Sunday, February 10, 2013

It's Still Important To Stay Grounded With Ichiro & Gardner

(Can this trio carry enough offensive weight?  Courtesy of Getty Images)

ESPN NY's Spring Training countdown series got off to a pretty crummy start, but he's been a little better lately.  Earlier this morning, Wally Matthews took a break from handing out fictional punishments on Alex Rodriguez to discuss the 2013 outfield, which is actually a worthwhile topic.  The Yankees are looking at a serious offensive downgrade from that group this year, and the ability of Brett Gardner and Ichiro Suzuki to be productive in their ways could be a big determining factor in the level of success this season's team can have.  Wally, to his credit, thinks Ichiro and Gardner can get the job done, and maybe they can.  But Wally's reasoning for why leaves much to be desired.

Cash Comments On MiL Option Situations (And So Do I)

The theme of the bulk of the Yankees' low-dollar offseason signings is that most of the players they've signed are fringe Major Leaguers at best.  Adding a little bit of intrigue to that "meh"-worthy group is the difference in contract situations and flexibility with regards to Minor League options.  Yesterday Chad Jennings of LoHud shed some light on the situation with comments from Brian Cashman on who does and doesn't have a MiL option or 2 still available, and who does and doesn't have the option of opting out of their deal if they don't make the Yankees' Opening Day roster.  While on-field performance in camp is usually the biggest factor in determining who makes it and who doesn't, these opt-out options could play a role as well.