The Yankees have an off-day, so it’s a good time to ask a few questions about the team that’s bugging me, and maybe you as well…
Lord knows the Yankees are lighting it up with the best record in baseball (23-9) since they stumbled off the ground at 5-10.
Still, there are things about the team and the Yankees organization that cause me to wonder. See what you think as we cruise around the neighborhood.
Yankees: Wishy-Washiness From The Spin Doctor Again
Despite his hiring as the “Great Communicator,” Aaron Boone has always been stingy when answering questions, which he doesn’t want to answer or doesn’t know the answer to.
What do we know about Giancarlo Stanton‘s latest injury that has kept him out of the Yankees for nearly a week?
If Aaron Boone doesn’t know the answer from the Yankees medical team about this one, that says something, but when all Boone can offer is this…
“We’ll see,” Boone told reporters before Sunday’s series finale, “I know he’s doing well. … He’s tracking well, and we’ll see what the off day looks like and see where we’re at Tuesday.”, never revealing the exact cause of the disruption in Stanton’s playing time.
Yeah, we’ll see, Aaron.
Yankees: What Is The Status Of Estevan Florial?
Estevan Florial has been one of Yankee’s major prospects, but he has never found his way to a spot on the big club due to injuries and circumstance.
This year, the Yankees started him off at Double-A, tearing the league apart and earning a promotion to Triple-A Scranton.
The trouble was, though, that Brian Cashman wasn’t aware, or he ignored MLB rules that kept Florial in Scranton for ten days, even while the Yankees struggled with a makeshift outfield that included out of position Brett Gardner in centerfield, and Tyler Wade in right field.
A gold-chip prospect in a trade that could help bring the Yankees bring a left-handed power bat to attack the short porch at Yankee Stadium; the team still appears reluctant to give Florial a shot in the big leagues.
While the Yankees can always know something we don’t, on the surface, it appears they are walking their way into a situation in which, in another circumstance, Gio Urshela might never have been allowed to be what he is today.
Do The Yankees Really Believe What They Say About Jameson Taillon?
Reading the New York papers today, you would think the search is over to find another proven and reliable starter to the Yankee’s staff.
“I think it’s just getting a little more consistent in some of the outings where he hasn’t finished off a good outing,” the Yankees manager said before the White Sox series finale. “There have been some games where he hasn’t put guys away, and hopefully, he continues to get better and better in that because everything we’re seeing from him stuff-wise suggests he should do really well.”
He should do well, but will he? Taillon is the weak link in the Yankee’s starting rotation, and subject to the return of Luis Severino, he’s it.
Ya gotta root for the guy, who’s another one of those pitchers, decimated by prolonged injury and time-out from baseball, plucked off the ground like Corey Kluber by Brian Cashman and doing “good enough” for now.
But are the Yankees in it with Taillon, or is there a pitcher out there for Cashman to find, who will be an upgrade?
Does Aaron Boone Have The Right Recipe For Aaron Judge?
Aaron Judge is having the kind of year that reminds me of the explosion he had in 2017 when he took the Yankees fan base and the American League by storm.
It’s even gotten as ridiculous this year as Judge having his first-ever “walk-off” in a game yesterday – a bases-loaded walk to secure a win over the White Sox.
Injury-free for the most part, Judge is enjoying playing time to heights he has not seen since that wonderous year, way back when.
Aware of that, Aaron Boone is taking ever so much care to observe every movement of Judge when he’s playing, and based on that, allowing Judge days off.
While the conversations between Boone and Judge are privy, is it time to ask if Boone is not overprotective of Judge, given the Yankee’s makeshift outfield they’re sending out there these days?
Judge, a veteran by now, can be expected to know his body better than anyone. Knowing his value to the team, can it then also be expected that Judge will not do anything “stupid” if allowed to have the reins loosened?
