Results tagged ‘ Kei Igawa ’

As the deadline approaches…

061210berkman.jpgThe Yankees already have one deal in the books, another expected to be completed and perhaps something else on the way as Saturday’s 4 p.m. ET non-waivers Trade Deadline approaches.

By the time the clock hits the deadline, Austin Kearns should have passed through customs and have tried on his Yankees gear for the first time. Lance Berkman is also expected to be at Tropicana Field by first pitch and could be in the lineup, as soon as the deal for Minor Leaguers Mark Melancon and Jimmy Paredes is officially finalized. 
Berkman’s going to be an interesting fit here. He’s very close with Andy Pettitte and it’s believed that Pettitte helped convince Berkman to approve the deal to the Yankees, although Berkman admitted he’s “nervous” and “apprehensive” about the whole idea of playing home games in a city that isn’t Houston. It’s all he knows, and that’s understandable, but it’s also not exactly what you want to hear.
Then there’s this – Berkman is hitting .245 with 13 home runs and 49 RBIs in 85 games this year, but he’s hitting .188 with one home run and four RBIs in 64 at-bats against left-handed pitching. Kearns’ right-handed bat can help balance that, along with covering for Curtis Granderson’s troubles against lefties. Berkman has also hit .194 away from Minute Maid Park this year, but the Yankees still consider him an upgrade over Colin Curtis.
So, is there anything else to keep on the radar? The New York Daily News noted that the Yankees are still talking to the Cubs about lefty Ted Lilly, but ESPN’s Buster Olney tweets that the Yankees are not pursuing Lilly unless the Cubs want “to put him on a platter and give him away.” (Of course, the Yankees could have had Lilly back in 2007 but decided to go with Kei Igawa instead, but that’s an item for another day.
Olney also tweets the Yankees may be looking to pick up an infielder before 4 p.m. today. Also, I thought it was interesting that Joe Girardi said Kearns’ name wasn’t even mentioned to him in passing by Brian Cashman until Thursday — and that’s after New York just completed a four-game series in Cleveland. If that’s so, things move quick, huh?

Rumor Mill: Cashman wings it home

The nice part about holding the General Managers’ meetings at a Chicago airport hotel must have been that it was easy for Brian Cashman to get back to New York.

Cobbling through this morning’s reports, it’s clear that the Hot Stove is alive and well, though there isn’t much concrete to hitch onto. Sure, the Yankees would be interested if the Blue Jays decide to move Roy Halladay — just the way they were in July (New York Daily News). But who’s to say Toronto can really stomach seeing Doc in their division pitching for either the Yankees or the Red Sox? That’d have to be one heck of a prospect package.

File the name Curtis Granderson under those that we might be seeing a lot of this winter (New York Post). We said in Spring Training that if the Yankees didn’t make the playoffs, it would be because a lot of things more important than Melky Cabrera vs. Brett Gardner went wrong. Well, neither really played All-Star caliber ball and the Yankees didn’t seem to suffer a bit. But looking to 2010, Granderson could be an impact player for a team that could lose both Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui.

Also today in the Post, the Yankees are planning to wait until after 2010 to discuss extensions with Joe Girardi and Derek Jeter. Arbitration-eligible Brian Bruney is expected to be tendered a contract, and Cashman has received some level of interest from Japanese teams in the long-forgotten Kei Igawa, though his preference would be to stay.

The most significant moves this week were to outright Josh Towers and Freddy Guzman into free agency. That means there’s still plenty of work left to do.

Did the K-man do it, or did the K-man do it?

One of the running jokes of the Yankees ’08 season was bringing up Kei Igawa’s name any time there was a need for a starting pitcher. That happened a lot, and after a one-shot deal in Detroit on May 9, Igawa was never the guy they called up to start.

Joe Girardi’s last assignment to Igawa was to record the final three outs in a June 27 game at Shea Stadium, with the Yankees leading 9-0. Igawa got the job done (cue Cosmo Kramer: “Did the K-man do it, or did the K-man do it?”) but gave up two hard singles in the process before inducing Luis Castillo to hit into a game-ending double play.

He was not heard from again on the big league level. There’s no clearer sign than how far Igawa’s star has fallen than the fact he is no longer on the Yankees’ 40-man roster, a Triple-A filler part with $12 million still owed to him through the 2011 season.

So it seems that in the much-rumored trade that would plant Mike Cameron in center field at Yankee Stadium, while shipping Melky Cabrera to the Milwaukee Brewers, the holdup may be Igawa. The New York Post reported that the Brewers want to pick up as little of his salary as possible, as Milwaukee is dropping Cameron’s $10 million deal for 2009 as a salary dump.

The Post reported that the Brewers asked for Phil Coke, Jose Veras and Mark Melancon before Igawa’s name surfaced, but the Yankees quickly said no. That brings the Brewers to Milwaukee, a touted import from Japan who may need this chance more than anyone to revive his stalled career.

Another long night in Detroit

This stadium, Comerica Park, played host to one of the least pleasant memories of the ’07 season — an Aug. 24 game that was delayed by rain for four hours and one minute, with first pitch thrown at 11:06 p.m. ET.

The game ended on a walkoff homer at 3:30 a.m. ET the next morning. The losing pitcher? Wouldn’t you know it, it was the lefty taken on Friday by the Padres, Sean Henn.

No rain here tonight, thankfully, but speaking of lefties who once drew interest from San Diego, how would the Yankees like to have a mulligan on Kei Igawa? While I don’t think Igawa pitched as poorly as his line — 3.0 IP+, 11 H, 6 ER — indicates, it’s pretty apparent that the Tigers were salivating to get their rips in against him.

Wilson Betemit’s shoddy defensive play at third base really killed Igawa in the three-run third inning; by my count, there were four balls – two backhanded, one forehanded and one barehanded – that Betemit could have made a play on but didn’t. Igawa is probably going to get at least one more turn through the rotation to prove that this was a fluke, but unless he starts pounding down in the zone more consistently, the jury has to be out.

Any silver lining? Well, Alex Rodriguez took about three dozen grounders on a back field in Tampa, Fla. this afternoon. The Yankees need him more than ever, on both sides of the ball.

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