Friday, November 6, 2009
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Melky's slash line stands at .292/.355/.463, good for an .819 OPS (114 OPS+). This is worlds better than last year, when he posted a .249/.301/.341 line, which comes out to a .641 OPS (68 OPS+). His career line is .272/.334/.389/.723/89. So Melky has gone from a below-average offensive player to an above-average one, at a position where league average play is considered to be very valuable. Let's dig a little deeper to see how Melky has improved. His walk rate stands at 9.4%, which is not great, but is a major step forward from last year's 6.5% and his career mark of 8.4%. We've also seen an increase in his line drive rate, which stands at 20.8% (18.6 last year, 18.9 career). This, as well as his improved plate discipline are reasons why his batting average is twenty points higher than his career mark. Perhaps most surprising about Melky's season is his improved power. Melky is slugging .463 after never having a season of better than .391 (2006 and 2007) and has an Iso of .171 after never doing better than .117 (2007). Now, one might argue that this is a product of the New Yankee Stadium, but his slugging percentage on the road is identical to his home mark.
Now, on to something Melky has always been able to do; play defense. Fangraphs has Melky as a +3.3 defender in centerfield, so he's been an asset on both offense and defense. He's been worth 1.6 Wins Above Replacement, which makes him worth $7.3 million, and considering he's getting paid $1.4 million this year, he's a tremendous bargain.
So what does the future hold for Melky? One thing we tend to forget is that Melky is just 24 years old, so he has plenty of development left, and if he can continue his current trend, he should be a valuable guy for years to come. With his step forward this year, along with Brett Gardner's solid rookie season, what seemed like the team's biggest hole last offseason has been shored up with low-cost players. This will give Austin Jackson more time to develop in the minors, or allow the Yankees to move him for a big return.
Monday, July 6, 2009
Thursday, July 2, 2009
The Yankees got a lead briefly in their half of the third on a Johnny Damon homer but the Mariners managed to manufacture a run in the fourth after a leadoff double by Javier Lopez to tie it back up. In the fifth when Melky hit a solo shot the Mariners came right back the next half an inning to tie it up again on a Ken Griffey Jr. homer. I'll say this for the Mariners, they definitely don't give up easily.
This tie wouldn't last that long though. With Washburn still in, Mark Texeira led off the sixth with a ground ball base hit jsut beyond the reach of the Mariner's third baseman. Next up was A-Rod and he continued his hot hitting with an absolute bomb to dead center. This was no cheap New Yankee Stadium home run. When it finally dropped into Monument Park, the Yankees pulled ahead for the final time. Andy would throw one more scoreless inning before giving way to Phil Coke and Alfredo Aceves, who combined for a scorelss eighth. Mariano ended it with an easy 1-2-3 inning in with the Mariners couldn't even lift the ball off of the ground.
Thursday, June 18, 2009
So, I want to take this moment to appreciate the Yankees MVP, Mark Teixeira. He's given us gold glove level defense and silver slugger worthy offense. He doesn't have Alex Rodriguez's flair for the dramatic but last night really was a great example of the type of player he is. He made a great play on defense that could have saved an extra base hit and almost started a rally to win the game in the 9th. A quietly excellent producer who everybody kind of forgot about after his April struggles. Worth every penny, at least so far.
Friday, May 29, 2009
Their are some conflicting reports about whether or not Melky is available tonight so I guess we'll have to wait until game time to find out.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
- Melky Cabrera had an MRI today and he likely will not need to go on the DL, as he should only be out 5-7 days after running into the wall and injuring his shoulder yesterday
- Brian Bruney visited Dr. James Andrews, who examined his elbow and found no structural damage. He has a flexor muscle strain, and apparently it was not fully healed when he came back. He'll likely be out 2-3 weeks, but it could be a lot worse, as many of us thought he may need TJ
- Jorge Posada is playing in extended spring training games and should be activated in Cleveland on Friday. That should be a boost for the offense
Saturday, May 23, 2009
For the first time, their was no giant bat or stands selling jerseys. Their were certainly some feelings of nostalgia as we walked past the old, condemned stadium as well. However, it was impossible to feel all that sad when the new stadium came into view. Walking into the "Great Hall" was simply mind-blowing. The massive pictures of great Yankees players and moments are just great tributes to their history and the spaciousness of it all is very welcome. Monument park was unfortunately closed two hours before the game so we couldn't get it, so we went straight to our seats after a quick trip to the (miraculously clean) bathroom.
We then proceded to watch eight of the worst innings of baseball I have even seen in person. It started out perfectly fine. Andy Pettitte held the other team scoreless for the first two innings before taking a hit in the third. Raul Ibanez absolutely crushed a ball to dead center to give the Phillies a run and a 1-0 lead. It would last though. Robinson Cano, who had a great game, led off the Yankees half of the third with a leadoff double (or error, depending on what team you root for) and scored with some small ball. Melky bunted him over to third and Nick Swisher got the RBI with a sharp groundout to the shortstop.
