Showing posts with label Xavier Nady. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Xavier Nady. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Last Night's Game and Xavier Nady

So the Yankees got a 5-3 win last night over the A's. It was Andy Pettitte's second win and Mariano Rivera's fourth save. Overall, it was a good game for the Yankees. They kept a sustained rally, Pettitte was able to pitch well despite not striking out a batter, and there were some flashy defensive plays. Brian Bruney allowed his first baserunner and run since Opening Day in the eighth, but Rivera was able to shut the door so it was all good. Brett Gardner, who also made a spectacular catch on a long drive from the very well received Jason Giambi, had two RsBI last night, thanks to a Bob Geren mistake. With the infield playing in early in the game, Gardner squeaked a single passed the slick-fielding Mark Ellis to plate the first two runs of the ball game for the Yankees. It was all down hill from there for Oakland starter Dana Eveland. On the plus side for Oakland, it was fun to watch reliever Andrew Bailey come in and throw some smoke. Despite giving up a homer--his first run allowed all year--to Johnny Damon, Bailey was blowing it by the Yankees in the mid-90's.

Two things that may fly under the radar are the two hits Hideki Matsui collected. The first was a double down the left field line and the second was a base hit right up the middle. What's so special about these two things? The directions of the hits. The double was on an outside pitch that Matsui actually went with and smoked down the line. The single was over the middle and that's where Matsui put it back after contact. Matsui usually has a tendency to roll his hands over on pitches that are middle/away and ground out weakly to the right side. It was very, very nice to see him drive the ball the other way and back up the middle. Perhaps he is coming out of his mini slump; I say mini-slump because despite not getting a whole lot of hits, Hideki is still reaching base. Counting last night, Hideki now has 9 walks on the season, and his OBP is up to .409. Matsui coming alive is a very good sign.

Another good sign for the Yankees is that Xavier Nady will not need surgery, and will most likely miss 4-6 weeks. This also likely means that the Yankees won't make a trade or pick someone off the free-agent/waiver wire, since X will be out for a relatively short period of time. It does, however, mean that Melky Cabrera will get more PAs. Melky's hitting .294/.368/.467 as of right now, but I would expect those numbers to fall with more playing time. Regardless, Nady won't have to have surgery and that's good news. Here's to a speedy recovery, X!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Cleveland Series Wrap Up and Xavier Nady Musings

The Yankees just finished their first series in the new Stadium and it was "meh" to say the least. I was at my girlfriend's house, and was able to watch Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. It was good to see some games in person and not have to follow Gameday Audio or Gameday itself. Joba's struggle with command was troubling, but that's gonna happen every so often. Saturday was, well, ugh. Sunday was better. It was nice to see that Burnett didn't fall apart despite walking seven. Granted, those types of days are the exceptions and not the rules.

The new Stadium is definitely playing small, as balls seem to be flying out to right. Maybe it's the weather? Maybe it's the wind? Maybe it's the balls? Maybe it's the players? Who know? But, I say we give it more than one series before we declare the new Stadium Arlington North or Coors East.

SERIES POSITIVES: Well, splitting a four game series is good, I guess. It's generally pretty hard to win three out of four. The offense is still clicking nicely, though, which is good to see. Brian Bruney had a good series; pitching in two games, the right hander threw two perfect innings while striking out two, throwing only 20 pitches between the two outings. Bruney hasn't allowed a baserunner since Opening Day. Are you watching, Wallace Matthews?

SERIES NEGATIVES: Wang. He was just awful again on Saturday. You've gotta wonder if he's near the end of the proverbial rope. I'm assuming (hoping?) that Girardi skips him in Boston this weekend. After that, he'll probably get one or two starts before we all start chanting "We Want Hughes," though I'm sure people are already chanting that.

LOOKING AHEAD: The game tonight against the A's is called, but they've got two more coming up against Oakland. It'll be nice to see the Big-G back in the Bronx and I hope he gets a big hand tomorrow. I feel like the Giambino will always be under-appreciated in the Bronx.

TEAM STATS:
OFFENSE: .260/.342/.475/.817, 110 OPS+, 20 HR, 70 R
PITCHING: 6.54 ERA, 74 ERA+, 1.584 WHIP, 4.3 BB/9, 7.6 K/9, 1.76 K/BB

Nady Musings:

Via Kevin Devaney, Xavier Nady still doesn't have a diagnosis on his right elbow. No matter how much time X misses, it's not good for the Yankees. Sure, I wanted Nick Swisher to play over him, but not this way. While I think Swisher would've eventually played his way into the lineup over Nady--and Swisher is the better player--Xavier's absence hurts. The fourth outfielder is now Melky Cabrera instead of Swish or X. Any time the Yankees have to give more PAs to the Melk-man, it's not a good thing. This could give Damon less time off than Girardi would like, and it most likely means that if Brett Gardner struggles, a trade is going to have to be made. No Nady off the bench means that Swisher and Damon will probably see zero action in CF this year and maybe I'm looking too deep into my fake-crystal ball, but I don't see the Yankees giving Melky the CF job, even if/when Gardner falters. Nady would've also been able to spell Hideki Matsui against tough left handed pitchers if need be. I was never a huge Xavier Nady fan, but his presence on the team was vital to its depth. His injury means more playing time for a lesser player and maybe even an external move. Regardless, I hope X gets a good diagnosis and he's able to play again this season. If not, we've more than likely seen our last of Xavier Nady in the Bronx.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Xavier Nady Gets a One Year Deal

The Yankees have signed Xavier Nady to a one year deal worth $6.55 million.

This probably means that the X-Man will not be traded by the Yankees--at least not before the season starts. This is good for the Yankees because it will provide them with outfield depth. Nick Swisher should still start over Xavier Nady but that's something I've touched on before. The alignment on Opening Day should be Damon/Gardner/Swisher with Matsui as the DH if the pitcher is right handed and Nady if the pitcher is left handed. Nady on the bench means greater flexibility in giving the aging Damon a day off in left field if he needs it or allowing the Yankees to shift Swisher to CF if Gardner starts to stumble too much at the plate. This kind of roster flexibility is going to be something new for the Yankees, even though Joe Girardi juggled the lineup a bit much last year. This time, though, if he does, it will be for good reason and he'll have more than suitable replacements. The infield bench is still looking pretty weak but there's still time for that to be ironed out.

If Nady were a free Agent, he'd be valued at about $7.71 million. That projection comes from using his Marcels offensive projection combined with his CHONE defensive projection, using the same math as my "What's A Player Worth" post. So it appears that the Yankees will be getting a good deal for Mr. Nady, if he lives up to his performance.

And, I've got to talk about it because it needs to be touched on. Today seemed unreal to me. As cliche as it may sound, today was an event four years in the making. From the moment his keynote speech at the 2004 DNC ended, I knew Barack Obama would be President one day--I just didn't think it'd be this soon. The election of a black man to the office of the Presidency is nothing short of historic and monumental. I'm a very cynical person and wasn't sure if the American people could do what they did on November 4th but they did and my faith in a people was restored.

We still have a long way to go in this nation in terms of race relations, but today, the most hopeful I've known in quite some time, we reached a peak. At the risk of sounding silly, I will always remember what I was doing when Chief Justice Roberts swore in Barack Obama: standing in front of my TV in my college apartment, hands on my head, shedding tears of joy because for the first time in years, I've felt hopeful for the future of my country.