East Notes: Yankees, Barney, Marlins, McGehee

The latest from the AL East..

  • The Yankees may have interest in Darwin Barney of the Cubs, tweets Bruce Levine of 670thescore.com.  The two sides have discussed the second baseman in the past and talks have been renewed in the wake of Omar Infante's agreement with the Royals.  Barney had a down year in 2013, posting a .208/.266/.303 line in 501 plate appearances.
  • Meanwhile, the Marlins are looking for a third baseman and are intrigued by free agent Casey McGehee, who played in Japan this year and led his team to a championship, writes Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald.  Back in October, Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet reported that McGehee was seeking a return to MLB.  The 31-year-old hit .289/.371/.512 with 27 home runs in his first season with the Rakuten Golden Eagles.  Wilson Betemit, who lost 2013 to injuries, has also been discussed as an option.  Miami wants a third baseman with versatility, and McGehee and Betemit both fit the bill. 
  • Despite a little talk about other teams interest in Brian Roberts, he hasn’t been mentioned very often by the Orioles in the last few weeks, writes Rich Dubroff of CSNBaltimore.com.
  • Rays infielder Tim Beckham, the top pick in the 2008 draft, will miss a good chunk of the 2014 season after suffering an ACL tear, writes Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.  He would have been a long shot to make the Opening Day roster but he likely would have seen action if Tampa Bay needed depth or had an injury to a middle infielder.

78 Responses to East Notes: Yankees, Barney, Marlins, McGehee Leave a Reply

  1. GoForThree 2 years ago

    The Yankees are going all out in their search for a replacement for Cano. Barney will fit right in there…

    • BadBJay 2 years ago

      he had an awful season with the bat… at Wrigley. Majority of Yankee fans will not have patience with him if he’s hitting .220, even with a decent glove.

      • Dave Guarnieri 2 years ago

        In fairness, his life time BA is .246. He won the NL Gold Glove in 2012. He and Brendon Ryan in the same infield up the middle is scary good defensively and scary bad offensively. Barney is a far better player than Jayson Nix who is agonizing to watch. It is a minor upgrade. Hopefully, he and Ryan are late inning replacements for Jeter and Nunez (it looks like Mark Reynolds is going elsewhere which I don’t understand).

        • BadBJay 2 years ago

          Fair enough. But I don’t think you can sustain two middle infielders for the late innings with no bats on a consistent basis. We’re talking about two guys, Ryan and Barney, who do not hit. It makes for slim pickings for pinch hitters if the situation presents itself.

          I feel the same way about Mark Reynolds as you do about Jayson Nix.

          • Dave Guarnieri 2 years ago

            I understand completely but suppose one or both can bat, say .260 on a regular basis? Both have done so before in seasons with 500 plus at bats. So they are strong up the middle defensively when the duo play together, along with Ellsbury and McCann. However, being GREAT up the middle starts with the pitcher, and the current crew is not scaring anyone.

          • BadBJay 2 years ago

            Ryan is a career .237 hitter. Barney is a .246 career hitter. If either of them hit .260, whip out the champagne!

            I agree with the pitching. They lost 3 pitchers on their 25 man roster. No trades, no signings to fill those slots.

          • Dave Guarnieri 2 years ago

            They could hit .260 combined :). I REALLY don’t want to see Jayson Nix signed, has his BA EVER broken .230 for an entire season? He played a lot before getting hurt and drove in what, 24 runs?. The AROD situation is really affecting any more moves for people we have heard of. Reynolds doesn’t WOW me, but Tex is kind of a rare bird and in my mind (and apparently his) is still a question mark. I am really reaching here but Nunez did improve his fielding last year, if he can play to his potential, perhaps the Yankees being patient will pay off. I can see him at third while AROD is in exile. Kelly Johnson I rate just a tad better than Nix, but he may be the back-up First Basement by default. KJ plays a lot of positions, and none well.

  2. Dave Pierce 2 years ago

    I think McGehee and the Marlins are a good fit and gamble for one another.

    • TommyL 2 years ago

      Dodgers should take a hard look, especially if Uribe ends up with the Fish or elsewhere.

