Jorge to the shelf

…Or so it’s being reported. See the previous entry for more reaction, something akin to outright disgruntlement. The key here is how long Jorge Posada will be out. If it’s going to be more than a month, Mr. Cashman had best start shopping, and not in the superannuated Pudge Rodriguez aisle of Catcher-Mart either.

Actually, I take that back. Even if Posada is out only the minimum 15 days, the Yankees need to find a backstop who can hit at something close to league-average rates. Given Posada’s age, the chance of another injury is high, this year and next year and for however long his career lasts. It’s nice that the Yankees have Yogi Berra, but they need an Elston Howard to get by as well, or at least a Charlie Silvera. They don’t have that, and it was an obvious need — we talked about it in this space all winter.

I just want to repeat something I wrote this morning, because I see in the comments for that entry someone talking about Jose Molina as the awesomest backup of all-time or somesuch thing. Not so much. There’s no arguing he’s a good defender and very tough for opponents to run on, but he just doesn’t reach base enough to play with any regularity. Reaching base is the basis of offense — a team can’t score runs if the hitters don’t reach base. Molina’s career OBP is .277. It is, no matter how you slice it, dice it, adjust it, the 11th-worst OBP of the last 25 years.

Remember Alvaro Espinoza and how little he hit? He reached base more often. Alfredo Griffin once took four walks in a full season of play. He reached base more often. Rey Ordonez’s bat was the joke of the league when he played with the Mets. He reached base more often. You know how my YES colleague John Flaherty likes to make fun of his offensive abilities during many broadcasts? He reached base more often. If you reduce the population solely to catchers, Molina has the sixth-lowest OBP of the last 25 years.

Giving a hitter of this quality anything like regular playing time is extremely damaging regardless of his defense, because the offensive losses outweigh the defensive gains. If the Yankees are going to reap the benefits of having Posada, his bat, they’re going to have to find a better way of dealing with the costs of having Posada, occasional, perhaps lengthy, unavailability.

…The Yankees called up Frankie Cervelli. He seems spectacularly unlikely to hit, but might actually get on base more often than Molina. Yes, this is faint praise.

I’VE SUGGESTED THIS BEFORE…
The Diamondbacks aren’t going anywhere, their bullpen is egregious, and they don’t seem to have much use for 25-year-old backstop Miguel Montero, a career .239/.310/.412 hitter to this point. In 444 career at bats he’s hit 24 doubles and 17 home runs. He’s walked 44 times and has struck out 95 times. In the minors through 2006, he batted .291/.359/.467. He’s not the next Bill Dickey by any means, but he’s overqualified to be a pure reserve and is underappreciated by his current franchise. There might be a match there if the Yankees are willing to part with a pitcher or two. Just sayin’. 

15 Comments

I like your idea for trading with the D-Backs.
You can almost gurantee the Yanks are making a trade.

The idea of trading with Arizona might work well, but what pitcher(s) do they give up? I feel like any of these guys that have gone in and out of the bullpen can contribute, but its still a matter of figuring out who can do what. I don’t think they will want to give up an important pitching piece just to get a backup catcher.

Didn’t Mike Piazza praise Cervelli’s skills during the WBC? Piazza was an offensive catcher, but if he was impressed with Cervelli that must mean he has some upside and can still develop some more hitting ability.

The idea of trading with Arizona might work well, but what pitcher(s) do they give up? I feel like any of these guys that have gone in and out of the bullpen can contribute, but its still a matter of figuring out who can do what. I don’t think they will want to give up an important pitching piece just to get a backup catcher.

