When camp opened on Tuesday, I asked Yankees fans to send in their questions about the Yankees for a “Yankees Mailbag”. I was thinking of making this a regular post over the course of the 2017 season, but it really depends how many questions I get. Luckily, I had enough to have a proper ‘Yankees Mailbag’ post.
Thank you to everyone that sent in questions, and for those that want to send in questions for the next Yankees Mailbag, just leave your questions in the comments and we’ll do it again next Friday!
So let’s get to it and answer some questions.
From: Nicholas Lanza
Question: When will the YES Network be on Comcast?
Comcast hasn’t given an official date, but the YES Network announced they will appear on Comcast’s T.V. Guide at some point during the Spring. They made the deal in January, but Comcast held off putting the YES Network back on the air because the Brooklyn Nets brought in abysmal ratings. Bad ratings would mean the cable providers lose money.
Once there’s an official date, I’ll let you know, but all indicates Comcast will carry the YES Network by Opening Day.
Question: According to Cots, the Yankees are about $19 Million over the cap right now, trading Brett Gardner or Chase Headley saves $13 Million. Is there a possibility they try to go under it this year instead of next?
I mean, yes it’s possible that they could go under the luxury tax this year. However, the Yankees trading Brett Gardner or Chase Headley would have to mean they’re officially out of the postseason picture by the July trade deadline. If they’re completely out of it and they decide to sell, then it could help them get under luxury tax this season.
However, the Yankees are going to have a few contracts come off the books after the 2017 season (CC Sabathia, Michael Pineda, Alex Rodriguez, etc.), so I understand why the Yankees might wait until next offseason.
Question: What do you think of Mark Teixeira‘s new business venture with ESPN? Do you think he’s a perfect fit for television or do you see him elsewhere?
First off, I’m very happy for Mark. I wished it was with the YES Network, but I’m glad he landed a job on ESPN (seriously, YES Network…you didn’t contact Mark Teixeira? He’s perfect for the network!).
I think Teixeira will have an amazing career on television. He’s very articulate, passionate and he has so much knowledge of the game. However, his Foul Territory videos made me wish he pulled a Derek Jeter and hosted Saturday Night Live.
ESPN is very lucky to have him and they’re not going to regret hiring him.
Question: What do you think the Yankees will do with Gardner/Ellsbury at the top of the lineup?
Honestly, if I were Jacoby Ellsbury, I would go into camp and prove to the Yankees that I deserve the leadoff spot. And if I were Brett Gardner, I would think the leadoff spot is mine to lose. The Yankees worked well with Gardner at the top of the order as he sees the most pitches in an at-bat and had a very good OBP last year.
I’d keep Gardner at the top of the order and move Ellsbury down. Ellsbury has a lot to prove this year, and this would be the year where Ellsbury is officially put on notice. Play well and you’ll be at the top of the order. Don’t play well and you’ll be demoted to the bottom of the lineup.
Question: You don’t seem excited about Clint Frazier. Why is that?
It’s not that I’m not excited about Clint Frazier. He’s a very intriguing player and I hope he has a very successful career.
But I’m also a realist.
Do you know how many times the Yankees overhyped a prospect and then he didn’t pan out at the Major League level? It happens more often than you think (Rob Refsnyder is a good example. He looked like he was going to be the next big prospect to come out of the organization, and now it feels like there’s not even a place for him).
Until players can establish that they can perform at the Major League level, they’re just prospects. Frazier is an exciting prospect, but until he can prove he’s ready for the Major’s and can adjust when the rest of the league figures him out, I’ll continue to be wary. And it’s not just him I’m concerned about. I’m wary about all prospects who make it to The Show.
From: Katy S.
Question: Who do you think is the ‘Face of the Yankees’?
I want to say Gary Sanchez (very badly might I add), but he has only been on the team for two months. If Sanchez keeps up the amazing work, he will be the ‘Face of the Yankees’ in the future. But he’s not the ‘Face of the Yankees’ yet.
As for right now, it’s probably Brett Gardner. Joe Girardi said Gardner is the biggest veteran presence in the Yankees along with CC Sabathia. Also, like Sanchez, Gardner is a home grown. If there is going to be a ‘Face of the Yankees’, they have to at least be drafted by the organization and make an impact on the field and in the clubhouse. Right now, that’s Gardner.
If you want your question to be in the next ‘Yankees Mailbag’, leave your question below!