Why Robinson Cano going to Seattle is no big deal for a Yankee fan

Robinson Cano holds a bat prior to a game betw...

Robinson Cano holds a bat prior to a game between the New York Yankees and Baltimore Orioles on August 28, 2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Does Robinson Cano need the money? I know it’s been a very long time since I posted here on The Outfield. Since Winter Storm Hercules has kept me home today, I thought I would share some thoughts.

The obvious answer to my question is no, Cano doesn’t need the money. But does anyone?

Before you say I’m just a bitter Yankee fan ranting about the loss of Cano, I have news for you, I wish him the best in Seattle.

I can’t argue with Cano’s production and what he’s done for the Yankees. On the field, yes, it is a loss, but over the long-term, this is a good move for New York. Time has certainly come for the organization to stop with long-term contracts that handicap the team later on.

I can cite numerous examples of long-term contracts in baseball that will hamper teams’ ability to sign younger, more productive talent. Players have come a long way in compensation, and in many situations to the detriment of a club’s ability to win long-term.

Cano, while a big talent and a household name, didn’t fill the seats. I watched numerous games from the comfort of my couch this past season. Without A-Rod or Jeter, there were many empty seats. If Cano couldn’t fill seats, is his on-field performance truly an asset?

If additions like McCann, Beltran and Ellsbury will attract fans to the Stadium, time will tell. I think they will. The off-season additions will fit with manager Joe Girardi’s desired style of baseball. The Yankees gave out some large contracts to these players, but the value is worth more than a single player.

The business of baseball never ends. Teams want to win championships, but owners want to fill seats. A player’s worth is more than just performance. It is the name on the jersey, the brand that player has become. Cano wasn’t that brand for the Yankees.

As the snow falls, I look forward to the new baseball season. Go Yankees.

Thanks for reading! All comments and feedback are always welcome!

 

Jorge Posada to retire

Jorge Posada

Image via Wikipedia

Jorge Posada plans to retire according to reports. The Yankee catcher was one-quarter of the “Core Four” creating the Yankee Dynasty in the 1990s and winning another World Series title in 2009. Posada was to Yankee fans what Jason Varitek is to the Red Sox Nation. This Yankee fan will certainly miss Jorge.

A career .273 hitter; 275 HRs, and career OPS of .848, Jorge won’t be in Cooperstown. His numbers are simply not there. However, like Don Mattingly, Posada elicits strong emotions from Yankee faithful. Jorge’s passion for the game and his position was never more clear than last season’s tantrum when he moved to DH. Posada was the right piece to the puzzle along with Jeter, Rivera, and Pettite.

Those of us who grew up watching the Core Four will forever be grateful for Posada’s services. We will be grateful for his committment to the team. His legacy will be more than calloused hands from batting with no gloves. Jorge will always be a Yankee favorite.  Who knows, the managerial ranks may come calling sooner or later. Are we sad to see him leave? Of course. However, there is simply no way we could see Posada in any other uniform. Now is the right time for him to go.

Thanks Jorge! Enjoy your retirement.

Phillies and Yankees In the 2011 World Series: A Prediction

Roy Halladay

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The New York Yankees and Philadephia Phillies will meet in the World Series. Philadelphia is the dominant team in the National League playoffs. While the Phillie offense isn’t the most potent, the Phillies have what every team strives for….pitching.

The Phillie rotation is strong and reliable. The Phillies rotation is, arguably, the best in the playoffs right now. This is true for either league. It is for this reason, and this reason alone, I predict the Phillies will beat the Yankees and win the World Series. New York will bring the lumber. Granderson, Cano, and Teixeira will be swinging. The problem lies with Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee. Fans must remember 2010 and the ALCS. Lee had the Yankees number. He was as close to un-hittable as any pitcher can be.

Halladay is phenomenal and will be problematic for Yankee hitters. The flip side, Sabathia will do well. Ivan Nova is proving to be worth more than his $432,000 salary. From my perspective however, that’s about as good as it gets for the Yankees rotation. AJ Burnett‘s inconsistency makes him unreliable. We don’t know which Burnett will show in Game 4 of the ALDS let alone in subsequent series.

The Yankees can’t rely solely on offensive output. Not to mention, I think the Phillies will have an easier run through the NLDS and NLCS than the Yanks’ in the American League. Simply put, the Yankees will be tired. Detroit will play tough. Regardless if the Rangers or Rays make the ALCS, either team is capable of giving the Yankees a rough ride. In the end the Yankees will make it there, but not without a few bumps.

As a Yankee fan it is difficult to make this prediction. As an objective blogger, I have to do what I have to do.

Prediction: Phillies win in 6, (I hope I’m wrong).

 

October Baseball Is Here! Let the Playoffs Begin!

