AL East Links: Rays, Bautista, Yankees

The latest from Florida, where pitchers and catchers are reporting to AL East Spring Training camps…

  • Rays executive VP of baseball operations Andrew Friedman told Erik Hahmann of DRaysBay that "starting pitching, position players who can help you on both sides of the ball, and impact talent up the middle" are difficult or impossible for the Rays to obtain on the open market. That's why the Rays expect the upcoming draft to be some of "the most important days in the history of [the Tampa Bay] franchise." Friedman admits that the Rays face different challenges than, say, the Yankees or Red Sox, but expects his club to compete in 2011.
  • Jose Bautista, who set a deadline for extension talks with the Blue Jays, told Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports that he is "still very hopeful” about signing long-term with the Jays. Bautista's arbitration hearing is scheduled for today, so we'll know by tomorrow whether he's going to sign an extension or make $10.5MM or $7.6MM this year.
  • Joel Sherman of the New York Post points out that some aging players are crucial to the Yankees' success in 2011.

42 Responses to AL East Links: Rays, Bautista, Yankees Leave a Reply

  1. Brad426 4 years ago

    I’m not sure I’d count Mo as one of the “aging players”, as I’m not sure he is even human. And Posada should listen to his “friends” telling him to concentrate on hitting… that guy can still rake and without the grind of catching he is still very valuable offensively.

  2. Hoosierdaddy92 4 years ago

    Now people are questioning the Yankee offense? I understand the pitching concerns, but the offense is fine with 35-year old ARod, 36-year-old Posada, and 36 year Jeter. They still have Mark Teixeira who is due for a rebound year, Nick Swisher who has hit 29 homers, the past two seasons and .280 average, Curtis Granderson, who always hits over 20 homers, Brett Gardner, who gets on base and steal bags, oh yea and ROBINSON CANO, an MVP finalist. I am a tigers fan and I would kill to have any of the Yankee OFs on my team to play LF.

  3. ZeroZeroZero 4 years ago

    The Jays would definitely be smart to see if Bautista can repeat last year or even approach it. He has never even been close to producing those numbers and I would say its a 50/50 shot of him being able to do it again.

    • duddy_17 4 years ago

      There’s some big risk in waiting though. If the Jays don’t lock him up this year, he performs like he did last year, he’s certain to test the free agent waters. Not sure if this kind of production is something you want to give up, for a roll of the dice on 2 picks (from a Type A signing that the big money clubs don’t mind risking).

      • ZeroZeroZero 4 years ago

        Thats a possibility but would he be willing to give the Blue Jays that much of a discount this year?

  4. Exposfan 4 years ago

    “starting pitching, position players who can help you on both sides of the ball, and impact talent up the middle”

    Maybe you should have thought about it before trading away Garza and Bartlett
    Just sayin’…

    • MB923 4 years ago

      Bartlett is not good defensively, or offensively for that matter (except 09). Bartlett was the worst defensive SS in all of baseball last year. Even worse than “Numba 2, Derek Jeetah, numba 2″

    • Longo103 4 years ago

      Maybe you should have thought garza is a flyball pitcher whos probably going to be in for a big suprise when tropicana field isnt saving him(Career FIP of 4.26)…

      Dont get me started on bartlett(defensively he also sucks)..if you think he will be as good as 09, you’re in for a big surprise…

    • kdawg89 4 years ago

      The prospects they received are far more valuable to the club than either of those 2. Bartlett < Brignac offensively and defensively and Garza leaving ,in addition to getting the Rays some very good prospects, created a spot in the rotation for Hellickson.

  5. $1545094 4 years ago

    it’s in the best interest of the Jays to wait and see what Bautista can do in 2011. there’s no need to lock him up now when the risk is higher than the reward.

    in a world of what have you done for me lately I guess it’s not that surprising for people to only see what he did in 2010 and forget about what he did in the season’s before that.
    he’s not bad, but he has only had ONE great season.

    • $5427573 4 years ago

      One season and 1 or 2 months to be technical. His production jumped as soon as he was traded to the Jays in 2009

      • Todd Smith 4 years ago

        He was traded to the Jays in 2008 – where he hit .214/.237/.411 in 21 games. Over 113 games in 2009 with Toronto, he hit .235/.349/.408 – which were pretty much right in line with his career norms. One good season.

        • Encarnacion's Parrot 4 years ago

          September 2009: .944 OPS, 10 home runs. He was corrected about the additional month.

          • Todd Smith 4 years ago

            Well, I guess if you want to get that granular, then you’d have to take out April 2010 (.213 AVG, .741 OPS, 4 HR) and June 2010 (.179 AVG, .693 OPS, 4 HR)…so really, he hasn’t even had 1 good season, just 5 good months. If you want to be technical about it…

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            to be fair, those beginning months we’re mostly in the lead off position..

            In which he tried to see a lot of pitches and just didn’t fit in comfortably.

  6. Sweet Jesus, the Rays are going to have an unstoppable franchise from here on out if they keep doing what they’re doing. I think i’m gonna have to jump from the Twins to the Rays. I’m getting sick of the way the Twins operate.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      yes and no..

