Replacement Level Yankees Weblog
The Curse of Jerry Hairston, Jr./Eric Hinske:

RSS 2.0 Atom Yankees’ Brandon McCarthy explains adjustment that’s helped him dominate
(30 Comments - 8/22/2014 4:53:14 pm)

White Sox (59-68) @ Yankees (64-61), Friday, August 22, 2014, 7:05pm
(3 Comments - 8/22/2014 4:31:49 pm)

North Jersey: Out on Castillo
(25 Comments - 8/22/2014 1:44:27 pm)

FanGraphs: Brian McCann Probably Couldn’t Be Given Away For Free
(27 Comments - 8/22/2014 10:41:24 am) McCarthy masters Astros in four-hit shutout
(7 Comments - 8/21/2014 9:32:41 pm)

NY Post: Joe Girardi out of options as Yankees’ ship sinks
(25 Comments - 8/21/2014 4:40:17 pm) Yankees Stink
(19 Comments - 8/21/2014 1:26:18 pm)

Astros (53-73) @ Yankees (63-60), Wednesday, August 20, 2014, 7:05pm
(51 Comments - 8/20/2014 11:17:01 pm)

(18 Comments - 8/20/2014 6:19:08 pm)

(104 Comments - 8/20/2014 7:05:25 am)

Look what people have to say about the RLYW!

CAIRO just takes the Marcels and changes the underlying assumptions and components in a bunch of ways that make the Yankees look better.

Wow, two stupid posts in one day. I think you’ve reached your yearly quota.

I don’t know if any of you current posters were around for that, but if so, I just can’t understand how you can call yourselves Yankee fans. Pathetic quitters is what you sounded like. Of the lame posts I could stand to read, the only person who had any confidence in the Yankees at that point was a (yeesh) Red Sox fan.
Jeter is King

Quite the attitude you have SG. Maybe you should shitcan this blog and join Steve at WasWatching? Or follow some other stupid team that has made the PS 15 of the last 17 years. Jeez… and some people think Yankee fans are entitled.

This site is best viewed with a monitor.

Disclaimer: If you think this is the official website of the New York Yankees, you're an idiot. Go away.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Yankees (55-52) @ Red Sox (48-60), Friday, August 1, 2014, 7:10pm

NYY: Chris Capuano (#26, 35, LHP, 1-1, 4.30) vs. BOS: Anthony Ranaudo (#0, 24, RHP, 0-0, undef)

1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Brian McCann (L) C
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Stephen Drew (L) 2B
9. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF

1. Brock Holt (L) RF
2. Dustin Pedroia (R) 2B
3. David Ortiz (L) DH
4. Mike Napoli (R) 1B
5. Allen Craig (R) LF
6. Xander Bogaerts (R) SS
7. Will Middlebrooks (R) 3B
8. David Ross (R) C
9. Mookie Betts (R) CF

These games used to mean something.

Apparently Martin Prado was acquired to ride the pine…

--Posted at 4:30 pm by SG / 40 Comments | - (0)

The “New” Yankees vs. the “Old” Yankees

With the recent acquisitions of Chase Headley, Stephen Drew and Martin Prado, it’s fair to say the Yankees should have a better lineup going forward than they’ve had for most of the season.  The question is, how much better?

Here are the rest of the season Steamer projections for the Yankees’ most frequently used lineup to this point of the season.

Order Player Pos PA wOBA Outs BR
1 Brett Gardner LF 4.45 .328 3 0.54
2 Derek Jeter SS 4.00 .311 3 0.42
3 Jacoby Ellsbury CF 4.00 .332 3 0.51
4 Mark Teixeira 1B 4.00 .348 3 0.54
5 Brian McCann C 4.00 .336 3 0.50
6 Carlos Beltran DH 4.00 .353 3 0.57
7 Ichiro Suzuki RF 4.00 .297 3 0.39
8 Brian Roberts 2B 4.00 .296 3 0.42
9 Kelly Johnson 3B 4.00 .318 3 0.53
36.45 .324 24.00 4.41
p162 714.85

wOBA: Weighted on-base average
BR: Linear weights batting runs
Outs: Outs made at the plate per game

Here’s what the lineup could look like now with the new additions.

