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 (11:52 AM)
Good afternoon, everyone. Five minutes away from the weekly Yankees chat, the second city edition, so get your questions ready
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Will we see Alex Rodriguez back with the Yankees some time in September or is he out for the season?
Wallace Matthews (11:58 AM)
Definitely not out for the season. Cashman said mid-August, Girardi said 4-6 weeks from surgery, which was on July 11. So it seems likely he's back last week of August
What do you think of promoting Banuelos to AAA? Looks like he had a decent start last night and kept his walks down somewhat (3 in 5 innings around 7 hits) but I get nervous seeing him rushed a bit.
Wallace Matthews (12:00 PM)
I think it was the right move as a gauge of his readiness to pitch at this level. I asked Girardi about this yesterday and the intention seems to be to use him --IF he is brought up -- as a reliever and in less pressure-filled situations, such as in a clean inning or a one-sided game. He said they would not be using him as a situational lefty against a key hitter with men on base. It still might be rushing him -- he only turned 20 in March -- but they obviously aren;t comfortable with BLogan as the only lefty in their pen
Hi Wally,Good and bad things from manny's first 3A start! Will he be a member of the 2012 rotation in April?
Wallace Matthews (12:01 PM)
too early to say. Just five months ago, everyone was sure Montero would be the No. 2 catcher this year, esp after cervelli went down with a broken foot. a lot has to go right for Man Ban between now and then for that to happen
Yes or No to this question--Is Cashman the GM next season?
Wallace Matthews (12:01 PM)
I asked Cashman that very question yesterday. Here was his answer: "I don;t know. I would like to be."
What happens next with the Nova/Hughes rotation spot?
Wallace Matthews (12:03 PM)
hate to be a wiseguy but ask me after tomorrow night;s game. Hughes did a lot ot help his cause Tuesday night
Chris (New York, NY)
SIX MAN ROTATION! Do you think the Girardi and the Yankees are that concerned about Colon and Garcia's arms or is this temporary?
Wallace Matthews (12:05 PM)
absolutely temporary. A six-man rotation means you take starts away from CC, which would be the dumbest move ever, and it also means you take the pitchers, th emost tempermental group of athletes in any sport outside of figure skating, out of their precious routines. Once the yankees decide what to do with Hughes/Nova, they will go back to a 5-man rotation
What's happening Wally? I understand why the Yanks are temporarily using a 6-man rotation but long-term, that limits the number of times CC takes the hill. I know you've reported that the odd man out will be either Hughes or Nova but I'd rather see Burnett out of the rotation. If Hughes and Nova continue to pitch as they have in their most recent start, who gets sent to the 'pen?
Wallace Matthews (12:06 PM)
I just dealt with the 6-man issue and I agree with yoou. But I don';t see any way Burnett goes to the pen. My gut still says it will be Hughes because Girardi is already comfortable with him there since he was a successful reliever two years ago. But as with everythign else around here, that could change in a hurry
Wally, 1. With Granderson butchering a few balls hit to him lately have has Genuis Joe thought of moving Gardner to CF and Grandy to left? Wouldn't it improve the defense?2. I was at Sunday's game. I was suprised that Joe G didn't take Cano out of the DH spot and move him to 2nd - the pitcher would have batted 2nd in Jeter's spo. Cervelli almost botched a potential DP and there was no way that Garcia was going to come to the plate in the bottom of the 6th since he was done. Joe G was going to pinch hit in that spot anyway . By using and then puliing Cervelli he would have had to resort to Posada catching if Martin had gotten hurt. Any talk that his moves were curious to say the least?
Wallace Matthews (12:08 PM)
Hey, Dom. I was not at the game so did not see it as in-depth as you did. There has been no talk of a Grandy-Gardy switch in the OF. and I've often thought many of GiJoe's ingame moves curious to say the least, but to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one, he has been working with a very short (3 man) bench since Dickerson got sent down
Did Hughes save his spot in the rotation last night? I still would rather have Nova pitching over Hughes.
Wallace Matthews (12:09 PM)
I wouldn;t go that far, but he certainly did himself some good. Let's see what Nova does tomorrow night. It's funny, but for a manager who constantly pooh-poohs single game performances and "small sample sizes," a lot seems to be riding on just a couple of games here
Do you see the Yankees doing anything on the waiver wire and if so who do you think they will get?
Wallace Matthews (12:10 PM)
Cashman told me no yesterday, and it's impossible to predict because you never know who will show up on the wire. I would be surprised if they add anyone of note from outside the organization for the rest of the season
When A-rod comes back in 2 weeks or so, do you think that Girardi should keep Gardner in the leadoff spot and jeter in the 2 hole and just move everyone down, putting A-rod 5th because of his decrease in power and a way of putting Gardner in the leadoff spot without bruising Jeter's ego?
