Girardi knows it’s playoffs or bust in ’09

In three-plus decades of Steinbrenner ownership, listing “manager of the New York Yankees” on your resume has historically made for some shaky job security. No one needs to remind Joe Girardi.

He is well aware that if the lights aren’t on at the new Yankee Stadium come October, someone else could be sitting behind the manager’s desk in 2010.

“As a player, I felt it every year,” Girardi said. “If you didn’t play well, you didn’t get a job the next year. I’m comfortable; I understand. Would I rather be sitting with a World Series ring from 2008? Yes, I would, but it’s not the reality of it.”

Here are assorted other items from Girardi’s first press conference of the spring (more than half of which revolved around A-Rod):

– On CC Sabathia: “Look at what CC has done the last couple of years. What he’s been able to accomplish, the innings that he’s been able to give a club. Pitching last year in Milwaukee in a difficult Wild Card race and his personality leads me to believe that he can be very successful in New York.”

– On A.J. Burnett: “Hearing how he’s talked about matured, he’s learned over the last couple of years that it’s not just throwing the ball through a wall. It leads me to believe that he’s going to do well.”

– On Mark Teixeira: “I’m very impressed by Tex, just by my conversations with him and what he brings to the table every day. The playoffs with the Angels last year were successful. I think I’m looking at the track record, but more importantly, the discussions.”

– Jorge Posada is being expected to catch 100 to 110 games this year, though he probably won’t catch in the spring until mid-March. The longer spring schedule allows them to be more conservative. Mariano Rivera will likewise be brought along slowly as there’s no rush for him to log his eight to 10 innings.

– Hideki Matsui is in camp and tested well with his surgically repaired left knee. He’ll begin camp on rehab to avoid pounding on it with running early on. The plan is that Brett Gardner or Melky Cabrera will be the Opening Day center fielder but that is, of course, subject to change.

– Girardi seemed to hint he may lean toward Xavier Nady in right field if he had to fill out a lineup card right now, but Nick Swisher will get a fair shake as long as both guys remain in camp. “It’s something we have to decide over the next 7 ½ weeks,” he said.

– Last point to hammer home: For the purposes of 2009, Joba Chamberlain is a starting pitcher. 

40 Comments

AGREED! Just look at Posada!!!

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Garrett,
Check my ears, you’ll see rocks!!! With four great pitches Chamberlain projects as a starter if his body tolerates it. But you never know what could change that direction!
See my next post for the next super reliever on the horizon!

With the Yankees luck Teixeira will suffer an injury of some sort in 2009 or 2010, but let’s not jinx us before the season starts.

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I’m glad we’re finally on the same page, M_Saiki. Ha! Second round of the playoffs or bust! Cheers.

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Time for Melky to win the job or the Cameron trade will likely be completed

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Giants franchise Jacobs.
Jimmy Leyritz jailed indefinetely.
I have a had time thinking we will keep Swisher and his salary as a backup but I might be wrong.
Andy Phillips sign with Pittsburgh.

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I really want Nady around this year. He was one of the few bright lights in ’08 and made me wonder why the Mets ever got rid of him. (Pitching, I know.) I wanna see Melky in CF–if he gets his act together–I’m rooting for that kid, and I heard from people that saw him play in the Dominican this Winter that he looked really good out there. (I think Cashman may have said the same.) However, if Gardner can hit–and that still is a BIG if–Melky may be toast. As for Swisher, at the very least, he deepens the bench. At best he could solidly contribute–like Nady, he also reminds me somehow of the late ’90s guys that weren’t stars but always came through–so I’d like to see him stay, as well.

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Happy Valentine’s Day — we’re sending love to all the haters in baseball on the MLB.com homepage right now. Everyone be sure to leave your comments there on my story. So far Orioles fans seem to think they are the new future! Comment at http://is.gd/js04

Mark/MLB.com
http://mlblogs.mlblogs.com
http://www.twitter.com/mlblogs

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TO BRYAN HOCH

Can I have your gut or true feelings in relation to Alex Rodriguez and the whole CURRENT ISSUE in relation to my view.

