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Mike Piazza Going To The Yankees? (!!)

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  • NJMetfan4life
    replied
    Mets need a better catcher than Casanova. I'm hopeing for a return, but am doubtful it will happen.

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  • Mattingly
    replied
    Originally posted by John Shoemaker View Post
    IMO there are a lot of teams that could use either Frank Thomas or Mike Piazza. I just want to see them both playing this year.
    Which teams do you consider most likely to want their services? How much would you see their contract (pro-rated, of course) being for? Let's pretend that there's a May 1st start date.

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  • John Shoemaker
    replied
    IMO there are a lot of teams that could use either Frank Thomas or Mike Piazza. I just want to see them both playing this year.

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  • Mattingly
    replied
    Originally posted by John Shoemaker View Post
    With Frank Thomas on the market now it might hurt Piazza's job prospects.
    Wouldn't this presume that only 1 out of 14 AL teams needs a DH/backup C?

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  • John Shoemaker
    replied
    With Frank Thomas on the market now it might hurt Piazza's job prospects.

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  • blacksilverfan12
    replied
    With the way the Dodgers hit this weekend, they could probably use him

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  • Urbanshocker13
    replied
    Ummmmm..........Can he pitch?

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  • Mattingly
    replied
    Originally posted by NYMets523 View Post
    I thought you meant he should have moved to 1B when they acquired him.
    No, I don't remember their being any big issues about him not catching in 1998. I only remember that the Mets had Mookie's son, Preston Wilson in their farm, but he was used to trade for Piazza from Florida.

    As to Mikey's defense, I remember that became an issue around 2001 or so. Between prospects coming up and his inability to throw out runners caused that. While Steve Phillips was never the most tactful GM out there (to say the least), he was still "the boss", even for an All-Star player who was the face of the late '90s and early '00 Mets.

    During some Interleague game at Yankee Stadium (2002 or '03), I think that quite a few Yankee runners just jogged all over the bases and ran on him on the Saturday game, so they replaced him with Vance Wilson as backstop for the Sunday game, while Piazza DH'd.
    Yogi Berra playing the OF doesn't have anything to do with Piazza. And Piazza did play 68 games at 1B in 2004. So like Fonzie, he complained by played there anyway.
    I wouldn't say they were totally related, but I wasn't referring to specifically OF. I was saying that Piazza's not moving showed that he was more interested in the catching offensive records.
    As I had said though, they were playing multiple positions early on in their careers. Piazza played 2 innings at 1B until 2004 when they tried it.
    By "they", you mean Berra and Bench? Anyway, you're right, he did play 68 games at 1B in 2004, but only with a .806 OPS, .266 BA.
    Sorry, but you're coming off as being hypocritical. You're explaining reasons why Jeter shouldn't have moved from SS to CF, but aren't considering how a move from C to 1B is on a guy like Piazza who, like Jeter, played his career at one position.
    From what I remember of that CenterStage interview with Tommy Lasorda, Mike Piazza was a 1Bman in his Minor League career. Only when he'd been offered as a backstop did the MLB team accept him, since they hadn't needed a 1Bman at the time, so I don't believe it was a totally new thing for him, even after many years.

    I also think that 1B is one of the least athletically challenging positions to play, since you have people who play there who can't move around too much. By contrast, if you can't move in CF, your team will lose quite a few games.

    When Alex Rodriguez was acquired (Feb 2004), and that's what you'd said was when Jeter should've moved, we still had Bernie in CF, and the Yanks didn't even want to move Bernie. Hideki Matsui played CF for most of his time in Japan, but when he came to the Yanks, he moved to LF. Why? Bernie, that's why.

    Only when Damon was acquired for the 2006 season did Bernie not play a full season in CF. In fact, Bernie actually played more games in RF than anywhere else, including CF. Link.

    Either case, it was the Yanks' FO feeling that Bernie shouldn't move from CF for anybody, and only when it became painfully obvious was the move made. They also had the chance to get someone you should be well familiar with--Carlos Beltran--to replace Bernie in CF in 2005, but chose not to, taking a 41-year-old Big Unit instead.

    I believe the fact remains that the Yanks' FO (and certainly not Joe Torre) never asked Derek Jeter to move out of SS, but Mike Piazza was asked by the Mets' FO to move from C to 1B.
    Kind of unfair to compare Piazza's 83 games from a season he missed half of because of a freak injury to less than 20 games. Look at the career lines of Gomes and Kubel. They do not suggest that they will maintain their solid hitting.
    I don't remember what the freak injury thing is all about, since I haven't followed Piazza in 2007. However, that was his last season so that's all I have to go by. I think that as a player ages closer to 40 (his DOB is Sep 4, 1968), their last season would be a good indicator of their value.
    Adding Piazza now would just create more issues with the DH spot. If they didn't though and had to choose from Duncan, Ensberg, and Piazza to be their righty DH, the most productive option would be Piazza.
    Yes, but I think this is forgetting several things. To my knowledge, the Yanks aren't in a need for a RH-hitting DH. Why waste a roster spot that could be used for a reliever or another bench player? This would just add another player who's in there for one purpose and one purpose only: to DH.

