I just began classes for second semester this week. One of them is one of the foundation classes for all Communications majors, called Digital Toolbox. I didn’t know what to expect – it sounds all technical, and “technical” I definitely am not. But my adviser teaches it, and she’s cool. The projects seem cool too, and it doesn’t seem all that scary or technical at all.
That’s a lovely shot of Lowell Thomas, the place all Comm majors love ❤
Our first assignment is to make a site with WordPress. I’ve already got that covered! Hope I can use this site, if not I’ll just make another, but I’m still going to do whatever I learn in class on here as well. I’m going to be adding stuff on my blog here to go along with the assignment, like a portfolio page and other requirements. My professor suggested that we update throughout the semester and have some sort of “theme,” which sounds exactly what I’m doing already (though I hope to update MORE).
So since the big splash is out of the way for the Yankees, and since I felt obliged to post for class, I’ll do something different. As some of you may know, aside from this blog, I also am part of FanVsFan with my site at http://pinstripepartisan.com. The FanVsFan community is just as amazing as MLBlogs.
A lot of cool stuff goes on in the FanVsFan Network, especially at their radio network. Last night, it was suggested that I tune in to “Airin it Out with The Bone and Giz.” Now I didn’t know what to expect, and I was trying to refrain from letting the name of the show lead to any snap judgements.
Bone and Giz definitely earned two thumbs up from me. The show was extremely entertaining, and they covered a wide variety of topics. I didn’t even mind when they stopped talking about baseball. I’m not much of a football fan at all, but they even discussed the NFL Playoffs such that I was actually quite interested.
This week, Bone and Giz were joined with a special guest, the beat writer for the New York Post, Mike Vaccaro. Anyone who loves New York sports, or anyone who is an aspiring sports writer, has got to look up to Vaccaro. He has been with the Post since 2002, but in over 20 years of journalistic excellence, Vaccaro has covered a vast array of sporting events, including four Olympics, 12 World Series, 10 Super Bowls, eight Final Fours and five U.S. Opens.
I especially enjoyed when they discussed a “Day in the Life of Mike Vaccaro.” Life as a New York sports journalist is never boring. As he said, “There really aren’t two days that are exactly the same.” It’s always exciting and unpredictable.
Vaccaro shared his thoughts on why he loves his job so much, “One of the nice things about writing a column in New York is that if you wanted to, or were psychopathic enough, you can write one every day of the year because something is happening every day of the year.”
Other topics were introduced, and some interesting comments were made. Vaccaro said that Alex Rodriguez is the greatest player he has ever seen – and he has seen quite a few. Not sure if I agree with that, but I’m not going to argue with him!
I suggest that you tune in to this show, you won’t be disappointed. From Yu Darvish to Mark Wahlberg, to the NFL Playoffs to jean shorts, Bone and Giz have something for everyone. It is fast-paced and there isn’t a dull moment in the entire show. Not to mention, Bone and Giz are a hilarious team who work extremely well together, and Mike Vaccaro was an incredible guest.
“Airin’ it Out with The Bone and Giz” airs every Thursday evening from 8-9:30pm on the FanVsFan Radio Network.
Check out Mike Vaccaro’s work at the New York Post. You can also follow him on Twitter at https://twitter.com/MikeVacc.
Nothing much is happening in the world of the Yankees, as I’ve become accustomed to all winter long, but I feel like writing something. Actually, “nothing” is “something” for the Yankees this offseason.
Lately, it seems that even the non-exciting moves aren’t happening. When I thought of Japanese players that the Yankees would win the rights to negotiate with, I had my fingers crossed for Yu Darvish to be that guy. No. Although starting pitching was, as Cashman has tirelessly noted, the team’s number-one priority this offseason, they didn’t go wholeheartedly for Darvish, or for any other top starters, for that matter.
But what the Yankees did do, was they won the bidding for exclusive negotiating rights for Japanese shortstop, Hiroyuki Nakajima. Since the Yankees are playing the fiscal responsibility card this offseason, that’s probably why Nakajima appealed to them. They won his bidding with just $2 million.
Now I wasn’t excited about this at all, I mean aren’t there enough suitable utility infielders that already have Major League experience that they could have gone after? Why go after Nakajima?
Oh well. On Thursday, it became official that the Yankees had not reached a deal with Nakajima, so he’s going back to Japan, and the Yankees get to keep their $2 million.
I wonder, though: will they spend it?
$2 million isn’t enough to get a #2 starter, that’s for sure. But they do need a backup corner infielder, so why not bring back Eric Chavez? I know they signed Jayson Nix to a minor league deal in November, but Chavez is a better value in my eyes.
