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 (11:58 AM)
Howdy, gang. It's that day and time again, and same rule as last week: NO JETER QUESTIONS! (hahahahaha). Only kidding. I'm refilling my coffee cup and we'll get going at high noon
Ray A. (San Francisco, CA)
If Jeter signs with any other team in baseball other than the Yankees, who would it be? I would have said the Giants, but we just signed Tejada yesterday.
Wallace Matthews (12:02 PM)
Hey, ray. First of all, I don;t see it happening. But if it does, I would give chances to either of the LA teams or perhaps the Orioles. The Dodgers need a celeb-type atraction to fill the seats; the Angels could probably afford him if Arte Moreno wants him, and showalter loves Jeter and might want to add a veteran to his clubhouse. But at the end of it all, I think Jeter is headed back to the Yankees
After hearing about all the Jeter signing deal saga, what measures are the Yankees going to take or Jeter himself to get a deal done?
Wallace Matthews (12:05 PM)
Hey, Matt: From what I can gather, most of the movement is going to have to come from jeter. I had a story last week with Cashman who, when asked if he could see this whole thing blowing up, said, "Not on our end," meaning the Yanks 3/15M offer is on the table for good and will not be pulled back. Although I belive ther is some room for movement in the Yankees offer, there's not nearly as much as Jeter is asking for. So Jeter and Close are going to have to come down a bit to make it happen, and I think after they drink the Reality Potion. they will
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Which Free Agent Players will the Yankees sign this winter?
Wallace Matthews (12:06 PM)
Hey, Chris: Cliff Lee, Derek jeter, Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte. Not a bad winter I would say
Michael C. (Westport, CT)
Okay boxing expert. A-Rod vs. Jeter in the ring. Who wins?
Wallace Matthews (12:06 PM)
Personally, I'd rather see Minka and Cameron go at it
Where do you see Ivan Nova fitting in with the team in 2011. I liked what I saw out of him in glimpses and he's obviously still young. If the Yanks sign Lee and Pettitte returns, the staff is filled out (barring injury). Would they put Nova in the 'pen or send him to AAA to start the season to get his innings up? Does he project as a starter or reliever in the Yankees eyes?
Wallace Matthews (12:09 PM)
Hey, Chris. Cashman has said that not only will Nova be given a shot to make the rotation, he EXPECTS him to be part of it, as he put it, "as a number five or maybe higher" The one concern is stamina and/or effectiveness late in a game, bec. he showed a tendency to get hit the second time through a batting order and the second time facing a team. If he makes the club as the No. 5, he probably would start the season in AAA to get another start or so until the Yankees need him, which dep. on schedule usu. isnt untl later in April. But the Yankees see him as SP material, no doubt about it
steven (massapequa ny)
do u see laird and montero both making the team out of spring training
Wallace Matthews (12:11 PM)
Hello, Steven. The Yankees sincerely hope, and maybe even expect, Montero to make the squad as the everyday catcher. If he doesn;t, they need to formulate a Plan B with Posada penciled in as the DH and Cervelli nw considered no more than a good backup. as for Laird, he will get a shot but the expectations at this time are not nearly so high
So Cashman will be rappeling of a building dressed as an elf for Christmas; what's next Reggie jumping out of plane dressed as Easter Bunny? Yogi paragliding like the tooth fairy?
Wallace Matthews (12:12 PM)
hey, Eric. i didn't think the off-season was going that badly that Cashman would resort to jumping off a building, and if Reggie does jump out f a plane, he assures me it will be his own private plane. Mr. October does not fly commercial
what kind of innings limits should we expect if nova makes the roster?
Wallace Matthews (12:15 PM)
hey, Ryan. Interesting question and I guarantee this: whatever the number is, Girardi and Cashman will guard it like it's the nuclear codes. all season long, they refused to acknowledge that the Hughes number was 175 and even when he was shut down almost right at that number, still refused to acknowledge it. My guess would be Nova's number will be around the same place, 175 innings or so.
Tom (West Palm Beach)
Just saw that Greinke would wave his no trade clause if yankees made and offer for him. Wouldn't that be a great move considering his age and the fact his has 2 years left on his contract?
Wallace Matthews (12:17 PM)
hey, Tom. My understanding is that has not been confirmed, only hinted at thru sources. greinke has yet to say so, and the word about his psychological makeup is that he might not exactly thrive here. What I have heard is the Rangers are looking at greinke as their fallback plan should Lee get away from them, which I think is highly likely
not a yankee fan, but as a neutral observer of the jeter saga, my question is what will the yankees do at the SS position in 3 years, when he is a defensive liablility (and isn't he getting there now?)
