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May 17, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Wally Matthews

Wallace Matthews
  (12:50 PM)

Good afternoon everyone. Before we get started, a question: How do you think a live chat with John Tortorella would go?

Dom (NY)

Any chance the Yankees would go after a player like BJ Upton in the off season? With their inability to score runs unless they hit HR's Cashman needs to have the Yanks get younger, more athletic and be able to create runs. This team doesn't ever play old time fundamental baseball - bunt, hit behind the runner, move base runners along , etc. It's the reason why the lost to the Tigers last year- you;re not always going to get teh big hit you need to score runs in other ways. Your thoughts?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:02 PM)

Dom I agree with many of your points and I think with this organization anything is possible. But it willbe interesting to see how serious Hal S. is about trying to get the payroll under $189M by 2014. If he means it, it may curtail free agent spending, esp since many of the inexpensive pitchers the Yankees were hoping to rely on, like Pineda, Nova and Hughes, not to mention Banuelos and Betances, may not be that reliable. They were hoping not to have to spend big money on pitching so they could pursue guys like Upton or Adam Jones. Now, that may be difficult

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

When will we see Brett Gardner back with the Yankees?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:04 PM)

Tough question. Originally the Yankees said he would be back as soon as the 15 days were up. Last week, Girardi said he wouldn;t swing a bat for 8-10 days, and I'm sorry to say I don;t know exactly where that puts us today. In any event, I wouldn;t expect him back before next week at the earliest

Stephen (Bangkok, Thailand)

It is becoming more apparent that the Phillies aren't likely to give Hamels the contract he will want (7 yrs, $160 million+). Hamels seems like a great fit for the Yankees, any chance that they might be aggressive and look to acquire Hamels in June/July? What would/could they offer to the Phillies to make this happen?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:05 PM)

I refer you to my answer to a previous question about BJ Upton. Obv, the Yankees could bid anything they want, and they will need to shop for pitching again next off-season with Kuroda presumably gone and Pineda out for some portion of the season. The question is, will they? It all depends on Hal Steinbrenner and a lot of it could hinge on how far this team goes this season

Kyler M. (Columbus, OH)

Orioles > Yankees

Wallace Matthews
  (1:06 PM)

I get the point. But was it really necessary to post this 19 times?

Alex (Anaheim)

Is there hope for Kuroda? I know the NL West isn't the AL East, but he's not this bad...is he?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:09 PM)

Not all the time, obviously. He's had three very good-to-excellent outings, so he is capable of pitching very well. The problem is, he's not overpowering so if his location isn;t precise, AL lineups will bomb him the way Toronto did last night. He works with very little margin for error, which was less noticeable in the NL than it is against the relentless lineups he's facing now

nina curry-santiago (rochester, ny)

matt: I was at the game bewtwwen NY and boston on 4/21/12 where the yankees came back and won 15-9 ! Do you know if there is any way I can get a copy of that game or who I should contact for that? Thanks. My email is nsanti2012@yahoo.com

Wallace Matthews
  (1:09 PM)

I'm sorry, I don;t but if I can find the answer I will email you

Ian (Atl, GA)

Is there a worse team in the entire MLB with runners in scoring position than our Yankees?? This team fails to play smallball of any kind when they are up against a tough pitcher. It's HR or nothing and with Nunez and Gardner out, they can't even steal bases to help manufacture runs. I thought Girardi would bring more of a NL, Hit and run, Sac bunt, Sac Fly, etc. mentality to this team. I'm not asking to become the Rays, but I'm tired of this team having bases loaded and 0 outs and coming up with nothing. Sometimes, don't be the Hero but just keep the line moving!!

Wallace Matthews
  (1:11 PM)

Actually, that was the kind of ball they played in 2009 and for much of 2010. But this was what ultimately doomed them against Detrot last year in the ALDS. I think you may have hit on part of the problem; the lineup certainly does not manufacture as may runs without Gardner in there, and at least two of the guys the Yankees depend upon for power, A-Rod and Teixeira, are not performing as expected

Billy (NY NY)

When Girardi said he would have challenged the home run call (which Showalter didn't challenge) was Girardi saying that he is a better coach than Showalter?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:13 PM)

No. At least i don;t think so. I actually asked him that question and if he wasn;t asked, i doubt he would have volunteered that. I think he was just acknowledging that it was close enough that you at least have to try to get the umpires to review it

Mitchell (NYC)

Boxing question {your 1st love} in Yankee chat. I don't see how Pacq or Money would either be a tough fight for Ray Leonard in his prime or Hearns. Looking at styles and superior power that both Hearn and Ray had do you agree??

