2015-2016 Offseason MLB Trade Reviews

by Nicholas Cicale (@nickcicale)

Athletics acquire OF Chris Coghlan
Cubs acquire RHP Aaron Brooks

With the Dexter Fowler signing imminent, the Cubs traded away Chris Coghlan, who was slotted to be a fifth outfielder at best. Aaron Brooks isn’t much of a return, but pitching depth is more valuable to them at the moment than in the field.

The A’s are now overflowing with outfield options. After adding Khris Davis a few weeks back, they also have Josh Reddick, the team’s leader in WAR last season, and speedster Billy Burns, with veteran Coco Crisp and Superman Sam Fuld likely on the bench with Coghlan. Coghlan also have some (not much) experience in the infield, so seeing him as a flexible utility guy with a little work isn’t too hard to comprehend. (more…)

Yankees Lose, But Season Not A Loss

by Nicholas Cicale (@nickcicale)

The Yankees’ 2015 season crashed and burned in three hours last night, as they were shut down by the Houston Astros in the wild card play-in game. It was a bad matchup on paper, with Cy Young front runner Dallas Keuchel dominating the lefty-heavy Yankees lineup two previous time already in 2015 (16 shutout innings only allowing 10 base runners). While Yankees pitching did an admirable job against the Astros power-hitting bats, the Yankees offense was predictable useless, scattering three hits through the nine innings. The team looked helpless, swung at pitches aimlessly (Carlos Beltran and Alex Rodriguez had back-to-back 3-pitch swinging strikeouts to start the ninth inning), and just wasn’t suited for a one-game playoff. As a result, it was a boring and uncomfortable game to watch, and the once electric Yankees stadium crowd (wrongfully) let the team have it the final two innings of the contest, booing Brett Gardner to start when he came just short of hustling out a slow dribbler to first base. (more…)

2014 MLB Preview #9: The New York Yankees

The New York Yankees (90-72)
Team Ace: CC Sabathia
Breakout Player: Michael Pineda

The Yankees have an extremely wide range of outcomes for this season, and I decided to go by the numbers with my favorite team (partly because I felt it was a way to be less bias, and mostly because it seemed really fun to do).  Lets start with the facts; the Yankees had 85 wins last year, after having 95 wins in 2012.  Their team ace, CC Sabathia had the worst season of his career (career worst 4.78 ERA, 1.38 WHIP, .3 WAR and in pitches per inning, and worst K rate since 2005).  They suffered major injuries with four of their previous year’s regular starters, with Jeter, A-Rod, Teixeira, and Granderson all missing at least 100 games.  The team was forced to mix and match any players they could find, and although they didn’t make the playoffs still managed to be surprisingly competitive relying on guys that were at or below replacement level.   Everything that could have went wrong for the Yankees did in 2013.  To me, this all means that 85 wins is a worse case scenario for this team this year.


#9. The New York Yankees: MLB 2013 Preseason Power Rankings

#9. The New York Yankees

Team Ace: C.C. Sabathia


Most Valuable Position Player: Robinson Cano

Breakout Candidate: Michael Pineda

Notable Offseason Additions: Kevin Youkelis, Travis Hafner, Mariano Rivera (Injury)

Notable Offseason Losses: Nick Swisher, Russell Martin, Raphael Soriano, Eric Chavez, Raul Ibanez, Alex Rodriguez (Injury), Mark Teixeira (Injury), Curtis Granderson (Injury)

Biggest Team Weakness: Third base and catcher