Roster uncertainty: September call-ups

Posted by: Chad Jennings – Posted in Misc on Aug 30, 2012 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Most seasons, I have a decent sense of what to expect from September call-ups. They’re always relatively minor moves, and some people don’t care about them at all, but it’s usually pretty easy to pick out the guys who can come up and play some kind of role on the big league roster. This season seems like a little more of a mystery, both in terms of who gets called up, and what kind of role they might play.

Impact player
If the Yankees had a can’t-miss reliever in Triple-A, he’d already be here in place of Joba Chamberlain. If they had a standout hitter, they might not have traded for Casey McGehee or Steve Pearce. Instead, the closest thing to an impact call-up might be Eduardo Nunez. The Yankees utility man on Opening Day has been working on his shortstop defense in the minors, and although his minor league numbers are bad, he Yankees know he can hit a little bit at this level. Where he can have the greatest impact, though, is on the bases. He would instantly become the Yankees best pinch runner and a legitimate stolen base threat. Might get some at-bats against lefties, too.

Extra outfielder
Another outfielder could legitimately help the Yankees — it would give them someone other than Ichiro Suzuki to backup in center, and give them a defensive replacement when Nick Swisher plays first base — and they have two extra outfielders already on the 40-man. Zoilo Almonte has strong numbers this season, but he’s a corner guy in Double-A. Melky Mesa has a terrible batting average and a ton of strikeouts in Triple-A, but he’s a good defensive player with speed. In a limited role, he might make sense. Of course, the best available outfielder is Chris Dickerson, who has outstanding Triple-A numbers, experience in the Bronx and enough big league success to suggest he could legitimately help in a regular platoon role against right-handers. But Dickerson is not on the 40-man. Is it worth adding him for such a bit part? Would the Yankees want to add him anyway to keep him under team control this winter? And if not Dickerson, is it worth pulling Mesa out of regular minor league duty right away, or could additional outfield depth wait until after the minor league playoffs?

Third catcher
An extra catcher is a September 1 tradition, and the Yankees have two to choose from. Francisco Cervelli and Austin Romine are both on the 40-man roster, both playing in Triple-A and both capable of playing at the big league level. Romine is the one with greater long-term potential; Cervelli is the one with more immediate familiarity. For the first round of call-ups, Cervelli makes the most sense. Yes, there’s value in giving a prospect like Romine a little more time in the big league clubhouse, but Romine’s played fewer than 30 games this season and there’s more value in letting him continue to play every day until Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s playoff run ends. Cervelli knows what he’s doing up here.

Bullpen depth
This is another September standard. If nothing else, the Yankees could use another arm to two to eat innings in a mopup role (think about last night’s game, if the Yankees had come back to tie and force extra innings). Problem is, there are only three healthy minor league pitchers currently on the 40-man roster: Cory Wade, Adam Warren and Justin Thomas. All three have been in the big leagues this season — Thomas with the Red Sox — so there’s reason to think they can do the job. Although Warren is the biggest prospect would be the most exciting of the three, it might also make sense to let him keep making minor league starts until the Triple-A postseason ends. Wade is probably the best bet, and Thomas would make sense as a third lefty who’s also stretched out enough to be a multi-inning mopup man. One other name to consider as an immediate impact possibility: Lefty Juan Cedeno. He’s pitched very well this season, and might be worth a 40-man spot in the offseason anyway.

Just out of curiosity
There’s not a lot of wiggle room on the Yankees 40-man roster right now, so “curiosity” call-ups might not happen. But there are three in particular that are worth mentioned (four if you count Cedeno as a guy who fits this category). In Triple-A, the Yankees have four-corners utility man Ronnier Mustelier putting up pretty good numbers, and as an older prospect, it’s worth exploring whether he could be a big league role player next season. Also in Triple-A, Chase Whitley has a 1.10 WHIP as a multi-inning reliever who’s moved quickly through the system. Down in Double-A Trenton, the greatest curiosity of all might be reliever Mark Montgomery, who has 97 strikeouts in 62.1 innings this season and gets compared to Dave Robertson. It’s probably a year too early for Montgomery to make his big league debut, but he has been overwhelming during his two years of pro ball.

Infielders on the 40-man
We’ve already mentioned the two minor league catcher, two minor league outfielders and three healthy minor league pitchers current on the 40-man, but infielders Ramiro Pena, Corban Joseph and David Adams are on the 40-man as well. Pena is a known commodity (good defense, little bit of speed, you know the drill) but Joseph and Adams are a little more intriguing. It might not make sense to call them up right away — might as well let them keep getting at-bats through the minor league playoffs — but both have put up strong numbers this season, with Joseph in particular hitting for surprising power in his Triple-A debut. They’re both pretty limited to second and third base, and if the Yankees think they could play some sort of role next season, it wouldn’t hurt to get their feet wet with a few at-bats down the stretch.

