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Sunday, June 13, 2021

Yankees are a broken team, so why is Brian Cashman doing nothing?

Something drastic is going to happen soon. Can’t you feel it? Will it be Aaron Boone getting banged? Have you noticed the manager hasn’t received a recent vote of confidence after getting one after the Yankees started 5-10?

Interesting.

If Boone survives, and you can argue he shouldn’t be the No. 1 fall guy, then Cashman has to at least try for a quick fix even if it means overpaying for immediate help by selling the farm while making Jasson Dominguez the only untouchable.

Everything you hear coming out of Yankees land is how they’re built to win championships, yet it’s obvious from the outside looking in that Cashman has put together a flawed team that has a flawed blueprint. Sooner or later, you’ll get eaten up for loading lineups with nine right-handed sluggers who are being preached analytics, and these Yankees have become shark bait to a lot of pitching.

It’s painfully obvious that the Yankees need a center fielder with Aaron Hicks done for the season after more underachieving and Brett Gardner looking 37 going on 47 a lot of the time. The 20-45 Diamondbacks will be blowing up their team before the July 31 trade deadline and have a 27-year-old, switch-hitting center fielder with an affordable contract available. Why hasn’t Cashman traded for Ketel Marte, a .347 hitter this season who has a 31-homer campaign on his resume?

Seriously, call the Diamondbacks and offer them a great return, two or three elite prospects and Clint Frazier if that’s what it takes. Look at all the ranked prospects that the Yankees have traded over the last 10 years and try naming just one who turned into a star.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 13, 2021 at 09:16 PM | 38 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: yankees

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   1. Walt Davis Posted: June 13, 2021 at 10:12 PM (#6024058)
The DBacks have Marte under control for another 3/$26, even they aren't in a hurry to sell. Jasson Dominguez is an 18-yo OF ranked #26 by MLB, yet to play pro ball but apparently a super-prospect. Their next best prospect is Clarke Schmidt, a 25-yo RHP ranked #74 who hasn't pitched yet this year. Next up is RHP Deivi Garcia at #83, still just 22 but he's been terrible at AAA and MLB so far. At 5'9", 163 the Yanks better hope the DBacks don't have an issue with tiny RHP. I'll let people who follow prospects chime in on whether the Yanks have enough depth to make a Garcia plus deal work for a guy as good, cheap and under control as Marte.
   2. Rough Carrigan Posted: June 13, 2021 at 10:56 PM (#6024063)
Pedro Martinez was probably that same height and weight.
   3. Howie Menckel Posted: June 13, 2021 at 11:05 PM (#6024064)
the Clint Frazier rollercoaster has been a delight for at least five years.

when things are good - like last season and entering this one - he is untouchable and a cornerstone of the Yankees' future.

when he lays some eggs, THAT'S when sadsack teams should trade from him because he's a budding superstar.

he turns 27 in Sept, and is a corner OF of modest defensive skills with a 105 OPS+ in 681 AB.
er
he's a young version of AZ's David Peralta, who is a better player at this juncture - though he's MLB-old, vs MLB-middled-aged like Frazier.
   4. Walt Davis Posted: June 14, 2021 at 12:51 AM (#6024069)
Pedro Martinez was probably that same height and weight.

Nevertheless, many scouts, prospect hounds, etc. express doubts about small RHP. Whether that is justified or not is mostly beside the point, the question is whether the DBacks share that belief. (I just happened to notice he's a tiny guy, I don't generally look at such things.)
   5. Howie Menckel Posted: June 14, 2021 at 01:15 AM (#6024071)
Marcus Stroman is listed at 5-7, 180.

he's having an, oh, decent year for the Mets.
   6. Walt Davis Posted: June 14, 2021 at 01:19 AM (#6024072)
Yanks-related and in case you were curious ... Chapman is pretty much on a Rivera pace which, of course, is not easy but is a lot easier than having a Rivera career. Through age 33:

AC 588 G, 571 IP, 288 saves, 184 ERA+
MR 512 G, 650 IP, 283 saves, 186 ERA+

The trickier bit is the age 34-43 603 G, 634 IP, 369 saves, 230 ERA+.