  3. Alex 2 years ago

    Defensively and currently, would there be a better double play combination if the Yankees acquired Barney and had Ryan at short? Assuming Jeter isn’t playing the field, of course.

    • James F 2 years ago

      Alternate timeline: Red Sox – Yankee’s game, Pedroia + Iggy and Ryan + Barney. That’d be impressive.

    • pft2 2 years ago

      That could be useful if the Yankees had the pitching, but with the way CC, Kuroda, and Nova finished the season, and no replacement for Pettitte, and losing Rivera and Logan in the bullpen, the pitching looks pretty weak.

    • LazerTown 2 years ago

      And pair that with Gardner and ellsbury in the outfield.

  4. James F 2 years ago

    Why Darwin Barney when they have Brendan Ryan?

    • BENT_WOOKIE 2 years ago

      as a cubs fan that is the first thought I had about it.

  5. Farmer Tan Colin! 2 years ago

    Barney had a bad season last year but he should be about a 1-2 war second basemen. Not much with the stick but best at fielding his position. What is a realistic get the Yankees would give up? I can see the Cubs including another prospect in a deal but I don’t see Samardijza going with Barney.

  6. slider32 2 years ago

    I don’t like Barney he is not an upgrade for what they have in Ryan and Johnson, he can’t hit a lick and neither can Ryan. Both are great fielders.

    • Federal League 2 years ago

      In Barney’s defense, his career OPS is nearly 100 points higher against LHP than it is against RHP.

      • levendis 2 years ago

        platoon with Johnson at 2B?

        • Federal League 2 years ago

          I’d imagine that’s more of less what the Yankees are thinking, if this rumor is true anyway. Not knowing what the team is going to get from Jeter with regards to health, and Johnson maybe seeing more time at 3B if Rodriguez isn’t around for some or all of 2014, as well as whatever the team decides to do or not do with Eduardo Nunez, they are probably just trying to put as many infield options on the table as they can.

          • chris hines 2 years ago

            I’d imagine Johnson would go to starting at 3B, like I said below that’s a bad platoon with Johnson’s reverse career splits.

          • Federal League 2 years ago

            Johnson’s splits are a bit weird to work through. Career-wise he’s pretty even, but he was god-awful in 2011 and 2012 [both with ~150 PA], but rebounded in a smaller sample size in 2013 [albeit with no real power output].

            I don’t know whether that’s a product of doing damage in his mid-20s and now he’s lost a half-step or if he’s just had a rough go of it for a couple seasons.

        • chris hines 2 years ago

          Barney hits .263/.313/.381a career vs LHP Johnson is a .276/.336/.434 career hitter against LHP that’s not a good platoon.

          • levendis 2 years ago

            hmm good point. I feel having Ryan and Barney is redundant anyway. I was going to say a platoon with Johnson/ Reynolds at 3B would be a good one. But I’m rather surprised Johnson hits lefties that well, in fact he hits them better in his career, pretty bizarre, sort of how Ichiro was against lefties this year.

      • slider32 2 years ago

        How about a trade of Samardzja and Baez for Gardner, Sanchez, and Warren.

        • JJ 2 years ago

          you can not get Baez for Gardner, Sanchez, and Warren.SMH

  7. Since_77 2 years ago

    I wouldn’t mind Barney, he had an off year in 2013. It could be a low risk/high return deals that Cashman is used to pulling off.

    • Federal League 2 years ago

      Perusing the stats, it doesn’t really look that much of an off year. It’s pretty much identical to the year he had in 2012, just a difference in the batting average.

      Not very out of line with 2011, either.

      • jjs91 2 years ago

        But that .222 babip doesn’t look like his norm. A barney/johnson platoon wouldn’t be the worst thing ever he he can get his batting average back up. wouldn’t be my first choice though.

        • Federal League 2 years ago

          I pretty much agree with you. There’s some things to like about Barney — he is a talented asset on the defensive side of the ball, hits right-handed, and his career K% is just barely over 11%.

          He even posted a career best 6.5% BB rate in 2013 [it’s still below average, but it’s an improvement nonetheless].

          What I was trying to get across is that after 1799 PA in the majors, he’s a .246/.293/.336 hitter and it’s probably more likely you get something similar to that, rather than him flirting with a .280 AVG again.