Didn’t Mike Piazza praise Cervelli’s skills during the WBC? Piazza was an offensive catcher, but if he was impressed with Cervelli that must mean he has some upside and can still develop some more hitting ability.

i know he’s probably not ready, and it doesn’t make sense bc of the whole 40-man roster thing, but is prospect Montero going to be ready soon? I heard he can flat out rake…

look im 18 years old….CAN I BE THE YANKEES SKIPPER!!!!…I’ll make sure the yankees play With heart..dey playin like dey dont want it a ring……Joe Girardi is the wrong skipper…we need a Coach like BILLY MARTIN and im serious man..we lookin like BUMB’S…im A tru yankees fan and right now i no the yankees are not make it no were near the world series by the way dey playin at the moment….we need to stop changein the line up so much and sit down the people dat are not playin good…And take out Brian Cashman..He Is not worth havein no more…MR Steinbrenner…DO THE RIGHT DECISION…WE NEED TO MAKE DIZ TEAM LIKE 1998 Yankees…..HOPE THE YES NETWORK READS DIZ AND GIVE TO MR Steinbrenner….!!!CAN I BE A COACH FOR ONE DAY!!!

How about considering one of the young crop of Texas Rangers catchers? Even Adam Melhuse might be an upgrade over Molina.

http://theyankeebomber.blogspot.com

Steve: Cervelli has very good numbers vs. lefties in the minors. How does a .314/.404/.434 minor league split translate to the majors?

Steve: Cervelli has very good numbers vs. lefties in the minors. How does a .314/.404/.434 minor league split translate to the majors?

Steve: Cervelli has very good numbers vs. lefties in the minors. How does a .314/.404/.434 minor league split translate to the majors?

steven,
something about you and your writing is absurdly unlikeable and pretentious. i can’t place it. maybe it’s your self aggrandizing and self referential way. maybe its your strain to turn a pompous phrase. it could be your certitude about anything and everything. whatever it is, it’s not a smooth read.

Looks like Cash might have missed an opportunity in Brayan Pena, who cleared waivers and is back at AAA for the Royals. (via MLBTR).

PS: Steve, for what it’s worth, your grandiloquent approach is a big reason I keep reading! (no offense, donald23! 🙂 )

IM AGREE THE YANKS NEED A NEW SKIPPER JOE IS A GREAT MAN BUT NO HE ISNT THE YANKEE TYPE TO WIN A WS

“PLAYER OF THE GAME”?????? Are you kidding me?? How in the world can you make a pitcher that gave up 4 runs in the first inning..”PLAYER OF THE GAME”? That is a complete embarrassment! DO NOT GLORIFY a pitcher that lost the game!!! Don’t ignore the fact that Joba lost the game. And he left the game with a fist pump???? LOL. The only reason the remaining fans left in the stadium were cheering when he got pulled was because the rest of the Yankees were playing so damn bad!!!! Great!….. He threw 12 strikeouts. And if he wouldn’t have given up “4 RUNS” in the 1ST INNING, that stood, and lasted the ENTIRE game, RESULTING in a LOSS…..maybe “PLAYER OF THE GAME”. Was it given to him because of the drama that just recently happened with his mother? I hope that isn’t the reason. But I honestly cannot think of how he ended up being “PLAYER OF THE GAME”. The Yankees cannot buy a run right now for whatever reason. We leave so many runners on base it is almost illegal. They need a boot somewhere to spark some kind of motivation. The Red Sox were getting hits and actually hitting runners home both meetings this year against us. This Bullpen is an absolute JOKE!!!! We spent so much on 2 starting pitchers, that are a stories all by them self…..but we have “ZERO” that we can count on in the bullpen. It’s actually pretty damn funny, watching Girardi rotate the entire bullpen through a game all the time. Someone needs to talk to Michael Kay, Ken Singleton and Flash…..Because they are making themselves look like a bunch of baboons picking the pitcher that actually LOST THE DAMN GAME as ………”The PLAYER OF THE GAME”. WHAT A JOKE!

I must disagree, donald23. I find writers to be categorically offensive, but Steven does a great job & I enjoy his fervor scribendi.

Ivan

The fault of the loss was as much on Joba as anybody else. He did great after the first inning, but the first inning does count. He allowed four runs and Beckett allowed three, over more innings. Joba did not pitch one of his better games, and Beckett outpitched him.

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