Order Player Pos PA wOBA Outs BR
1 Brett Gardner LF 4.56 .328 3 0.55
2 Derek Jeter SS 4.00 .311 3 0.42
3 Jacoby Ellsbury CF 4.00 .332 3 0.51
4 Mark Teixeira 1B 4.00 .348 3 0.54
5 Brian McCann C 4.00 .336 3 0.50
6 Carlos Beltran DH 4.00 .353 3 0.57
7 Chase Headley 3B 4.00 .337 3 0.51
8 Martin Prado RF 4.00 .322 3 0.47
9 Stephen Drew 2B 4.00 .306 3 0.43
36.56 .330 24.00 4.50
p162 728.96

Standard caveats about projections apply.  They are imprecise attempts to estimate a player’s true talent and could be inaccurate in either direction for a myriad number of reasons.

The Yankees added about one-tenth of a run per game.  Over a full season that might be worth a win or two.  We can also probably assume that the defense will be better with Headley at 3B and Drew at 2B, although he’s never played the position before.

The Yankees still face long odds to qualify for the postseason given where they are in the standings and the fact that they still aren’t a particularly good team.  But they are better today than they were on Wednesday, and they did it without harming themselves in the long-term.

It’s hard to complain about that.

--Posted at 9:10 am by SG / 26 Comments | - (0)

Thursday, July 31, 2014

TGS NY: Stephen Drew traded to Yankees

The Boston Red Sox have completed a rare trade with the rival New York Yankees, sending shortstop Stephen Drew to New York, sources told ESPN.

Drew was the fourth member of the Red Sox to be dealt ahead of Thursday’s non-waiver trade deadline, joining Jon Lester, John Lackey and Andrew Miller in the mass exodus from Boston.

Drew joins a Yankees infield that already includes shortstop Derek Jeter, third baseman Chase Headley and shortstop Brian Roberts.

Wow.  I am pumped for the rest of the season now.  Adding a 63 OPS+ bat to displace Brian Roberts’s 85 OPS+ was really the missing piece.

My guess, Kelly Johnson (who got traded for Drew) will out-WAR him over the rest of the season.  My other guess, it’s an irrelevant move.

Just like how the Yankees are becoming irrelevant.

Update: Yankees have acquired [Martin] Prado from Arizona

Prado’s a pretty valuable player because he hits around league average and can play pretty good defense at 3B, 2B and LF.  He’s signed for two more seasons so he gives the Yankees some flexibility when trying to construct their roster going forward.  The cost is believed to be Pete O’Brien, who’s shown great power in the minors, but whose defense and plate discipline make hinder him in his quest for a significant major league career.

--Posted at 3:00 pm by SG / 104 Comments | - (0)

CBS New York: Yankees Linked To Several Players As Trade Deadline Fast Approaches

What they do before Thursday’s 4 p.m. non-waiver trade deadline will likely shape whether or not they make the postseason.

Yankees working hard on trying to improve rotation and bullpen according to a pair of NL GM’s.— Nick Cafardo (@nickcafardo) July 29, 2014

With starting pitchers CC Sabathia (knee) and Ivan Nova (elbow) out for the season, and the likelihood of Masahiro Tanaka (elbow) getting back to pre-injury form sketchy at best, the Yankees have gotten by with the likes of youngsters David Phelps, Chase Whitley and Shane Greene, but they likely cannot be counted on during a pennant race. The Bombers hope to get Michael Pineda (shoulder) back in the middle of August, but definitely could use another starter.

According to multiple reports the Yankees have been linked to big ticket items like Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels of the Philadelphia Phillies, as well as solid youngster Jake Arrieta of the Chicago Cubs and veteran left-hander Brett Anderson of the Colorado Rockies.

I predict the Yankees will make a move or two, but it won’t help them much.  Hopefully it won’t hurt them further down the line.

--Posted at 8:49 am by SG / 143 Comments | - (0)

Wednesday, July 30, 2014 Yankees Stink

ARLINGTON—One night after producing their biggest inning of the season, the Yankees’ bats quickly went cold against Colby Lewis and the Rangers’ pitching staff in a 3-2 loss on Wednesday at Globe Life Park.

Lewis retired the final 13 batters he faced in a sharp seven-inning outing, recording his second quality start against the Yankees in a week. Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury hit solo homers, accounting for the Yanks’ only run production.

After Derek Jeter was honored by a pregame ceremony that included a surprise appearance by former President George W. Bush, Hiroki Kuroda allowed three first-inning runs as the Yankees were handed their fourth defeat in the last five games.

In the five-hit first inning, Elvis Andrus ripped a run-scoring double down the left-field line, Adrian Beltre knocked home a run with a single to center field, and Leonys Martin blooped a run-scoring hit in front of Gardner in left field.

