Wednesday, January 14, 2015


What's cooking in week ten of our BYB Hot Stove series?  Not much.  It's just about a month before pitchers and catchers report and the 2015 Yankees don't look any different than how we left them in 2014, or do they?

I read an interesting column posted on earlier this week and I'm sort of okay with it.  Here is how the article starts off:  "These Yankees, they get it. They value versatility. They're diligent about defense. They're avoiding the payroll pitfalls of the top-of-the-market long-term pitching contracts that have burned ballclubs in the Bronx and beyond. They've propped up their once-barren prospect stash."  We have avoided laying out a ton of cash for guys because we wanted to beat out the Red Sox or because we thought "he" could be the answer.  Although tempting, the Yankees have avoided signing guys like Max Scherzer and James Shields.  They didn't pay big bucks for a shortstop to "replace" Derek Jeter.  They haven't added a big dollar big bat to replace an ailing Mark Teixeira or ARod.  Many have said, the Yankees have learned their lesson.  I say, there is still something up their sleeves.

"The answer this club, as currently constructed, is providing largely revolves around two concepts -- a bullpen that routinely locks down late leads and a defense drastically improved over what the Yanks fielded in the first half of '14," states the same article.  Could Cole Hamels still be in their future, perhaps.  "It's not outlandish to suggest the Yankees, one of two AL teams reportedly not on his no-trade list, have actually accrued enough young talent to pry him from the Phillies. And as crazy as it sounds, the four years and $96 million still guaranteed to Hamels are not all that onerous in this marketplace."

It is possible that we still may get Hamels even though Phillies fans are saying he is going to San Diego and they are going to get a crack at Wil Myers as an opening fixture for the rebuilding year for the club.  However, according to Jon Heyman, Myers will not be the centerpiece of a deal with Hamels.  "The conversation has turned to a prospect package, of which the Padres can still manage even with all of the deals they have made this offseason, but it's worth pointing out that nothing is close yet and the Padres aren't alone in this. The Red Sox are still interested, though, the Padres' interest likely diminishes their ability to get the deal they would want, and the Cardinals have reportedly jumped in on both Hamels and David Price in their search for one more reliable starter." This could come down to the wire.

The Padres and Giants have an interest in Mets starter Dillon Gee.  According to NY Daily News Andy Martino, there could even be a three team deal brewing over Gee. Back in December, Martino wrote that "league sources peg the Giants and Royals as two teams that have expressed interest in Gee. The Giants have also asked again about (Daniel) Murphy, according to a source, but the Mets are inclined to keep their second baseman."  The talks are not over according to Martino.  Now we see teams like the Rays and Nationals with interest.  Other players being discussed in this potential trade include Ian Desmond, Ben Zobrist, Jon Niese and Bartolo Colon. We may see something here in the coming days or weeks.

Ken Rosenthal is reporting that Ryan Howard could bring potential to teams looking for a big bat in their lineup.  "As long as Ryan Howard can hit home runs the Phillies should be able to find a team that wants him if they pay a good deal of his salary."  Teams that could potentially be interested according to include "Tigers, Royals, Angels, Yankees, Rangers, Rays, Orioles and Red Sox."  Here we go again.

So, that's it for this week's Hot Stove.  Things continue to heat up and that's good because spring is just around the corner.

--Suzie Pinstripe, BYB Senior Staff Writer

BYB Hot Stove Columnist
Twitter: @suzieprof

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