Browsing Posts tagged Jorge Posada

On Saturday, the Yankees and free agent catcher, Brian McCann agreed to a five-year, $85 million contract. The 6’3″, 230 pound, 29-year-old, lefty swinging McCann spent his first eight seasons with the Atlanta Braves. As Atlanta’s full-time catcher, McCann hit at least 20 home runs in seven of his eight seasons. McCann, a career .279 hitter, also made the NL All-Star team seven times.  McCann will earn an average of $17 million per season, which will make him baseball’s highest paid catcher.

The upgrade from Chris Stewart to Brian McCann is the biggest positional improvement the Yankees could make. During 2013, McCann dealt with a shoulder injury, but posted a .795 OPS, which would have ranked third among American League catchers behind only Joe Mauer and Carlos Santana. Lefty power hitters are always welcome in Yankee Stadium and the short porch in right field will definitely boost McCann’s power numbers.  McCann does not have drastic splits, but he hits righties better (.285/.362/.495) than lefties (.259/.320/.424). Those split should help the Yankees spell McCann with Francisco Cervelli, who hits lefties. Don’t forget about the DH-slot, either where McCann can take a half-day off and mash against righties. 

Defensively, Fangraphs ranks McCann as an above average catcher. According to FG, over the last three seasons, McCann’s superior pitch framing ability alone has saved 65 runs. Over the last ten years, Atlanta has had a revolving door of good, young arms and Atlanta always ranks towards the top of ERA leaders. McCann’s ability to handle a young pitching staff cannot be understated. The Yankees don’t have a surplus of young arms, but McCann’s track record suggests he’ll be able to quickly learn the Yankee staff.

McCann is regarded as an emotional, gritty player and that’s exactly what the Yankees need. McCann has gotten into his share of altercations with opposing players, but that’s what teams want out our their catchers. McCann is a tough guy and will not let other teams showboat or showoff. 

This off-season’s free agent catcher class was headlined by McCann, Carlos Ruiz, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The Phillies quickly retained Ruiz and the Yankees had a glaring need for an upgrade behind the plate. While the price tag may seem steep, Fangraphs projects McCann as a 4.5 to 5.0 win player during 2014. $6 million per win is the baseline in player valuation and if McCann can exceed a WAR of 3.0, he’ll pay off his salary. Make no mistake about it–Chris Stewart, Francisco Cervelli, and co. did an excellent job behind the plate last season, but McCann will hopefully remind Yankee fans of the glory days of Jorge Posada

Earlier this week, Jorge Posada told sources that he was retiring. And rightfully so. Like every catcher before him, his skills behind the plate began to diminish and the Yankees did not value his bat enough to bring him back for 2012. Jorge showed in the ALDS that he can still hit (.429), but with the Yankees moving in a younger direction, it was time to say goodbye to Jorge. Posada will need to wait for five years before becoming eligible for the Hall of Fame. While Jorge will not be a First Ballot selection, Jorge will ultimately get in and here’s why..

Hip Hip..

 

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The catcher position is arguably the most decorated position in Yankee history. Behind the plate, the Yankees have a rich tradition that includes Billy Dickey, Yogi Berra, Elston Howard, and Thurman Munson. Today, Jorge Posada retired and firmly entrenched his name into the Yankee tradition at catcher. Posada, viewed as a borderline Hall of Fame candidate, hit 275 home runs and drove in 1,065 runs in 17 seasons with the Yanks. Posada played in 125 post-season games, appeared in five All-Star Games and won five World Championships.

During his final season with the Bombers, Posada was relegated to DH duty, hitting 14 HRs and driving in 44 runs. Posada, who is one of the most powerful switch hitters I’ve seen, was only used as a lefty swinger. Despite losing his starting catching position and only hitting from the left side, Posada was one of the only post-season bright spots, hitting .429 during the ALDS against the Tigers.

I’ll always remember Jorge for his honesty and solid play. Posada was the definition of a gamer and was a true Yankee. His double off of Pedro Martinez in the 2003 ALCS will live forever as will the day he caught David Wells’s perfect game. Most importantly, the fans always showered Jorge with his patentent ‘Hip Hip…JORGE!!!’ chant. I will miss doing that.

After the 2011 season, it was clear the Yankees were set to move on. Posada’s skills had clearly diminished and the Yankees have a plethora of young players who will assume the DH spot next season. I do think Jorge could have DH’ed for another American League team, but playing an entire career with one club means something. Not many athletes are able to do it.

As for the Hall of Fame, Jorge definitely isn’t a first ballot Hall of Famer, but he could get in down the road. That’s an article for another day, but today, we remember Jorge for always being a gentleman, a true professional, and a Yankee for life.

HIP, HIP….

In a day/night doubleheader against the heavily slumping Red Sox, the Yankees won 6-2 in game one and lost 7-4 in 14 innings in game two. With the Tampa Bay Ray win, they now hold a one game lead in the American League wild card standings as each team has three games left to play.

