Alright, folks. Here I am. I'm ready to tell you how I feel about other players. Some of them are guys we should have gotten during the off season. It's better for me to tell you how I feel about these players so that if you see me going insane over my blog during the year, you'll understand why.
Joe Girardi, you were probably one of the most underestimated people when you first became Yankee manager. No one ever thought you could bring us to victory. Of course, I even had my doubts at first. I saw towards the end of the 2008 season that you were planning something. I saw how his strategy was changing. He began to toy around with a few infielders, outfielders, pitchers, catchers, pinch hitters, pinch runners, etc., and I really saw his brain working. He wasn't working towards a world series, because we all knew that for the 2008 season, the word "world series" was not going to be mentioned in the same sentence with the word "Yankees". Yes, it was sad, but Joe Girardi's wheels were turning. He was planning for the 2009 season, and he brought us to victory. I'm not picking Joe Girardi over Joe Torre, because that would be very unfair to Joe Torre. I'm not picking Joe Torre over Joe Girardi either (is it me or does the Yankee organization have a fascination with the name "Joe"?). The two of them BOTH have brilliant minds -- they were just put to use differently.
Brian Bruney is now with the Nationals. I have to say, I was a HUGE Brian Bruney fan back in the 2008 season. I really was. In the 2009 season, however, something changed him. He wasn't the same player in the 2009 season. He was determined enough, but he didn't have the team spirit (in my opinion). I think he was there just to BE there, you know? I won't talk down about Bruney. He was a good player. I can't deny that. Yes, he had his days. Yes, he disappointed us at times. But I'm not going to stand here and tell you that he should still be pitching for the Yankees. It was better off that he go pitch for another team. He shouldn't be locked here. He should have the opportunities to explore other options.
Melky Cabrera (now with the Braves) was always a Yankee favorite. Cute kid. Loved to play the game. I remember watching all of those funky moves he would pull off in the outfield. My personal favorite was when he fell through the platform wall. I think it was in Texas? It was cute. The platform door was loose and he fell right through it when he was trying to catch the ball. He caught it alright. Proudly trotted out of center field and went to the top of the next inning. Everyone stared at him like "are you kidding me?!" No, my friends, Melky Cabrera was NOT kidding. It was a sin to trade him off. It wasn't a good decision on the part of the New York Yankees. He was a key part to the World Series Championship of 2009.
Phil Coke (now with the Tigers), compared to everyone else that departed from the Championship team of 2009, was the "mortal sin". How could the Yankees trade off a player that was SO AMAZING?! He was an incredible rookie. I've never seen anything like him in my life. He reminds me of a young AJ Burnett. Am I wrong? The control he had over the ball was DOMINATING. I can't tell you who I think the best pitcher out of the bullpen was, because there were so many key players to the Championship. If I had to place him somewhere, Phil Coke would come out on my top three [players from the bullpen]. I understand you have to trade quality to get quality, but did you have to trade him? This is going to come back and do the "told you so" dance in the Yankee Organization's face. I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one that feels this way.
Johnny Damon is too much of a sore subject for me to discuss. Not having Johnny Damon running out to left field will make my heart sink on the first Spring Training game (which is in 10 days, but no one's counting...). I don't understand how he couldn't take a contract from the Yankees! Following the reports on him really make me feel disgusted. He's talking to the Tigers? The White Sox? The Braves? These teams are not to be mentioned in the same sentence as Johnny Damon. I'm sorry, but Johnny Damon is a star. He should be with the Yankees, end of story. He should have just accepted the deal. This is all at fault to Scott Boras. This is nothing to do with Johnny Damon. Johnny wants to settle down. He wants to play. But of course, Boras has to wreak havok and he has to be a pain in the neck and haggle for money. Johnny Damon is of course concerned about the money, but I think baseball means a little more to him than it does to Boras. Thanks again for making another one of your clients look like the bad guy, Boras. Not this time. Sign him with the Yankees already. We need a solid DH. Just sign him. We all know this is where he wants to be, and this is the place where he belongs. So stop being so concerned about the money and look to see what Johnny wants. This is not the Scott Boras show. Exit stage left, PLEASE.
