For years now, I've endured this recurring tragic-comedy nightmare that Hal Steinbrenner is fated to relive his dad's up-and-down record as owner of the Yankees.
If so, that includes the 14-Year Barf - from the early 80s into the mid-90s- when the Yankees consistently sucked, despite burning money on free agents. The Boss made his reputation by firing people. Would it not be karma's perfect joke if the Son is remembered for clinging to his beloved office underlings?
|The 2010 Baseball America |
Top 10 Yankee Prospects
Listen: I don't claim to be an expert on Yankee prospects. (Most "experts," as you see, have shoddy track records.) But we've all seen this movie: The princess wants a good sleep, yet all the mattresses in creation cannot supply it.
Despite a $200 million payroll, the Yankees have now gone two years doing what is increasingly difficult to accomplish: Missing the playoffs. Nevertheless, for nearly a decade, Brian Cashman - keenly aware of the trades that destroyed the Yankees in the 1980s - refused to deal our top prospects.
Now, he is doing just that.
Soon, the results will start coming due.
|2011 BA Top 10 Yankee Prospects|
Whenever Brian Cashman makes a move, a wave of cheerleaders immediately concludes that the guy we traded wasn't that good after all, and Larry Rothschild, the pitching coach, will straighten out our new acquisition (just as Kevin Long, the former batting coach, would solve the hitting issues.) This may sound crazy, but there are times when I miss Suzyn Waldman, who is often the lone voice to question Yankee front office moves. (Last year, when Jose Pirela performed well at 2B in September, Suzyn raged, where had this guy been all season, and who said he couldn't play? They were questions asked by fans, but not by the Gammonites.)
Anyway... that reluctance to trade Yankee kids? Forgetabout it. It's over.
Cashman has tasted the meat of meaningful Yankee prospects, and he has found it delicious.
The Braves were happy to trade two arms for Manny Banuelos. Surely, they did this on the recommendation of Gordon Blakely, the longtime Yankee scout, who moved to Atlanta this winter. Was this our Jay Buhner deal? (Or was O'Brien?) I dunno. But the Yankees are finally entering the phase when these deals will start coming home to roost. This summer, we might just see a few former prospects starring for other teams. And in exchange, I'm not sure Cashman has done much more than rearrange the deck chairs on the Yankee Titanic.
If O'Brien or Banuelos emerges, hold onto your hats.
Because we've seen this movie, and it lasts a long, long time.