I was extremely pleased with Eric Chavez last year. Although me missed a huge chunk of the season with that foot injury, he produced in the 58 games he did participate in. He hit a respectable .263 avg with 2 HR and 26 RBI. More importantly, Chavez played perfect defense, ceasing to make any errors at third base or first base. One thing I like about Chavez is that he knows his limits. Even though he’s just 33, he understands that his role now will most likely be a part-time player, because he’s very fragile and has been worn down by various injuries over his 14 year career. He’s fine with being a bench player.
I definitely think the Yankees should bring him back. He’s a quality veteran ballplayer who when healthy can be productive at the plate, and his smooth defense is a guarantee. And he only cost $1.5 million last season. The upside is huge for Chavez, I mean why didn’t they bring him back yet? Not for anything, he also happens to be one of the most handsome men I’ve ever seen on the baseball field. He looks fabulous in the Yankee pinstripes.
My tone towards the Yankees organization this offseason has been one of disinterest, simply because I’m getting bored with predicting what they’re going to do – or what they’re not going to do, rather. It’s getting annoying. So they probably won’t bring back Eric Chavez, simply because it makes a ton of sense to do so…
The winter is wearing thin now! I want to see some baseball!
As much as Yankees fans may try to convince themselves that they are okay with GM Brian Cashman doing nothing, parts of us are just not ready to fully accept that nothing will actually happen. I’m okay with it, but I still can’t believe that it’s going to be this way. All I’ve ever known in my lifetime were the Yankees that went out there and made moves, whether via free agency or trades. I haven’t liked every move my franchise has made in my lifetime, but overall I’d say they’ve done a pretty respectable job, considering in my 18 years they have won 5 World Series Championships, and I only remember them not making the playoffs once, back in 2008.
And it’s hard to believe that they’ll do nothing. I’ll never forget the day the Yankees signed Mark Teixeira on December 23, 2008. I went on the Yankees website during my last period in school only to find this article titled, “Hal: No Yanks offers to Tex…” and I left school thinking that my Christmas would be ruined. 6:30 later that night, an article was posted saying that they had signed Teixeira. It’s impossible for me to forget these kinds of things. How can one really take the Yankees organization seriously?
Sure, there are no free agents that appeal to the needs of the Yankees right now. Starting pitching, as Cashman has tirelessly noted, is the number one priority of this team. As each player – Wilson, Darvish, Buehrle, Danks, Gonzalez – found a new home that wasn’t New York, the frustrations of some fans boiled over, and rightfully so. We have to wonder what they’re up to if they let all of these players go by.
Sometimes I wondered if Brian Cashman was even conscious. Where has he been this offseason?
Although not incredibly exciting whatsoever, Cashman has made some moves for the Yankees – small, miniscule things that don’t change much – but at least he has proven to me that he is indeed alive, and may actually be working.
The two relatively recent signings were that of former Red Sox reliever Hideki Okajima and returning right handed bench player Andruw Jones.
The Hideki Okajima signing doesn’t do much for me. He had three great years in Boston and then became less and less effective. At 36 years old, the lefty was awarded with a Minor League deal from the Yankees and will compete for the otehr lefty-specialist spot in the bullpen. Boone Logan has managed to hold his own with that job for the Yankees, so even if the Yankees aren’t satisfied with their second-lefty options, I don’t really think it’s the end of the world.
I expected the Yankees to bring back Andruw Jones, so I’m not especially excited about this move, but I am very pleased. Andruw Jones exceeded my expectations last season, hitting .247 with 13 HR and 33 RBI, but really picking it up after the All-Star break, where he hit .291 and earned more playing time. I thought he would go off to another team and try to be an everyday player, but I’m glad he’s still with the Yankees. He has 15 years of experience, but he’s still just 34 and still has a baby-face and charming smile. And for just $2 million with additional incentives, I’d say Jones is a steal.
As I noted earlier, neither of these signings will satisfy the hungry Yankees fans. They aren’t spectacular, but they are practical, wise investments that are low-risk and high-reward. You really can’t go wrong with either Andruw Jones or Hideki Okajima.
Speaking of low-risk and high-reward and not going wrong, and keeping mind the number one priority of the Yankees this offseason, I’m wondering why the Yankees aren’t going after Roy Oswalt. Like Jones, Oswalt is a 34 year old veteran with over 10 years of experience in the Bigs. All he wants is a 1-year contract anyways, so even if he sucks, after the one year, he’ll be gone. With a career ERA of 3.21, it’s highly unlikely that he will completely flop. The Yankees are concerned with his back issues, but really? A one year contract, you won’t even do that? They signed Bartolo Colon last season, who had more than his fair share of injuries, and he was fantastic for them.
Oswalt is definitely someone for the Yankees to think about, but they better hurry. If they think for too long, he might be gone like the rest of them…
I’m not going to get my hopes up, because I don’t want to be disappointed. But this will remain in the back of my mind until I hear otherwise.
42 days until pitchers and catchers report!
