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(Hardball Talk)   Yankees report that for the first time this year Derek Jeter is starting to play the field. Eligible women immediately rush down to Florida   (hardballtalk.nbcsports.com ) divider line
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223 clicks; posted to Sports » on 04 Feb 2014 at 8:15 AM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-02-04 08:28:11 AM  
You get a gift basket! You get a gift basket!  You get a gift basket!

/NTTAWWT
 
2014-02-04 09:29:12 AM  
I'd guess even ineigible women are also interested.
 
2014-02-04 10:40:47 AM  
And this year, the Yankees will essentially be paying $12M for MLB's most popular mascot.  Except the San Diego Chicken doesn't take the field.

Granted, there aren't a lot of historical examples of guys who:
1) Played shortstop full time at age 40.
2) Were virtually guaranteed a spot in the lineup regardless of how they hit.
3) Were bad defenders as younger men, but never got moved to less important defensive positions.

... but it's safe to say that counting on a Jeter resurgence has more to do with his legacy and general niceness than anything a scout would tell you.

I'd normally suggest sliding Jeter over to 3B, but it's not like he's blocking a ton of SS prospects in the Yankees' trade-depleted farm system.  You move him to third, and now it's the Eduardo Nunez Show.  They only have two infielders who look like they'll end up in the majors, and both (Gregory Bird at 1B, and Eric Jagielo at 3B) are a couple years away.

So they're stuck with filling 162 games of SS and 3B with their 40-man.  Get ready for 1200+ PA of:

1) The ghost of Derek Jeter, who probably can't play every day between his age and his ankles.
2) Scott Sizemore, who had a streak of averageness interrupted by 2012 (out with a torn ACL) and 2013 (out with a re-torn ACL).
3) Kelly Johnson, who is probably the best hitter on this list at this point (admittedly, not saying much), but has made 12 career starts at 3B, and wasn't exactly tearing it up defending at 2B.
4) Brendan Ryan, who has a great glove but has hit .194 and .197 with zero power the last two seasons.  He is coming off a career high in HR (4), however.
5) Eduardo Nunez, who is like Brendan Ryan without the glove thing.  Proud owner of a -1.7 career WAR.
 
2014-02-04 06:07:23 PM  

chimp_ninja: And this year, the Yankees will essentially be paying $12M for MLB's most popular mascot.  Except the San Diego Chicken doesn't take the field.

Granted, there aren't a lot of historical examples of guys who:
1) Played shortstop full time at age 40.
2) Were virtually guaranteed a spot in the lineup regardless of how they hit.
3) Were bad defenders as younger men, but never got moved to less important defensive positions.

... but it's safe to say that counting on a Jeter resurgence has more to do with his legacy and general niceness than anything a scout would tell you.

I'd normally suggest sliding Jeter over to 3B, but it's not like he's blocking a ton of SS prospects in the Yankees' trade-depleted farm system.  You move him to third, and now it's the Eduardo Nunez Show.  They only have two infielders who look like they'll end up in the majors, and both (Gregory Bird at 1B, and Eric Jagielo at 3B) are a couple years away.

So they're stuck with filling 162 games of SS and 3B with their 40-man.  Get ready for 1200+ PA of:

1) The ghost of Derek Jeter, who probably can't play every day between his age and his ankles.
2) Scott Sizemore, who had a streak of averageness interrupted by 2012 (out with a torn ACL) and 2013 (out with a re-torn ACL).
3) Kelly Johnson, who is probably the best hitter on this list at this point (admittedly, not saying much), but has made 12 career starts at 3B, and wasn't exactly tearing it up defending at 2B.
4) Brendan Ryan, who has a great glove but has hit .194 and .197 with zero power the last two seasons.  He is coming off a career high in HR (4), however.
5) Eduardo Nunez, who is like Brendan Ryan without the glove thing.  Proud owner of a -1.7 career WAR.


You did forget a couple of Non-Roster spring training invitees that could make the team. You mentioned Sizemore, but they also have Russ Canzler (who plays all corner positions and has routinely killed AAA pitching only to get up to the majors and not do much, could play 3B for the Yanks if he's impressive enough in Spring Training) and Corban Joseph (who they did give a couple of starts to last year). 

I think the smart move would probably to put Ryan at SS most games with Jeter at 3B. Swap Jeter over to SS to give Ryan some rest here and there and have Johnson playing 3B in those cases (also, when they occasionally move Jeter over to DH, although DH should be well spoken for by Soriano). If you're going to suck offensively, you might as well have some decent defense, so I think they should be playing Ryan. Actually, Brandon Inge is still available. If you *really* wanted to go defense-oriented, you could be playing Ryan and Inge and just admitting defeat at the bottom third of your lineup.

What I think the Yankees *will* do is start Jeter at SS damn near every game with Ryan available off the bench as a defensive replacement. They'll platoon Sizemore and Johnson at 3B, despite neither being a good fielder there (also, while Sizemore has a large platoon, Johnson does not. Sizemore is not really that huge of an upgrade against lefties that you need to be carrying him with a roster spot. That being said). At some point management will get impatient and promote whatever they have in the minors up to try to improve the situation (Joseph, Canzler or Nunez being first options, Dean Anna somehow occupying 3B being another, Ronny Mustelier being a long-shot option as well)

There's also still some free agent options that could be added to the mix. Although with the exception of Steven Drew, they're all just bodies to add to the pile (and Drew probably won't sign with the Yankees since he'd want SS, and Jeter likely will not move). Brandon Inge, Justin Turner, Nick Green, and Placido Polanco are all available likely on minor league deals. Turner and Inge would be decent gloves with horrible bats. Green is just bad at everything. Polanco was okay once, but is old and shiatty now. He's a perfect fit for the New York Yankees. I don't know why they haven't signed him already.
 
2014-02-04 06:58:59 PM  
I'm not ready to completely write off Jeter's bat just yet; he had a great 2012 offensively. I'd also take a gimpy Jeter over a healthy Nunez in the field any day.

Any. Day.
 
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