UPDATE: 6:30 PM: My bad, I had 26 players on the roster. Take away Mitre or Melancon, depending on the rest of the spring training.
UPDATE: 4:40 PM: Just to clear things up. I had Granderson in left and Gardner in center as an impulsive reaction, not because I think that will happen. I really don't have much of an opinion on that. The roster I posted is the roster I WANT, not the roster I necessarily think the Yankees will go with. Thanks for reading!
We are two weeks away from the Yankees opening day game against the Red Sox. We are also a while into spring training and stats are beginning to matter. At what point do stats become relevant? Do they matter yet? If they do, here are some players that you should be aware of.
Robinson Cano: .387/.424/.581 1 HR 4 RBI
Francisco Cervelli: .471/.526/.647 1 HR 2 RBI
Colin Curtis: .500/.563/1.083 2 HR 8 RBI (6-12 hitting)
Brett Gardner: .281/.361/.406 0 HR 1 RBI 1 SB 0 CS
Greg Golson .316/.381/.579 1 HR 5 RBI 1 SB 2 CS
Jamie Hoffmann: .130/.174/.259 0 HR 0 RBI 1 SB 1 CS
Ramiro Pena: .214/.267/.357 1 HR 2 RBI 1 SB 0 CS
Kevin Russo: .368/.435/.474 0 HR 2 RBI
Marcus Thames: .107/.107/.167 0 HR 0 RBI
Jon Weber: .550/.700/.550 0 HR 5 RBI
David Winfree: .294/.294/.368 0 HR 2 RBI
Randy Winn: .167/.167/.200 0 HR 4 RBI
That's the hitters. My take is that Spring Training stats matter at least a bit now, but the rest of Spring Training is very important. If you asked me right now I would honestly not want Jamie Hoffmann or Marcus Thames on the MLB roster. Both have outs in their contracts, but I do not feel they will help the club. Instead I would take Greg Golson (solid speed, OK bat, former top prospect) David Winfree (OK speed, OK bat) or maybe even this years Shelley Duncan, Jon Weber (solid bat throughout minor-league career, seems like a AAAA player) At this point Marcus Thames seems to be declining rapidly, as his spring training stats reflect that. He could definitely pick it up once the season starts, but you can't guarantee anything. In Jamie Hoffmanns case the Yankees should trade for him and send him down to AAA to mature. They may need him this season. As for the utility job, Russo is a solid player, but he seems like more of a future starter and playing him very scarcely could have a negative affect on him. Give Pena the job and keep Russo in mind for the future.
Continue reading after the jump for the pitchers -
Alfredo Aceves: 1-1 3.77 ERA 1 BB 7 K's
Jon Albaladejo: 0-0 33.75 ERA 2 BB 1 K
Joba Chamberlain: 0-0 16.20 ERA 7 BB 5 K's
Chad Gaudin: 0-3 8.68 ERA 5 BB 5 K's
Jason Hirsh: 0-0 0.00 ERA (3.2 IP) 0 BB 5 K's
Phil Hughes: 0-1 2.08 0 BB 5 K's
Boone Logan: 0-1 2.57 ERA 1 BB 5 K's
Mark Melancon: 0-0 2.84 ERA 1 BB 8 K's
Sergio Mitre: 0-0 3.21 ERA 3 BB 14 K's
Royce Ring: 0-0 0.00 ERA (4.1 IP) 1 Hit Against 1 BB 5 K's
Amaury Sanit: 2-0 0.00 ERA (4.1 IP) 0 BB 5 K's
For Hughes and Chamberlain it is too small a sample size to judge the winner. As of now Hughes is the obvious favorite, but don't count out Joba, as he had a solid performance in his last start. (3 IP 2 hits 1 ER) Watch their next appearance closely, as Girardi wants to decide the winner rather soon. For the pitchers in the pen, the performances so far matter. Chad Gaudin has struggled and has blamed the intense workouts. Meanwhile, another year removed from Tommy John surgery, Sergio Mitre has been lights out. Jason Hirsh is a name to keep an eye on, as he was a solid MLB pitcher a couple of years ago with the Rockies. With Damaso Marte slightly injured the Yankees may want to take another lefty with them. If they do look for them to take Boone Logan, even though Royce Ring, a former prospect within the Mets organization, has had the slightly better spring. Amaury Sanit is a name to keep an eye on as well, as he has pitched very well. Aceves was pitching really well until his performance yesterday (4.1 IP 5 ER) and should get a spot as a long reliever. Melancon should make the team, but very possibly won't, as the Yankees look to pull a Dave Robertson with him and develop him more.
If the season started tomorrow here is my roster that I would want, not what the Yankees would likely pick. This is MY pick. There is still time left and many things can change, don't forget that.
1. CC Sabathia
2. A.J. Burnett
3. Andy Pettitte
4. Javier Vazquez
5. Phil Hughes
Long Reliever: Alfredo Aceves
Long Reliever/Spot Starter: Sergio Mitre
Long/Middle/Set Up Man: Chan Ho Park
Lefty: Damaso Marte
Lefty: Boone Logan
Middle Reliever: Mark Melancon
Set-Up Man: David Robertson
Closer: Mariano Rivera
1. Jeter SS
2. Johnson DH
3. Teixeira 1B
4. Rodriguez 3B
5. Cano 2B
6. Posada C
7. Granderson LF
8. Swisher RF
9. Gardner CF
Backup Catcher: Cervelli
Utility Infielder: Pena
4th Outfielder: Winn
5th Outfielder/Pinch Runner: Greg Golson
Analysis: I took Melancon as the last pitcher because he has proven himself and can be a solid MLB reliever. If the Yankees don't think they will use him often, then they should NOT take him. Notice Joba Chamberlain is not there. I think the Yankees should (but definitely won't) send Joba to AAA and have him continue to practice pitching there as a starter. Barring a Hughes meltdown, wait for a pitcher to get injured and call him up. If there is no injury consider a 6 man rotation (helps keeps Hughes' innings down) or move one of the two to the pen.
As for the bench, notice I took Greg Golson over both Hoffmann and Thames. Golson has options left, while they both don't. I am perfectly fine letting Thames go, but I would like the Yankees to trade for Hoffmann and put him in AAA. Golson won the spot over Weber (32 years old, career AAAA player, will struggle in MLB) and Winfree (no speed, not enough power).