Category Archives: MLB

The Only Person Who Can Be Upset with the Yankees After 11 Games Is Clint Frazier

Fans have been upset that the Yankees are not a good baseball team right now. But like my co-host Stanzo says, there’s a lot of reasons to be positive. The big guys will hit, we should get some length out of our starters as time goes on, and the defense should get better when Voit comes back.

We shouldn’t be that upset (yet), I can settle for disappointed right now. But if there’s one person who absolutely SHOULD be upset, it’s a guy who actually plays for the Yankees…at times. Clint Frazier.

We were told this off-season, as was he by Aaron Boone, that he is the starting left fielder. He “earned” it. On top of his electric bat and his hustle on the bases, his defense has gotten better and he’s greatly matured as a person (although I never really saw that as an issue) into what people consider a “Yankee”.

And now, with the Yankees offense stalling he is getting pinch-hit opportunities and getting his spot taken by Brett Gardner. That makes no sense to me, and it should make no sense to him. He can make a difference offensively and when our guys are hitting noticeably bad, he’s on the bench?

We’re getting a platoon in left field between him and Gardner, and that’s not what we or he was promised. And it’s not like he’s even played bad enough to lose his spot. He’s not Jay Bruce or Tyler Wade. He had a tough stretch from April 6-9 where he went 0-13 with 6 Ks, granted. But if we’re giving everybody else the benefit of the doubt, why does he not get the same treatment?

I hope he sees consistent playing time soon because I like really like Frazier and his potential, but the Yankees haven’t shown they want to do that for him. If not, all the trade deadline rumors around Frazier will start swirling again. This time though, it wouldn’t be for the Yankees benefit…it would be for his.

WHY LINDOR IS THE MOST IMPORTANT METS CONTRACT OF THE NEXT DECade

It’s no secret the New York Mets are under new ownership. Billionaire hedge fund guru Steve Cohen bought the team from the Wilpons this past offseason, who frustrated Mets fans for a very long time. Whether it was an unwillingness to spend, an incompetency in the money they did spend, or just a general disconnect between the front office and the product on the field, loyal Mets fans gladly moved on from them and finally got the owner they deserved.

There was a great excitement around Cohen’s first offseason, which all in all went well. One of the biggest moves Cohen, GM Sandy Alderson, and the Mets made was obviously trading a significant package for All Start shortstop Francisco Lindor (which also included a great pitcher in Carlos Carrasco). But, there was one caveat with this move, and that is Lindor is in the final year of his contract and is expecting big money in an extension.

Negotiations started over a week ago, but have stalled as Lindor’s Opening Day, first pitch deadline quickly approaches. The Mets offered 10 years, $325 million as a best and final offer, but Lindor wants 12 years, $385 million. Neither side has budged yet.

For some obvious and some not-so-obvious, this extension is the most important signing the Mets front office will be taking part in over the course of the next decade. Here’s why:

FRANSISCO LINDOR IS A STUD

Simple enough. He’s 26 years old right now, he has a .285 career batting average, .833 OPS, 27.9 WAR, has a ton of playoff experience, and, as intangible as it seems, has the personality of a New York superstar that will fit perfectly on a championship roster.

Lindor can be the face of the franchise for years to come, and locking him up through his prime ensures the Mets can be offensively and defensively sound while they look to compete in the 3-5 year championship window Cohen set.

But…with that window comes expectations. From the fans, and from the players. Which brings me to my next point.

ARE THE METS ACTUALLY BIG SPENDERS?

When Cohen became owner, many fans expected a huge offseason that entailed signing George Springer, J.T. Realmuto, or Trevor Bauer. Instead, they signed catcher James McCann and traded for Lindor/Carrasco as the biggest moves.

I think most fans, while still wanting a larger splash, settled happily for the McCann signing and trade. They didn’t get the big signing they wanted, but the Mets were in on a lot of the guys originally discussed and made no hesitation in actually offering big money. It just didn’t work out for a plethora of reasons (see Blue Jays overpaying Springer or Bauer being a troll).