Whaddya know, Kimbrel is also 33:

CK 611 G, 596 IP, 366 saves, 193 ERA+

So he's got more wiggle room and, all things considered, has a "reasonable" shot at the saves record. That would require "just" the 4th best post-32 save total ... and not that many more than Fernando Rodney who wandered off the closer path a couple of times along the way.

Sheesh, Jansen is also 33:

KJ 658 G, 663 IP, 327 saves, 163 ERA+

Surely the ERA+ gap is too big to close but he's got a shot at the saves record too. K-Rod, Street and Nen were all in somewhat similar positions but the baseball gods were not kind. (And they didn't have these kind of ERA+ numbers.)
   7. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: June 14, 2021 at 03:17 AM (#6024074)
Something drastic is going to happen soon. Can’t you feel it? Will it be Aaron Boone getting banged?


That last phrase does not seamlessly translate across the Atlantic, so my thanks to the writer for that at least.
   8. TomH Posted: June 14, 2021 at 07:32 AM (#6024078)
The article uses "flawed", "train wreck" and "broken".

The team has allowed the third fewest runs in the AL, so their pitching and defense is fine.
They have drawn more walks than the avg team (about 30). They have hit barely above avg # of home runs.
Their team BA is poor, but that seems to be a fluke of "atem" balls. They don't strike out much more than avg.
Much of their team BA problem is the backups have hit horribly.

So you have an average offense, fine run prevention, which should lead to a record about 36-29. They have underperformed by 3 wins; actual record is 33-32. But in a tough division, so they are many games out.

I guess, when you are the Yankees, you must conclude that you need to SPEND MORE MONEY AND GIVE UP MORE PROSPECTS TO FIX THE BROKEN TRAIN WRECK
   9. Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: June 14, 2021 at 08:07 AM (#6024080)
Marcus Stroman is listed at 5-7, 180.

he's having an, oh, decent year for the Mets.


Oh please. The guy isn't even the best pitcher on his team.
   10. Random Transaction Generator Posted: June 14, 2021 at 08:36 AM (#6024083)
Well, one thing that definitely seems to be "flawed" or "broken" with the Yankees is their base running.

They've been out on base (caught advancing an extra base on a hit, advancing on a fly ball, doubled up on line drives, out while trying to advance on wild pitch/passed ball) 31 times.
The next highest in the American League is 23.

They've been put out at home in this manner 13 times.

They are also dead last in the American League for run scoring percentage (with 25%). The league average is 32%.

They are also dead last on going 1st to 3rd on a single, and second last on 1st to home on a double.
   11. Random Transaction Generator Posted: June 14, 2021 at 08:38 AM (#6024084)
So you have an average offense


I don't know where you get the idea that NYY offense is "average".

They are second last in runs scored in the American League (3.88). Only the Detroit Tigers have a worse offense (3.74).

The Yankees are more than half a run worse than the league average (4.49).
   12. JJ1986 Posted: June 14, 2021 at 09:25 AM (#6024086)
Why hasn't Cashman simply demanded that the Diamondbacks give him Ketel Marte?
   13. Howie Menckel Posted: June 14, 2021 at 10:12 AM (#6024093)
Oh please. The guy isn't even the second-best pitcher on his team.

FTFY
   14. villageidiom Posted: June 14, 2021 at 10:56 AM (#6024103)
Everything you hear coming out of Yankees land is how they’re built to win championships
Sometimes a business markets itself as being better than it is to increase sales. How successful that marketing strategy is can be assessed by how many people repeat the marketing message in absence of supporting evidence.
   15. TomH Posted: June 14, 2021 at 11:08 AM (#6024108)
re: "average" offense, and bad baserunning

TRUE, they have scored pitifully few runs. But they have the underlying stats of an average offense. So, we need to ask, what is more likely going forward; horrible baserunning and poor clutch performance leading to few runs, or median baserunning and clutch hitting to result in median runs.

