Chat with Wally Matthews
Welcome to ESPNNewYork.com! On Wednesday, New York Yankees beat writer Wally Matthews will stop by to take your baseball questions.
Matthews has covered New York sports since 1983 as a reporter, columnist, radio host and TV commentator. He joins ESPNNewYork to cover the Yankees, which he's done since the days of Stump Merrill, having worked for Newsday, the New York Post, the New York Sun and 1050 ESPN Radio.
Send your questions now and join Matthews Wednesday at noon ET!
Wallace Matthews (12:00 PM)
Good afternoon and welcome to this weeks Yankee chat, which comes, ironically, on the day of Game 1 of the World Series, which in case you haven;t noticed, the Yankees are not a part of. But two potential Yankees are expected to play major roles, CJ Wilson and Albert Pujols. so lets get started, shall we?
How do the Yankees view Swisher? I'm a big believer in clubhouse chemistry, and all that good stuff, but has the point has come where that's outweighed by the consistent struggles in the clutch. Do you think they pick up his opt? If not, what do you think they do?
Wallace Matthews (12:04 PM)
Interesting question with no easy answer. Swisher is viewed by the organization as a productive regular season hitter and serviceable -to- better outfielder, but his lack of October production is a concern especially since it has happened repeatedly throughout his career. As far as a clubhouse presence, his act may not be as popular among all teammates as you might think. Pick up the option? a tough call. Cashman loves him., but he will do what he thinks is right for the team, and if someone who he thinks is better becomes available for the $10.25M the Yankees owe swisher, or less, he will move him. Michael Cuddyer, maybe? Right now, my gut says they pick up the option, but that can change quickly
Ian (Atl, GA)
Please tell me that the Yanks are not going to go and get Pujols or Fielder, or even break the bank for CC. 5 years for $125 is the most he should get, not another 6-7 years for $161 again. He is still getting a raise. I hope they don't trade Montero, the only exception is King Felix. This team needs to use all of their young stud players to inject life into an aging team. Have they forgotten that Jeter, Mo, Pettite, Bernie, Posada, etc were all homegrown and they got complimentary players to go with them???
Wallace Matthews (12:06 PM)
Ian, I wish I could tell you that, but I'm not sure that the Yankees wont at least explore the possibility of signing Albert or The Prince, and worry about where to play them later. Believe me, scott Boras is going to be selling Fielder hard to them, and I can;t shake the suspicion that someone in the organiztion, probably not Cashman, will find Pujols very difficult to resist. Agreed, the team has to get younger but how do ytou think Game 5 would have ended if Pujols came to bat with the bases loaded in the seventh inning? As for Montero, I don;t think he';s going anywhere bec. I don;t think King Felix is going anywhere, either
CHINKYIZE from Twitter (Bronx/Queens)
With all the Free Agent discussions surrounding tonights World Series starting pitcher C.J. Wilson one could argue that Mark Buerhle is a more viable Free Agent starter on the market that could give a team two #1 starting pitchers. Do you feel that he is flying under the radar? Do you think the Yankees would be aggressive in Buerhle?
Wallace Matthews (12:09 PM)
I think Buerhle is certainly a viable and attractive option for the Yankees who will not fly too far under the radar once the FA season really begins. And don;t be so sure that Wilson is the guy the Yankees are targeting, or will wind up with. I think last year's Cliff Lee affair should serve as a warning that not even the Yankees always get what they want
I've never understood why the Yankees don't use their pricing power more in Latin America and the draft. Wouldn't the allocation of an additional $10M in those areas be more useful than a league average pitcher?
Wallace Matthews (12:11 PM)
Theoretically yes, but the Yankees need pitching now and can;t afford to wait for Latin american kids to develop. also, there's a widespread belief in baseball that pitchers from latin America have a high rate of failure because they pitch too often -- winter ball, etc -- and from to young an age and often end up old before their time. It remains to be seen if Banuelos, in particular, will be different; the Yankees have taken extra precautions with that super talented left arm of his
Wallace Matthews (12:17 PM)
apparently some tech issues with the chat today. please keep trying
D (Theology Class)
Tex + Prospects $$ for King Felix. Leaves an open spot at 1B to pursue Pujols with Prince as a backup plan if Pujols goes elsewhere. Thoughts?
Wallace Matthews (12:22 PM)
I think it's a great idea considering Tex' BA/OBP are headed downward, although he remains productive as a power hitter. But Yanks would have to eat a considerable chunk of cash as well as "persuade" Tex to waive his no-trade, which may not be so easy
Aesa (Saratoga, NY)
Any chance Mark Teixeira would accept a trade out of town? We need to make room for Albert and no offense to Mark but he hasnt been very exciting come October. I like his 40hrs and defense, but his avg keeps getting worse and has not been clutch. If the Yankees were to go after Pujols, you would think Mark has gotta be the one to go.. Maybe we could get some pitching help in return?
Wallace Matthews (12:24 PM)
Hey, see previous answer. Tex has been quite vocal about his no-trade, which could mean he;s not about to go anywhere. But there's no doubt his numbers are lagging in BA and OBP and his oct. production has been dismal. plays an excellent 1B, however
Prince Fielder DH ?
Wallace Matthews (12:24 PM)
Yes, if scott Boras has his way. But then what do you do with Montero? And A-Rod in the near future?
Yankee Flyer (Boston)
How concerned are the Yankees about CC's weight gain during the season? Any chance they'd add a weight clause into any potential contract extension? Advancing age and expanding girth has ruined many a good ball player.
Wallace Matthews (12:26 PM)
Publicly, not. But you;d have to think a weight clasue will be part of any extension/contract modification if he opts out, because while CC was still a very good pitcher in 2011, by no stretch of the imagination could he be called dominant, and the Yankees have every right to raise the objections over his obvious weight gain this season
Evan (New Jersey)
Instead of overpaying for a pitcher (C.J Wilson) that has already prove he can not handle the pressure of the post-season (0-2 8.04 ERA) what do you think the possibility of putting together a trade to get a solid number 2 or 3 starter?
Wallace Matthews (12:28 PM)
like it in theory, but the problem is the Yankees have too many untradeable contracts, and the guys who are tradeable -- Montero, Nunez. Romine, Banuelos, Brackman, Noesi -- are not the kind of players you trade for a #2 or #3. At least, so far cashman has shown no inclination to do so.
Which starting pitcher would you recommend the Yankees to sign?
Wallace Matthews (12:29 PM)
of the available? the pickings are slim this year, but I would think Wilson, Buerhle and Edwin Jackson would be good choices
Wallace Matthews (12:30 PM)
my apologies to all who tried to get through and couldn;t today due to technical issues. we'll have them ironed out and do this again next week, OK?