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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Brewers Sign Yuniesky Betancourt

The Brewers signed infielder Yuniesky Betancourt to a Major League deal, according to a press release from his agency.  He’d been the team’s starting shortstop in 2011.

Betancourt, 31, hit .228/.256/.400 in 228 plate appearances for the Royals last year, playing mostly second base.

The District Attorney Posted: March 26, 2013 at 03:52 PM | 67 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: brewers, transactions, yuniesky betancourt

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   1. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:20 PM (#4397023)
This is the second team that is employing Yuni for a second stint. Yuni is the herpes of baseball.
   2. Esoteric Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:28 PM (#4397032)
Ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha.

HA!

EDIT: What I don't get is...who decides, upon getting an up-close look at Yuni, to bring him back for a second go-round? He brings nothing whatsoever to the table.
   3. Zach Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:29 PM (#4397033)
"Mostly second" base is a fun concept. I imagine it's like "Kind of Blue," only for baseball.

"You squares, man, you come in here with your rules and your bases. We like to do our own thing, feel the groove."

It could also be a sly commentary on his defensive positioning.
   4. Drexl Spivey Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:31 PM (#4397036)
The YuniBomber will likely get most of the starts at first base for the Brewers until Hart returns.

####.
   5. 'Spos Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:33 PM (#4397039)
Not the Yankees?
   6. Ron J2 Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:36 PM (#4397043)
#4 Any team that finds itself starting Betancourt at first should fire the GM.

You can sort of defend playing him in the middle infield (I mean it's not an ideal choice but he's somewhere in the top 90 middle infielders I think. Not that it matters much once you get past the #50 spot)
   7. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:40 PM (#4397047)
Kyle Lohse +2.5 WAR
Yuniesky Betancourt -1.0 WAR
Net +1.5 WAR
   8. morineko Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:41 PM (#4397048)
The Brewers do bring back a lot of players for Round 2. Usually Round 2 involves some time at Nashville first, but this isn't unprecedented. Now, if they had said "minor league deal" I would have been all for it--the worst that could happen is that he backs up Hainley Statia a couple of times a week.
   9. McCoy Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:44 PM (#4397051)
It really is Wrigley North up there and Wisconsin really does seem to be 10 years behind everyone else.
   10. Walt Davis Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:49 PM (#4397060)
On a ML deal?

I need to hire Yuni's agent.
   11. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:53 PM (#4397065)
You can sort of defend playing him in the middle infield (I mean it's not an ideal choice but he's somewhere in the top 90 middle infielders I think. Not that it matters much once you get past the #50 spot)


There are 87 middle infielders (80% of games at 2B/SS) who got 100+ PAs from 2010-2012, and by WAR Yuni is 87th of that group. If he's in the top 90, he's barely in the top 90; he's sub-replacement at bat and in the field.

He's also never played a professional game at 1B and is a crappy fielder overall. If the plan really is to start him at first -- really? Really really? -- you can't even depend on the solid D you'd hope for out of a converted middle infielder.
   12. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:55 PM (#4397068)
If the plan really is to start him at first

His career 82 OPS+ screams 1B to me.
   13. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:57 PM (#4397071)
and...bottom. Ok, time to get a new barrel.
   14. McCoy Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:58 PM (#4397072)
I'm beginning to wonder if LaHair regrets going to Japan.
   15. SG Posted: March 26, 2013 at 04:59 PM (#4397076)
Thank you Milwaukee, for snapping him up before Cashman could.
   16. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:03 PM (#4397080)
There are 87 middle infielders (80% of games at 2B/SS) who got 100+ PAs from 2010-2012, and by WAR Yuni is 87th of that group. If he's in the top 90, he's barely in the top 90; he's sub-replacement at bat and in the field.


