The Curse of Jerry Hairston, Jr./Eric Hinske:

Monday, November 13, 2017 Unanimous decision: Judge named AL ROY

Aaron Judge was unanimously named the Baseball Writers’ Association of America’s American League Rookie of the Year Award winner on Monday, becoming the first Yankee since Derek Jeter in 1996 to garner the honor, and the ninth overall.

Judge, who recently won his first AL Silver Slugger Award, is also an AL MVP Award candidate following a 2017 campaign in which he hit .284 with an AL-leading 52 homers, 128 runs, 114 RBIs and a 1.049 OPS.
Judge’s 52 taters set the Major League rookie record for home runs in a season, breaking Mark McGwire’s mark of 49 homers that had stood for three decades. He also set the rookie record for walks, with 127, passing Ted Williams’ 107 in 1939.
The 25-year-old earned an All-Star nod—while winning the Home Run Derby along the way—and was a finalist for the AL Gold Glove Award for right field.

It was a foregone conclusion, but still nice to see. Congrats to Judge (good on him for the Silver Slugger Award,as well - Sanchez won it, as well. Can you name the last Yankee to win the Silver Slugger award? It’s sort of surprising).

By the way, if he hadn’t had that big September, do you think some yahoo would have still found a way to convince themselves to vote for someone else #1?

--Posted at 6:44 pm by Brian Cronin / 75 Comments | - (0)


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Of course they would have. Slump narrative will keep him from MVP. Right from the ESPN story: “The knocks against Judge are his 208 strikeouts—only five times has a player whiffed more in one season—and extended slump after winning the All-Star Home Run Derby.”

Yeah. That malingerer shoulda hit 63 home runs if he didn’t slump. What a jamoke.

My guess would be McCann.  Catching is pretty weak but from the lead-in it seems like Ellsbury or Headley or something.

NY Daily News “Larry Rothschild, who guided the Yankees’ pitching staff to a strong 2017 season and is considered one of the best in the business, will be back for 2018, the News confirmed.

Rothschild may also be the only coach from Joe Girardi’s staff to be retained.”

This seems very weird not letting the new manager pick his own coach unless a managerial deal including Rothschild is in place.  Does this mean Thomson is in?

[4] Are you suggesting that Cashman and/or the Steinbrenners are involved in a conspiracy to preserve Rothschild’s influence?

Yay Judge! Rookie of the Year, and now spokesperson for a globally recognized soft drink. I’m glad someone’s paying him (how many years till arbitration?), but meanwhile, hope he’ll consider starting a charity to benefit kids with Type 2 diabetes.

Also his agents/trainers are a firm called PSI, so in the video of his news conference today, the backdrop makes it look like he’s at Pepsi Headquarters. He’s even better at this than Jeter.

i think it’s a travesty that some of the ad wizards on Madison Avenue haven’t come up with an “odd couple” campaign featuring Judge and Altuve. For like Soup or laundry stuff or something.

[7] Judge and Torreyes. Torreyes can’t reach the General Mills cereal products on the top shelf and needs Judge to get them down for him. Judge can’t fit through the doggy-door when they are locked out of the house and needs Torreyes to squeeze through and let him in.

This stuff writes itself really.

8 YES that’s the spirit!

The tall giant man is actually OCD about getting his whites as white as can be while the little fella always comes home with dirt on his jersey!
*hands on hips* *rolls eyes*

This seems very weird not letting the new manager pick his own coach unless a managerial deal including Rothschild is in place.

Cashman picked Rothschild, so he’s safe.

[7] Yeah, laundry detergent, and Judge accidentally sticks Altuve in the washing machine.

[3] I would have guessed Jeter or Granderson the year he hit 40 HR

“It is almost a lock-solid certainty that at least one of the top names in this offseason’s rumor mill — J.D. Martinez, Eric Hosmer, Giancarlo Stanton”

Let’s hope it’s Hosmer.

Ha my bad…in regards to the Red Sox. Forgot to share the link.

