Friday, November 14, 2008

Hot Stove cooks a couple of meals

Well it didn't take Cashman long to make a few deals and get some pieces set for the Yankees 2009 drive for the World Series. Before free agency hit Cashman resigned Damaso Marte and made a trade for Nick Swisher.

Here are my thoughts on each deal:

Damaso Marte: 3 years for $12 mil, plus club option for 2012
The Yankees have lacked an explosive lefthander in the bullpen for years. Ever since Mike Stanton went to the Mets in 2003 the Yankees haven't been able to find a southpaw who could get anybody out on a consistent basis. The price for Marte was pretty reasonable over three years and he was more effective than his numbers indicated. He was bad when he first arrived in the city but he really pulled things together over the last month of the season or so.

Obviously grades will change by the end of the contract but as of right now: B

Nick Swisher and Kanekoa Teixeira for Wilson Betemit, Jeff Marquez and Jhonny Nunez

Betemit was a throw away player for the Yankees. Swisher was the same for the Sox. The only thing is that the White Sox forgot that Nick Swisher actually knows how to play its just that Ozzie Guillen didn't know how to use him. Betemit will never really amount to much. The Sox could use him all around or as a general replacement for Joe Crede, though, they do have Josh Fields. None of the minor leaguers are of note. Jeff Marquez was a quasi-legitimate prospect two years ago but he failed to deliver last season and he really wont ever be better than a back of the rotation guy. Jhonny Nunez was acquired for Alberto Gonzalez back in June. 'Nough said. Kanekoa has some stuff but like most youngsters he lacks control. It's anybodies guess that he will ever figure it out but most likely he wont. The Yankees bought low on Swisher and lucky for them, the Sox were desperate to unload payroll and took on the debacle known as Wilson Betemit.

Grade: A, even if Swisher doesn't pan out, the Yankees gave up next to nothing to take a flier on him. But the new digs might be just what he needs to get back on track and jack 30 homers a year at a really cheap rate.


Dan said...

What's with these guys named, "Jhonny"? Baseball has cornered the market on odd names. Nick Swisher is a useful pickup. What was Ozzie doing wrong with him, in your opinion?

Joey said...

Swisher will definitely fill a hole in center and he will produce better than his numbers were last year. Lots of big name free agents out their this year should be interesting to see how it turns out.

What does everyone think of the Matt Holiday deal? The A's won't keep him after this year and could send him packing by the All-Star Break. He has the rare Piazza-like opportunity to play for 4 teams in 18 month period.

Dan said...

I was a little surprised that the A's made that trade. Usually they're sellers not buyers. But like you said Joe, they could become sellers again very quickly.

Peter said...

Yea I wouldn't put it past the A's to deal him again. They wont be any better next year than they were last year and they can either move him for players mid-season or just take the draft picks which Billy Beane loves.

As for Swisher. I guess Ozzie was using him a lot as a leadoff hitter and Swisher didn't care for that. Plus maybe he just hated playing for a guy like Ozzie. That type of manager is tough to play for after coming from a hippie squad like Oakland.

Dennis said...

I think I disagree. I am not exceedingly familiar with either player, but it seems to me that a plodder like Swisher is a mediocre outfielder/first baseman who will hit .250 with 25 HR and a lot of strikeouts on an 80 win team. Can't see him starting for the Yankees.

On the other hand, I think every playoff team needs a Betemit type player who can man 6 positions and not embarrass himself at the plate.

In short, Swisher is probably a better individual player, but Betemit may have been more valuable to a team like the Yankees.

Peter said...

I think that Swisher only under performed because of his situation not necessarily his talent level. He is only 28 so it isn't like he is falling off physically.

Betemit on the other hand is pretty embarrassing at the plate. He'll run into a homer occasionally but he never walks and wont hit for average. Plus just being able to play six different positions doesn't mean you play them well.