Returning big leaguers
These are the no brainers. Casey McGehee will be added to the roster as soon as Charleston’s season is over. Alex Rodriguez, Andy Pettitte and Ivan Nova will come off the disabled list as soon as they’re healthy. The only real question mark in this group is Pedro Feliciano. Is he effective enough in his return from shoulder surgery to be a viable big league reliever? If so, the Yankees might as well bring him up to get something out of that contract.  I reported all of this.  I am not reiterating this to sound brilliant, but to show that what I have reported is true.  The Yankees have been very poorly run and we will see if Hal really cares.  I would not want to have the legacy of placing the Yankees in a bad position.  he is headed that way.  EDB


This is not a slump.  This is what this team is.  I have never seen a team swing and miss as much as this team.  This chump promised to make any changes to help the Yankees win.  I did  not see that this year. The Yankees did not go at and get a big bat.  They  stuck with Andruw Jones and Russell Martin and this is not acceptable.

I see a team chasing the second place team.  Right now we are getting the Yankees excuses Joe Girardi, “It is hard to judge individual’s at bats.  I don’t see them trying to do too much.”  We are getting Joe’s goofy laugh.  “There will be low points and high points, we have to find a way to get out of this rut we are in.”  “The guys efforts are great.”  Really Joe, your players cannot (1). identify pitches, (2) put their bats on the ball, (3). move runners over (4). bring them in.  I cannot except this bullshit anymore.  This team has been dysfunctional since they lost to Detroit last year in the playoffs and maybe before.   This has not changed and the Yankees will not admit it.  The Yankees did nothing to fix what was wrong.  In the off season, they will have a chance, because a lot has to be done.  This team is a joke.  EDB


Well Mr. Owners    AND MR ARCHITECT  .  Some disturbing stats for you:  Tha Yankees are 0-46 when trailing after the eighth inning in 2012 and they were 2- 50 in 2011.  They just lost 2 of 3 to the last place Blue Jays who had lost 6 striaght series and 7 of eight series.  If I heard   correctly, the Yankees were 3 of 17 with.  This team offensively,  has been   dysfunctional for the past two years.  I started harping on this when I started writing this blog.  Yet, there have not been significant changes.  This is the Yankees and you are going to cause what happened in 1965, when the team went in the toilet.  I don’t care about the salary cap.  You make a huge profit and you need to address the fact that is team does not hit in the clutch.  It lacks heart.  Yankees fans deserve better than this.  EDB

A QUESTION…….?????

A QUESTION FOR    AND    Why are    and   on the Yankees team?  Another question, why are and on the Yankees.  One more question, why is   batting fourth and why is   given the ball?  Something confuses me, why is a .207 hitter batting cleanup for the Yankees.  Oh, why isn’t  this guy in the minors?  Something is still gnawing at  me, why is this guy the cleanup hitter against lefties?  Why is this guy   in the Yankees bullpen?  I am still not satisfied, why is this guy even on the Yankees Roster?  Oh Yes, whys is this guy   in a Yankee Uniform?  I will speak for Yankees fans, Jones and Chamberlain suck, stink, are awful, eat shit, are not giving the team their best chance to win, cause agita, are an insult to Yankees fans, belong in the toilet, are a joke, are disgraceful, are not earning their salary, Watching them makes  us .  They cannot do their jobs to respectability, they cannot perform,  get rid of them.  .  EDB


The Yankees lost 2 of 3 to the last place Blue Jays and now went 3 and 3 against the Jays and Indians.  Just how deep will the Yankees sink?  Maybe this far.  This moron does not get that blowing a ten game lead will reflect upon him as owner.  He does not play, but he has not allowed his genius GM to fix what is wrong.  The right handed order is a .   You two morons will be remembered as the two that let this great franchise slip.  EDB


Here’s my question: Did Buck want to acquire   Joe Saunders from the Diamonbacks to pitch against the Yankees because he throws left-handed?  If the answer is yes, other teams facing the Yankees can acquire: (1).  and bring him out of retirement.  He could literally throw his glove on the mound and beat the Yankees picthing left-handed.  (2).   Juan, the left-handed peanut vendor  (3). The One-Armed Man from the Fugitive.  He is by necessity, left-handed.  (4). Yes, the one and only Tim Tiebo.  If the Doofus Commissioner, will okay a new rule that allows footballs to be pitched to Teams.  Guys like Andruw Jones would not hit the football.   (5). Mike, the ice cream man, could get the Yankees right-handed lineup out.

 (6). Chuck Connors  

 Kevin Joseph Aloysius Connors (The Rifleman)

Position: First Baseman
Bats: Left, Throws: Left
Height: 6′ 5″, Weight: 190 lb.   Chuck, if he were still with us, and even though he is not, could still get the Yankees right-handed lineup out.  Speaking of that (7).    A left-handed Walking Dead Zombie would limit the Yankees Right-handed lineup to less than two runs.  Once again, let’s thank the architect .  After all  Steve Pearce batted cleanup tonight and   Monsieur Merle batted fifth tonight.    EDB