Very impressive showing by the offense tonight.  In their defense, when you’re facing a tough customer like Colby Lewis, runs are hard to come by.

--Posted at 10:15 pm by SG / 14 Comments | - (0)

Yankees (55-51) @ Rangers (42-65), Wednesday, July 30, 2014, 8:05pm

NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (39, RHP, 7-6, 3.99) vs. TEX: Colby Lewis (34, RHP, 6-8, 6.23)

1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Chase Headley (S) 3B
7. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
8. Zoilo Almonte (S) RF
9. Brendan Ryan (R) 2B

1. Shin-Soo Choo (L) DH
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Alex Rios (R) RF
4. Adrian Beltre (R) 3B
5. Jim Adduci (L) LF
6. J.P. Arencibia (R) 1B
7. Leonys Martin (L) CF
8. Robinson Chirinos (R) C
9. Rougned Odor (L) 2B

I hope Kuroda’s up for going nine innings today.  Well eight, since the Rangers won’t need to bat in the bottom of the ninth.

--Posted at 3:39 pm by SG / 39 Comments | - (0)

The Sustainability of TPBG

Brett Gardner came into 2014 with a career SLG of .381 in 2228 PA.  Gardner’s been a very valuable player for the Yankees in his career, but it’s primarily been due to his ability to get on base at an above-average rate, his ability to use his speed on the bases, and his defense in the outfield.  Since he was often called “The Speedy Brett Gardner” and I am too lazy to keep typing that, he became TSBG.

After a couple of big games in Texas Gardner is now slugging .455 this year and he has hit 13 home runs in 385 at bats this season after hitting 23 in 1932 prior at bats in MLB.  If Gardner has roughly a .381 true talent SLG, here is the standard deviation of his slugging percentage.

-1: .354
-2: .328

Now it’s worth noting that players do add power as they get older.  If Gardner is closer to a .400 SLG true talent player now, his .455 is still about two standard deviations above his mean.

The truth is, Gardner’s been a different player over the last two season.

2008-2012 1619 .266 .355 .368 93 11.0% 19.5% 4.29 49.3% 28.4% 18.4% .319
2013-2014 1052 .277 .349 .432 116 8.9% 24.0% 4.32 46.6% 29.5% 19.6% .341

He’s been swinging at more pitches, which has led to a reduced walk rate and an increased strikeout rate.  But more importantly, it also means he’s been hitting the ball harder, and he’s been a more valuable offensive player.  The walks have been mostly replaced by hits so his OBP has not changed much, and he’s still seeing a lot of pitches in every plate appearance.  He’s gone from The Speedy Brett Gardner to The Powerful Brett Gardner.

Can he keep it up?  I don’t know. 

Using Baseball-Reference’s play index, I found 472 players that had at least 2000 PA and a SLG of less than .400 through age 29.  Of those players, just 14 had at least 2000 more PA and slugged over .400.

Gardner doesn’t have to slug .400 to still be pretty useful, and it’s been fun to watch his progression to where he is now.  Here’s hoping he can continue to defy the odds.

--Posted at 9:54 am by SG / 18 Comments | - (0) Seven-run sixth helps Yanks hold off Rangers

ARLINGTON—The Yankees erupted for their biggest inning of the season on Tuesday night, sending 11 men to the plate in a seven-run sixth inning. It could have been a laugher, but instead they had to hang on for a 12-11 victory over the Rangers at Globe Life Park.

Brett Gardner had four hits, including a homer, as the Yankees snapped a three-game losing streak. They rallied to wipe away an early deficit, helping Brandon McCarthy notch his third victory in four starts since joining the club earlier this month.

It didn’t come easily; J.P. Arencibia drove in seven runs for Texas, hitting a seventh-inning grand slam off Dellin Betances, Arencibia’s second homer of the night. Arencibia entered the game batting .152 and finished 4-for-4, also stroking a pair of doubles.

New York was limited to Gardner’s leadoff homer, his career-high 13th long ball of the season, before they pounded Rangers rookie Nick Martinez in the decisive sixth inning. The Yanks did their damage on five hits, two walks, a sac fly and an error.

That was a lot more stressful than it needed to be.