      For as much as I love what TB is doing.. Very seldom does a championship team just grow… as you saw the last few years they were very competitive, but failed to add the necessary pieces late in the year or in the summer to compliment their talent and take them to the top.

      I love the commitment to scouting and working on a budget, they have shown the league how to compete with the big boys, but they peaked empty handed and will now have to wait a year or 2 for more reinforcements to emerge. .

      At a certain point you have to turn your farm depth in to major league talent and make a strong push. .

      • kdawg89 4 years ago

        agreed…They’ll compete for a playoff spot, barring injuries and a Manny meltdown. They’re probably still 2-3 yrs. away from SERIOUSLY contending for a title though.

        • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

          Yes but even then, they need to dust off the wallets once and a while, or flip some prospects for a piece to make them the favourites not then underdogs..

          I mean if they had gotten Fielder this year to DH, the WS might have had a different champion.

          • wickedkevin 4 years ago

            No matter what they do they still won’t get the fans they need to spend the money on FA.

          • They will spend money like they did last year, but they let most of the team walk and will start over again. They’re gonna have to spend A LOT of money to keep Longoria in Tampa. They will have $70-80 million dollar payroll again in 5-7 years and be very competitive.

  7. rockfordone 4 years ago

    I agree -be careful Jays

  8. Fail! Watch him play everyday and you will see the difference.

  9. that is true, but he could just as easily be jayson werth 2.0 which wouldnt be bad at all, so long as the jays dont sign him to a contract like that

  10. Encarnacion's Parrot 4 years ago

    I think it’s reasonible to think he’s for real. The guy has always been able to work the count, and even with pitchers trying to adjust and expose a hole in his approach, he figured it out quickly. I thought I remembered 2 times where pitchers changed their thinking of him, turns out I was correct:

    June OPS – .693; July – 1.183

    I’m too lazy to find his September game logs, but I’m certain he started off badly in the month, and finished the rest of the season very strong.

    He also had a very respectable .862 OPS away from Rogers Centre.

    If you look at his numbers, most of the teams he had trouble with were from the NL.

  11. we already know the values he and the jays have submitted for arb, 7.6 and 10.5mill. if they are negotiating a long term deal, i highly doubt that they would be talking substantially more money than that per year. i dont see how $7.6-$10.5mill per year on a 3-4 year deal would really burn the jays, even if he regresses to ryan ludwick form as you suggest. if he maintains werth-like production, then a deal like that would be a steal for the jays.

  12. guess it’s easy to be pessimistic too.

  13. $1545094 4 years ago

    if he regresses to Jose Bautista pre 2010, then it hurts.

  14. FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago


  15. yeah, his flyball rates were way up last year vs. career numbers and his swing is completely different too. It’s not like a lot of his homeruns were “just-barely’s”, he hit some moonshots, which really makes last season (kind of) sustainable.

  16. FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago

    Lets not act like he’s a star player all of a sudden, i doubt many people even knew of Bautista before this season.

    Yes he does have to hit at least a good amount of HRs to be valuable because he doesn’t play good defence.

    Maybe his lack of injury history has something to do with his lack of playing time, no?

    The Jays have done plenty this past year in adding talent.. Signing Bautista to a long-term deal is irrelevant to that case

  17. $1545094 4 years ago

    I don’t think it’s about what production he can have or what other things he can do for the team. it’s about the price. whatever he will be doing for the Jays, I don’t think it’s worth the $7.6 MIL a season he will be getting. if he would sign a contract extension for $5 a season I’d be all for it. he is asking for $10.5 MIL, sorry but he’s not worth THAT much.

  18. this is true, but pretty unlikely

  19. FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago

    its understandable that the flyball rates increased with the mechanics, but the guy increased his HR/FB rate to 20+%, a Pujolsian number, when he has a career of around 13%. I’m expecting that to drop to at least 16 or 17 percent

  20. $5427573 4 years ago

    Anyone remember that foul ball Bautista hit out of the Rogers Centre? Now that’s power.

  21. Encarnacion's Parrot 4 years ago

    Regression should be expected, but that’s only because his .ISO spiked so much. A 1.000 OPS is unlikely, but a .900 OPS with a dropped HR/FB rate as you suggest is obtainable. I also really don’t see how anyone can fluke their way to 54 home runs.

    His OBP will only be sustainable if he can hit at a .260 average again. Walks aren’t an issue.

    2010 was they eye-opener, 2011 should be the evaluation, but I won’t mind a 3/45 deal with an option.

  22. Lunchbox45 4 years ago

    which would still be pretty decent.

  23. Sniderlover 4 years ago

    I think you are right. Its expected he will regress from 50 homeruns but he can still hit 30+. I think it will be a similar situation to Pena IMO.

  24. $5427573 4 years ago

    Doesn’t play good defence? That was his primary role in clubs prior to last season.

    Also, are you forgetting he was in at least the top 5 for AL MVP’s last year? The guy is stellar on defence. At both LF and 3B.

  25. Literally right out of the park!!! That was awesome. I was on the 3rd bas line 2nd row of the second deck for that game. I still cant believe it…

  26. $1545094 4 years ago

    same could have been said about Batista before 2010 that he could do what he did.

  27. Please, please demonstrate more of your witty translation skills.

    This is terribly uninformed.

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