          • chris hines 2 years ago

            In 3 full seasons he’s posted wRC+ of 79, 74 and 51, it’s reasonable to expect another season in the mid 70’s rather than in the 50’s again.

          • Federal League 2 years ago

            Sure, which is what I’ve been saying. 2013 really wasn’t all that down, the basics are still there. His down turn was pretty much all focused in his batting average.

      • chris hines 2 years ago

        I would consider almost 100 point drop in OPS as a down year, now he wasn’t good with the bat before but those 30 points in OBP and 50 points of SLG is a pretty important gap.

        • Federal League 2 years ago

          Right, but in terms of power output [HR, doubles totals], K/BB rates, there’s not much daylight between the two seasons.

          It really comes down to his hits total, which fluctuates for any player really. That’s what I was getting at when I said it wasn’t really that far off from his career norms.

          • chris hines 2 years ago

            Right but there’s a difference in saying the only real difference in his last three seasons is his ridiculously low BABIP this year and not calling a .80-.100 point drop in OPS from the last two seasons a down year.

          • Federal League 2 years ago

            It’s just part of the normal ebb and flow of batting average that affects all players. His raw production really didn’t change at all, outside of his runs scored total, because he was on base less frequently.

            In 2010 his BABIP was .284 and he hit .241. In 2012 his BABIP was .273 and he hit .254. Sure it was down in 2013, but he also had a small spike in 2011.

            Like I said in the post a few down, he’s a .246/.293/.336 hitter after 1799 PA in the majors who averages about 5-6 HR a year with a sub .300 OBP.

          • chris hines 2 years ago

            I understand the point but I still disagree with the initial statement “it doesn’t really look that much of an off year”. The process may have been the same but a drop in OPS that big is an “off year” I’d expect the batted balls to fall in and him to be a .299-.315 OBP/.350 SLG guy going forward, not a .266 OPB/.303 SLG guy.

          • Federal League 2 years ago

            I’m not going to get into a back and forth with you, chris, over the nits you feel like picking.

          • Federal League 2 years ago

            I’m not going to get into a back and forth with you, chris, over the nits you feel like picking.

  8. John Kreese 2 years ago

    Realistically what could NY send to SEA for Franklin or Ackley?

    • Delia Enriquez 2 years ago

      Ichiro maybe? That’s the OF the Yanks would want to part with.

      • chris hines 2 years ago

        They might as well hold on to Ackley at that point, even if he hits to his career line he’s better than Ichiro at this point but with actual upside.

        • slider32 2 years ago

          I don’t see Ackley as an upgrade over Johnson!

          • chris hines 2 years ago

            He is defensively and it would allow Johnson to move over and fill third. I don’t see the two sides working out a deal though, Ackley’s trade value hasn’t recovered enough to get fair value and there’s no reason for the Yanks to overpay for Ackley based on hope.

      • Thunda Pig 2 years ago

        Preston Claiborne and Ichiro.

    • James F 2 years ago

      It would probably take another team for the Yankee’s to get Ackley. Mariners need a defensive first catcher that’s mlb ready and the Yankee’s could part with someone like Mark Montgomery + Gardner? M’s give some other team a B prospect for a catcher along with the Yankee’s sending a prospect to the third team involved, Yankee’s give up Montgomery and Gardner. Mariners give Yankee’s Ackley and a prospect. No idea without another team involved.

      • chris hines 2 years ago

        Couldn’t Jesus Sucre be used as the backup catcher? If not Austin Romine is a terrible AB but he’s solid behind the plate. I wouldn’t give up a prospect to a third team, Montgomery, and Gardner just for Ackley.

        • James F 2 years ago

          Doubt he’s ready. He has barely played in triple A. As for Romine, I somehow forgot about him but his walk rate is atrocious. So I don’t think the Mariners would do a trade including him. I also added the part about sending a prospect to a third team at the last second as a “what’s in it for us.” I guess sending Nunez (Since he’ll start in triple A most likely) or Kelly Johnson to a third team would be fine too.

          • chris hines 2 years ago

            I get Ackley’s upside but at this point he’s a .245/.315/.354 career player and has great D at second, I wouldn’t trade Gardner and Montgomery for that. I can get Ellis on the cheap and be a better team this year.