Jorge Gives Thanks - Nick Laham, Getty Images

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The Yankees put on their ‘Clinch Day’ caps early this afternoon with a 4-2 victory against the Tampa Bay Rays. The Yankees followed up that 4-2 victory with another 4-2 victory in the night cap of the double header. Robinson Cano had a big two-run double in the first game and Jorge Posada had a clutch RBI single in the night cap. With the wins, the Yankees are officially your 2011 American League Champions. More importantly, the Yankees magic number for home field advantage is 3 with seven games to go!

Those are some UGLY hats...-AP Photo

Game Notes:

Game 1

-Big props to the Yankee bullpen for this one. Phil Hughes was a late scratch with a tight back. Joe Girardi was forced to scramble to put together a piecework stream of relievers. Well, Joe pushed the right buttons as the Yankee relievers only allowed two runs to a desperate Tampa Bay team. Mo came in in the ninth to lock down his 45th save and a Yankee playoff berth. 

-Major props to Eduardo Nunez. With the Yankees trailing James Shields and the Rays 2-1 in the bottom of the eighth, Nunie crushed a deep home run knotting the game up. Five hitters later, Robinson Cano blasted a two-run double off the center field wall. Clutch hitting baby. It’ll win us games in October.

Game 2

Big C got the start in Game 2. Sabathia hasn’t been great since his rain delayed start against the Seattle Mariners when he flirted with a perfect game. Nonetheless, the big man came out and threw 7.1 innings of two-run ball. He didn’t get his elusive 20th win and wasn’t exactly dominant, but gave the Yanks a good start. I’m not crazy with him throwing 130 pitches a week before the playoffs start, but I guess that’s baseball, Suzyn.

Jorge Posada had the big knock in this one. With the bases load, Jorgie stepped to the dish with the bases loaded and delivered an RBI single to right field in the eighth inning. Jorge’s hit was the game winner for the Bombers.

What’s Next?: The Yanks will go for the four-game sweep tomorrow against the Rays. The Rays are still only two games behind the Red Sox in the AL Wildcard race. Boston has been stinking up the joint against the O’s this week so these games matter. Let’s just sweep away the Rays and keep getting fat off our wins. 

Thursday, 7:05PM: Jeff Niemann (11-7, 3.95 ERA) vs. Bartolo Colon (8-9, 3.81 ERA)

The New York Yankees defeated the Tampa Bay Rays by a score of 9-2 this afternoon. Phil Hughes successfully got the Yankees through the first six innings with a little help from the offense, specifically Jorge Posada (see more below) With the win, the Yankees fall to 72-46 on the season.

Thank You - AP

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Ho hum. Another day, another Yankee win. The Yankees beat the Brewers tonight, 5-2 as they have won 14 of their last 18 games. AJ Burnett went seven strong, surrendering two runs en route to his eighth victory. Burnett’s fastball and curve looked great tonight. Hopefully, he can piece together quality starts. D-Rob and Mo locked down the last two, as usual. Russell Martin hit a three-run bomb (his tenth) as part of a four-run fourth. Martin hadn’t homered in 69 at-bats, so it was nice to see him go deep. Hip Hip Jorge also hit a solo blast (his ninth) that was reviewed and confirmed by the umps. Jorgie is hitting .390 in June so he’s been putting in work. Other than that, the Yankees only had six hits, but used the long-ball to pace their victory. The club moves to 47-31 overall and has a 2.5 game lead over the Red Sox in the division. The Yankees will give the ball to CC tomorrow as they go for the matinée sweep. They will have to take down the Wolf Pack. This team is playing so well right now that a sweep would seem fitting as the Big Man goes for his MLB leading 11th win.

Thursday, 1:05 PM: Randy Wolf (6-4, 3.20 ERA) vs. CC Sabthia (10-4, 3.25 ERA)

For you New Jersey NYSOS readers, Derek Jeter will make a rehab start in Double A Trenton on Saturday. I’m sure tickets are gone by now, but you can try. Speaking of Trenton, Phil Hughes threw 6.1 scoreless today for the Thunder (maintaining a velocity around 94 MPH) and Brian Cashman indicated that Hughes is on pace to start July 4th in Cleveland. Huuuuuuuughes.

Old Timers’ Day is always one of the most fun days of the year. But today had special meaning. Long-time trainer Gene Monohan will retire at the end of the season and threw out the first pitch today to Jorge Posada. Joe Torre and Bernie Williams also made their returns to Yankee Stadium, but Adam will have more on that later. The Yankees honored their long-time trainer and the Yankee legends with a 6-4 win in the rubber game of this three game set. With the win, the Yankees to improve to 45-31 overall and 22-4 during day games.

 

Whitey, Yogi, and Joe

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Jorgie’s sixth inning two-run blast proved to be the difference as the Yankees topped the Reds, 4-2 in the first game of a double dip. Before the blast, Posada had went 126 at-bats(!!) without a home run, the second longest drought in his career. Yankee starter Freddy Garcia gave up two unearned runs (thanks, Ramiro) in seven innings of work. The bullpen (D-Rob & Mo) was dynamite again in relief as the Yankee improve to 43-29 on the season.

 

Jorgie Juiced One!

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The New York Yankees defeated the Cleveland Indians today by a final score of 9-1. The Yankee offense got at least one hit in every inning and 18 in total. With the win, the Yankees move to 36-27 on the season.

Rex Taking Some BP - Kathy Kmonicek (AP)

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