My view is that like in the criminal justice system if an occurrance was not punishable by law in 2003 you cannot then punish/sentence/suspend that person in 2009 if the occurrance does become a punishable offence in 2009 regardless of whether in 2006 or 07 whenever he was asked if he participated in that occurrance in 2003 and he denied it. The fact is that the powers to be in Selig included deemed it to be a non punishable or open to suspension at the time END OF STORY. We or others may not like it, we may disagree totally BUT THAT WAS THE MANTRA in 2003.
I among others would like to believe he and all 103 others are clean since that time. Also it is Rodriguez alone that is being singled out, yes he is possibly the biggest name in baseball, how do we know that others among the 103 nameless are not perceived to be nearly as big, certainly to their own teams at least.

WE HAVE TO ACCEPT IT AND MOVE ON regardless of whether we agree or disagree. For Selig to consider suspensions is totally inconceivable and I imagine totally illegal.
If armed robbery was not a punishable crime in 2003 and is found to be a punishable crime in 2009, one cannot go out and arrest, charge and punish individuals who participated in armed robbery in 2003.

Aussie Bryan

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Aceves will be Hughes out for the 5th starter spot and Joba will be in the bull pen by June.

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yanks are going to play real baseball in 09,,

http://junior13.mlblogs.com/

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The Cameron deal stalled before because Milwaulkie wants us to eat Cameron’s salary and they would go through Arbritation with Cabrera. We offered Igawa before and someone else neither of which appealed much to Milwaulkie but Swisher is now on the table.

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I don’t see Swisher playing CF, he is not in the conversation at all. Gardner probably will be a bench player unless he is absolutely tremendous. I would say at this point Damon playing CF is more likely than Swisher but not likely. We’ll see it is Cabrera’s and Gardner’s job to lose. Milwaulkie could call at any time and this would all change.

The deal as it stands: Igawa or Swisher plus Cabrera for Cameron

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Hypothetically, the OF spots will most likely be filled like this if Gardner or Cabrerra don’t get the job. Matsui will DH, Gardner will pinch-run/outfield, Damon LF, Nady RF, Swisher CF and Melky will be the odd man out. Of course, this is all hypothetical and my opinion. I could be wrong, but I just can’t see the move for Cameron a good one in any sense, I would be very surprised if they got him.

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I hope Bruney can be relied upon but he has given me too many chest pains to say games over Bruney to Rivera 7th, 8th and 9th.

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The logic from Cashman’s perspective is that Cameron provides them with a CF for this year and next. Also, it is highly unlikely they will carry 6 OFs. With Melky’s raise either he starts or he’s gone. Cameron discussions indicate that at this point neither Gardner or Cabrera makes them confortable. Swisher brings alot to the table but he is not in the CF discussion and will they really carry 6 OFs?

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Good point on the 2mm, I believe it would actually be less than 2mm. I still think that they would rather Swisher because he brings everything to the table Cameron does but at a cheaper price, and for a longer period of time. Cameron was so attractive to the Yanks because of his ability to get on base and his decent pop. Swish offers an upgrade at Cameron at the plate and a slight downgrade in center, I just don’t see the logic in going after Cameron.

Also, Bruney was good in 06 and 08. I remember 07 was not as bad as it looks statistically, he had a few bad outings that made his ERA sky rocket. Though I agree that if the wildman returns, he’s out, I just see Bruney as a more matured pitcher who can deal with the best of em’.

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The clear indication I am getting is that Nady or Swisher will be dealt and possibly Cabrera also. Only other scenerio I see is that Gardner is bench and then Swisher is used at multiple positions to increase his trade value midseason.

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Bruney was terrible in 07. He almost got released. Torre used him with the surrender brigade. Bruney was much better last year.

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I would have to think that Swish would take over in Center-Field if they are no happy with Garnder and/or Melky. That said, ST hasn’t even begun yet and that is what they will based these decisions off of. I think the post is just trying to get someone to pay attention to them haha. Plus, Pettitte was resigned, and I recall Cashman saying earlier that “he hasn’t got the glue” in regards to another free-agent signing. If they were thinking about spending another 10 million I think they would have spoken to Dunn rather than hold out for Cameron.