Wallace Matthews
  (1:15 PM)

People hate these in the middle of the Yankees chat but I like em, so tuf. I think Hearns would have been too big for Manny and too tough for Floyd. Never would have allowed him to slow down the pace of the fight the way many of his opponents have. Ray was a great puncher with a left hook and also quite big for the weight class. I don;t see either Floyd or Manny beating either of them

Billy (NY NY)

Did Girardi embarrass Garcia by putting him in to pitch a non-save situation against the Orioles's blowout against the Yankees?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:16 PM)

Is Garcia embarrassed to pick up his $4M paycheck on the first and 15th of every month? You have a job, you do what the boss asks you to do. Garcia seemed fine with it

Swami (Kinnelon)

Don't the Yankees prospects suddenly look bleak? We just don't seem to have any position players coming up to replace an anemic offense that sputters most of the time. Looking into 2013 and 2014 where do you think we are going to get the offense from other than Curtis, Robbie and to some extent Mark? Is it time to worry about the future as an Yankee fan?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:18 PM)

See, this is what all the gloom and doom stories were about when they extended A-Rod and gave all those years and money to teixeira. What happens is the expiration date on these guys passes and yet you still have to pay em, and if you;re paying em you have to play em. Could you imagine the Yankees sitting A-Rod in favor of say, Brandon Laird or Nunez? it';s not going to happen. What is going to happen is several more years of declining production from the older guys and they're almost impossible to move. So yeah, there might be some cause to worry a little bit

Pat (Madison)

When will it be time to concede that the Yankees just aren't going to be that great of a team this year?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:20 PM)

Uh, October 3rd? Seriously, I;ve seen yankee teams struggle worse than this and regroup to make the playoffs, o I think it;s too early for that. But there are legtimate problems in the one area everyone took for granted, the lineup, and that may not be so easy to fix

Fred Katz (New York)

What is the front office's take on Nunez? Do they still have faith in him? And does he still have any sort of trade value?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:21 PM)

Publicly they do, and I know they love him offensively, but I;m sure they have the same doubts you do about his fielding and his baseball smarts. They still talk about him as the eventual everday SS -- meaning, Jeter's replacement -- but whether they really believe that, i don;t know

Joba (DL)

My team needs me. When am I coming back?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:21 PM)

just keep off the trampoline and you should be fine

Jonathan (Bronx)

With Arod and Tex struggling do u think it's time to elevate Granderson to the RBI spots in the Lineup?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:23 PM)

I have though Granderson should be the No. 5 hitter since the off-season; I wrote several columns about it. I think it's ridiculous to waste a 40-hr hitter in the No. 2 hole. Eventually, Girardi will realize it, too, if he hasn;t already, and drop Tex to 6th or 7th

theboogeydown (River Ave)

Let's put a $ to how much it would cost to make Tex bunt down 3rd with the shift on. An additional $5mm? $10mm? I'm sickened by a professional that can't do something the game dictates he must do. Note: I'm not including actually hitting the ball right, just a bunt. Someone needs to pose the question to him.C'mon Mark, what's your number?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:24 PM)

He volunteered to us in spring training that he would do this, and never did it once in the spring nor so far in the season. So i don;t think there's any price you could come up with to make him do it. I think he realzies its the right thing to do but when he's up there, he's thinking HR or RBI, not beating the shift, and it;s a self-defeating philosophy

theboogeydown (River Ave)

How does the amount of runners left on base by our NYY compare to the rest of MLB? Seems outrageous so far.

Wallace Matthews
  (1:25 PM)

Excellent question that i don;t know the answer to, but I will get the great Mark simon of ESPN Stats and Info on it ASAP

@cpena21 (El paso)

With the recent injuries to te yanks pitching staff, do you see the Yankees bringing up Manny B from AAA to lengthen the pen? He's been real sharp as of late. Or does this come off as desperate?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:26 PM)

Desperate. ManBoy is still just 21 and I don;t think the Yankees would thrust him into that role yet. ask me again closer to the trading deadline

Frank (The Queens)

Wally, I just don't see the Yankees getting to the playoffs this season unless they win at least 99 games. Do you think they can do that, and if so, how??

Wallace Matthews
  (1:28 PM)

Well, the won it with what, 97 wins last year? I concede the division has improved -- who saw the Orioles coming like this? -- but the Yankees have to do a better job of cleaning up on bad teams, something they had always done in the past but not so far this year.

@cpena21 (El paso)

With Soriano assuming Closing duties, is it safe to assume Boone Logan will be the 8th inning guy? Or will Girardi play te matchups?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:28 PM)

Girardi said he will mix and match up to soriano.

Eric (SI, NY)

The live chat with Torts can be described in one word: Short

Wallace Matthews
  (1:29 PM)

Thanks, eric. Knew I could depend on you

Izzat (Cleveland)

Can the Yankees still contend even with all the injuries their going though?

Wallace Matthews
  (1:30 PM)

Of course they can. as bad as they;ve played, their only 3-1/5 games out. I think it';s important, however, for DRob to make a speedy recovery to lengthen the pen, and until he proves otherwise, i am considering A-Rod a 15-10 HR guy at best, which is not sufficient for the Yankees cleanup hitter. If Gardner returns, A-Rod starts hitting for power again and Tex wakes up, they;ll be in the thick of it to the end

Wallace Matthews
  (1:32 PM)

So many questions, so little time. Thanks to everyone who participated and sorry for not getting to everyone. we'll do this again next week, OK?