Tuesday, June 18, 2013

What's Going On Behind The Scenes In Yankeeland?

(Courtesy of Ron Antonelli/NY Daily News)

(Originally published at IIATMS/TYA)

Cash had a lot to say to the media yesterday.  Unsurprisingly, the bulk of it was about injuries.  While the news on A-Rod and Michael Pineda was both positive, it was what Cash said about Mark Teixeira that stood out.  When asked about Kevin Long's statement over the weekend that Teix hadn't seemed right since coming off the DL, Cash pulled off the impressive feat of going both on the defensive and the offensive, saying that Long had never said anything like that in any internal discussions and calling it "alarming" that Long would then say that to reporters.  When pressed further to comment on whether he was angry with Long, Cash summed up his feelings with this statement:

“I think some people are better with the microphone than others.”

Boom, roasted! I don't care if you like Cash or not, that's a good line.  What I do care about is the fact that it's another example of Cash publicly airing out his people, something that's never been a part of his playbook and has come as a bit of a surprise to me this season.

Teix Back To The DL

Cash strongly hinted at it on his conference call yesterday and now it sounds like the Yankees are making it official today.  Via Sweeny Murti, they will put Mark Teixeira back on the DL today for right wrist inflammation and recall Adam Warren from Triple-A to take his spot on the active roster.  Murti also speculates that Zoilo Almonte could be called up in another attempt to find some offense.  After losing Teix's bat again, this wouldn't be a bad move.

If we're following the Jose Bautista path from 2012 with this wrist injury, the initial diagnosis was strike 1.  This setback and return DL trip is strike 2.  Even if Teix comes back from this inflammation to play a few games, it still appears like he's right on track to get strike 3 and season-ending surgery at some point.

Yanks Get Aggressive With Minor League Promotions, But Not Too Aggressive

(Do you, Raffy.  Do you.  Courtesy of MiLB.com)

I have no evidence to back this claim up other than my own memory, but it seems like the Yankees have been on the cautious side recently when it comes to promoting their top prospects.  They didn't rush Jesus Montero, Dellin Betances, or Manny Banuelos, aren't rushing guys like Gary Sanchez and Mason Williams now, and didn't give any indication they were going to be anything but patient with Ty Hensley and Austin Aune.  In the past few days, however, they've executed a small series of Minor League promotions that seem to be coming a bit earlier than usual.  I can't recall there being many promotions for top prospects before the MiL All Star Games in the last few years.  These recent moves could signal a slight change in philosophy when it comes to development and promotion.

How Big Of An Ovation Does Mattingly Get Tonight?

Probably not as big as CM Punk in Chicago - kinda hard to beat that in an open-air baseball stadium that's only a third full when the game starts - but I bet it'll be pretty close tonight when Donnie Baseball returns to Yankee Stadium.  Personally I was a little young to really be a big Don Mattingly fan.  I caught him at the end of his career, when his health had started to betray him and the transition was being made to the Core Four dynasty.  But if you know anything about Yankee history, you know that Mattingly was and is one of the most beloved players in team history.  He was Derek Jeter before Derek Jeter was Derek Jeter.

I could care less about any of the talk about him returning as future manager or coach.  His track record on the coaching side of Major League baseball isn't all that stellar and I think Joe is still the better man for the job.  For nostalgia and fan history's sake though, it will be cool to see Mattingly back in Yankee Stadium tonight.  He'll get a huge reaction from the crowd and he deserves it.

A Batch Of Good Injury News

The bulk of Cash's conference call yesterday afternoon was spent updating the media on the litany of injuries the Yankees are still dealing with.  Outside of his wishy-washy statement on Teix and whether or not his wrist setback will send him back to the DL, it was all pretty positive.  How's that for a change of pace, huh?

Derek Jeter- Has been taking all kinds of batting practice (cage, tee, soft toss) and has started taking groundballs with some lateral movement.

Eduardo Nunez- Started hitting off a tee and taking groundballs again.

Alex Rodriguez- Started running the bases at 75% over the weekend with no issues, and is scheduled to face  live pitching for the first time today in Tampa.

Francisco Cervelli- Has been doing catching and throwing drills but is still at least a week away from starting to swing a bat again.

Curtis Granderson- Scheduled to get the pin removed from his broken hand this Thursday.  Will probably be re-evaluated then to determine next steps.