Jerry Hairston Jr. (now with the Padres) was an interesting character to be on the field. A positive addition to the organization around the time of the All Star Game. He was a very energetic character that grew on Yankee fans. Unfortunately, he isn't with us anymore. He was a good and dedicated player. He got a hit when you needed one. Not so much a home run hitter, but definitely a team player. Little baseball got him where he wanted to go. It's a shame to depart with him, but he's one of the players that needs to explore the major leagues to find his niche.
Eric Hinske (now with the Braves) was a waste of everyone's time. How do you accept someone that RAILROADS Jorge Posada in the 2007 season? Did we just FORGET THAT and see DOLLAR SIGNS? Like HOW DARE YOU. The tension in the locker room must have been EXTREMELY high. If I were Jorge, I'd be pretty mad that the guy who tried to hurt me INTENTIONALLY was in the same room with me. That's just my opinion. He did absolutely NOTHING for the Yankees. He paled around with a few of the guys in the dugout/bullpen and that's about it. He was an absolute waste of a player. Why would you sign him when you have a FULL ROSTER and a minor league system FULL of useful players? The Yankee organization is an amazing one, but they sometimes don't use their heads. If he hadn't come onto the team, we probably would have won the world series without him. He just got a free ring, shirt, cap, key to the city, and party. Good way to take advantage of an organization, Hinske!
Hideki Matsui (now with the Angels) will forever and for always be in the heart of Yankee fans. He has ALWAYS come through in the moments we needed him. Sometimes he didn't, but that was towards the end of his career with the Yankees (hopefully we'll get him back. I think we're gonna need him if Boras doesn't stop fussing over Damon and avoiding the Yankees like an ex girlfriend at a party after a messy breakup) because of his knee and different concerns with his health. For a DH, he was pretty damn good. We couldn't expect fielding from him because of his knees, but that's understood. He pitched in whenever he could. Without this man, the team is not going to be the same. I don't understand how you can get rid of HIM but keep so many other players that could have gone to other places.
Jose Molina (now with the Blue jays) was a GREAT second catcher. He really pulled through for us when Jorge Posada had surgery to end his 2008 season and whenever he couldn't be behind the plate for the 2009 season. Coming in to replace Wil Nieves, he really stepped up to show us what he had. He was a very good teacher for ex Yankee catcher, Chad Moeller. I believe that he taught Moeller a lot. However, Moeller was no dim wit -- he knew how to pull off a good game. It was very upsetting to see him go. I didn't like him at first because I didn't agree with a lot of the things he did. We were never really on the same page. However, maybe a few days after the All Star break, I really started to like him. He really showed that he had a brilliant mind. Of course everyone says "you never know what you've got until it's gone", but we all kind of knew that we would miss Molina. Of course we will always remember what he put into the game here. I'll never forget it. But, Cervelli is now the other catcher (behind Jorge Posada) and this kidd will truly soar beyond everything he has ever learned. You can see it in his eyes. We'll miss you, Molina. Hope to see you when we come to Canada.
Angel Berroa (now with the Dodgers) was not the greatest choice to bring up from the minor leagues. I would have rather seen Cody Ransom or Ramiro Pena out there on the field. Not this guy. He really did not do a lot. He is probably a better player than what he showed to Yankee fans for the 2009 season, but there's just that feeling inside me that says "...NEXT."
Shelley Duncan (now with the Indians) was a player that was 100% misunderstood and taken for granted. The way the Yankees threw him from the minor league system to the major league system back to the minor league system was just plain evil. He was a very hardworking player that no one payed attention to. I don't blame him for filing for free agency. He has the right to be angry at the Yankee organization. If anything, I'd take his side. A nice guy (yes, I've met him) from Arizona that deserves better treatment. Shelley, if this means that you're going to excel somewhere else, I'm happy for you. Let your career soar beyond what you've always dreamed. I hope that someday the Yankee organization will realize the talent that you have and I hope you come back. Always keep us in mind.