    In Boston, they have a well-known DH, David Ortiz. Who has been the regular Yankees' DH? As long as I've known, it's been the "DH-du-jour" meaning we have a different one every day. If someone is hurt, can't field, he's the DH. The following can also serve as our DH, even if they're all lefties: Hideki Matsui, Johnny Damon, Jason Giambi.
    He did play 68 games at 1B in 2004.
    True.
    He's one of the worst defensive shortstops in the game. They want to move him because of how awful his defense is. After Cabrera was traded, they were considering moving him to 3B but he said he wouldn't move.
    Why did he say that? To me, a young guy like this can't put his foot down and refuse to play. If the manager puts his name into the lineup and tells him "You're playing 3B today", he either plays 3B or takes a seat on the pine.

    Remember Soriano, who wouldn't play LF for the Nats? He finally did this, and he had a lot more seniority than did Hanley Ramirez. Now he plays LF for the Cubs. Like Piazza, Soriano was in a position (2B) which hadn't been used to much offense, but he had a good bat (though obviously not of Piazza's career numbers). Either case, young guys shouldn't be able to put their foot down like this.

    I didn't even like it when Bonds told Dusty that he was DHing at Yankee Stadium in 2002 (instead of playing LF), so my bias against this is obvious.
    Except Justin Morneau is there. You're quick to say "he should move to X". You're not considering what players play those other positions.
    So what's stopping Justin from moving to 1B? Has he ever tried it out? Is he unable to catch a ball thrown at him while standing up? Either that or darting quickly towards a ball headed towards RF?
    Those throws are different because you can put yourself in position to throw. The throw to 1B isn't long. Throwing out runners you have to quickly transition from the crouch to a throwing stance.
    The throws that a catcher are different from which position? From 1B is what you're saying?

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  • whoisonit
    replied
    Originally posted by Mattingly View Post
    I don't know the reasoning why Bench moved, despite seeing once an ESPN SportsCenter on him and his then manager Sparky Lyle.
    Man, ESPN never gets anything correct, huh ?

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  • Mattingly
    replied
    Originally posted by Baseball Guru View Post
    The Bench remark is not towards me is it? Not sure why he was brought up in the convo unless someone else brought him up... There is no comparison between Piazza and Bench when it comes to D..

    My thing is that Posada is not all that much better at throwing out runners (5%) than Piazza and Piazza's bat makes up for his shortcomings there....
    No, it wasn't anything you'd said earlier about Piazza's defense. I wasn't even criticizing this, since I'd mentioned him calling a good game, from what I've heard (must've been Al Leiter or someone else said this), and that he'd blocked the plate well. His deficiences, as I've mentioned in this thread, throwing out runners and catching popups near the plate (adventures suitable for the youtube generation seemed like a slight exagerration).

    The Bench and Berra references was to both having played different positions. I don't know the reasoning why Bench moved, despite seeing once an ESPN SportsCenter on him and his then manager Sparky Lyle. However, he did play 3B and some 1B.

    Yogi almost moved, but the reason for this was to allow Elston Howard, the first African-American Yankee player, to catch, and just as Bill Dickey (as you're obviously well aware) mentored Yogi, then Yogi in turn mentored Ellie.

    I believe that in both Bench's and Yogi's case, the move came at the end of their storied careers, just like Cal Ripken, Jr moved from SS to 3B. Those came to allow others more youthful and thus more suitable to play that position to do so.

    I won't say this in the Mets forum, but as I've mentioned earlier, I believe that this was so Piazza could get the most HRs as a catcher. He's got a great bat, I'll never deny him that, but if he gets a few more jacks while catching, he gets more "HRs as a catcher", not just the career total. It's my belief that Mike Piazza was fixated at this, at the expense of the team's benefit.

    I don't expect him to just pick up and "git" to 1B like he's a total nobody, since he was definitely the Mets top superstar player while he was here. However, when he complained about not being given sufficient notice, then he didn't want to do it.