By pinstripes2 on February 13, 2009 9:41 AM
Dunn can’t play CF. Although I was warming up to the idea of him signing because of the power. We currently have 6 OFs, one is likely out of the mix. Trading Swisher and Cabrera raises the payroll by $2M and not 10.

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I would have to disagree about Bruney Bpark, respectively. The past two seasons he has been a force from the pen, and if it wasn’t for the injury he had sustained last season, he would have most likely put up solid numbers all year.

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I think “extremely high” is a bit exaggerated; however, I do agree that they are being careful with our beloved backstop.

By pinstripes2 on February 13, 2009 9:36 AM
I believe that to be accurate, although Cashman will never admit it. It is a good sign that we are showing Posada confidence by not bringing in a catcher, it is a bad sign that Kevin Cash is the only catcher we signed. However, Molina is preparing himself as a starter just in case. Molina should be a better hitter this year and his defense is top notch. We could still see Pudge on a minor league deal if his option dry up completely, Florida is a more likely scenerio for him. Problem with Posada is they are going to run on him all day putting pitchers in a situation where a walk becomes a run with a single.

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I would have to think that Swish would take over in Center-Field if they are no happy with Garnder and/or Melky. That said, ST hasn’t even begun yet and that is what they will based these decisions off of. I think the post is just trying to get someone to pay attention to them haha. Plus, Pettitte was resigned, and I recall Cashman saying earlier that “he hasn’t got the glue” in regards to another free-agent signing. If they were thinking about spending another 10 million I think they would have spoken to Dunn rather than hold out for Cameron.

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Bpark,

Thanks for the clarification with the number situation. I believe that Bruney was deemed the RHP-Setup role earlier this Winter.

By pinstripes2 on February 13, 2009 9:23 AM
I was guessing with the number. I have no idea. Bruney has showed flashes but if the wild man returns, he won’t be setting up for long. Bruney is a bases loaded walk king. Prior to last seasons resurgence, most predicted we’d cut him.

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I think “extremely high” is a bit exaggerated; however, I do agree that they are being careful with our beloved backstop.

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Cameron for Swisher and Cabrera is on the table. Milwaulkie is balking right now but Cashman’s phone could ring at anytime. Girardi says Nady is his RF starter if he’s with the club.

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We’re in a world of hurt, the concern over Posada is justified. The 2 likely outcomes: we try to let Posada catch but needing his bat in the lineup he is moved to dh: either Damon plays center and Matsui LF or Damon stays in left and Matsui is either dealt or benched.

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Bpark,

Thanks for the clarification with the number situation. I believe that Bruney was deemed the RHP-Setup role earlier this Winter.

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Matt,
I understand the fact that most players will inevitably succumb to injuries; however, as I previously stated, the fact of the matter is that Teix was signed for his long-term durability. He has showed no signs of an injury plagued season, so barring any freak accidents, I believe a betting man would place his cash with Cashman and say that he will stay relatively healthy throughout his career. I know that a lot of people falter in the stripes, but just like the injuries, the Yankee brass believe that Teix can sustain his stud-like performance in Yankee Stadium given his stellar production when being traded to another team mid-season and throughout his entire career. You can only SPECULATE that he will not succeed because others have failed, deeming your argument inconclusive and lacking suspect evidence. Whereas my argument, though inconclusive, has history and a 6 year career to back up my statement. Just because others have failed in the past does not give just argument to say it will happen to someone completely unrelated; however, you can take A-Rod for example. He has played in Texas and was signed to a long term contract based on his performance and longevity, he has stayed healthy and preformed great (leave anabolics and other substances’ out of the argument). Teix and A-Rod both played in Texas and both signed long-term deals, based on your logic — the logic that what happened to one player will MOST LIKELY happen to another– Tiex will become an MVP every second year, eventually coming clean to “roids”. Though it may be premature to say that Montero will look like Dunn in the outfield may be premature; however, the uncommonly large and bulky physical stature of both men suggest that they will play a similar, poor, outfield. Look at Tiex’s stats in the OF, though someone may have watched one game when he looked “fluid”, the stats don’t lie and neither does a baseball franchise– Texas, or any other team, has kept Tiex on the inner portion of the diamond since that dismal outfield performance.
Calling Austin Jackson an unknown but arguing that Montero should replace Tiex at first in the near future is actually mind blowing, and makes me question why I am even attempt to make a sound argument with someone who believes a rookie A-baller is more proven than our most touted AAA prospect… and Gardner or Melky would not be with the squad if the Yankee brass didn’t have faith in them, any Yankee fan knows that for a players to survive the wrath of Gorge they must promise good things. Montero could very well DH according to the layout of the team, the farm system, and my knowledge of which. Unless I am missing something, than I believe that my argument is sound.

