Rob Refsnyder should be the 2015 starting second baseman

November 25, 2014 | 13 comments | in Quick Analytical Blurbs | by SJK

You vicious bastards! Let the boy play second base!

Numerous times in 2014, we called for Brian Cashman to bring up Rob Refsnyder, who lit up the minors. The 23-year old had an incredible year, hitting .342/.385/.548 at Double-A and .300/.389/.456 at Triple-A. Considering how awful the Yankees’ offense was, it was mind-boggling that the Yankees’ General Manager refused to give him a shot.

As we approach the 2015 season, there is no excuse not to give him the opportunity he deserves. Plus, since the club will not be winning a World Series anytime soon, next year will be the perfect situation to be patient with a young player and give him plenty of playing time. Patience is not usually in the Yankees’ repertoire, but it’s time to build a young core — and patience is required.

Brian Cashman Whitney Houston NoMaas Yankees
Children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way.

Sherman: Hal is restricting payroll this offseason

November 25, 2014 | 5 comments | in Quick Analytical Blurbs | by SJK

Joel Sherman / NY Post:

The Yankees are not currently playing for any major free agents such as Max Scherzer and, they insist, that stance is not going to change this winter. That is because they spent the majority of this offseason’s budget last offseason when they laid out $458 million on Masahiro Tanaka, Jacoby Ellsbury, Brian McCann and Carlos Beltran.

Hal Steinbrenner feels the payroll is too stretched with long-term risk to keep piling on. Consider that, for luxury tax purposes, the Yankees already have 11 players signed for $177.6 million in 2015. That is before adding the approximately $11 million each team is charged for items such as insurance and pensions, or dealing with an arbitration case or filling the shortstop position or trying to keep David Robertson or Brandon McCarthy.

It is often a punch line to state the Yankees have a budget. But Steinbrenner actually draws lines in the offseason of what he is willing to do that he then often erases during the season as the club’s needs become pronounced. Hence, for example, a willingness to add Martin Prado’s $22 million for 2015-16 while the 2014 campaign was in progress.

Red Sox shopping spree making it even more difficult for Yanks in 2015

November 24, 2014 | 43 comments | in Quick Analytical Blurbs | by SJK

Whether or not we/you agree with the eventual terms of a Hanley Ramirez to Boston deal, the small market gritty underdog blue-collar Red Sox will be vastly improved over last year’s edition. With a flush farm system, young talent, and now plugging holes (giggity) with free agent signings (wow, this formula sounds familiar), the Yankees’ odds of being “championship-caliber” in 2015 got even longer.

The Boston Red Sox, not content to wait for third baseman Pablo Sandoval’s decision as to whether he will sign with the club, reportedly have come to terms with Hanley Ramirez on what is expected to be in the range of a five-year, $90 million agreement, reported Sunday.

One major league source however, told ESPN that the deal between the Red Sox and Ramirez is not finalized and is for greater than the five-year, $90 million deal that’s been reported.

In 2014, Ramirez hit .283/.369/.448 (135 wRC+).

Per Fangraphs, here is the lineup the Red Sox are currently projected to put out:

1. Mookie Betts, RF (R)
2. Dustin Pedroia, 2B (R)
3. David Ortiz, DH (L)
4. Hanley Ramirez, 3B (R)
5. Mike Napoli, 1B (R)
6. Yoenis Cespedes, LF (R)
7. Xander Bogaerts, SS (R)
8. Rusney Castillo, CF (R)
9. Christian Vazquez, C (R)

That’s a very strong lineup (very right-handed), depending on how the kids perform. And Pablo Sandoval is reportedly still in the running to land in Massachusetts, so Boston will have excess pieces to trade as well.

The point here is four-fold:

1. When you have good young players, you can take on financial risk to fill holes (giggity) in other areas.

2. When you have good young players, it gives you flexibility to trade (which Boston will likely do).

3. The Red Sox front office is now light years ahead of the Yankees’, which blames last season’s playoff miss on bad luck.

4. Sadly, as the Red Sox improve, the Yankees slip further away from the pack.

EDIT 1:56 PM: Pablo Sandoval reportedly coming to Boston too. Look for Boston to make trades now. Cespedes for a starting pitcher as Hanley moves to the OF?

Pythagoras to Cashman: “If you follow me, my child, then thou must rebuild.”

November 17, 2014 | 23 comments | in Quick Analytical Blurbs | by Pythagoras of Samos

NY Post:

General manager Brian Cashman said, “I believe in the Pythagorean Theory,” which uses runs scored and allowed to show how many games a team should have won, based on historical precedent. That equation showed the Yankees as a 79-win team in 2013 and a 77-win team last year.

I’d just as soon act like we were a 75-win team because I feel we have to make significant improvement,” Cashman said.

At NoMaas, we sacrifice virgins at the altar of Pythagoras. As a reminder:

According to His theory, examining a team’s run differential can provide a more accurate understanding of its true strength, as opposed to simply looking at its winning percentage. Over the course of a season, a team’s actual record should gravitate towards a record more reflective of its run differential.