Wallace Matthews (12:19 PM)
Hey KL: That it exactly the Yankees concern and the reason why they don;t want to give him more than 3 years. Honestly, they would prefer not to give him more than two but they are well aware of Jeter's pride - some would say stubornness -- and know that he would have rejected such a suggestion out of hand. Right now, the plan is Eduardo Nunez but he is admittedly an untested commodity. And knowing the yankees, you have to figure they have their eye on any number of young shortstops who will be entering the FA portion of their careers over the next few seasons
How many Derek Jeter questions in this chat? over/under 7.5? (this doesn't count)
Wallace Matthews (12:21 PM)
I would bet the over, but so far, Lee, Nova and Montero have made appearances, too
What are the plans for this off season beyond Lee, Jeter, Pettitte, and Rivera? Any other stating pitchers on the radar?
Wallace Matthews (12:23 PM)
hey, Eric, the problem is after Lee, this is one lousy free agent crop. De la Rosa signed with Colorado yesterday. So who's left? Pavano, Millwood and couple of others. I think they go all in for Lee, coax pettitte back for another year, hope Nova develops and pray Larry Rothschild can unlock the secret to AJ Burnett
what do you think of the following scenario- yanks sign cliff lee then trade montero for greinke? That creates a dominant rotation and perhaps they can promote romine or keep posada as the catcher. Is this realistic?
Wallace Matthews (12:24 PM)
Hey, Jeremy. Don;t think so, only because Romine is considered a year away and the Yankees need a catcher now. The only way they trade montero is if he bombs out in spring training, and if so, won;t worth anything near the caliber of Greinke
Why haven't we heard about a Yankee offer for Lee yet? Are they afraid Texas would top their first offer? I'm thinking back to the Teixeira deal in the fall of 2008 and I'm wondering that even with the Yankees saying Gardner is their man in left could we see a swooping of Crawford like they did with Teixeira when people thought they were out of it?
Wallace Matthews (12:26 PM)
Hey, darrin. I have a story up on the site right now saying Lee's agent has put out the word he doesn;t really want any offers yet and plans to do all his biz at next week's winter meetings. Don;t think the Yanks are afraid of being topped by Texas because they have no problem coming back again. As for Crawford, Cashman has said repeatedly he is happy with his outfield and the word is the Yankees don;t really think Crawford at 15M per is enuf of an upgrade over Gardner, who works for 400K. Sometimes, the Yankees do care about such things
jen Parrish (tigard oregon)
what other free agents are we looking at .
Wallace Matthews (12:27 PM)
Hi, Jen. Other than Lee, the yankees have been very very quiet. Cashman, I believe, could stand up to waterboarding and not give anything up. I could see them going after a left reliever like Pedro Feliciano and maybe making a run at bringing Kerry Wood back. otherwise, not much out there they would want
Do you think the Jeter camp is surprised/affected by the seemingly ovewhelming fan support of the Yankees in all of this?
Wallace Matthews (12:30 PM)
Hey, stack. I don;t know if the fan support is overwhelming, but they can;t be too happy at the lack of outrage at the Yankees offer. Personally, I think 3 years, 15M is beyond fair for a 36-y-o SS, but at the same time, I don;t blame jeter and close for trying to get as much as they can. I think if anything, Jeter is surprised at how hard the Yankees are playing this game. I think he and close may have misjudged the amount of leverage they have, which is next to none
hey wally, do you think any big time player will ever have the audacity to deny the yankees a deal based purely on loyalty to a team and city or is the money machine too persuasive to players in this age of baseball?
Wallace Matthews (12:31 PM)
Justin. let me ask you this: Would you? I've taken jobs at places i thought I would never and could never work because, let's face it, we all need money and we all want as mch of it as we can get. I think it happens at times, but honestly, in those cases, the difference in money is rarely all that much to make a difference
Mike (New York)
Which team will Cliff Lee sign with, and will he sign next week during the winter meetings?
Wallace Matthews (12:31 PM)
I believe Lee will sign soon after the meetings, and with the Yankees
Wallace Matthews (12:32 PM)
Hate to cut if off now, guys, and my apologies to all those I didn't get to. Thanks for all the great questions and we'll do it again next wednesday