Heck, I'd get Miguel Cairo out of retirement before I got Yuni. And I hate Miguel Cairo.
   17. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:08 PM (#4397088)
yuni is getting paid more than the league minimum. talk about another stick in the eye.

doug wouldn't have done this if he didn't have his manager's approval and possible doing it at ron's behest. shame on both of them

it's not just that the player is subpar. he's lazy. he is a legitimate lollygagger both in the field and on the bases. there are documented cases visible to the untrained eye where Betancourt just flat out didn't try.

why do you sign someone with that in this playing history? do you want that on a team?

if so i don't know what to think. it defies explanation
   18. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:18 PM (#4397090)

it's not just that the player is subpar. he's lazy. he is a legitimate lollygagger both in the field and on the bases. there are documented cases visible to the untrained eye where Betancourt just flat out didn't try.


Not only that, but the last team that let him go did so because he was disruptive in the clubhouse. So he has that going for him too.
   19. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:25 PM (#4397097)
poorly skilled, lazy and a malcontent

that is what the brewers sought out to 'help' the team?

really???
   20. zonk Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:27 PM (#4397100)
This is the second team that is employing Yuni for a second stint. Yuni is the herpes of baseball.


I'd say it's too late for 'herpes' to become Yuni's official BTF nickname, ala the Run Fairy and a few other classics, but teams keep giving him jobs, so maybe not.

In a way, it kinda makes me sad that Yuni isn't a few years older.

I mean, tell me the dude isn't screaming to have had membership in F Troop... but alas, I think the universe believes that Cubs fans have suffered enough (and will have plenty of active suffering aside from the quality of their F-utility IFers), so I doubt it will ever come to pass.
   21. Dan Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:29 PM (#4397101)
Who does he push off of the roster? Bianchi?
   22. geonose Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:37 PM (#4397105)
Clearly Yuni casts a spell over all he comes into contact with, because two organizations have deliberately acquired him twice.

Beware, Mariners fans, for you are next.
   23. The Ghost's Tryin' to Reason with Hurricane Season Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:38 PM (#4397108)
Veteran Presence, people. Sheesh, do I have to explain EVERYTHING to you guys?

The only thing Yuni excelled at in Seattle was racing on the field to pummel a guy who got a walk-off hit. He was always there first, and I was worried that someday he'd tackle a guy before he reached first base.
   24. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:39 PM (#4397109)
poorly skilled, lazy and a malcontent


is a good way to go through life, evidently.
   25. Esoteric Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:40 PM (#4397111)
it's not just that the player is subpar. he's lazy. he is a legitimate lollygagger both in the field and on the bases. there are documented cases visible to the untrained eye where Betancourt just flat out didn't try.

why do you sign someone with that in this playing history? do you want that on a team?
This was exactly the point of my bitter "ahahahaha" post above. I saw Betancourt's ugly deterioration up close from the front row as a Mariners fan. By the end of his time there he was a world-class lollygagger (love that word!) whose natural defensive abilities -- and yes, there was once a time when he was thought of as a legitimate 'plus' defender -- had atrophied from indifference and bad habits to the point where he was a disgrace.

So I cannot possibly comprehend why the Brewers, having suffered through his "services" as starting shortstop once already, would want to have him back again. (The Royals? Well I just assume they're dumb.) This guy was out of Major League baseball. He wouldn't have gotten an ML job anywhere, were it not for this! Could the Brewers not find a warm body SOMEWHERE in their system?
   26. The Fallen Reputation of Billy Jo Robidoux Posted: March 26, 2013 at 05:59 PM (#4397127)
My guess (read: hope) is that Hart's return will bump Yuni off the roster, as Alex Gonzalez can become the infield backup.
   27. dr. scott Posted: March 26, 2013 at 06:00 PM (#4397128)
He clearly has photos of someone and a cocker spaniel. He mayhave borrowed them from nefi Perez.
   28. JoeHova Posted: March 26, 2013 at 06:00 PM (#4397131)
What in the ############# #### is Doug ############# Melvin doing? This absolutely sucks. I already bought Extra Innings (or more accurately, MLB decided I was an auto-renew customer even though I don't recall authorizing that) for this season. Is it too late to get a refund?
   29. John Northey Posted: March 26, 2013 at 06:39 PM (#4397156)
Geez, what must it be like for whoever was in line to play 1B...replaced by a guy who can't hit well enough to be a backup middle infielder. Ick.
   30. JJ1986 Posted: March 26, 2013 at 06:44 PM (#4397158)
Geez, what must it be like for whoever was in line to play 1B...replaced by a guy who can't hit well enough to be a backup middle infielder. Ick.


