Just a few quick hits as we wait for baseball season:
– Edwar Ramirez was DFA’d today to make room for Chan Ho Park and I would be surprised if Edwar wasn’t picked up by someone. Rob asked me the other day via Twitter who I thought had more value, Ramirez or Jonathan Albaladejo. I said Ramirez because he has the best pitch. Neither has been particularly effective, but Ramirez has a changeup that is truly plus at the major league level. His problem, of course, is that he doesn’t really have anything else. Ramirez put up absurd strikeout numbers in the minor leagues but in the majors, the hitters figured him out pretty quickly: lay off the change, wait for the fastball. What Ramirez needs is more experience facing major league hitters to work on commanding his fastball and painting the corners and getting ahead. The Yankees can’t offer him that kind of experience, but there are other teams who can.
– Bob Klapisch wrote an interesting comparison of Robinson Cano and Dustin Pedroia. The two players really do have a lot in common and have some very similar numbers (though the way they are generally perceived smacks of the racial preconceptions that TYU discussed a few weeks back). Pedroia walks more than Cano, but you have to wonder how much Fenway helps Pedroia. His road/home splits are pretty staggering and while Yankee Stadium could certainly help Cano, his splits, as of yet, don’t show it.
I do have to take umbrage with one part of Klapisch’s article though:
The Sox, who’ve lost Jason Bay and have only a long-shot hope of resurrecting David Ortiz’s bat, need Pedroia to emphasize run production over on-base percentage…
That’s like saying you want to emphasize getting hits over swinging the bat. It doesn’t make any sense; you can’t do one without the other. I know what Klapisch is trying to imply: that you can sacrifice on-base percentage for slugging and that will drive in more runs. That’s not true of course; the best way to produce runs is, and always will be, to get on base.
The article also suggests Cano is due for a real breakout year and I think the Yankees should have optimism regarding Cano. He’s a tremendous contact hitter and as he learns to be a bit more patient and his power develops further, he should only get better.
– Really interesting article from Tyler Kepner at the NYTimes that profiles many of the pitchers Chad Moeller has caught in his career. Some good stuff in there about Mariano Rivera, Randy Johnson, Mike Mussina, and others.
– This isn’t Yankee related, but if there are any other fellow Syracuse fans reading: it will be interesting to see if the ‘Cuse ends up #1 on Monday after crushing Villanova Saturday night. Not that it means anything in the long run, but its been a long time since the Orange have been there.