    I think that since he's in the NL and can't DH, and his bat is too valuable to use as a pinch hitter, then 1B seems like the least stressful position re pivoting. I wouldn't guarantee you that he would be as good defensively at 1B as John Olerud, nor Keith Hernandez from the past, and a good-fielding 1Bman like Doug Mientkiewicz or Jose Pena is always a great thing. However, I think he could've made a very good effor to learn this, I would have had tons more respect for him as a "team-first company man", so to speak.

    I won't say that I disrespect him, but I think I'd have held him to a higher level had he made that move. That's just my thoughts.

    I'll try replying to NYMets523 later on.

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  • NYMets523
    replied
    Originally posted by Mattingly View Post
    Mike Piazza was with the team from 1998-2005, and I remember his being asked to move being around 2002 after Olerud had already left the team. I don't remember the name of the prospect.
    I thought you meant he should have moved to 1B when they acquired him.

    I never claimed that Piazza should go to the OF. I just mentioned that Yogi Berra had done this. I was referring to Mike Piazza playing 1B. Why was this so difficult, and why did he need to complain to the media? Edgar Alfonzo complained also, but at least he moved. That was the point I was making.
    Yogi Berra playing the OF doesn't have anything to do with Piazza. And Piazza did play 68 games at 1B in 2004. So like Fonzie, he complained by played there anyway.

    That's why I thought that Piazza could've moved. Yogi and Bench moved, so why couldn't he?
    As I had said though, they were playing multiple positions early on in their careers. Piazza played 2 innings at 1B until 2004 when they tried it.

    Oh, I've heard that also. We had Bernie in 2004, but many (such as yours truly) felt that Bernie should've been in LF anyway, since he'd also lost a step out there. When he was faster (he'd been a HS runner back in Puerto Rico), he got around much better, but slowed and missed a few fly balls that he just *HAD* to catch.

    I think that the "Jeter-to-CF" thing has been debated just as much longer than the threads about him moving to SS. Needless to say, even if I will, I think that his moving to LF would've been much more beneficial had he made the move. Bernie, who is way up on the list of beloved Yankees (on the same plateau reserved for Yogi, Gehrig and my namesake), for all his skills, however, slightly diminished, at least knows the OF. Since a CFer has to take command out there for gapper hits, that "I got it" thing could work wonders.

    I also think that Jeter's never run much in the outfield, and his primary asset as far as lateral moves is backing up. He's limited to the glove side, he gets criticized for the "jump throw" thing when the ball is to his right (with the jump throw meaning he's got his back to the mound, has to twist and throw to 1B), but for high-arching popups behind him, he's a genius at getting to those. There's a lot more room to cover in the cavernous Yankee Stadium LF than you'd have at SS. In fact, some say that LF is harder there than RF, which would be the opposite for Fenway.
    Sorry, but you're coming off as being hypocritical. You're explaining reasons why Jeter shouldn't have moved from SS to CF, but aren't considering how a move from C to 1B is on a guy like Piazza who, like Jeter, played his career at one position.

    Since I only have the 2007 stats for Mikey, I'll compare those to 2008 stats for the guys you'd mentioned.
    Kind of unfair to compare Piazza's 83 games from a season he missed half of because of a freak injury to less than 20 games. Look at the career lines of Gomes and Kubel. They do not suggest that they will maintain their solid hitting.

    Since Hideki Matsui can easily be our part-time DH (since Damon is usually in LF), as well as could Jason Giambi (when he's not playing 1B), I don't think that Duncan or Ensberg would factor in more than being bench guys, aren't the everyday DH. Adding Piazza to a lineup that for many years (since Giambi got here in 2002) has had an excess of DHs, would seem useless I think. I don't even think the Yanks have a full-time DH, whereas Ortiz is Boston's. Anyone who's hurt can DH, as does Posada now, as did Jeter when his quad acted up, and after he'd recovered from the separated shoulder around 2002 or '03.
    Adding Piazza now would just create more issues with the DH spot. If they didn't though and had to choose from Duncan, Ensberg, and Piazza to be their righty DH, the most productive option would be Piazza.

    I wouldn't say to just "Shut up, Mikey, and move", but at least try to do this. Had he at least tried it for a month, I would've understood. You're right, though, some of the superstar players like Piazza or Jeter do get certain "privileges" not deemed to the regular players.
    He did play 68 games at 1B in 2004.

    What's the situation in Florida with Hanley Ramirez moving? Who does he have to move for? Isn't he one of the best young defensive shorts out there?
    He's one of the worst defensive shortstops in the game. They want to move him because of how awful his defense is. After Cabrera was traded, they were considering moving him to 3B but he said he wouldn't move.

    As to Minnesota's Mauer, I think that the hot corner isn't something for those who have knee problems, since it's almost as athletically demanding as SS. However, it's more punishing on one's knees than any other position I can think of. He should try 1B.
    Except Justin Morneau is there. You're quick to say "he should move to X". You're not considering what players play those other positions.