Unfortunately, that guy was also a backup middle infielder.
   31. The Fallen Reputation of Billy Jo Robidoux Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:03 PM (#4397168)
Local reporting says that Gonzalez will remain the starting 1B, with Yuni! as an infield backup:

If you call Alex Gonzalez the starting first baseman, three reserve roles would go to catcher Martin Maldonado, outfielder Logan Schafer and Betancourt.


(The two players leading the 1B depth chart are injured).
   32. vortex of dissipation Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:04 PM (#4397169)
Yuniesky Betancourt, the team's free-swinging starting shortstop in 2011, is a physical exam away from re-signing on a one-year Major League deal and breaking camp as the Brewers' utility infielder. He will undergo that physical on Wednesday, and if the deal goes through, Betancourt could earn up to $1.4 million, including incentives.


One point four bloody million?
   33. Drexl Spivey Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:15 PM (#4397171)
First base options for the Brewers at the start of the year:

1. Corey Hart: On the DL
2. Mat Gamel: Out for the year; on the DL
3. Taylor Green: On the DL
4. Khris Davis: Too shitty defensively to handle the move from LF to 1B
5. Hunter Morris: The Brewers apparently don't want to put the guy on the 40 man roster or to start his service time clock
6. Alex Gonzalez

Now Yuni. On the plus side, it cannot possibly get any worse.
   34. Walt Davis Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:16 PM (#4397173)
Up to $1.4 million though! Hopefully that's league minimum with a $1 M bonus if he makes the AS team.

Seriously, Derrek Lee is really THAT unavailable. Heck, I think I'd call Carlos Lee before Yuni. I might call Cecil Cooper first. Does Cecil Fielder have any other sons? Really, no 1B or corner OF anywhere in the system that doesn't look like a better option? How is that possible?
   35. zonk Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:17 PM (#4397174)
Yuniesky Betancourt, the team's free-swinging starting shortstop in 2011, is a physical exam away from re-signing on a one-year Major League deal and breaking camp as the Brewers' utility infielder. He will undergo that physical on Wednesday, and if the deal goes through, Betancourt could earn up to $1.4 million, including incentives.



One point four bloody million?


Now, now... we don't quite know what the incentives to reach 1.4 million are.

For example, if his turds come out in the form of gold bars that the Brewers get to keep, that might be worth it.

If he rushes for 1000 yards for the Packers, that might be worth it.

If he cures cancer, that might be worth it.

Sheesh, people, let's not jump to convulsions... errr... conclusions here.
   36. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:26 PM (#4397180)
Who's laughing now? Kevin Towers, that's who's laughing now!
   37. Drexl Spivey Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:28 PM (#4397181)
If you want to see something funny, check out the brewcrewball.com article about the signing.

http://www.brewcrewball.com/2013/3/26/4149858/brewers-re-sign-yuniesky-betancourt-as-part-of-campaign-to-find-least

So far, 0 of the 328 comments on the page have been in favor of this signing.
   38. Hang down your head, Tom Foley Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:34 PM (#4397185)
He doesn't show up on baseball-reference's active hits leaderboard, but he has 974, putting him right in the middle of what I consider his peer group.

91. Hunter Pence (629991 R 
92. Brian McCann 
(828979 L 
93. Matt Kemp 
(727962 R 
94. Billy Butler 
(626956 R 
   39. zonk Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:36 PM (#4397186)
http://www.brewcrewball.com/2013/3/26/4149858/brewers-re-sign-yuniesky-betancourt-as-part-of-campaign-to-find-least

So far, 0 of the 328 comments on the page have been in favor of this signing.


This may be bad for Brewers fans, but it's a golden age for people looking to restock their animated gif libraries...
   40. Greg K Posted: March 26, 2013 at 07:45 PM (#4397190)
Betancourt was playing in a game earlier this Spring that my friend and I were watching. As he had never heard of him, he asked why I kept saying he was such an awful player.