How did they suddenly get to be so rotten at baserunning?
   16. Rally Posted: June 14, 2021 at 11:22 AM (#6024110)
The last few years the Yankees have had a great offense because everything they did worked. If someone got hurt, another player even better would step forward.

Miguel Andujar had a fine season in 2018, then got hurt. So they plug in a 27 year old off the waiver wire and he hits even better, plus he can play defense. Sign a singles hitting glove man leaving the best hitter’s park in existence, and now he’s a high average power threat.

Looks like they ran out of magic beans this year, as the only guys hitting above average are the giants with 50-hr seasons on the resume.
   17. jmurph Posted: June 14, 2021 at 11:48 AM (#6024115)
I haven't been paying daily attention to the standings, so upon inspection I have to say that I'm very disappointed the Yankees record isn't much worse given the tone of this article.

Somewhat related: is it normal to only have 3 teams in the AL with a positive run differential at this point in the season?
   18. The Duke Posted: June 14, 2021 at 01:13 PM (#6024119)
The yanks are one game over .500 in an incredibly strong division. The angst doesn’t seem to match the results

Now if you want bad. Holy cow, the Cardinals are really bad. Can’t pitch, can’t hit, bullpen is a dumpster fire, 3 starters are injured, the manager hands out four-finger salutes like candy. Nothing’s going right
   19. cookiedabookie Posted: June 14, 2021 at 01:32 PM (#6024121)
They're not broken as much as running through an extremely unlucky stretch, at least according to their batted ball data. They're near the top across the board and are significantly underperforming their xwOBA
   20. Rally Posted: June 14, 2021 at 02:15 PM (#6024128)
Somewhat related: is it normal to only have 3 teams in the AL with a positive run differential at this point in the season?


In a 15 team league, I would find that extremely unusual. But that's not happening. The AL East has 3 teams with positive run dif, TB, BOS, and BUF.

Plus the White Sox, A's and Astros are outscoring their opponents.
   21. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: June 14, 2021 at 02:39 PM (#6024132)
Sometimes a business markets itself as being better than it is to increase sales. How successful that marketing strategy is can be assessed by how many people repeat the marketing message in absence of supporting evidence.

Dallas Cowboys?
   22. Baldrick Posted: June 14, 2021 at 02:44 PM (#6024133)
I'm very happy that Yankees fans are sad, but extremely annoyed that they're sad about having a perfectly normal good team.
   23. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 14, 2021 at 02:51 PM (#6024134)
Why hasn’t Cashman traded for Ketel Marte, a .347 hitter this season who has a 31-homer campaign on his resume?
There’s probably some interest, but not enough to overpay. Marte has a career 109 OPS+, and has mostly been an infielder until this season. WAR doesn’t seem to like his outfield defense (-0.9 in 2021) - he’s not prime Ken Griffey, Jr.
   24. jmurph Posted: June 14, 2021 at 03:07 PM (#6024137)
In a 15 team league, I would find that extremely unusual. But that's not happening. The AL East has 3 teams with positive run dif, TB, BOS, and BUF.

Plus the White Sox, A's and Astros are outscoring their opponents.

I am a dumb. I thought I had sorted within the league but I clearly had not.
   25. Walt Davis Posted: June 14, 2021 at 05:12 PM (#6024160)
<i>That last phrase does not seamlessly translate across the Atlantic, so my thanks to the writer for that at least.</i?

