I'm also extremely shocked A-Rod decided to opt out. I totally, completely thought he was going to work out an extension of some sort with NY. I hope to GOD that most of this decision was due to Boras' influence and that A-Rod isn't actually such a greedy, honor-less bastard. In some ways, I'm not disappointed he is leaving but the thought of having to replace his production is really depressing. Watching him this year at times (Baltimore, Cleveland, Boston BAM) will probably go down as some of my favorite Yankee memories of all time. I know for sure that right now they are certainly at the top of my list. Seriously, I giggled/whoknowswhatelsemaybecreamedmypants when A-Rod hit that fucker off Joe Borowski to win the game at Yankee Stadium. Highlight of 2007 (with the others being graduation from college and Sean telling me he was gay, hilarious). On the flipside, I am looking forward to the possibility of A-Rod stepping up to the plate with 2 outs, 2 men on, and down by 2, batting in the middle of the Angels lineup and having Joba/Mo strike him out with a chest high fastball at 96+ mph. GOD THAT WOULD BE SO AMAZING.
On another note, I'm not super worried about the Yankees lineup minus A-Rod. I think his departure and Girardi's return to the NY bench could galvanize a return to more small-ball ways of winning games, which is something that has definitely departed our managerial mindset over the past couple of years (although with Abreu and Damon that changed a little bit...but not much). When healthy, Matsui was one of the best hitters in baseball for the month of July when he went absolutely crazy. Even at the end of the year after quite a precipitous and well-documented slide his stats were not bad. Not great but definitely not bad at all. Damon is the wild-card of the bunch I think; if he can produce at 2006 type levels then I'm definitely not worried. I'm hoping that he was just hampered by injuries like Matsui and that a return to full health will mean a return to form (for both of them). I definitely like Damon in LF though and Matsui DH'ing. First base can be taught and that's where Giambi needs to go; I don't give a fuck how many ground balls and errant throws you have to give to him in practice but he needs to learn how to play first base. I'm willing to lose a couple of runs defensively each year (a couple is an understatement but whatever) playing him over Duncan/Phillips because his bat is SO much better. Maybe Girardi will realize this as he brings a more "new school" approach than Torre ever came close to. I'm afraid (legit afraid) that Posada will have to be re-signed, simply because we have no backup and there's no one on the market that I'd be willing to trade prospects to get over to NY. I'm also afraid he won't take a home team discount seeing as how Torre's departure was handled (which was WAY
overblown by the media...). His production just can't possibly be anywhere near where it was this year, but we'll be paying for that sort of production for the next 2-3 years...not a fan.
I'm also definitely NOT willing to part with any of our top-tier prospects to snag Santana from the Twins. This idea has been bandied about fairly seriously among various Yankee followers and I'm really super duper opposed to it. I don't care how good Santana is/can be. Honestly. The spark and energy that Joba/Hughes/Kennedy/Melky etc bring to the clubhouse can really not be put into words. I get SO fired up watching Joba and Hughes pitch, so much so that I can't imagine the way I'd feel about Santana. Sure he's an absolutely amazing pitcher but I would honestly rather have those two on my team. Thinking about trading any of those guys, but especially Joba and Hughes makes me want to vomit in my mouth. A lot of vomit. That would spill out onto my body. Gross.
I'm still not sure it'd be a great idea to trade Moose yet. Not sure what he can provide, but I feel like until he truly has worn out his welcome in NY...it'd just be a bad idea. I wouldn't be super opposed to the trade but it would have to be someone pretty effin sweet to go through with it. If I were Cashman, of course. I don't know how you did this, because he is so good and such a hard worker, but you forgot about Pavano. How good can he be? OH WAIT he'll never pitch for the Yankees ever again because he's a huge fucking pussy that can't do shit on the mound but still makes an ass-fuck-ton of money. God he pisses me off.
Anyway. Go Yankees