About 5 minutes later Betancourt rounded third after someone had hit a single and, since the 3B had drifted off to deal with the cut-off throw, decided to dance about 20 feet off the bag, daring someone to do something about it. However, the pitcher, who had been backing up a potential throw to third, simply walked to the bag and they threw Betancourt out.
   41. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: March 26, 2013 at 08:26 PM (#4397200)
   42. Drexl Spivey Posted: March 26, 2013 at 08:43 PM (#4397205)
YOU FOOL!


I can't believe that I just got tricked into watching a Tom Bergeron/Gilbert Gottfried video.

That is so much worse than viewing a Madeline Albright photo.
   43. base ball chick Posted: March 26, 2013 at 08:54 PM (#4397211)
seriously wtf

yall be better off with tyler greene who can actually play second and isn't a complete waste of roster space there
   44. Dale Sams Posted: March 26, 2013 at 08:57 PM (#4397212)
Angel Berroa had a .942 OPS in the Independent League last year!
   45. Drexl Spivey Posted: March 26, 2013 at 09:10 PM (#4397216)
seriously wtf

yall be better off with tyler greene who can actually play second and isn't a complete waste of roster space there


I'm pretty sure that getting mocked by an Astros fan is the lowest level that a team can sink to.
   46. Too Much Coffee Man Posted: March 26, 2013 at 09:28 PM (#4397219)
I believe that most, if not all MLB GMs are bright and at least semi-competent. Doesn't mean that they are not open to criticism, but when they do something, e.g., sign a guy to be a "makeup guy," it is rational in the sense that many people with the same information would make similar decisions, although you and I might weight that information differently.
Doing something different than what the consensus here doesn't necessarily mean bad, dumb, irrational.

This, though, defies rational thought
   47. Jarrod HypnerotomachiaPoliphili(Teddy F. Ballgame) Posted: March 26, 2013 at 09:38 PM (#4397220)
OK, which would be a dumber signing, Yuniesky Betancourt or Chone Figgins?
   48. Drexl Spivey Posted: March 26, 2013 at 09:44 PM (#4397221)
OK, which would be a dumber signing, Yuniesky Betancourt or Chone Figgins?


This is kind of like choosing between cancer and AIDS, but I'll take Figgins (as the preferential player). When he screws up it's not due to a lack of effort.

Also, Yuni might make 1.4 million dollars this year.
   49. Drexl Spivey Posted: March 26, 2013 at 09:57 PM (#4397226)
There's been some speculation that Brewers owner Mark Attanasio has been behind the signings of both Lohse and Yuni.

I do not want this to be true, but it would explain both signings.
   50. Jim Wisinski Posted: March 26, 2013 at 11:36 PM (#4397306)
Seriously, Derrek Lee is really THAT unavailable. Heck, I think I'd call Carlos Lee before Yuni.


They might be better off calling Travis Lee.
   51. zonk Posted: March 26, 2013 at 11:45 PM (#4397315)
Seriously, Derrek Lee is really THAT unavailable. Heck, I think I'd call Carlos Lee before Yuni.



They might be better off calling Travis Lee.


Or Geddy Lee... Or heck, even Peggy Lee - and she's dead.
   52. JE (Jason) Posted: March 27, 2013 at 01:19 AM (#4397409)
Not only that, but the last team that let him go did so because he was disruptive in the clubhouse. So he has that going for him too.

I assume you're talking about the Royals. Do we know definitively why Yuniesky opted out of his minor league deal with the Phillies the other day? Did his agent already know that the Brewers were interested in signing him?
   53. caprules Posted: March 27, 2013 at 01:51 AM (#4397417)
My memory is that Betancourt got "hot" about the same time as the Brewers did in 2011, and that his surge, such that it was, was tied by some local media as key to helping the Brewers win the Central in 2011. His surge was basically OPSing .752 in July. Every other month he was below .700 and in May he had a truly dreadful .489

This is only meant to be a possible look at what might have intrigued Attanasio or Melvin. I certainly had no desire to bring him back in any role.
   54. TomH Posted: March 27, 2013 at 08:19 AM (#4397444)
could Bonds play 1B for min wage, plus an oodle of incentives? McGwire? Foxx if he weren't dead.
   55. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: March 27, 2013 at 08:51 AM (#4397450)
i woke up this morning, have confirmed i am not dead, ergo this is not h8ll in terms of being a final destination and so i have validated that yesterday's news stands and that this is just a temporary version of h8ll. a preview if you will.

d8mn. h8ll is going to stink.
   56. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: March 27, 2013 at 09:02 AM (#4397457)
d8mn. h8ll is going to stink.