I can’t wait to see my YANKEES.
A year ago at this time, I was just beginning to accept that the Yankees didn’t get Cliff Lee. That pained me for a long time, but I slowly convinced myself that it was okay, and that I had other things to look forward to in the season. I later said that I wouldn’t care how well the Yankees did – I just wanted to see some of the young guys come up and play and make an impact. I waited and waited, and finally, Jesus Montero debuted on September 1. To the surprise of many, the 21 year old got hot quickly, without letting the pressure of being the best prospect on the best team in the best city get to him. Although the season was cut short as the Yankees lost to the Tigers in the ALDS and the ultimate goal of bringing home #28 was not accomplished, I can look back on 2011 and smile. The rookie brought me hope.
I’ve been extremely busy finishing up my first semester in college, and I knew I wouldn’t have been able to follow the events of the offseason the way I would have liked to, but I made sure to check up on things every once in awhile to see if my Yanks did anything. CC Sabathia received a contract extension and Freddy Garcia was signed – moves which were either expected or not all that exciting. No major changes have been made to the Yankees yet, despite Cashman’s claims that the starting pitching is in need of improvement.
Awhile back, I did a debate saying Yu Darvish should go to the Yankees. At first I didn’t really think so, but when formulating my argument supporting that claim, I wound up convincing myself. I though Yu Darvish made a ton of sense for the Yankees. CJ Wilson didn’t appeal to me because I am not fond of giving up draft picks, and when CJ Wilson is the best pitcher on the market, there’s a problem. I didn’t want the Yankees to overpay for him.
Now I know Darvish isn’t going to be cheap, but I still think he made sense for the Yankees. The posting fee wouldn’t have counted towards the luxury tax threshold that the Yankees are trying to get under – it’s just disposable money, and the Yankees have a fair amount of that. Besides, since they didn’t do anything else this offseason, they could have put in a better bid than one that was described as just “modest.” I don’t know what Darvish’s actual contract would be, but what I do know is that many are wary of giving a rather large deal to a guy who is unproven in America. Still, there’s risk with every player. Who knows if CJ Wilson would have been able to succeed in New York? And the rookies, as much as I want to see them, they’re unproven as well. Granted, they don’t have the same kind of price tag…
I know Yu Darvish is a risk, but I wish the Yankees pursued him more actively. They’ve been scouting him for years now. I know so many people who say just that because he’s from Japan, they don’t want him. And yes, I know teams have been burned by international signings before – I remember Igawa. But Darvish is supposed to be ten times better than all the other international signings combined. To me, if you can pitch, you can pitch no matter where you are on the globe. Darvish is extremely, incredibly dominant in Japan. Maybe in the United States, he’d be just regular-dominant – perfect for a number-two starter.
Yu Darvish was all I wanted for Christmas this year from Cashman, much like Cliff Lee was all I wanted last year. The free agent market for starting pitching is pretty dry this year, and Darvish to me was the best free-agent option. And if nothing else, it would have been exciting to have him on the Yankees. Darvish is headed to Texas, and the better free agents are no longer available, but the Yankees are still in need of pitching. What’s going to happen?
They could either sign low-risk and high-reward guys like they did with Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia last year, or they can trade for someone more suitable for the top of the rotation. Neither of these ideas is too appealing to me.
Or, the Yankees can do nothing.
To my surprise, I support the latter option.
Yu Darvish was kind of like a checkpoint for me: if they signed him, great, I’m beyond satisfied. I would have known that their earlier inactivity was because they were focused on him. To me, he was the deal of the offseason. Since he’s not coming to the Yankees and there’s no one else to sign, I don’t want anyone. I don’t want to trade just to trade. The rookies gave me hope last year, and the more time passes, the more the prospects are getting more ready to play in the Bigs. I want them to do so as Yankees. I don’t want them to be traded away. And like I said before: sure, trading is perhaps less risky than signing Darvish, because you’d be trading for someone who had success in this league. But success in the Majors does not by any means guarantee success on the New York Yankees. I’ve seen countless good players come to New York and underperform beyond belief. In this case, I don’t think trading for a guy is any better than letting the rookies pitch. They have the same upside – but the cost is way different.
Trading for a starting pitcher wouldn’t guarantee a championship anyways, and trading away the prospects that I’ve been dying to see wouldn’t make me any more excited. Since Darvish is out of the picture now, I want the Yankees to try out their prospects. Keep Jesus Montero, and Manny Banuelos, and let’s finally see what these guys, and other guys of their caliber who we’ve heard so much about, can actually do. Sure, they definitely don’t guarantee a championship. But watching them would create a heck of a lot more excitement than any trade can do for me.
Cashman, since you’ve decided to do nothing so far, is it a lot to ask from you to do nothing for the remainder of the offseason?
Sometimes it’s the moves you don’t make that help you out the most…