Respecting what Boone is trying to do, Aaron Judge is on his way to a monster year the Yankees sorely need in the wake of Clint Frazier‘s trouble in getting off the ground, Gary Sanchez being Gary Sanchez, Aaron Hicks‘ disappearance (again!) from the lineup, and the slow but steady climb back by DJ Lemahieu to his former self, so why not unleash Judge to set his own course?
Can Jordan Montgomery Continue On His Path To Be The Next Andy Pettitte?
Ever since former Yankees manager Joe Girardi first noticed Jordan Montgomery during camp in 2017, telling himself this guy looks good with his presence on the mound, Montgomery, minus Tommy John‘s surgery, has kept himself in the Yankee’s plans.
Over his last four starts, though, the Yankees are being treated to what can be as they look at their need to replace CC Sabathia as a much-needed lefty in their rotation.
Four starts in May, though, give the Yankees an indication of the Montgomery/Pettite comparison:
There’s a hiccup in there, of course, but there’s also the promise that Montgomery is for real, and every time Boone sends him out there, chances are he will deliver, giving the Yankees a chance to win.
Nursed along by Yankees pitching coach Matt Blake, the development of Montgomery’s secondary pitches will further his ascension in the league as a dominant, though not spectacular, starting pitcher – and yes – reminiscent of shut ’em-down Andy Pettitte.
As The Off-Day Closes…
As the off-day comes to an end, three games against intra-division rivals Toronto Blue Jays are on the horizon beginning tomorrow night at Yankee Stadium when Corey Kluber makes his first start since spinning a no-hitter.
A “break” in the Yankee’s schedule occurs next with a set against the Detroit Tigers, but then it’s back again with a home series against those Tampa Bay Rays, who are currently riding the hottest win-streak in the major leagues.
In the meantime, it’d be nice if the Yankees could address with some level of forcefulness at least a couple of the issues presented above…
Here’s What Readers Are Saying…
Tim Phares Florial will help the Yankees, but he’s not quite ready yet.
Tim Phares I do not want to trade Florial. Stanton and Judge will be fine. Taillon hadn’t pitched for almost two years prior to this season; he’s coming around. You have NO patience.
Emil E. Hernandez The Answers To All Those Questions Are Brian Cashman… Boone Maybe The Greatest Communicator but Cashman Is The Greatest Controller…
Mitch Bondo Bandalan I agree with the Stanton piece. No information or what is going on with him but that seems to be the status quo with the team. As with Judge, one of them should be trained to play first. Bring tall, they could save some of the grind on their bodies if they are able to transition. I like Judge in the outfield but Stanton could switch. Not worried about Trillion but the expectation is he is a 5th starter. Monty will be fine. Just needs more work.
BD Montefusco There won’t be any trades yet because they are winning and they aren’t desperate. I would be surprised if there was a trade now. It’s still very early and there aren’t many teams that have assets and are ready to blow up the season. The Stanton thing bothers me, but it is what it is. Florial won’t be up unless they are desperate, and they aren’t.
Mel Castillo Honestly well written for the most part!! Much respect and appreciation for what you do
Mark Malmut I don’t love Taillon, but there is no need to replace a #5 starter with another pitcher. The Yankees rotation of Cole-German-Kluber-Montgomery is the best top 4 starters in the AL and possibly all of baseball. When Severino comes back, and that will happen in less than 6 weeks, that rotation will be untouchable. As #5 starters go, Taillon is doing all any team can hope for; pitch into the 6th inning with a chance to win. Regarding Boone, he’s a horrible manager with no instinct for the game. He’s a puppet to the analytics team and shows no intelligence from the bench. His refusal to address Stanton’s injury is typical of a manager who is following marching orders. Also, I think they’re holding off a little longer before bringing up Florial because I believe they think that once he’s here, he’s never going back to the minors, and expectations are that he is going to eventually find his way into a starting position. Maybe later this year or spring of 2022.
Al Pratt When we’re winning nothing bugs me. Except for the inconsistent strike zone.