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Odds and Ends

About the Off-Season: Odds and Ends

By Tim Kabel

March 9, 2023


It is Thursday, the day I have been using to focus on multiple, smaller topics, rather than one larger theme. Spring Training is basically at the mid-way point. Three weeks from today, the season opens. We can start to reach some conclusions based on how things have looked so far. Nothing is carved in stone, but we at least have enough evidence to form some opinions.

  • Josh Donaldson looks old, slow, sluggish, and washed up. He has been up 10 times and has three hits but no extra base hits and no runs batted in. I agree with EJ Fagan, who stated on the Bronx Beat Podcast, that it might be time for the Yankees to simply cut their losses and release Donaldson. I know he makes a lot of money but, does that justify losing games? If you replaced him with a more productive player making the league minimum, it wouldn't be so bad. You would only be paying slightly more than you would have paid Donaldson to be awful. When you factor in Donaldson's demeanor and attitude, it becomes an even easier decision.

  • On Saturday, Oswaldo Cabrera was miked up during the game. He was charismatic and charming as well as informative. He always seems to be having a lot of fun playing baseball. During the game, he mentioned that he would like to play centerfield at some point. He came into the game yesterday in that position and made a diving catch. I understand the allure of having him play multiple positions. Essentially, he can play every position except catcher. He is a valuable person to have on the team due to the number of positions he can play well. However, don't forget that he would be valuable playing just one position too.

  • The position that Cabrera has played most frequently this spring is third base. If the Yankees rid themselves of Josh Donaldson, he would be my first choice to play there every day. DJ LeMahieu could rotate around the infield and DH Positions.

  • Anthony Volpe looks ready to play at the Major League level. It remains to be seen whether the Yankees will bring him north. He is batting .353 for the spring and is an exciting player. He has shown the ability to play both second base and shortstop.

  • Isaiah Kiner-Falefa was hitless in two at bats yesterday and has one hit in 11 at bats. He also continues to be a defensive liability. He is clearly losing the competition to play shortstop.

  • Oswald Peraza has not been hitting the cover off the ball but, he has been out for a few games after tweaking his leg stepping awkwardly on first base. He will reportedly return to the lineup today. However, he remains a stellar fielder and his call-up at the end of last season really opened some eyes. I think the best-case scenario for the Yankees is to have both Volpe and Peraza in the starting lineup as a double play combination, with Peraza at shortstop and Volpe at second base.

  • A lot has been written about Aaron Hicks having a bounce back year this year. I'm not seeing that. He has hit a home run and a double this spring, but he only has one RBI. and he dropped a ball the other day in left field. Hopefully, he can play well enough for another team to be interested in him. I strongly believe that all the positive things the Yankees are saying about him are simply to drive up his value so they can trade him. At this point, I would rather see Willie Calhoun in leftfield than Hicks.

  • This is my 190th article for SSTN. In case you haven't figured it out by now, I am not a big proponent of all the analytics and modern statistics. I still look at batting average, slugging percentage, RBI, and home runs. I also pay attention to stolen bases and the success rate of stolen bases. If you steal 30 bases but get thrown out 29 times, that's not so good. When it comes to WAR, I'm a pacifist.

  • Omar Minaya was interviewed yesterday during the game on YES. He spent a lot of time raving about Anthony Volpe and Jasson Dominguez. He said that there were other very good young players in camp too but mentioned them both by name and went on about them. Interestingly, he said it was unclear what position Volpe would play.

  • This spring training could be the end of the line for Estevan Florial. He is out of options and unless he makes the team, he will need to be either traded or released. I also do not understand Aaron Boone’s fascination with Albert Abreu. They have better options than him for the bullpen.

  • For years, Yankees’ minor leaguers failed to live up to the hype that surrounded them. I believe that both Anthony Volpe and Oswald Peraza will meet the expectations that many of us have for them. Oswaldo Cabrera was not built up as much as the other two, and his versatility and confidence could help make him a star in this town. However, the player who most excites me out of all the youngsters, is Jasson Dominguez. His stock slipped at the beginning of his minor league career. However, he excelled at three levels last year and has been the most exciting player in the Yankees’ camp this spring. There is something about him that just draws your attention. Add to that the fact that he is only 20 years old. I do not want the Yankees to trade any of their top minor league players but, I especially don't want them to trade Dominguez. I would not be happy to read or hear that they shipped Dominguez and others out for Bryan Reynolds.

  • Aaron Judge played left field yesterday. If that becomes more than just an occasional event, Aaron Hicks's days could be numbered.

  • On Saturday, during the game Aaron Hicks was interviewed and he stated that in his mind, the left field job is his. I like confidence as much as anyone but, I think it is somewhat misplaced in this instance. Hicks seems to have forgotten that it's fine to be confident, even a little arrogant, as long as you can back it up. His mouth is writing checks his body can't fund.

  • On Saturday and again yesterday, Jack Curry stated that he was at an event in the off-season with Oswaldo Cabrera during which Cabrera was asked questions by youngsters. One of the kids asked Cabrera what his favorite position was. He replied, “Wherever the manager puts me that day.” Compare that to the statement Hicks made about left field being his position.

  • Do you think Anthony Volpe will begin the season in the Bronx or in Scranton Wilkes-Barre? If he doesn't make it to the Major Leagues on March 30, when do you think he will arrive? I am optimistic that he will open the season as the starting second baseman for the New York Yankees.

16 kommentarer

09 mars 2023

I hope you do Odds and Ends throughout the season... nice!

Will Yankees release Donaldson? - NO

Will Volpe go North ?- NO

IKF - rides the pine unless Cashman can trade him

Hicks- He plays LF or traded or released depending on what they do with JD ... it's all about the money!

Florial gets released

Abreu - injuries to BP means he stays

Rookies finally break thru Yankee lineup with Volpe being called up before All Star break maybe sooner especially if Cashman trades Torres ... There is a trade involving Torres .... guaranteed!

Analytics and modern statistics...... I like the old tried and true method like you ....I prefer THE EYE TEST and beyond that agree …


Robert Malchman
Robert Malchman
09 mars 2023

Bad news for Aaron Hicks: Sidney Powell was on YES last night saying Aaron Hicks was the Yankee left fielder.



09 mars 2023

I'm also a pacifist when it comes to WAR. I mean it's a useful tool but people treat it like its some sort of ultimate truth.


09 mars 2023

Volpe is not in the 40 man roster. In order for him to come north, a move must be made. From what i have seen, live and in person, Volpe is the better shortstop, over Peraza. For some reason, most are assuming the opposite. Peraza needs another position.

09 mars 2023

For some reason

arm strength is the main reason


Paul Semendinger
Paul Semendinger
09 mars 2023

I'd like the Yankees to determine between Volpe and Peraza if they're both long-term Yankees and, if so, give them each the position they see them playing long-term and leave them there to shine.

I agree on Donaldson. EJ and I talked about that on the SSTN show. It's a sunk cost. Move on.

I love Cabrera's attitude. "I'll play wherever you want." LOVE IT!

But I hate miking up players (and managers and coaches). It's a gimmick that takes away from the game for me.

Great job Tim!

09 mars 2023

once I mastered positioning, including how to angle my upper body so that if the ball took a bad hop it would hit my chest and then fall straight down, he let me wear the glove

of course, he first removed the heel padding.

as far as players addressing the home audience and/or announcers, it's a avoidable distraction.

might be worthwhile if it enhanced revenue and the enhancement was used as an offset that reduced ticket prices, but that aint likely

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