But because those signings didn’t pan out, there is an expectation a Francisco Lindor extension gets done. They gave up two future shortstops for him in Rosario and Jimenez, and if they don’t get the extension then you have to deal with finding your future shortstop in free agency when Lindor, and a large amount of other top-notch shortstops, hit the market this offseason.

The problem with that is, if you were going to just sign a shortstop in free agency, why did you make the trade? Sure, you can argue the Mets are in a championship window now, but you have to compete for a title THIS season with Lindor in order for it to look like a good deal.

If it doesn’t, the first year of the Cohen ownership feels a lot like empty promises, and it makes you question if/when the Mets front office plans to spend the money they feel like they now have. It felt like the roster was going to be fun toy for Cohen to play with, but the more he sets price ceilings the more it starts to feel like a business.

That makes you question…if the Mets aren’t going to go all-in on the guy they clearly traded for and planned on extending, when will they do it?

THE PRECEDENT

Now is where it gets tricky though. What is the precedent the ownership wants to set with their money? That, while offering significant contracts to many players, they will put their foot down on an amount? Or that they will get players whatever it takes because they can afford it?

Agents, like fans, certainly thought the Mets might be desperate to reward Queens with a high-caliber, high-salaried roster. Instead, the Mets have strategically and smartly built a solid roster without overspending. And they’ve made it clear by walking on Springer and not considering Realmuto they won’t be taken advantage of just because of Cohen’s net worth.

By letting Lindor head into free agency, they are setting the precedent that they will absolutely put their foot down. Sure, they’ll spend, but they WILL NOT overpay.

And that is so important going into Cohen’s future because when all the amazing shortstops hit the market after this season, nobody is going to walk into a meeting with the Mets thinking they’ll be getting Mike Trout or Mookie Betts money. They’ll have realistic expectations, and the Mets won’t be crippled financially by the luxury tax.

So with all that said, the lingering effects of this Lindor extension starts on the field, trickles over to public perception, and finds itself all the way into the front office for at least the next decade. It’ll be very interesting to see which way Steve Cohen and the Mets organization decide to go.

MLB Rule changes: what stays & what goes?

The 2020 Major League Baseball season has been like no other – 60 games, no fans in the seats, 16 teams in the playoffs, and several other rule changes.  Though the bulk of these rule changes are temporary, the powers that be could ultimately decide to keep some of these rules for future seasons.  As a result, I would like to share my views of which rules I would like to keep and which I would like to toss.  I am going to list these in order from “most strongly want to keep” to “most strongly want to toss”.  Thus, without further ado, here are my thoughts.

MLB makes it official: The three-batter minimum rule is here
Picture via Yahoo! Sports
  1. If a reliever enters a game mid-inning, he must pitch to at least three batters or the end of the half-inning – DEFINITELY KEEP

OK, I know that MLB actually introduced this rule pre-Covid, but, since it officially debuted on the field in 2020, I am addressing it anyway.  Simply put, I love this rule.  I am a baseball purist, and most purists hate this rule.  However, the purist in me believes that starting pitchers should pitch until they are no longer effective, and relievers should do the same.  I do not love that the game has evolved to a point in which the standard is for teams to use six relievers per game.  Thus, I believe that anything that can trim that number is a good thing.  Plus, I think that relief pitchers are the biggest reason why games are longer than they were in previous generations.  Pitching changes lengthen games, and relievers tend to pitch at a slower pace than starters.  After all, starters want to find a rhythm, which is hard to accomplish at a slow pace (unless you are Steve Trachsel); whereas relievers pitch to so few batters that deliberation outweighs any need to find rhythm.  The 2020 “three-batter rule” does not address this second issue, but at least it does address the first in allowing for fewer pitching change.  I like this rule, even if it means an angry mob of situational lefties will be knocking down my door.  Sorry, Jerry Blevins.