From the linked article:

Despite a six-week late summer swoon that saw Judge strike out in a Major League record 37 consecutive games—perhaps impacted by a shoulder injury believed to be sustained on one of his bone-rattling defensive plays—Judge bounced back to make September his strongest month…

That’s the first I’m hearing about a shoulder injury spurring the slump. It’d be good to know that there is some explanation for it. (Besides the stupid Home Run Derby, which I wish he hadn’t participated in.)

[16] It was discussed from time to time here (because he iced his shoulder after every game this summer).

It almost certainly wasn’t the only cause of his slump, but if it was a significant factor, the Yankees absolutely fucked that up. If his shoulder was injured enough to be a major cause of his slump, he should have been on the DL to let it heal.

Of course, we all watched the playoffs, Judge is definitely exploitable, so we’ll probably never know for sure if Judge was playing injured.

I definitely think Judge’s strikeouts and exploitablility are valid factors in deciding the MVP, and I think he and Altuve are close enough to give the nod to Altuve based on that.

To take it a step further, I dare say that Altuve was simply the better player in 2017.

Was Judge’s exploitation in the postseason due more to the fact that it was the postseason and each pitch is given 100% focus/attention/effort/etc than his weakness?

Low and away sliders were pinpointed as his weakness early in the season, Jack Curry tweeted about it all the time and how his plan was to recognize them and lay off those pitches to hit the FB. But in the postseason, were pitchers just executing their plan better than in regular season for above reason?

[4,5,10]  Some baseball podcast I listen to pointed out that Dodger pitching coach Rick Honeycutt has survived multiple ownerships, GMs, and managers.  Rare but it happens.

[19]  There were some pretty big strike zones in the postseason.  Judge had two choices—be disciplined and lay off low stuff and hope for a called ball, or try to get the bat on the ball in the area where he is weakest.

[19/21] Judge also produced at an above average rate in the postseason.

IMO, the question to ask is if the Indians had a great approach, or just got a bit lucky, since they totally neutralized him.

[18] I’m not really sure how you are getting from A-B in your post. But just to provide a counter argument: Altuve’s size prevents him from making plays a normal sized 2B could make, so I dare to say that Judge was simply the better player in 2017.

[11] Judge then accidentally tosses Torreyes in the dryer, shrinking him even further. Torreyes essentially becomes Judge’s Lil Penny for future commercials.

Did we just open up an advertising firm?

[23] It’s true. With balls deep in the hole, Altuve has to climb an acorn, hop on top of the ball, and then ride it like a lumberjack on a log over to first base.

[13-15] - It depends.  Are they getting 2017 Stanton or 2015 and 2016 Stanton? The guy who is often hurt and is signed for 10 more years and $300M or the guy who is a force that also has an opt out in 3 years?

[22] Going strictly off the eye-test, I’d say the Indians executed the game plan perfectly. They knew Judge was the biggest threat and it seemed like 99% of sliders thrown to him were near perfect pitches. Sometimes you gotta hand it to the opposition.

When is the last time that a trade similar to a potential Stanton trade happened? ARod?

Could you imagine the Marlins being OK getting an Alfonso Soriano + Joaquin Arias in return? I can’t.

edit: The salaries are actually pretty similar in 2017 dollars (until ARod opted out). With that in mind, Stanton SHOULD be worth less…

The Marlins have a difficult needle to thread.  They mainly want to shed payroll, but they have to get something back to make it not look like a Loria move, plus all the questions raised in [27].  Doesn’t this feel like a total Boston/Dombrowski deal, though?

[30] There are reports that Stanton would not waive his NTC for Boston.

My question is this, would Stanton clear irrevocable waivers?

[30] There’s basically no way the Marlins come out of this looking good unless they can get several teams involved in a bidding war (unlikely given the limited teams that could afford Stanton). As I stated above, Stanton also has a NTC that he seems willing to use.