          • James F 2 years ago

            The thing is, he’s still young, cheaper, chance of improvement, and he’ll be under team control until ’18. Mark Ellis will cost more, older, and you know what, fits with the Yankee’s in terms of age. Gardner will be a free agent after next year so Montgomery would be a decent prospect to throw in there.

  9. Dave Dakota 2 years ago

    Why isn’t Michael Young taken by the Yanks?? Play 2nd and 3rd. No brainer experienced leader and can produce decent enough for what we need offensively.

    • Rizzo44 2 years ago

      They really need legit d and offense at D. The last legit 3b was Scott brousous lol.

  10. Suprised if ichiro doesn’t end up traded back to mariners from yanks and if they want franklin and his mama got take montero off m’s hands too

  11. alphabet_soup5 2 years ago

    I wonder what nickname the annoying Yankees announcer would give Darwin Barney.

    • Wek 2 years ago

      Cant be as annoying and embarrassing nickname that Girardi would give him.

    • Rizzo44 2 years ago

      Good question. The dude is more annoying than Hawk harrelson though. That’s not easy to do

    • Yankees420 2 years ago

      I’m sure it would be a litany of bad evolution puns…I was kind of liking the idea acquiring him until I read your comment.

  12. AJ 2 years ago

    If only the Rays had taken Posey first overall in ’08…

    • Rizzo44 2 years ago

      Rays weak point is the middle infielders. Now James Loney. Their strong point is pitching and 3b. Ss,2b and corner OF are placees they need to improve that and move out of Florida

      • AJ 2 years ago

        They don’t need to move out of Florida. They need to move out of St. Pete. Put the stadium next to where the Tampa Bay Lightning play, and the attendance will improve.

        • Rizzo44 2 years ago

          They are like the Marlins they can’t get more than 5-7k fans..

          • Yankees420 2 years ago

            Have you ever been to Tropicana Field? The travel to and from the game can take as long as the game itself. It’s horrendous (although it’s been a few years for me since I moved out of Florida, so it could have improved, but I doubt it).

  13. jeffreycogs 2 years ago

    Brendan Ryan and Darwin Barney might just be the worst offensive and best defensive up the middle combination in the game.

  14. GrilledCheese39 2 years ago

    As a Pirate fan, I loved Mcgehee. Terrific fielder at 1B, could hit lefties.. Would love to see him back.

  15. egarym 2 years ago

    Barney for Gardner

    • Since_77 2 years ago

      The Yankees shouldn’t do this because they need pitching. They can always sign a better Mark Ellis who is a better offensive player on a one year deal.

      There was a rumor that Reds offered Homer Bailey for Gardner. That one would work.

  16. slider32 2 years ago

    If I’m the Yanks I try and trade Gardner, Murphy, and Betances to the Nats for Espinosa and Storen.

    • jjs91 2 years ago

      That’s a lot to give up for a buy low candidate.

  17. pft2 2 years ago

    Darwin Barney? Might as well just have Brendan Ryan at 2B, unless they anticipate him playing SS. Imagine a middle IF of Barney and Ryan. You might as well have 2 pitchers hitting at the bottom of the lineup.

    • chris hines 2 years ago

      Your actual pitchers would give up a lot less balls through the IF though.

  18. yankeestarz 2 years ago

    Barney, Brandon Phillips or someone else, the Yankees wouldn’t be able to pull off a trade. They have no upper level talent and their biggest trade pieces (Wells, Ichiro, Gardner) are in the final year of their contract and sub-par compared to other trade options. Bottom line: Kelly Johnson is the opening day 2B.

    • chris hines 2 years ago

      Weren’t they the ones who turned down Brandon Phillips for Gardner? Seems like they would’ve been able to pull off a trade they just didn’t want to.

  19. Cubsin20xx 2 years ago

    Barney for Soriano!

  20. Cubsin20xx 2 years ago

    Barney for Soriano!

  21. Thunda Pig 2 years ago

    The Yanks should take a gamble on Brain Roberts.

  22. AsHeR 2 years ago

    well Yankees, if you want the best fielding 2B in the NL you can have him. but beware of the frustration that comes with RISP and this guy whiffing.

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