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My Advice to Tatis, Jr.? Next Time, Swing Harder

If you’re wondering what every baseball fan on Twitter is talking about today, look no further than right here:

On Monday night, Fernando Tatis, Jr., hit a grand slam off Texas Rangers pitcher Ian Gibaut. The score was 10-3 in the top of the 8th. Doesn’t really seem like a big deal, right?

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Taking a Deeper Look at the Yankees’ Grooming Policy

The Yankees’ long-standing hair policy was making waves on Twitter on Monday after some comments from former Yankee Andrew McCutchen. McCutchen was only here for the second half of 2018, but he’s an awesome dude and quickly became a fan favorite.

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Do I Have A Crush On Giancarlo Stanton?

Giancarlo Stanton has not reached expectations so far as a Yankee. Injuries really have set back Stanton and hindered his play throughout his tenure with the Yanks. I know many Yankees fans have become restless when it comes too Stanton, however, I still love the guy. Stanton can do no wrong to me, even after drilling Tanaka in the head with a piss missile off his bat this past weekend. I don’t know how Tanaka is alive let alone how he was smiling later that day in the hospital.Of course when Stanton is healthy, he takes it into his own hands to pass his injury bug on to his teammates.

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A Comprehensive Look at Brian Cashman’s Starting Pitching Moves

Brian Cashman is the longest-tenured GM in baseball. After starting as an intern in 1986 and being promoted to assistant GM in 1992, Cashman was named the General Manager prior to the 1998 season. He was reluctant to take the job, as he knew that George Steinbrenner had a history of firing people in power positions any given moment. Luckily for Cashman, the Yankees went on to win the World Series in his first three seasons at the helm.

In the twenty seasons since the Yanks’ 2000 World Series victory, Cashman’s teams have experienced multiple phases with varying levels of success. The 2001-07 seasons were littered with playoff disappointment. The free agency splurge ahead of the 2009 season produced a title immediately, but that core failed to win it all again. The 2013-16 teams were a pathetic group of aging veterans that appeared in only one playoff game. And finally, Aaron Judge helped usher in the “Baby Bombers” era with a team that came within one game of the World Series in 2017.

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60 Reasons to Get Excited for MLB’s 60 Game Season

  1. Every Game Matters

With the season being just 60 games instead of the usual 162, teams won’t get the chance to mail it in if they’re losing a game. This season isn’t a marathon, it’s a sprint.

2. Old Faces in New Places

Among other moves, World Series hero Anthony Rendon switched leagues and signed with the Angels, Gerrit Cole left the Astros for the rival Yankees, and the Red Sox traded former MVP Mookie Betts to the Dodgers.

3. Mike Trout Doing Mike Trout Things

4. The DH in the National League

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Storylines For All Nine of the Yankees’ Opponents This Season

Boston Red Sox: Will the Rivalry Be Renewed in 2020?

After the Sox handled the Yankees in the 2018 ALDS, they were a completely different team in 2019. A combination of injuries and an ineffective pitching staff led to the Sox winning 24 less games than they did the year before, as the Yankees coasted to a 14-5 regular season record against them. After trading Mookie Betts and David Price and losing ace Chris Sale to Tommy John surgery, will this year’s group be able to bring back some firepower to the rivalry?

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It’s Time to Let the Steroid Guys in the Hall of Fame

So not everyone loved Long Gone Summer on Sunday night, and I get the criticism. It was disproportionately focused on McGwire instead of Sosa, and kind of glossed over the fact that they were both on steroids. However, I enjoyed it for two reasons. One, the doc wasn’t really supposed to be about the steroid usage or the implications of it. It was supposed to be 120 minutes of dingers, and that’s exactly what they gave us. And two, it’s pretty impossible to make a documentary about the 1998 MLB season and have it not be entertaining. Steroid era baseball content is like pizza, even the bad kinds are still pretty damn good.

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