At some level every baseball fan thinks he knows what moves need to be made -- or not made -- to improve his or her team.
With the volatile New York Yankees fan base that means every decision General Manager Brian Cashman makes is scrutinized from every angle -- bashed, praised and loudly argued about.
What do you think of Cashman?
Yankee fans have argued about Cashman for years. Some say he knows nothing about pitching, and he has made plenty of poor pitching choices over the years. Some say he only succeeds because he can throw Steinbrenner money at free agents, and that argument has some merit. Some say he generally ignores the bench, and when you look at the Yankee roster some seasons the past decade they might have a point.
But, the Yankees have won six American league pennants and four World Series titles since Cashman was named general manager in 1998. Since Cashman was given increased authority in 2005, the organization has changed. Lines of authority are clearer, there is more emphasis on the farm system, on building a younger roster. There was the stealthy Mark Teixeira signing.
Travis praised Cashman in the days following last Fall's World Series. Now we have another off-season's work to add to the mix when discussing Cashman.
Personally, I think Cashman has had an excellent off-season. Overall I believe he is an upper-echelon GM whose primary weakness remains his ability to judge pitching talent.
So, I ask again. Where do you stand on Cashman? Upper echelon GM? Middling GM who succeeds because of Yankee money? Terrible GM who should have been ousted years ago?