Ian Kennedy (now with the Diamondbacks) was definitely not something to be raved about, but the only reason he's not anything to rave about is because NO ONE DID ANYTHING TO HELP HIM. How could you say that Ian Kennedy was a horrible player when the last game he pitched in the Yankee farm system he struck out SIX OUT OF NINE BATTERS?! He faced nine batters. Struck out SIX. I don't understand. The kid had an aneurism in his arm. That's DEADLY. Chien-Ming Wang's stupid little foot injury (2008 in Houston) is NOTHING compared to Ian Kennedy's, but they kept Wang LONGER than they kept Kennedy. They gave Wang more CHANCES than they did Kennedy. That's not fair at all! The farm system REALLY worked hard on giving this kid a chance in the Major Leagues and it was unfair how they traded him off after getting him all worked up to pitch in Spring Training in 2010. It breaks the heart. I hope to see you back here some day, Ian.
Xavier Nady (now with the Cubs) was another addition to the Yankees that supported us. He carried us when we needed him to. When we called upon him for help, he stepped in. A switch hitter that always brought power to the plate. He was extremely useful in the outfield. He could also play infield if we needed him to, but I doubt we ever used him for the infield (if we did, once or twice, but I'm not to comment). It was sad to see him go. I was looking forward to seeing him work with us for Spring Training! I thought we'd get him back, but then again, everything happens for a reason. Good luck, Nady!
Cody Ransom (now with the Phillies) was my mom's favorite player. I know that no one is concerned about that, but I wanted to just throw that out there. My mom REALLY liked him. My mom doesn't like EVERY baseball player, so to me, that says a lot. We got him in a trade from the Astros late in the 2008 season. He really showed us what he had. When we first got him, EVERYDAY we got a home run or a HUGE hit from him. We needed to take more advantage of him when we had him. I am upset that he's gone. He was an amazing addition to our team. We need him back. PLEASE COME BACK!
Chad Moeller (now with the Baltimore Orioles) is one of my favorite baseball players. He's definitely in the top 10. I love this guy SO MUCH. He was a great catcher. Whenever he was behind the plate for the Yanks, he was IN THE ZONE. I don't care where he goes - he's on the Orioles right now and he is really doing well. I love watching him. He'll always be one of my favorite baseball players. His views on the game were very similar to mine. Every sign he gave to the pitcher was planned out. Every move that he made was planned out in his mind. He played mind games with the hitter. He is a better catcher than he was a hitter. Hitter, I won't say that he was in the same category as Babe Ruth. But he was no strikeout magnet, either. He hit when he could, little baseball was his thing. That may have been the only reason why the Yanks let him go. I'm not writing this snippet on Chad Moeller so that the Yankees will bring him back (it would be nice, but it will most likely not happen because the Yanks kind of have an idea of what they want to do), I'm writing it to show my appreciation for this guy. It probably doesn't matter to the rest of you, but I will always love this guy.
Brett Tomko (now a free agent) WAS A MISTAKE FROM THE BEGINNING. No wonder why he's a free agent! He was such a horrible pitcher. He did not do ONE GOOD THING for the Yankees. Compared to Wang? I think I'd want Wang here (you'll find out what I mean by that in a minute). He was a waste of my time. Why do I need to watch a pitcher who DOESN'T WANT TO BE HERE? He told reporters that he loved the A's. THEN WHY ARE YOU HERE?! TRANSFER TO ANOTHER TEAM. YANKEES HAVE NO TIME TO HEAR SORROW STORIES. Players like this make me mad. Why the Yankees picked him up, I have no idea. He did better with the A's. Did he intentionally do horribly with the Yankees so that we would realize how horrible he was? Now look where he is. Still a free agent, and Spring Training is well on it's way. Good job Tomko, you've got no where to go. If you want to be a dedicated player, BE A DEDICATED PLAYER.
