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Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Which New York team is in contention?

The Mets, right? The Mets added talent and the Yankees subtracted talent, at least at the major league level. Oh, you heard that the Yankees now have the best minor league players after the recent trades. But isn't the objective to have the best major league players?

Last night the depleted Yankees defeated the Mets in the Mets home park. Here are their records:

Mets 54-51 two back of a wild card spot
Yankees 53-52  five back of a wild card spot

They don't look very different. If the Yankees beat the Mets again tonight, the teams will have identical records.

Both teams needed a bat. The Mets added Jay Bruce (25 home runs, 80 RBI) of the Reds. The Yankees traded their best 2016 hitter Carlos Beltran. That was after the Yankees traded their two best relief pitchers Aroldis Chapman and then Andrew Miller.

But wait, for those three major league players the Yankees received one major league pitcher, Adam Warren who won last night's game, and ten minor league players. TEN! Wow, there must be loads of talent there, right?

Take the Miller trade. The Yankees got four minor league players in that one trade. But imagine how it could have been twice as good: if the Yankees had gotten EIGHT minor league players. Wowie!

That's pretty much the conventional wisdom or delusion sweeping through the media and filtering down to the more gullible fans. Quantity over quality. Recents posts here have dealt with the quality of the quantity of minor league players the Yankees just got.

The previous post asked if the fans would trade general managers:
Yankee fans, would you trade Brian Cashman for Sandy Alderson?

Met fans, would you trade Sandy Alderson for Brian Cashman?


Here's what Alderson has done:

Yoenis Cespedes:
Jay Bruce:
Cespedes powered and propolled the Mets to the 2015 division championship and they reached the final series of the tournament, losing to Kansas City.

April 3 Bruce turned 29 and he's signed for 2017 for $13 million, half of what the Mets are paying Cespedes in 2016. Bruce is a good addition to the Mets but he would have also been a good addition for the Yankees, both to make a run this season and as a valuable player going forward. The Yankees needed to score more, their pitching was OK.

Alderson was bold, two years in a row. Cashman was timid, passing on starting lefty David Price, both at the trading deadline in 2015 and in the off season when Price signed with the Red Sox. Price was acquired by Toronto in July 2015 and he helped propel the Blue Jays past the Yankees and into first place.

During the off season the Yankees were the only one of the thirty teams to not sign a free agent. Now the dismantling of Cashman's mess is underway. Cashman quit. Hal Steinbrenner quit. There's no other interpretation. Some Yankee fans have quit with them.

We all want to see the new upcoming players who will lead the team into the future. But that's starts on March 1, not August 1 with one third of the regular season still to play. You play it out. You go with the players you have. Otherwise, we're just rooting for the laundry. For the first two thirds of the season, were we rooting for the uniforms or for the players wearing them? Even the players we didn't think should have been acquired in recent years were now members of the team, a team that hustled pretty much all the time, including in last night's 6-5 ten inning win over the Mets. The Yankee players who remained showed a fire that their general manager and owner lack. They wanted to show Brian Cashman and Hal Steinbrenner that they are wrong and that they could win in spite of the capitulation by upper management.

So it's not Queens Quitters, it's some non-alliterative Yankee equivalent. The Yankees disgraced themselves by:
- waving the white flag
- cutting and running
- bugging out
- giving up
- quitting.

Blah, blah, blah. It's so outrageous. The Yankees are one game behind the Mets. ONE game. But despite the wimpy Wilpon ownership of the Mets, the Steinbrenner Kids have sunk to a low without precedent in New York. Shame on them and shame on us for going along.

Winners never quit and quitters never win. Trite but true.

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