    I think that to make the bare-handed catch, you really need to have good range, be able to pick up bunts coming at you from a different angle as catcher, and you have to make both the long throw to 1B, and the 5-4-3 around-the-horn play.
    Those throws are different because you can put yourself in position to throw. The throw to 1B isn't long. Throwing out runners you have to quickly transition from the crouch to a throwing stance.

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  • whoisonit
    replied
    Originally posted by Baseball Guru View Post
    Exactly, Olerud was gone when Piazza was asked to make the move and I think the prospect was Mike Jacobs...
    Correct, and Jacobs was considered 'special'. The fact is, whether Met fans like to admitt it or not, Piazza was wrong for not learning another position. It was clear to anyone who followed the Mets that he knew his legacy was based on his offensive production as a catcher. Thus rendering his insistance on catching as selfish.

    The references to Berra and Bench are appropriate. Both were far superior to Mike defensively, (which is a gross understatement), yet they changed positions. Ironicly, had they not, Piazza would not now hold offensive records for catchers.

    It's fine to like a good player, as all Met fans did with Mike. But blindly defending all criticism of him is as ill informed and ludicrouss as the disscussions that roll on about Jeter being a 'great' defensive player.

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  • Baseball Guru
    replied
    Originally posted by Mattingly View Post
    Mike Piazza was with the team from 1998-2005, and I remember his being asked to move being around 2002 after Olerud had already left the team. I don't remember the name of the prospect.
    Exactly, Olerud was gone when Piazza was asked to make the move and I think the prospect was Mike Jacobs...

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  • Baseball Guru
    replied
    Originally posted by Old Sweater View Post
    Posada still has a good enough arm and hands that a pitcher can throw a breaking ball with a runner on base. Plus with Posada the greyhounds ain't on auto pitot compared to Piazza.


    Posada

    808 SB/337 CS= 29% THROW OUT %

    PB 123/ WP 414/1365 GAMES=.39 A GAME

    Piazza

    1400 SB/423 CS=24% THROW OUT %

    102 PB/WP 356/1629 GAMES=.28 A GAME

    Johnny Bench

    610 SB/469 CS= 43% THROW OUT %

    94 PB/446 WP/1742 GAMES=.30 A GAME
    To think that Piazza had better hands then Bench is moronic to me. .

    The Bench remark is not towards me is it? Not sure why he was brought up in the convo unless someone else brought him up... There is no comparison between Piazza and Bench when it comes to D..

    My thing is that Posada is not all that much better at throwing out runners (5%) than Piazza and Piazza's bat makes up for his shortcomings there....

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  • Mattingly
    replied
    Originally posted by NYMets523 View Post
    Since we're looking back to the Phillips regime, it's very likely what ever "prospect" they had was nothing special. Besides, the Mets already had a 1B, John Olerud, who enjoyed 3 successful years with the Mets from '97 to '99. Why move Piazza from his position of catcher to 1B when they already had a very good 1B there?
    Mike Piazza was with the team from 1998-2005, and I remember his being asked to move being around 2002 after Olerud had already left the team. I don't remember the name of the prospect.
    Piazza in the OF? He'd be an even greater liability there than at 1B. Also, Yogi Berra played several games in the OF as well as 3B before 1960. He wasn't completely new to it.
    I never claimed that Piazza should go to the OF. I just mentioned that Yogi Berra had done this. I was referring to Mike Piazza playing 1B. Why was this so difficult, and why did he need to complain to the media? Edgar Alfonzo complained also, but at least he moved. That was the point I was making.
    My knowledge of that era is limited but could that decision have had anything to do with a 19 year old by the name of Mickey Mantle?
    I erred a tad, in that DiMag played one single game at 1B in 1950, and Mickey Mantle debuted in 1951. Link (please scroll down to "Fielding"). I believe that Mantle played RF in 1951 while DiMaggio still played CF. That was the only year that both played as Yankees, and they shared the OF duties.
    I have heard of Johnny Bench. Unlike Piazza though, Bench was playing various positions from 1970 to 1983. From 1992 to 2003, Mike Piazza played 2 games at 1B; 2 innings to be exact.
    That's why I thought that Piazza could've moved. Yogi and Bench moved, so why couldn't he?