P.S. To the other guy who was condemning me for “whining” about Matt’s opinion… I was simply stating my own before he discredited mine. All I am doing is defending my position.

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Pen: http://nybaseballdigest.com/?p=7298

“Closer: Mariano Rivera

Setup:?

Guaranteed Role: Damaso Marte

Strong Possibilities: Brian Bruney, Jose Veras, Alfredo Aceves, Jonathan Albaladejo, Phil Coke, Edwar Ramirez, Phil Hughes, Humberto Sanchez, David Robertson, Mark Melancon

Outside Looking In: JB Cox, Kei Igawa, Jason Johnson”

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That is if Nady is not here.

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Marte is taking 22?

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Girardi and Guillen are on the hottest seats?
Andy Phillips is a Pirate.

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I found this pretty interesting, both Damaso Marte and A.J. Burnett are set to wear #34 heading in to spring training, according to the 40-man roster that is. Anybody have any idea’s who will get 34 and who will be forced to change?

Also, great comparison between the pressures that President Obama and Joe will be facing this season. Though having an entire country looking at you for guidance in one of the worst recessions in years would be stressful, I believe that it pales in comparison to a house full of displeased Steinburners.

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JOBA SHOULD STAY IN THE BULLPEN OUR ROTATION IS ROCK SOLID WITH CC,AJ,WANG,ANDY,AND PHIL,SO WHY NOT KEEP JOBA IN THE PEN TO SET UP MO IF THE YANKS KEEP HIM THERE OTHER TEAMS WILL BE PLAYING 7 INNING GAMES CAUSE HE CAN EASILY GET 6 OUTS THEN MO HAS TO GET THE LAST 3 IT WILL BE LIKE THE YANKEE TEAMS OF OLD WHEN WE USE TO HAVE NELSON AND STANTON TO SET UP MO SO I JUST HOPE JOBA STAYS IN THE PEN SO TAKE OVER FOR MO WHEN HE GOES BUT IT ALL RIDES ON PHIL HUGHES IF HE CAN PRODUCE THEN JOBA WILL BE THE BEST FOR THE PEN *******LETS GO YANKEES****** GET THE RINGS READY

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I would NOT want to have Girardi’s for all the money that the Yankees can afford! I not sure who will have his every decision dissected more – President Obama or Joe Girardi? I’m a Red Sox fan – and I really want my team to end the season on top – but I do wish Joe well.

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

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I might be alone out here in the wilderness, but I can’t help feeling Joba is Mo’s heir apparent. Rivera is still awesome, but he turns 40 this year and when the greatest reliever of all time rides off into the sunset, I don’t see anyone else currently on the roster to come close, with the exception of Joba. Right?

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IF THERE IS ANYONE WHO IS GUILTY ON THIS ATTACK ON OUR GAME IT IS SELIG ,ORZA AND THE REST OF THE PIGS WHO PUT MONEY BEFORE INGRITY. THEY SHOULD BE DEALT WITH WITH SEVERE PENALTIES AND MADE TO TESTIFY BEFORE CONGRESS…MADE ACCOUNTABLE FOR WHAT THEY DID NOT DO – THEIR JOB- AND TO ALLOW US DOUBT ABOUT THE NATURAL GOODNESS AND BEAUTY OF THE GAME AND THEY SHOULD BE BANNED FOREVER FROM BASEBALL.

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