Both pitchers kept the opposition quiet for the next few innings, aided by a sliding catch in foul territory by Mark Teixeira. Then came the 5th and John Mayberry. Pettitte had been struggling with his control all afternoon and started off the inning with back to back walks before giving up a three run homer to a rookie making his ML debut named John Mayberry, of course inciting a mass orgasm amongst the Phillies fans arou
nd me. One, slightly drunk fan directly in front of me just kept repeating Mayberry's name. From here on out things were pretty dismal. Pettitte battled through seven innings without giving up any more runs and was followed by nearly perfect performances by Phil Coke (1 and 2/3 innings) and Jose Veras (1/3 of an inning). However, the only run they got was a solo shot by Jeter in the 6th. The only other time they came close to scoring was in the 8th when Brett Gardner got a pinch-hit double with one out. Even then, Matsui and Jeter followed up with back to back strike outs to blow the big chance. What was really incredible was how they failed to capitalize on Charlie Manuel removing dominant starter, J. A. Happ after only about 75 pitches.
By the time the ninth rolled around the stadium was pretty quiet. The fans woke up in a hurry though. Damon led off with a huge walk and took second while Mark Teixeira struck out. Then came who else but A-Rod. I have to admit that I didn't harbor much hope for him when they got two strikes on him and nodded in agreement when my dear mother felt a need to say, "He's so bad in the clutch." A couple pitches later he ties the game up against Brad Lidge with an opposite field home-run, hit the way only Alex can. The cheers and clapping went on long after Alex crossed home plate. The Yankees didn't waste any time winning it either. Robinson Cano quickly followed him up with a base hit and a rare steal of second which proved to be of the utmost importance. Melky Cabrera then laced a single to right centerfield and Cano ran on home drawing a late throw. It wasn't long before he got the now traditional pie in the face. Not a bad introduction to the new stadium at all.
On the way out we ran into a friend who used to sit near our old seats in years past. We also saw that Freddy (of the spoon and pan) had made the trip across the street and that today was his 84th birthday. On the way to the car, I couldn't resist taking a peek through the fence encircling The House That Ruth Built. However, their's no arguing that the new stadium is beautiful and makes powerful tributes to the Yankees proud past. Today gave me confidence that Mystique and Aura have moved across the street and that we to can make a new home for ourselves in this baseball nirvana.
Friday, May 1, 2009
Sorry this is so short but I'm in a rush.
Thursday, April 23, 2009
The Yanks are off to a pretty good start so far and a sweep in the upcoming series vs Boston would be real nice.
Monday, March 2, 2009
Melky's been in the big leagues for three years now. Intially, he displayed a ton of promise and earned himself some comparisons to perennial all-stars like Carlos Beltran from crazy people like myself. However, his offensive stats have declined across the board every year. Why? I don't know, but for some reason he lost all semblance of strike-zone judgement. After displaying some impressive plate discipline in 2006, that virtually vanished the next year and slipped even further in 2008. The dirty little secret that nobody realizes about Melky, though, is that he's not really such a great fielder after all. He's not really any better than average. His arm is great but his range, not so much. Melky is still young and he could still end up as a serviceable center fielder but probably not for the Yankees.
Gardner made his relatively unimpressive debut last year. A sub .300 SLG% won't cut it for the Yankees. However, 42 games is way to small a sample size to draw any conclusions from and he traditionally has started slow at new levels. In the minors Gardner profiled as the perfect leadoff hitter. He hit for a fairly high average and managed to walk a ton. The combination gave him an excellent OBP and when you combine that with the fact that he's the fastest white guy Nick Swisher has ever seen you`re going to get a really annoying and really good player. The problem is he has zero power. The theory that some fans, like nomaas.org, have been preaching is that with no home run threat, ML pitchers won't have to pitch around him. Then all those walks, and a huge chunk of his value, disappear. I can't really argue to much with that logic. Still, I`d give the job to Gardner. Simply because of his vastly superior fielding. Any of the stats we saw were of to small a sample size to use but just by watching the games we could tell that this guy is genuinely one of the best center fielders in baseball. I doubt either of them will hang onto the position past this year but for a one year fix, Gardner seems like the better option.
Thursday, February 19, 2009
“Along with a few other teams, we’re basically baseball’s stimulus package,” he said. “As long as we’re..giving all this money to other teams in revenue sharing, a staggering amount, we should be able to spend on salaries what we want to. Because of revenue sharing and because of the popularity nationwide, the Yankees are critical to baseball.”
Thursday, October 2, 2008
So, they`re probably going to have to trade for somebody. Nate McLouth, Matt Kemp, and David DeJesus have all been suggested.