Heading into the 2014 season, the Yankees were coming off a 2013 season in which they were outscored by 21 runs, meaning Cashman & Co were building off a true talent level of a 78-win team. To put it simply, if you are outscored by your opponents, you have the talent level of a sub-.500 team. This was the main reason why we correctly forecasted the Yankees missing the playoffs last season.

Entering the 2015 season, Yankees are coming off a campaign in which they were outscored by 31 runs, meaning Cashman is building off a true talent base of a 77-win team — which he publicly acknowledges in the comment above.

And while it’s encouraging that Cashman is using run differential to gauge his squad, this analysis should tell the front office that there are not enough upgrades possible to make this year’s club a contender. They will miss the playoffs again.

If Cashman worships at the altar of Pythagoras, the direction of this year’s strategy should be clear:


Yankees GM blames playoff-less season on bad luck and “game of inches”

November 13, 2014 | 18 comments | in Quick Analytical Blurbs | by SJK

Clearly living in deep denial…

Cashman trades Cervelli for lefty reliever with 4.50 BB/9

November 12, 2014 | 14 comments | in Quick Analytical Blurbs | by SJK

In 2013, Francisco Cervelli registered a 1.3 WAR, which is great for a backup catcher. His production was definitely inflated by a .408 BABIP, so his value will certainly drop in 2015. And maybe that’s why he could only be traded for a lefty reliever with control issues???

In 2013, Justin Wilson had a 4.20 ERA / 3.62 FIP / 3.88 xFIP and walked 4.50 BB/9. Ummm..ok? In his career spanning 138 innings, the 27-year old has put up a 2.99 ERA / 3.45 FIP / 3.83 xFIP, but with a 3.97 BB/9.

There’s LOOGY potential maybe? In 86 plate appearances against Wilson, left-handed hitters have a .253/.314/.367 line. That’s a very small sample though.

Seems like the Yanks traded for a Larry Rothschild project. He walks far too many hitters and that will need to change.

Hal Steinbrenner is full of sh**

November 12, 2014 | 10 comments | in Featured | by SJK

It could be a drinking game now. Every time that Hal Steinbrenner uses the phrase “championship-caliber“, you have to take a swig.

It’s simply pathetic at this point. Even if you disagree with everything we write, can we not all agree that Hal is completely full of sh**? Once again, he’s taking a page out of the propaganda handbook and repeating the same phrase he’s been using for the past three years, knowing full well he’s lying — all in the hopes of deceiving Yankee fans so they buy, buy, buy.

** Thanks for our friend @RobAbruzzese for the heads-up to the interview. Give him a follow.

Tuesday humor — Cashman: “I have no concern about Beltran’s health.”

November 11, 2014 | 8 comments | in Quick Analytical Blurbs | by SJK


“I think right now, we’re kind of settled in the outfield unless something surprising happens in the case of a trade, which I wouldn’t anticipate,” Cashman said as the annual three days of General Managers Meetings began on Monday at the Arizona Biltmore. “So I think we’re currently pretty well set with our outfield.

That means the Yankees’ outfield currently consists of RUN BMG, Ellsbury, Beltran, and the newly-signed Chris Young.

This begs the question: Does Cashman really think Beltran can play RF on any consistent basis? First, he’s not a good defender anymore (quite the opposite actually). Second, he’s a constant injury risk, as we witnessed last season with his elbow.

But apparently this is of no concern to the Yankees GM:

I have no concern about [Carlos] Beltran’s health.

Looks like Chris Young will be getting some performance bonuses this year:

Chris Young can earn up to $6,325,000 under his one-year contract with the New York Yankees.

The outfielder is guaranteed a $2.5 million salary under the deal announced Sunday and can make $3,825,000 more in performance bonuses based on plate appearances.

Young would earn $150,000 for 250, $200,000 for 275, $300,000 for 300, $350,000 for 350, $375,000 each for 375 and 400, $475,000 for 450, $500,000 for 500 and $550,000 each for 550, and 600.

And before the front office defenders respond with “Well, what else is he supposed to say?” – there’s a difference between being optimistic and just making obvious over-the-top statements. And if Cashman really believes Beltran is a zero health-risk, then well…may God have mercy on all of us.

The Robertson negotiations begin…

November 10, 2014 | 15 comments | in Quick Analytical Blurbs | by SJK

David Robertson Brian Cashman NoMaas Yankees Free Agent

At least six teams in on D-Rob?

November 10, 2014 | 1 comments | in Quick Analytical Blurbs | by SJK


David Robertson is likely to reject his $15.3 million qualifying offer. Rumors are that no less than six teams are interested in the right-hander, so it would be personally wise for him to play the field. That means if the Yanks want to keep the 29-year-old, they’ll have to shell out major bucks — think in the $18 million range — for multiple years

And before someone says, “oh, we have Betances” — losing D-Rob would still be a huge negative for the pen. He’s still very good. Betances/Robertson is quite the 1-2 punch.

Again, Robertson publicly admitted he would have signed an extension during last offseason at a “discount” for non-closer money.

Well done, negotiators.

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