--Posted at 12:10 am by SG / 6 Comments | - (0)

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Yankees (54-51) @ Rangers (42-64), Tuesday, July 29, 2014, 8:05pm

NYY: Brandon McCarthy (#38, 30, RHP, 5-10, 4.49) vs. TEX: Nick Martinez (#22, 23, RHP, 1-6, 4.73)

1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B
5. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
6. Brian McCann (L) C
7. Chase Headley (S) 3B
8. Zoilo Almonte (S) RF
9. Brendan Ryan (R) 2B

1. Shin-Soo Choo (L) LF
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Alex Rios (R) RF
4. Adrian Beltre (R) 3B
5. Jim Adduci (L) DH
6. J.P. Arencibia (R) 1B
7. Leonys Martin (L) CF
8. Robinson Chirinos (R) C
9. Rougned Odor (L) 2B

I am stunned that Almonte is getting a second consecutive start.  They must be trying to showcase him for a trade.

--Posted at 4:08 pm by SG / 101 Comments | - (0)

Anonymous MLB Scout: They[The Yankees] have more in their farm system than people think

One American League scout on the Yankees’ farm system: “They have more in their farm system than people think. They have some arms, they have the Aaron Judge kid, [Luis] Severino, [Gary] Sanchez, [Peter] O’Brien, [Eric] Jagielo. If they wanted to make a deal, they have enough to give up.”

Sure, if the Yankees are willing to trade most of their top five prospects they can make a deal. 

I sure hope they don’t.

--Posted at 9:12 am by SG / 19 Comments | - (0)

Monday, July 28, 2014 Gardner has Yu’s number, but Yanks fall in Texas

ARLINGTON—Brett Gardner continued to show off his head-scratching dominance of Yu Darvish, but the Rangers batted around against David Phelps in a four-run fifth inning and defeated the Yankees, 4-2, on Monday night at Globe Life Park.

New York lost its third straight game, flushing an early lead on a night when Gardner homered twice and Derek Jeter went 3-for-4, passing Carl Yastrzemski with his 3,420th career hit and claiming sole possession of seventh place on baseball’s all-time list.

J.P. Arencibia’s two-run single with two outs served as the go-ahead knock off Phelps, who had hurled four scoreless innings to start the game but left a mistake over the plate on an 0-2 pitch to the Texas first baseman, who came into the game batting .147.

- Yu Darvish is very good
- The Yankee offense aside from TPBG is not. 
- David Phelps made one bad pitch to Arencibia, and that was pretty much the game.

The Yankees have dropped three straight games.

--Posted at 10:14 pm by SG / 8 Comments | - (0)

Yankees (54-50) @ Rangers (41-64), Monday, July 28, 2014, 8:05pm

NYY: David Phelps (#41, 27, RHP, 5-4, 3.77) vs. TEX: Yu Darvish (#0, 27, RHP, 9-6, 2.92)

1. Brett Gardner (L) CF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Brian McCann (L) 1B
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Chase Headley (S) 3B
6. Francisco Cervelli (R) C
7. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
8. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
9. Zoilo Almonte (S) LF

1. Shin-Soo Choo (L) RF
2. Elvis Andrus (R) SS
3. Alex Rios (R) DH
4. Adrian Beltre (R) 3B
5. Jim Adduci (L) LF
6. J.P. Arencibia (R) 1B
7. Leonys Martin (L) CF
8. Chris Gimenez (R) C
9. Rougned Odor (L) 2B

I don’t suppose there’s any chance this game can get rained out after 5 innings?

The Yankees have recalled Zoilo Almonte for some bizarre reason, and have designated Jeff Francis for assignment.  He will be missed.

--Posted at 5:39 pm by SG / 51 Comments | - (0)

USA Today: Injured Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki shows up at Yankees game

Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, who landed on the 15-day disabled list with a hip flexor strain, flew to Philadelphia Saturday to have a specialist examine him. According to’s Thomas Harding, Tulowtizki visited Dr. William Meyers, who performed surgery on Tulowitzki in 2012. It’s not uncommon for players to seek a second opinion from a trusted doctor, and no one could criticize Tulowitzki for making his health a priority.

What is a little strange was Tulowitzki’s appearance at Yankee Stadium on Sunday. Tulowitzki went to New York and was shown on the YES Network during the Blue Jays-Yankees game.

Tulowitzki, who has spent his entire career in Colorado, and is a four-time All-Star. Tulowitzki signed a six-year contract extension in 2010 guaranteeing more than $150 million that would keep him in Colorado until 2020. With the Rockies in last place in the NL West, they may prefer to send Tulowitzki elsewhere.

