Cashman In For a Penny, In For Three Years

After being mired in writing for the last few days and up all night doing it, it’s a bit of a relief to get back to a little posting.  Thanks to Joe the Statistician Magician Leo, and J-Boogie for commenting–good stuff.  For those of you who do not read Joe’s Statistician Magician and J-Boogie’s Baseball and the Boogie-Down, you should.  Joe does good stuff and certainly lives up to his blog/moniker.  Please head over there and second my insistence that he become a sportswriter.  I’ve assured him that I’d be happy with free Yankees tickets as thanks for the encouragement after he makes it, and you should too.  J-Boogie totally called Mussina having a big season.  At the meeting of the Mike Mussina fan club, J-Boogie, please tell Mike about the piles of crow I’ve gladly eaten, congratulations, and that he’s a Hall of Famer.  I was at his gem in Chicago and he was dynamite.  Leo, great line on Cashman.

Back to Mussina, it’s tremendous to see him finally get 20 wins.  I’m really wondering if this is it for him.  He sure sounds content and comfortable enough in his own skin to walk away should he want to call it quits.  270-153, 3.68 ERA, 2,813 K sound like Hall of Fame numbers to me.

I for one am very glad Cashman is returning.  I can’t say I’ve agreed with every move he and the team have made–Igawa comes readily to mind, Sheffield (a very productive player when healthy but a total basket case and all-around zero), Kevin Brown (hit the wall with the head next time, KB), Jeff Weaver, and on and on.  I’m also not willing to necessarily put all those on Cashman but rather the organization, since people such as Buster Olney have long said that the impetus for some moves, certainly for Sheffield, was from Steinbrenner.  In such instances, Cashman is smart enough to know that he can talk until he’s blue in the face, but his job then is to deliver what, or who, his boss wants.  Brown was one of the three worst in recent memory, however.

Cashman has done the organization an enormous favor by rebuilding the organization’s pool of young players.  While the team needs to acquire more young position players (sorry Shelley, but last year showed you to be a career AAA player), the stockpile of young pitchers is astounding.  This is all the more impressive when we have seen several rise to the majors and do well–Coke, Robertson (high ERA, but the result of a few good bashings sandwiched by good work otherwise), Veras (up and down, but better than Nuke’s first two years, no?), Sanchez has promise and is now healthy, Joba is a stud, Hughes, plus others like Melancon await.  We’ll see how Austin Jackson develops and Gardner pans out, but the latter really lit it up upon his being recalled.  If he isn’t traded, Melky deserves another shot to me, but on a really short leash.  It’s time to perform and no time to brook that late-night nonsense.

In essence, change is fine as long as one knows to what or whom to change.  I sure didn’t with Cashman.   admit that to a good degree, my desire to see him back was knowing him and not knowing others to whom to turn.  But in fairness to Cashman, he’s done a pretty good job.  I don’t blame him for PaVoldemort (good riddance) for others wanted him badly too; no one I know saw his flake-out coming.  But it turned out to be a bad signing.  I also don’t know if he or Steinbrenner were enamored with Igawa as a salve for not obtaining Matsuzaka; maybe both.  But he’s righted a ship from the bottom up in ways the fans and the Steinbrenners should be thanking him for.  This will take more time without question, but it’s certainly moving in the right direction.  What the Yankees do with Mussina and Pettite, if they want to come back and if the team signs them, intrigues me a lot.  Either way, that’s 34 wins they need to account for, no small sum.  With possibly $86 million off the payroll, I’m anxious to see how it’s spent to supplement a youth movement that to some degree has already come–see the bullpen (don’t expect Marte back, either).

I’m glad Cashman is back and for three years. It shows mutual commitment from him as well as the organization.

Published in: on October 1, 2008 at 6:35 am  Comments (5)  

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5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. i completely agree on the need for developing strong position players- but sorry , but girardi only gave shelley 57 at -bats–i guess he “wasn’t one of my guys”. hardly enough to see what he really might have done.

    it’s a shame that the boss insisted on getting sheff–wined him and dined him personally–from what i read cashman and torre wanted vlad…

    anyway–good piece jason…glad you’re back on the scene!

  2. Thanks, J.

    If Cashman and Torre wanted Vlad and got Sheffield I feel bad for them. Sheffield was very good, but Vlad has been even better, and younger, and of course talking to Vlad might be enjoyable, not so much with Sheffield.

  3. Love your line about Kevin Brown! Actually, I wonder if he was a Cashman hire or did Steinbrenner insist on that one? Can’t remember.

  4. Oops. Forgot I’m supposed to leave my calling card.

  5. Thanks Mike. I agree that Shelley didn’t exactly get a thorough look in The Bronx in 2008, but I was referring to his 2008 as a whole. 12 HR, 44 RBI, and a .239 avg in the minors this year was what I had in mind just as much. Those are good power numbers but a poor average at AAA, and it doesn’t cut it at all to me.

    I’m not sure about Brown either, Jane, but I sure wish he had never come. His 2005, when he literally couldn’t get out of the first without allowing several runs, was just painful.

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