    I'd also mentioned Edgar Alfonzo, who did move from 2B to 3B, and that was a very public move, since the very rare trade between the Yanks and Mets (Yanks' RF David Justice for Mets' 3B Robin Ventura) resulted in an OF spot being opened up, allowing the Robbie Alomar trade.
    I was actually thinking of CF. I've read fans saying he should have moved to CF when A-Rod was acquired.
    Oh, I've heard that also. We had Bernie in 2004, but many (such as yours truly) felt that Bernie should've been in LF anyway, since he'd also lost a step out there. When he was faster (he'd been a HS runner back in Puerto Rico), he got around much better, but slowed and missed a few fly balls that he just *HAD* to catch.

    I think that the "Jeter-to-CF" thing has been debated just as much longer than the threads about him moving to SS. Needless to say, even if I will, I think that his moving to LF would've been much more beneficial had he made the move. Bernie, who is way up on the list of beloved Yankees (on the same plateau reserved for Yogi, Gehrig and my namesake), for all his skills, however, slightly diminished, at least knows the OF. Since a CFer has to take command out there for gapper hits, that "I got it" thing could work wonders.

    I also think that Jeter's never run much in the outfield, and his primary asset as far as lateral moves is backing up. He's limited to the glove side, he gets criticized for the "jump throw" thing when the ball is to his right (with the jump throw meaning he's got his back to the mound, has to twist and throw to 1B), but for high-arching popups behind him, he's a genius at getting to those. There's a lot more room to cover in the cavernous Yankee Stadium LF than you'd have at SS. In fact, some say that LF is harder there than RF, which would be the opposite for Fenway.
    Look at the DH of some teams. Piazza would be an upgrade over Jason Kubel, Jose Vidro, or Johnny Gomes. If the Yankees didn't have so many players who are below-average fielders, they could use his services. They need a right handed bat in their lineup and I guarantee you he'd put up significantly better numbers than Shelly Duncan or Morgan Ensberg.
    Since I only have the 2007 stats for Mikey, I'll compare those to 2008 stats for the guys you'd mentioned.

    Jason Kubel, DH/RF, MIN: .269 BA, .772 OPS, 3 jacks. Not bad.

    Jose Vidro, DH, SEA: .222 BA, .649 OPS, 2 jacks. I should get some varsity guys at the local HS (or a college freshman) to see if they can do better than this guy.

    Jonny Gomes, DH/RF, TAM: .294 BA, .933 OPS, 2 jacks. I don't think that Mikey's an improvement here.

    Mike Piazza, DH, OAK: .275 BA, .727 OPS, 8 jacks over 83 games.

    Since Hideki Matsui can easily be our part-time DH (since Damon is usually in LF), as well as could Jason Giambi (when he's not playing 1B), I don't think that Duncan or Ensberg would factor in more than being bench guys, aren't the everyday DH. Adding Piazza to a lineup that for many years (since Giambi got here in 2002) has had an excess of DHs, would seem useless I think. I don't even think the Yanks have a full-time DH, whereas Ortiz is Boston's. Anyone who's hurt can DH, as does Posada now, as did Jeter when his quad acted up, and after he'd recovered from the separated shoulder around 2002 or '03.

    Hideki Matsui, DH/LF, NYY: .319 BA, .923 OPS, 3 jacks. No bad!

    Jason Giambi, 1B/DH, NYY: .125 BA, .619 OPS. I see that his can of "spinach" from the past hasn't served him well this season.
    A move from 2B to 3B is different than moving from catcher to 1B. Considering Piazza was an all-star player, the team isn't going to tell him to shut up and move as they would to a player like Fonzie (who was good but not the caliber of player Piazza was).
    I realize that. This is why Jeter didn't want to move either. Besides, Joe Torre was never going to ask Jeter to move, since if you read the NYC (and surrounding area) papers, that was obvious.

    I wouldn't say to just "Shut up, Mikey, and move", but at least try to do this. Had he at least tried it for a month, I would've understood. You're right, though, some of the superstar players like Piazza or Jeter do get certain "privileges" not deemed to the regular players.
    That's a bit unfair to be honest and shows disrespect to your player. Some guys are stubborn about moving. Hanley Ramirez is a great hitter but he doesn't want to move from SS. In fact, Joe Mauer is also refusing to move from catcher to 3B despite a concern with his knees.
    What's the situation in Florida with Hanley Ramirez moving? Who does he have to move for? Isn't he one of the best young defensive shorts out there?

    As to Minnesota's Mauer, I think that the hot corner isn't something for those who have knee problems, since it's almost as athletically demanding as SS. However, it's more punishing on one's knees than any other position I can think of. He should try 1B.

    I think that to make the bare-handed catch, you really need to have good range, be able to pick up bunts coming at you from a different angle as catcher, and you have to make both the long throw to 1B, and the 5-4-3 around-the-horn play.
    Last edited by Mattingly; 04-18-2008, 03:33 AM.

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