I might wade into the Jorge Posada-Francisco Cervelli debate a bit later, but for now I'm touring the Yankee Universe and declaring it a 'no-Posada zone.' Let's find some other things to talk about.
- How about we start here, with a report from NoMaas that Derek Jeter, the shortstop whose defense everyone loves to hate, is currently playing the best defense of his career. He sure doesn't look like a guy who needs to be an outfielder, I know that much.
- There is a long way to go, of course, but MLB.com says it looks like the Red Sox are the class of the AL East. The defending champion Phillies played both teams within the last week or so, and here is manager Charlie Manuel's take.
Phillies manager Charlie Manuel has seen both the Yankees and Red Sox up close. Philadelphia won two of three at Yankee Stadium and salvaged Sunday's victory in the three games against Boston.
"Boston has more depth in their starting pitching and bullpen," says Manuel. "When you look at their whole pitching staff, they've got a lot of talent, a lot of hard throwers. It's a very good team, they have some speed and play the game right. "The talent the Yankees have with their starting rotation with CC Sabathia and A. J. Burnett when it's all said and done, they're going to win their games. I really believe Tampa Bay will get back in the race and Toronto can play well at times. It's really a good division."
- Brian Bruney returns tonight. Bye, bye Jose Veras or Brett Tomko, we won't miss either of you. The New York Times notes that, even without Bruney, things are getting better in the Yankee bullpen.
We’re halfway through June, and this is what Aceves, Coke, Hughes and Robertson have done this month: in 23 innings, they have combined to allow 16 hits, nine walks and just five earned runs, with 26 strikeouts.
That’s a 1.96 E.R.A. spread across four setup men, with Bruney now added to the mix.
"Coke has been pitching well, Aceves has done an outstanding job, Robertson’s been nothing short of fantastic, and Hughes has made a nice adjustment to the bullpen for a period of time," General Manager Brian Cashman said today. "We’ve had to move some pieces around to shore it up, and we’ll continue to do so."
We have talked a lot about Huston Street or other relievers the Yanks could trade for. I would love a Street deal, I still have hopes that this can be settled from within.
- The Times also noted the other day that switch-pitcher Pat Venditte, toiling away at Class A Charleston, does not seem to be viewed as a prospect despite amazing numbers.