The timing of Tulowitzki’s visit to the Yankees is awkward for a few reasons. He said before the season started that it would be an “honor” to replace Derek Jeter as the Yankees’ shortstop, and said in July that he doesn’t want to become baseball’s Dan Marino.

If Tulowitzki really wants to win a World Series title, there are probably much better places to go than the Yankees.

--Posted at 2:37 pm by SG / 14 Comments | - (0) Yankees end homestand with 5-4 loss to Blue Jays

NEW YORK – The Yankees’ 10-game post-All-Star break homestand covered the gamut, starting with celebration and renewed hope following a sweep of the Cincinnati Reds.

Then, there was a wild and whacky four-game set with the Texas Rangers that included a 14-inning marathon, heroics from newly-acquired third baseman Chase Headley and a frightening thunderstorm and tarp fiasco by the grounds crew. The Yankees won three of four.

It ended in bitter disappointment as they dropped the final two games of a three-game set to the division rival Toronto Blue Jays, including a 5-4 loss this afternoon at Yankee Stadium before 45,063 sun-splashed fans, among them Rockies All-Star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki.

“Any loss is tough, especially in the second half,” said reliever Dellin Betances, who allowed a run. “We had a great homestand but we had a chance to win this series today.”

Despite the loss, the Yankees (54-50) finished their crucial homestand with a 7-3 mark and made up ground in the AL East and the second wild card race.
At the All-Star break, the Yankees trailed the Orioles by five games in the division race and were 3 ½ games out of the second wild card. They are now four games behind Baltimore and one game behind Toronto for the second wild card.

Before the homestand I’d have been happy with 7-3, but to win seven of the first eight and then drop the last two winnable games to a team that you are fighting with in the standings is pretty rough and kind of takes the luster off the homestand.

--Posted at 8:23 am by SG / 13 Comments | - (0)

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Blue Jays (54-50) @ Yankees (54-48), Saturday, July 26, 2014, 1:05pm

TOR: Drew Hutchison (#36, 23, RHP, 6-9, 4.54) vs. NYY: Chris Capuano (#26, 35, LHP, 1-1, 4.55)



Chris Capuano makes his long-awaited Yankee debut!

--Posted at 9:22 am by SG / 92 Comments | - (0)

Friday, July 25, 2014

Blue Jays (54-49) @ Yankees (53-48), Friday, July 25, 2014, 7:05pm

TOR: Mark Buehrle (#0, 35, LHP, 10-6, 2.86) vs. NYY: Hiroki Kuroda (#18, 39, RHP, 6-6, 3.88)



1. Brett Gardner (L) LF
2. Derek Jeter (R) SS
3. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF
4. Carlos Beltran (S) DH
5. Brian McCann (L) 1B
6. Chase Headley (S) 3B
7. Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
8. Brian Roberts (S) 2B
9. Francisco Cervelli (R) C

--Posted at 2:30 pm by SG / 52 Comments | - (0) Cashman prioritizes adding bat before August

NEW YORK—The reformulated Yankees rotation has performed better than Brian Cashman would have anticipated, and the general manager said that he’d prefer to focus his attention on acquiring a big bat as the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline approaches.

“It’s weird,” Cashman said in an interview with ESPN New York 98.7 FM. “Our pitching has been drastically altered because of the injuries, and despite losing four out of five starters and all that stuff, our pitching has survived—surprisingly—to this point. I think our offense should be better.

“It still feels like the pitching needs more help, but honestly, the offense has been consistently poor throughout the entire year. The answer has to be an offensive piece, I guess.”

I’ve felt all along this team was a few bats short of a legitimate offense.  I’m encouraged that Cashman feels the same way.  The most obvious place where they could use an upgrade is probably RF if we assume Beltran is more or less restricted to one pitch plate appearances as a DH.  But I haven’t really looked at who might fit the bill and would be available.  I still don’t understand why they won’t give Zoilo Almonte a legitimate shot at MLB playing time.  All it would cost them is some Ichiro plate appearances…

--Posted at 10:04 am by SG / 13 Comments | - (0)

Thursday, July 24, 2014

CBS Sports: Yankees acquire Chris Capuano from Rockies for cash

The New York Yankees have acquired left-handed pitcher Chris Capuano from the Colorado Rockies for cash considerations, the club announced Thursday evening.

The Yankees will be the third franchise for Capuano this season, as he started off with the Red Sox and was later released on July 1. He then signed a minor-league deal with the Rockies on July 4.

Eh, why not?

--Posted at 9:00 pm by SG / 7 Comments | - (0)

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