Wallace Matthews (12:11 PM)
I think he should keep Gardy and Jeter 1-2, keep Grandy 3, put A-Rod back at 4 and then move everyone down one spot, for precisely the reason you mention
Tony (Pt Jeff, NY)
STUNNED the Yankees made no move at deadline given they are in 2nd... they need a pitcher and a bat... who do you truly see them getting through waiver wire OR do you think this club can go the distance as is?
Wallace Matthews (12:13 PM)
i think they have no choice but to work with what they have, with the possible addition of Montero, Banuelos and maybe Betances in September. I think they;re getting the wild card and history tells us they generally find a way in the ALDS. The key to their success, I believe, is finding a way to beat the red sox in October
Tony (Pt Jeff, NY)
Jeter- best shortstop EVER- agree? I went to HOF website and HOF shortstops are few and not impressive... could you make the case?
Wallace Matthews (12:15 PM)
As great as Jeter has been, I couldn't make that case. Just off the top of my head, Ozzie Smith was a better fielder, Honus Wagner a better hitter and where do you put A-Rod? He's played more games at SS than 3b. Certainly, however, Jeter is the best NY SS ever, better than Rizzuto or Reese.
If the Yankees are an early October exit this year, do you think they open the checkbook to make Pujols or Fielder a full-time DH?
Wallace Matthews (12:16 PM)
History tells us if the Yankees bomb out, they will do something dramatic in the off-season. They did it after 08 with CC, AJ and Tex. My gut says they would be more likely to make a run at Pujols than Fielder, who I think will stay in the NL
Is there any chance that Burnett is the odd man out of the rotation if he bombs tonight and Nova is strong tomorrow?
Wallace Matthews (12:17 PM)
seriously doubt it. Too much money, too many years left to risk losing him or blowing his already shaky confidence. Taking him ot of the playoff rotation in a 5-game series is one thing. Can;t see them yanking him from regular season rotation
Did Hughes pitch well enough to remain in the rotation? If so, what must Ivan Nova do to keep his rotation spot?
Wallace Matthews (12:18 PM)
Again, I don;t know but I'm sure he helped his cause tremendously last night. Now, if Nova pitches lights-out tomorrow, were back to square one. My guess is the 6-man rotation will not last and that Hughes will go to the pen, Nova to the rotation. But that is only a guess
Dave (New York)
Wally, I hear that Soriano, Burnett and Posada are on waivers. What does that mean exactly and could these guys potentially not be on the team by the end of the season?
Wallace Matthews (12:20 PM)
it doesn;t mean much. By today, it's very possible that so are Jeter, Teixeira, Cano and Granderson. I had a blog item yesterday with Cashman saying he routinely puts every player on his roster on waivers, in lots of seven at a time, every year to see what kind of interest they draw. Remember, the team has 48 hours to pull them back. To quote the GM, "It's meaningless."
what do you think the chances are that CC opts out? I think he'd be dumb not to -- why not guarantee yourself another 2-3 years and $50M when you can? That money may not be there when this contract runs out
Wallace Matthews (12:22 PM)
agreed. The only reason you et an opt-out clasue in your contract is to exercise it, and the season CC is having is exactly the reason you would use it. If you;re not going to opt-out now, when do you? That's why I had not doubt A-Rod would do the same in 2007. The clause is there for a reason. The question is, do the Yankees extend him, or just tear up the existing agreement and give him a raise over the remaining years?
Cervelli is the worst player in baseball, yet he's good enough to be in the big leagues over Montero. Is it time to drop the "top prospect" label for Montero? Seems like all hype, no substance
Wallace Matthews (12:24 PM)
Could be true. Gotta believe that if the Yankees thought Montero could do better than Cervelli, he woud be in their clubhouse right now. Or maybe they don;t want to hurt Scranton's chances. (Yeah, right)
What does putting Burnett and Posada on waivers mean? Does that mean if someone is willing to pay their salary, they can have them?
Wallace Matthews (12:25 PM)
Technically, yes. But if either them are claimed, Yankees would take to the claiming teams and try to work out a deal. If they couldn;t come to an agreement, Yankees will pull them back. They;re not giving away either of them, which might seem like bad news to some of you
Larry (Hartford, CT)
Does Cervelli's ability to play second and third in addition to him catching mean that he stays on the roster when Montero comes up? If so, it seems like Posada would be the odd man out in terms of playing time and/or a roster spot.
Wallace Matthews (12:26 PM)
doubt it, because his bat is so weak. Besides, Nunez can do those things too. It all depends on if Girardi/Cashman can stand the thought of Montero behind the plate.
Wallace Matthews (12:27 PM)
Thanks guys. Great questions, as always. We'll do it again next week