Cliff Lee pitching for the first time as a mem...

Image via Wikipedia

The epic final games of the regular season prove how great of a game baseball is. Regardless of what team is your favorite, no one can deny how exciting and entertaining the end of the 2011 regular season was. Sorry Boston fans, maybe next year. Please don’t blame the Yankees for your self-destruction in September. While everyone is talking about the Red Sox collapse, and Atlanta’s implosion, how about we talk about something more important…the playoffs.

The odds are on the Phillies to win the World Series with New York right behind Philadelphia. My prediction: Yankees and Phillies in the World Series. A World Series Champion prediction will come later. Let’s take a quick look at the divisional series matchups.

New York vs. Detroit: The ALDS will be a challenge for the Yanks. Sabathia, Nova, and Garcia are set. Sending Burnett to the bullpen is the smart move as his unpredictability is simply too much of a risk for the playoffs. Game 1 Friday night will truly set the tone of this series. Justin Verlander has the stuff to shutdown the Yankee lineup. New York will need to give Sabathia tremendous run support. Game 1 can go either way.

Series prediction: Yankees in five.

Tampa Bay vs. Texas: C.J. Wilson is about to become a truly household name. Tampa Bay’s pitching is the key to staying in the hunt. The Rays are rolling and will bring their surprise offense. In the end however, Texas sees a return trip to the ALCS. The Rangers high-powered offense ultimately wins the day.

Series prediction: Rangers win in four.

St. Louis vs. Philadelphia: There is not much to say with this series. The Cards are in really for the same reason Atlanta is out: the Braves blew it. The Phillies are carrying, arguably, one of the top rotations in baseball history. Halladay is contending for the NL Cy Young and Cliff Lee will be Cliff Lee. The Phillies offense isn’t as threatening as past seasons. However, a solid lineup behind this rotation is simply too dominant.

Series prediction: Phillies win in four.

Milwaukee vs. Arizona: The Brewers clinched home field advantage and as such, will clinch the NLDS. The combination of Ryan Braun and Prince Fielder, along with a solid lineup will win the series. The Diamondbacks have Upton offensively and seem to be placing all their eggs in one basket with Ian Kennedy. There’s something brewing in Milwaukee and the Diamondbacks won’t keep pace.

Series prediction: Brewers win in four.

Of course, I could be completely wrong. I once predicted Boston to win the East, Minnesota in the Central and a team from Colorado to take the NL West. In the end, what truly matters is October baseball is here. If the end of the season is any indication of what’s to come, we are all in a for a treat.

Agree? Disagree? Let me know what you think!

Opinion: Yes Yankee Fans, the Bronx Bombers Should Play to Win the Game

Bench-clearing brawl on June 5, 2008 game betw...

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As stated numerous times before I am a lifelong Yankee fan. I am ecstatic over the fact the Yankees not only made the playoffs, but clinched both the Division and home-field advantage. That being said, the Yankees find themselves in an interesting position. The final 3-game series of the regular season is against the Tampa Bay Rays. Tampa Bay trails Boston by 1 game in the Wild Card race. The Yankees should, and I believe will play to win the game.

The Red Sox are slumping and seem to be the team anyone would want to play in the post-season right now. However, look at their lineup. The playoffs bring out something special in all teams. Now throw in a struggling Red Sox team with hitters like Adrian Gonzalez, Dustin Pedroia, and Jacoby Ellsbury into a playoff situation. I would not want to be the opposing pitcher. The Red Sox will not struggle forever. They face the Baltimore Orioles beginning tonight and just may “wake-up” and put on a show. The potential of what the Red Sox can be is enough for all contenders in the 2011 playoffs to become Rays and Orioles fans.

The Yankees could easily put a second tier team on the field in the final series. However, here is why the won’t, and they shouldn’t: they do not want to devalue their 2011 post-season run. The potential lies for the Yanks to simply “let” the Rays take the series and potentially knock Boston out entirely. The Yanks won’t do this because you play to win the game. They shouldn’t do this because many fans, myself included, will be greatly disappointed. Second, the fans paying to see these games in person are not paying very good money to watch the Bombers not put in 100% effort.

Finally, the Yankees possess too much class, character, and history to not play hard night in and night out.

I am not presuming the Yankees will dominate the American League playoffs. They may not make it past the ALDS. If the Yankees do, and they don’t play the Red Sox in the ALCS because of New York’s performance in this final series of the regular season….I digress.

In the end, my point is moot. The Yankees will play hard, the Red Sox will play hard, and so will Tampa Bay. Not to mention, these last three games for the Baltimore Orioles might as well be the World Series. Sit back baseball fans, and enjoy the show.

Agree? Disagree? Let me know what you think!