With the ownership all but explicitly stating they can’t afford to keep Stanton, they just don’t appear to have much bargaining power. I mean, they’ve been set up for failure since the Stanton contract was basically a PR ploy to make the Marlins look not cheap - sucks for them as the first big move out of the new ownership will be trading a MVP candidate for a disappointing return.

[32]  Yes, because then any team can sign him for the minimum.  More probably there’d be some kind of a bidding war, but the Marlins would then be on the hook for at least part of the contract—and they would have gotten nothing in return.

[35] I think a team would make a claim just to have exclusive negotiation rights and to prevent that very open market.

[36] No, irrevocable waivers mean you got the player.  There’s no negotiation.  Any team that claims him now owns the contract; the Marlins couldn’t threaten to pull him back if no deal is reached, unlike revocable waivers.

I don’t know what would happen if say Boston claims him.  I wonder if his no-trade applies in that situation.

[37] Oh, well then he definitely wouldn’t pass through. There are plenty of teams that would take Stanton and his contract if they didn’t have to give anything up. Stanton’s contract is big, but it’s not a complete albatross.

[38]  Well, maybe.  Who wants that whole contract though?  Again, maybe Boston.  Could like Seattle make a huge play for a guy they’d never get otherwise?

[39] The contract is an issue when looking for a big return on a trade (especially since the Marlins are likely looking to dump a majority of the contract). But if it’s suddenly just money, that’s a pretty easy move for a lot of teams to make.

I mean, it does limit his market a bit, but basically any mid-market and up team that doesn’t have an entrenched, elite RF would be interesting in signing Stanton if he were a FA. The difference is that you already know the terms of the deal.

[40] - Yes but given Stanton’s injury history and the opt out, I’m not sure those terms are good.  10 years of risk for 3 years of upside.

I wouldn’t want the Yankees to claim him.

[41] I think that Stanton’s injury history is wildly overblown.

Re: Judge and the strike zone: Judge actually saw fewer breaking balls and more fastballs as the season wore on. Fastballs up were his bugaboo during the streak, not breaking balls down and away (I mean, not that he was great at those, but no one is and he wasn’t challenged this way more than the average player). Mike Axisa pointed this out a few days ago. The Indians definitely went after him down and away, but a lot of that was because that’s what guys like Andrew Miller etc. do. I think the idea that he can be exploited down and away like that is exaggerated.

Re: Stanton: a $30M/year player is breaking even at about 4 wins. Stanton has averaged 4.6 W/year and 127 games since his first full season. So, there are two ways to look at it: if he stays healthy, he should build up excess value for basically the first 5 years of the deal. Or, his injury troubles will make it tough for him, even as good as he is, to build any excess value.

In the optimistic scenario, he would be ~ a 6 win player the next few years, building up something like $100M in surplus value by the time he’s 32. Then he’d decline. But in this case the deal would most likely break even or be a net positive.

I’m not sure how likely I think this is, but I don’t really see this deal as an albatross. This is perhaps one of the greatest power hitter of ever and a remarkable athlete. And when Harper and Machado push or break $400M the deal really won’t be so denigrated.


According to MLBTR, Stanton did clear waivers in August.

[45] Yup. And the harder type of waivers to clear. I actually knew that, that’s why I asked. I don’t think stantons value is much more than salary relief. Those contracts aren’t very common and with Stantons questions…

I also don’t think the Marlins are going to eat salary to get a better return. That’s probably behind the “Marlins are asking for an unrealistic return” stories we are seeing today.

OK, I’m probably wrong about that. But, I don’t think the Marlins could/would do that.

[46] Yeah, I’m thinking that Stanton starts the year with the Marlins. But if he performs similar to his 2017, he could move pretty quickly next year.

[44] One of Stanton’s injuries was being hit in the face by a pitch.

I don’t see the Yankees buying.

[48] Another was a hamate bone issue (I think caused by being hit by a pitch).

Ham bones. Mmmmmmm…..