Matt Kemp would be great to get. Cano for Kemp rumors were suggested at the trade deadline and now they`ve been revived. However, they seem unlikely to me. Besides, I`m not sure I`d be willing to give up Cano and other prospects for Kemp.
David DeJesus and Nate McLouth are much better options. They`re not great fielders, however, they can hold their own and, hopefully, Austin Jackson can bump them over to right or left field in 2010. Neither are to old and both are cheap.
Could Kennedy, Wright, Gardner, and Britton get a deal done for either of them? They would be getting two potential starters, an immediate replacement in centerfield, and a solid reliever who, for whatever reason, will never get a shot with the Yankees. I`m just speculating right now and I`d love any thoughts on this trade proposal in the comments section, even if you think I`m a ridiculous homer.
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Sunday, April 13, 2008
The lineups from Pete Abe:
Johnny Damon CF
Robinson Cano 2B
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Hideki Matsui LF
Jorge Posada DH
Jason Giambi 1B
Jose Molina C
Alberto Gonzalez SS
Jacoby Ellsbury LF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
J.D. Drew RF
Manny Ramirez DH
Kevin Youkilis 3B
Sean Casey 1B
Jason Varitek C
Coco Crisp CF
Julio Lugo SS
For those of you screaming over the fact that Melky is not playing and Damon is, it is because of these numbers:
Melky vs. Dice-K: .000/.125/.000
Damon vs. Dice-K: .385/.429/.615
Also, everyone needs a rest from time to time. I won't be liveblogging tonight, so unless Charlie steps in there won't be one.
Monday, March 3, 2008
Melky had a good day (2 for 3 with a double, walk and 2 runs) as did his buddy Robinson Cano (3 for 4 with 2 RBI and a run). Shelley Duncan continued his hot hitting, going 2 for 4 with a double. Morgan Ensberg also went 2 for 4 with a double. One player I was really happy with was Francisco Cervelli, who threw out two runners attempting to steal, and showed patience at the plate, going 1 for 1 with two walks.
Moose got roughed up a bit, but I wouldn't start worrying yet. Jeff Karstens pitched well, allowing no runs in three innings of work, giving up two hits and striking out two. Edwar Ramirez allowed an unearned run while striking out one in an inning of work. Steven Jackson pitched a perfect inning. Dan McCutchen pitched a scoreless inning, allowing a hit and striking out a batter. Mark Melancon got the save, pitching a perfect ninth, while getting two groundball outs.
Saturday, January 26, 2008
"My strong recommendation is we stick with our young pitching staff and keep it in-house.That's my recommendation, and we've fought hard to take one step back to take two giant steps forward."I agree, and it looks like they will stick with the youngsters. He later mentioned that Johnny Damon and Bobby Abreu were out of shape last spring. Hopefully that will change this year. He then said that Bernie's 2005 season was poor, and Joe Torre should not have played him over Melky.
Monday, January 21, 2008
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
I'm not sure I buy this. Okay, the stats are similar, but the difference is that Rios has a lot more power potential. Melky, as Sheehan mentioned, is small (5'11'', 200 according to Sheehan, 170 according to Baseball-Reference). Rios is 6'4 and 194. He's not much heavier, but overall he is bigger. Plus, Rios has room to fill out his frame, while Melky isn't getting much bigger.
Cabrera went backwards in ’07, but not by enough for concern. Remember that he is just 23 years old and has more than 1100 plate appearances in the majors, with average to average-plus defense (good physical tools, but very raw, takes bad routes) and a very good 129/96 K/BB. He is a mature player offensively, patient at the plate and fair on the bases (25-for-35 stealing in his career). One interesting quirk is his G/F ratio, which is 1.63 for his career and was a whopping 1.81 last season. Cabrera is listed at 5’11” and 200 pounds. He’s not Willy Taveras, but rather a player who should be developing power and learning how to drive the ball, rather than hitting the ball on the ground 60 percent of the time.
I’m reminded of Alex Rios, who doesn’t look a thing like Cabrera. Rios was largely disappointing in 2004 and 2005, hitting just 11 homers in more than 900 at-bats, with an isolated power of 117. The problem: Rios was hitting the ball on the ground too much, a 1.82 G/F in those two seasons. Starting in ’06, Rios put the ball in the air more than half the time, and became a star. When you look at Cabrera’s body, his established control of the strike zone, and his ability to hold his own at a young age, you recognize that all it’s going to take is for him to start elevating the ball. Cabrera may not get there in 2008, but he’s going to pop 80 extra-base hits and slug .500 in a season very, very soon.
Sheehan could be right, and if he is I would be elated. I think people underrate Melky. I think he could be a productive MLB hitter, but not as good as Rios. His production will come mostly from his OBP and not his SLG.