FIFTY THOUSAND MOONS

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Should Gary Sanchez have been called up in June?

Watching Gary Sanchez has been the most enjoyable part of 2016. In case you haven't heard, he hit two more dingers last night - his 7th and 8th, moving ahead of Brett Gardner and Aaron Hicks on the Yankees/Indian Point Power Report. He also threw out another base-runner. He won't stay this hot, but it's becoming clear that he could have been our catcher two months ago, maybe three. We were wasting him in Scranton. Had we not released A-Rod and cleared house, he'd still be down there, toiling in the mines.

We've seen this movie before. If the Yankees were still blindly chasing the lost Wild Card, Sanchez would waited until September. Girardi would be reluctant to use him. He'd get maybe 50 at bats, play once a week, and poof - season over. Next spring, he'd need to prove himself. With McCann a fixture and Austin Romine a solid backup, they'd decide that Sanchez needs to play everyday, so he'd start 2017 in Scranton. Depressed and disillusioned, he'd go into a prolonged slump. Then we'd trade him, tell everybody he just isn't in our plans.

Yep, The Frankie Cervelli Story.

Which brings me to CF Ben Gamel, a lug nut of the Scranton arsenal. He homered last night (his fifth) for the Triple A Railriders. Gamel is on a 12-game hitting streak, batting .400 over that period, lifting his average to .313. Last year, he hit .300 at Scranton. Next year, unless the dead wood is cleared, he'll return. The guy is 24. He's a candidate to rot there.

Last night, Gamel's teammate Mason Williams went 2-3. He's hitting .311, though only in 74 at bats, recovering from an injury. The scouts seem to like Williams more than Gamel, who merely produces. At age 25, I guess you can say Williams has been successfully wasted in coal country. (To be fair, the injury cut his chances.) He's making his own movie: The Slade Heathcott Story.

(Slade is batting .231 for Triple A Charlotte. He's fallen from last year's output in Scranton, when he hit .267. Shows what happens when a guy has no hope.)  

Speaking of no hope... last night for Scranton, Rob Refsnyder went 2-5. Nobody wants to hear about him. Ref has no position, right? He's a Scranton icon, finishing his third season there. The first year, he hit .300. Last year, just .271. This year, he's at .333. Hell, nobody cares! He'll be in Scranton next year, or at least until we release him, right? He's 25. We have a raft of young OFs from the bullpen deals. None of these guys - throw in Jake Cave, too - will ever get a shot.

Last night, the mother ship lost in Seattle. The top-of-the-lineup Bobbsie Twins - Gardner and Ellsbury - went 2-8, with a run. The game ended with runners on second and third and one out. A single would tie the score and keep the season - theoretically - alive. Girardi pinch hit Teixeira for Tyler Austin. On a 3-1 count, Tex popped to left. Then Gardy grounded out to second. (If Gardy worked for CNN, his name could be Jake Tapper.) Game over. Wild Card race over. With runners in scoring position, Yankee batters went 0-4.

It was an especially hurtful defeat for reasons that are too painful to elaborate. Our bullpen lost the game, but why rail about Anthony Swarzak and Kirby Yates? They are merely the fodder we used to replace Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman. Four weeks ago, we had the best bullpen in baseball. We traded it for a future. Can't complain about the deals. You can't have your Chap and trade him too.

But while YES toasts the Yankees' sell-off, and while we celebrate Gary Sanchez, I can't help but wonder if Gamel should be playing CF and/or Refsnyder in left. As Trump would say, What the hell do you have to lose? Gardy is hitting .257. Ellsbury is hitting .262. Neither hits for power. Neither has more then 20 stolen bases. But none of this matters. Our team is dead, and some of our most interesting players are still in Scranton. Hooray for Gary Sanchez. Why did it take so long?

10 comments:

DutchFan said...

Last night, my early morning, John Sterling admitted to being able to predict baseball. In his worthless chat with that newspaper guy in the fifth, he publicly admitted that he predicted the 3-0 Seattle homerun. He already had confided in Suzan during the fourth, but I thought it was a mistake.
So there you have it, I heard it myself, you CAN predict baseball!

John M said...

"It turned out to be a tough loss for the Yankees, however, as they hit four home runs off Mariners starter Cody Martin, only to see Michael Pineda and the bullpen prove unable to hold a 5-3 lead. Pineda left with two runners on in the sixth, but Mike Zunino greeted Anthony Swarzak with a three-run home run to right field (Mariners Triple-A announcer Mike Curto tweeted that he didn't think any of Zunino's 17 home runs for Tacoma went to right field)."

Nice move, Joe. Keep bringing in Swarzak, especially in close games and key situations. I mean, it's not like your job is to put guys out there who give the team the best chance of winning. That would be silly.

ranger_lp said...

Swarzak....the human batting practice machine...

Alphonso said...

Why does no one recognize the damage Girardi does to this team?

Heathcott, ruined. Refsnyder, ruined. Gampel, ruined.
Mason Williams, ruined. Luis Seeverino, ruined. Nathan Eovaldi, ruined.

Tyler Austin, in the process of ruination.

Ands I have to worry about Bettances as Girardi fumes about the negative impact this team is having on his legacy record as a manager.

Buhner's Ghost said...

No swipes at Cano today? Oh, he got three hits and played stellar defense. Must have been Girardi's fault.

joe de pastry said...

Comparing Sanchez to Cervelli [0 HR in 277 AB this season, 7 HR in 510 AB last season]?

Rufus T. Firefly said...

Austin is hitting what -- .130?

Can't blame Binder Joe for pinch hitting for him, but wish it wasn't somebody hitting under .200 also.

Ike Davis said...

Speak for yourself.

Anonymous said...

WE ABSOLUTELY SHOULD HAVE CALLED SANCHEZ UP IN MID TO LATE JUNE.....I WAS SCREAMING AND CLAMORING FOR IT MONTHS AGO.......BUT RIGHT NOW, I'M ALL SWARZAKED OUT.... I AM TOO TERRIFIED FOR RATIONAL THOUGHT, THAT OUR MANAGER COULD PUT OUR WORST RELIEVER IN A CRUCIAL POINT IN 2 GAMES INSIDE A WEEK, AND GET BURNED BOTH TIMES IN DOING SO......SWARZAK HAS GIVEN UP 10 HOME RUNS IN 20 INNINGS!!!!.... HOW IS HE STILL ON THE ROSTER???.... THAT PROJECTS INTO 100 HOME RUNS OVER 200 INNINGS!!!!!!!!...100 HOME RUNS!!!!!... WHAT SWARZAK HAS BEEN DOING IS HISTORIC!!!..... 10 HOME RUNS IN 20 INNINGS!...IT'S TERRIFYING!!!!!!! ... SHOULD WE CALL IT "JOE GIRARDI'S HOUSE OF HORRORS (FEATURING ANTHONY SWARZAK)"?.... OR SHOULD WE CALL IT "ANTHONY SWARZAK'S HOUSE OF HORRORS (FEATURING JOE GIRARDI)"? WHAT A SEASON.

Alphonso said...

Swarzak is now on the DL, scheduled for surgery. Another asshole who thought it would be better to " tough out" that little, nagging arm problem that was preventing him from throwing good pitches, rather than inform the coaching staff of an
apparent " tweak."

I hope they cut his arm off in Dr. What's His Name's clinic.