It doesn't translate on this side either. I don't recall ever hearing "banged" for "fired" ... maybe the author thinks firing Boone would be "screwing" him?
   26. Walt Davis Posted: June 14, 2021 at 05:16 PM (#6024161)
On run differential ... the AL is 71-60 against the NL but the run differential is just +7. I'm not sure who'd getting lucky there. The NL further looks lopsided because its 3 best run differential teams, by far, are all out west. The ALE continues to beat the crap out of the NLE at 32-17 ... the top 3 teams are 27-6 which is ludicrous.
   27. Captain Supporter Posted: June 14, 2021 at 06:44 PM (#6024170)
Really dumb article. The Yankees do have problems but the solution is not to panic and start overpaying for mediocre players. And the problem is not analytics, which is given as the reason they are right handed heavy according to the writers although they provide no support for this at best questionable (more like idiotic, actually) thesis. The Yankees do need to learn a lesson for the Rays and stop handing out long term contracts to injury prone players like Jacoby Ellsbury, Aaron Hicks and Giancarlo Stanton that wind up being albatrosses that are hard to cure. Roster flexibility is a major key to success in today's game, and that means being willing to let players go rather than encumber your team for years. But panicing will only make a bad situation much worse.

   28. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: June 14, 2021 at 06:57 PM (#6024171)
not prime Ken Griffey, Jr.


To be fair, I wouldn't recommend trading for prime Ken Griffey Jr., either.
   29. Howie Menckel Posted: June 14, 2021 at 07:45 PM (#6024173)
have a mild dog in the hunt, having made a modest, legal preseason wager on the Mets +4.5 games vs Yankees win total.

my premise was two-fold:
- I was mystified by NYY seeming comfortable w fragile Kluber and Taillon as their 2-3 SP arms;
- I expected NYM Carrasco and Thor to be returning around... now.

a hit, and a miss, on the duos.

so
NYM 32-25
NYY 33-32

if NYM finishes 58-47, that's..... 90-72.
then NYY would need 62-35 for 95-67 to beat me.

stay the course, Mr. Cashman, stay the course!
   30. Walt Davis Posted: June 14, 2021 at 09:22 PM (#6024192)
To be fair, I wouldn't recommend trading for prime Ken Griffey Jr., either.

You won't have to give up that much ... and you get prime Bonds too.

stop handing out long term contracts to injury prone players like Jacoby Ellsbury, Aaron Hicks and Giancarlo Stanton

Hicks wasn't injury prone at the time they signed him. He had missed two substantial stints in 2017 and a mere two weeks of 2018. He didn't have a lot of PT because he wasn't a full-time starter, more of a platoon, until 2018. More importantly, they got him to sign for a mere 7/$70 -- that's not an "albatross", that's "chump change." (The notion the Yanks could have an albatross contract is laughable.) If you're not going to sign players who missed two months over the course of 5-6 seasons then you're not going to sign many players.

Ellsbury did miss nearly all of 2010 and half of 2012. This "fragile" player gave the Yanks 138, 106 (missing 1.5 months), and 138 starts over his first 3 seasons, missing a qualified season in year 2 by one PA, then he missed a month in year 4. He missed 2.5 months in his first 4 years of that contract. Then he got seriously hurt. The problem with Ellsbury wasn't his fragility, it was the 25 point drop in OPS+. Obviously not worth the money but he gave the Yanks 10 WAR, 2.4 WAA, slightly above average in every season he played for them.

Players miss time. Reggie started in nearly 2600 games -- and in the seasons leading up to the Yanks signing him, he started "just" 146, 145, 156 and 137 ... then in his first four years in NY, he started 126, 143, 138 and 127. He generally used 15 or so DH starts to reach those totals. Joe Morgan played 22 seasons, made nearly 2500 starts ... had just 3 seasons of 150+ starts and 5 more of 140+. And those two guys are superstars you want in the lineup every game you can and they were extremely durable. More normal players, good not great, usually get even more time off. Gary Matthews Sr had just 3 seasons of 150+ starts. There's a reason we set a "full" season at 650 PAs ... and that generally only takes about 140-145 starts ... and relatively few players hit 650 PA in a season much less consistently so. Give or take, you should expect pretty much every "starting" player to miss at least one start per week. Rest days, minor injuries, day games after night games, extra nasty pitcher from the wrong side on the mound and probably at least one serious IL stint every 4-5 years.