In hell, Yuniesky is the Brewers manager and all the players are Ned Yost!
   57. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 27, 2013 at 09:15 AM (#4397468)
Isn't Figgins still a decent fielder? And he seems like a fun guy in the clubhouse. I find absolutely no redeeming qualities for Yuni. None.


I assume you're talking about the Royals. Do we know definitively why Yuniesky opted out of his minor league deal with the Phillies the other day? Did his agent already know that the Brewers were interested in signing him?


Yea, the Royals released him last August because he was whining about playing time. I'm guessing Yuni opted out of his Phillies deal because he knew he could get a MLB offer elsewhere. The Yanks were said to be mildly interested and I wouldn't be surprised if his agent knew about interest from the Brewers. Lots of guys in Yuni's position are opting out, so its not that unusual. I mean, you may as well take your chances on the open market.
   58. JE (Jason) Posted: March 27, 2013 at 09:20 AM (#4397470)
The Yanks were said to be mildly interested

Now that would have been the icing on the offseason cake. (Of course, some here would have assumed it was an early April Fool's Day prank.)
   59. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: March 27, 2013 at 09:34 AM (#4397480)
In hell ... all the players are Ned Yost!

In purgatory, are they Ed Yost?
   60. Esoteric Posted: March 27, 2013 at 09:41 AM (#4397484)
I can't believe that I just got tricked into watching a Tom Bergeron/Gilbert Gottfried video.
I can't believe it was actually somewhat chuckleworthy.
   61. DL from MN Posted: March 27, 2013 at 09:54 AM (#4397495)
How can the Brewers not find a first baseman on waivers better than Betancourt this time of year? Jeff Clement just got cut by the Twins and that's just one example.
   62. Esoteric Posted: March 27, 2013 at 10:10 AM (#4397508)
How can the Brewers not find a first baseman on waivers better than Betancourt this time of year? Jeff Clement just got cut by the Twins and that's just one example.
Maybe the Brewers thought they were bringing back a "fan favorite" to get the low-intensity consumers back into the seats? You know, like Seattle bringing back Raul Ibanez? And this is all just a tragic mistake?
   63. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 27, 2013 at 10:14 AM (#4397511)
Maybe the Brewers thought they were bringing back a "fan favorite" to get the low-intensity consumers back into the seats? You know, like Seattle bringing back Raul Ibanez? And this is all just a tragic mistake?

To be fair, I think Raul tries, he's just comically bad at D.
   64. Esoteric Posted: March 27, 2013 at 11:20 AM (#4397577)
To be fair, I think Raul tries, he's just comically bad at D.
Oh for sure. Ibanez is faultless as a teammate, as a guy, etc. Extremely likable. But...not worth it at this late date.
   65. Walt Davis Posted: March 27, 2013 at 05:02 PM (#4397907)
Foxx if he weren't dead.

OK, Samantha Foxx is probably a worse baseball player than Yuni.
   66. Drexl Spivey Posted: March 27, 2013 at 06:40 PM (#4397964)
I already bought Extra Innings (or more accurately, MLB decided I was an auto-renew customer even though I don't recall authorizing that) for this season. Is it too late to get a refund?


Joe Hova: I'm on the fence about buying EI. I'd be willing to split the cost with you if you generate a generic password for your login (EI allows for three IP addresses to be used per year; I'd only use one of them).
   67. Ron J2 Posted: March 27, 2013 at 08:30 PM (#4398025)
@65 but in her prime she would have been a pretty good draw. And it's not likely to cost much in the standings.

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