If the Yankees ever were in a position where a Padres/Astros style rebuild made sense, I wonder if the Yankees could harness their financial advantage in their favor.  Instead of dropping to 60MM in payroll, they could sign the top tier free agents in the offseason, still be under the salary cap, and trade them for top tier prospects at the trade deadline if they paid the majority of the salaries.  It’s the only way I can think of to get an advantage in gathering prospects using money, and money is the Yankees biggest advantage.  (Or would be if the owners spent it.)

Feel free to ignore my ramblings.

Just to give a concrete example, if the Yankees had the Padres roster top to bottom, they could trade for Stanton without giving up much of anything, then trade Stanton away while paying his first year or two salary.  They would pay 50MM, but they could get a number one prospect assuming it was available from a contender.  It’s expensive compared to what can be gotten, but it’s a possible way to get top prospects where no other avenue exists. 

The example works with signing any of the top free agents as well.  With a free agent signing, a trade would have to wait a few months.

I wonder if there would be backlash for being so “unloyal”? Would they be worried it would hurt their future chances of signing FAs?

Also, it wouldn’t really work with Stanton because of his NTC.

The Yankees hand out NTC’s unlike any other team, so they would need to drop that in order to trade those FA’s they had signed. I don’t think that they can help themselves, the agent says one more thing, and they cave.

Had the Yankees claimed Stanton in August, maybe they win the WS

[55] - They still would have had to work out a trade and it appears the Marlins are asking for a lot.

Just dreaming

Sherman “The Yankees are seriously considering bringing in Dodgers third-base coach Chris Woodward to interview for their manager’s job.

The Yankees have believed they would cap interviews at five or six for the position and so far have done two interviews (Rob Thomson and Eric Wedge) and have two set up for this week (Hensley Meulens and Aaron Boone).

Woodward, 41, is currently considered the most likely to receive the fifth interview as the Yankees pursue a successor to Joe Girardi.”

Yankees also reached out to Ausmus but he wants to take a year off.

Get me Beltran

Guys, Arod is already in the payroll system. Come on !

Yankees also reached out to Ausmus but he wants to take a year off.

Phew. I actually don’t dislike Ausmus, honestly, but going from Girardi to Ausmus would boggle the mind.

I know nothing about Woodward, but he’s young enough that I trust Cash’s insight there. I just don’t want a mediocre retread.

RAB says Leyritz called to ask about the job!  File under: lack of self awareness.

[61] I completely agree but I think they revoked his employee badge when he “retired.”

[63] Leyritz was hanging out in the RF bleachers getting his picture taken with everyone when I was at the stadium in August. Sadly, a lot of people did not recognize him.

Just based on the HR in 95 to win the Donny game and the HR off Wohlers in 96 game 4, I’d give him the job.

Based on the killing a woman while drunk driving I would not.

“This was not a decision we took lightly, number one,” Steinbrenner said. “And obviously not a decision that had to do with two or three weeks. It had to do with two or three years. Observing things and hearing things.”

The fact that Steinbrenner and Cashman have been contemplating Girardi’s dismissal for multiple years — Girardi completed a four-year contract in 2017 — stayed underground until Girardi’s bitter end because both men successfully hid such dialogue, offering only praise for Girardi in public.

“He and I have had these discussions for a considerable length of time. Over and over again,” Steinbrenner said of Cashman. “Different people involved sometime. But similar type trends.”

The Viper Den of River Ave. would be a HELL of a name for a crime pulp.

Wow, Sevy finished 3rd in Cy voting.

Wow, Sevy finished 3rd in Cy voting.

Since he was a finalist, didn’t we already know that?

[69] Right. I’m dumb. Still a great season.

Also, suck it, Chris Sale. wink

Twins void one of their international contracts over eyesight concerns. They now have a $6M pool.

[72]  Totally bogus.  Somehow though I don’t picture Ohtani signing with the Twins for and extra $3m now.  If the big payoff was the concern he’d wait two years.

[66] Even without the drunk driving, wasn’t Leyritz kind of a dick in the clubhouse?

[73] - To correct myself, they don’t now have a $6M pool, apparently they still have the same $3M pool being reported all along, but people were unclear how they had $3M.

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