From 2015-19, there were only 36 players who made it to 3000 PA. Only 8 were (mostly) in their 30s. The list includes the pretty average (in those years) Brian Dozier, Nick Markakis, Kole Calhoun, Freddy Galvis, DJ LeMahieu, Castellanos, Pillar, Adam Jones and Cesar Hernandez. If you're only going to sign durable young stars, your pickings are slim. The durable young stars of 2015-19 are among the monster contracts now: Machado, Betts, Arenado, Lindor, Harper, Trout, Springer. The Yanks will likely have the chance to sign Kris Bryant this offseason ... but then Bryant will be turning 30, missed substantial time in 2018 and 2020 and only 145 starts in 2019, is on about that pace again this year and is not playing much 3B so far this year. There are some smart contracts in there too: Longoria, Rizzo, the first Altuve, the first Yelich but those were all arb+FA buyouts. Maybe the Yanks should offer Torres one of those (probably too late for Judge).
   31. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: June 15, 2021 at 09:08 AM (#6024263)
Ellsbury did miss nearly all of 2010 and half of 2012.


Speaking of, why isn't the $5 million the Yankees paid him this year to buy out his last option listed under the Yankee's tax tracker? Cots has them at an estimated $207 M, Ellsbury's option buy out would put them over the $210 tax threshold. Cots does list his $5M in 2021 on their 2020 spreadsheet, spotrac has Ellsbury getting $26+ in 2020 (his $21 yearly plus the option I am assuming). Were the Yanks able to lump his 2021 option into the 2020 payroll year because of their trying not to pay him bullshit?
   32. villageidiom Posted: June 15, 2021 at 10:21 AM (#6024265)
Speaking of, why isn't the $5 million the Yankees paid him this year to buy out his last option listed under the Yankee's tax tracker?
Option buyouts are spread across all guaranteed years for CBT purposes. For example, Stanton's contract is $315m over 13 guaranteed years, plus a $25m option for 2028 with a $10m buyout. For CBT purposes the $10m is treated as part of the guaranteed portion of the contract, so it ends up being $325m instead of $315m, still over 13 guaranteed years. His CBT assessment is $325m/13 = $25m per year through 2027.

In short, the $5 million for Ellsbury was already considered in the CBT calculation in prior years.
   33. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: June 15, 2021 at 10:39 AM (#6024270)
#32 -

Ah, got it, thanks.
   34. Lowry Seasoning Salt Posted: June 16, 2021 at 12:40 AM (#6024456)
The CBT thinking laid out in #32 clicked for me years ago when I realized how it made sense. That is, Stanton has a $25M option or $10M buyout, so we know he's getting at least $10M for that year, and thus it makes sense to count it toward the CBT AAV.
   35. dejarouehg Posted: June 16, 2021 at 10:25 AM (#6024500)
Derek Jeter gets the last laugh on Cashman, who he is clearly not very fond of. Stanton is an untradeable albatross on this team and, like Heyward is to the Cubs, will interfere with their flexibility to achieve their re-building goals. (Also similar to the Cubs, haven't done a good job of producing great MiLB assets.)
   36. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: June 16, 2021 at 10:52 AM (#6024513)
So you have an average offense, fine run prevention, which should lead to a record about 36-29. They have underperformed by 3 wins; actual record is 33-32.

FTR: Their record is now 34-32. Their Pythag record is 32-34.

If you can blame Cashman for any one thing above all, it's for putting together a roster that's too dependent on injury prone players remaining injury free: Kluber, Taillon, Montgomery, Germán, Severino, Britton, Stanton, Judge, Andujar, etc. Some of them have performed as expected, but overall they've missed way too many games for the effect not to be felt. Of course the Yankees aren't the only team with problems like this.
   37. TomH Posted: June 16, 2021 at 03:42 PM (#6024580)
Their Pythagoras w l might be 32 and 34, but if you use base runs or dips or fip or something, I suspect it is worse
   38. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: June 16, 2021 at 04:42 PM (#6024598)
And yet if you've suffered through watching them on TV for as many games as I have this season, you'd consider it a miracle that they aren't 22 and 44. (smiling through the tears)

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