Jose Veras (now with the Marlins) was not my favorite baseball player. It really hurt to see that Edwar Ramirez, an aspiring star that is reaching for the stars, is being shoved back down into the minor league system with a broom handle named JOSE VERAS. HE was being pushed down because JOSE VERAS had more time in the major leagues. Are you joking? This kid is working his behind off and all you can do is shrug your shoulders and start poking him down, too? Well, this wasn't the Yankee Organization's fault, this is HIS fault. He should have actually done his JOB and he would still be on the Yankees. He is a decent player, he just doesn't know how to pitch very well when he has to. He is not a good player to be plopped into a game where tensions are running high. He is good to put in one of those games where you have a 7-2 lead (for argument's sake). If you put him in a game where the the score is tied or one/two runs apart, then he will LOSE the game. It's just his persona. He doesn't do well in those kind of situations. As a manager, Joe Girardi really played around with him. He tried to see where he would fit, but Veras didn't give Girardi the time of day. He just kicked back, relaxed, and watched everything go up in flames around him. I was so happy when they D4A'd (that's my code name for 'Designated for Assignment) him. It gave Edwar Ramirez the chance to reach for the stars again. This kid deserves it all. Hopefully Veras will never come back.
Chien-Ming Wang (now with the Nationals) was an absolute waste of money. I'm sorry. I may be the only Yankee fan that dislikes him, but I can't. I can't stand him. He was such a waste of time and effort. It always seemed like he didn't WANT to get better. If I was making the money he was, and I had the publicity he did, I would be working my behind off to get better. When he came back, he wasn't on the right track, but that wasn't his fault. The pitching staff worked with him. His mental state was not what it should have been. THAT was his fault. If you have someone that is not dedicated to what they're doing, they shouldn't be at the top of the heap with the Yankees. Maybe it's good for him to go to the Nationals. He'll see what he could have had and things he could have worked for. He should have been more dedicated at getting better. Then maybe he would still be here. The Yankee organization has no time for players that are always getting hurt (example: Carl Pavano, but we won't speak of him).
Brian Cashman, I've saved the best for last. With all due respect, I understand that you are making the right decisions for this team. I really and truly do. However, lately, you make some of the most HORRIBLE decisions. I'm sorry. The best three things that you ever did was sign Mark Teixeira, C.C. Sabathia and AJ Burnett (I'm not sure about Granderson yet, the season has not started). You sign Hinske when he was D4A'd from the Jays, you signed Damaso Marte ('nuff said), you D4A people that shouldn't be in the D4A pile, you don't pay attention to the minor league system and the players that you have there, you're all about spending money and wasting time looking at people you want because they make the team look pretty, and the WORST DECISION YOU MADE was trading KYLE FARNSWORTH for IVAN "PUDGE" RODRIGUEZ. WORST DECISION IN ALL OF MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL. I don't care WHAT anyone says, that was a waste of time, energy and money. I will say that 75% of the time Pudge was behind the plate, WE LOST. You had THREE PERFECTLY GOOD CATCHERS (now we're talking about the 2008 season). You had Chad Moeller, an absolute NINJA, Chris Stewart (saw him catch a few times - not that bad, but if we needed him he would be my best option), and Jose Molina, a man who KNEW THE TEAM BACKWARDS AND FORWARDS. Pudge never fit in with the Yanks. He was welcomed of course, but he was never 100% a part of the team. That trade INFURIATED me. Farnsworth was a GOOD PLAYER. Yeah, he had temper issues, but how could you TRADE HIM? He was an amazing pitcher. When he was in the zone, he was dominating. You had him AND Girardi practically in tears! How could you do that?! All over Jorge Posada? You could have given someone in your own farm system a chance at winning the prize. Alright, not winning the prize (the world series) because we probably wouldn't have made it -- but we would have had a better record or possibly have gone to the playoffs! If we never traded for Pudge, we would have been so much better. That's my imput. If you have a man that is a catching NINJA and another catcher that is so dedicated and knows all of the pitchers backwards and forwards, I wouldn't have signed another catcher. I'm sorry to sound this way, but this is really how I feel. I'm not ranting about this either. I'm proving a point.
Anyway, I'm finished explaining myself. Now I hope you fully understand my views. I am a diehard Yankee fan that will always fight for the good of the team. I hope that some of you agree with me on some of these views. Please, please, please, PLEASE read these and please comment. I will be very happy. Thank you for your time, and I'll come back to you soon!