Tag: Andruw Jones

Andruw Jones, John Schuerholz Elected to Atlanta Braves Hall of Fame

Former Atlanta Braves center fielder Andruw Jones and team president John Schuerholz will be inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame on Aug. 19, according to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

“Now that I got the induction, I can officially say that I am retired,” Jones said, per Kevin McAlpin of 680 The Fan. “[I] will try to focus on helping the youth.”

Jones, 38, spent 12 years with the Braves, hitting .263 with 368 home runs and 1,117 RBI. He spent 17 years in the big leagues in total—including stints with the New York Yankees, Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers and Chicago White Sox—finishing his career with a .254 batting average, 434 home runs and 1,289 RBI.

He hit 25 or more home runs in 10 straight seasons between 1998 and 2007.

Jones was a five-time All-Star and a 10-time Gold Glover, supplementing his presence at the plate by being the best fielding center fielder of his generation.

He was the runner-up for the National League MVP in 2005 after ripping 51 home runs and 128 RBI.

Schuerholz, meanwhile, was the team’s general manager during its 14 consecutive NL East titles in the ’90s and 2000s. He became the team’s president in 2007 and has now been in baseball for 51 years and with the Braves for 26 years.

“The organization is thrilled to welcome these two treasured members of our family into the Braves Hall of Fame,” Braves chairman and CEO Terry McGuirk said, per O’Brien. “Both John and Andruw have had an incredible impact on this franchise, though in much different ways, and they are beyond deserving of this honor.”

The Braves will hold a ceremony for the pair on Aug. 19 before their game against the Washington Nationals at Turner Field, the final such ceremony before they move to their new ballpark in 2017.

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Andruw Jones Reportedly Signs with Japanese League’s Rakuten Golden Eagles

Andruw Jones enjoyed a successful 16-year career in the major leagues, but it appears that he will be taking his game elsewhere next season.

ESPN Stats & Info had the news, along with an interesting tidbit regarding his career:

Sports Illustrated (via Nikkan Sports) announced that the team Jones will be joining is the Rakuten Golden Eagles. SI‘s report also mentions that “Nikkan Sports estimates the deal is worth approximately $3.5 million including signing bonus, base salary and performance bonuses.”

With the New York Yankees last season, Jones hit just .197 with 14 home runs and 34 RBI. He provided some power off the bench, and in limited starting duties, but that was all he could muster in 94 games played.

That’s way down from his .254 career average, though. As ESPN Stats & Info mentions, he’s shown his home-run ability throughout his career and also has 1,289 career RBI.

The 35-year-old Jones has won 10 Gold Gloves in his major-league career. Even as a rookie with the Atlanta Braves in 1996, his potential was obvious.

The Japanese League should still be a challenge for Jones, and it’s understandable that he would choose to take his career in that direction. At his age, it’s hard to tell whether any major-league teams would’ve offered him a deal.

Because of his reputation, Jones should be very popular in Japan. He has a big personality and still has a flair for the big play.

Jones played with five major-league teams during his career. He made his mark as an Atlanta Braves center fielder, but he managed to contribute, in some way, wherever he went.

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New York Yankees: Role Players Have Been a Pleasant Surprise in First Half

Michael Pineda, the future staff ace, didn’t make it out of spring training. Mariano Rivera, the closer of all closers, was sidelined for the season by a freakish injury suffered while shagging fly balls during batting practice in Kansas City.

Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira are putting up numbers that would be acceptable for players making half their salary, and catcher Russell Martin is struggling to hit his weight.

And yet here are the New York Yankees sailing along with the best record in baseball at the All-Star break.


Well, because Derek Jeter carried them through a difficult first month or so of the season. Andy Pettitte came out of retirement to solidify the starting rotation. Rafael Soriano stepped in admirably for Rivera. And a cast of extras on the bench and in the bullpen has responded with timely hits and shutdown relief work.

The Yankees are winning even though Robinson Cano and perhaps Jeter will finish the season with a batting average near or above .300. The Bronx Bombers are winning because they are living up to their nickname by leading the majors in home runs.

So while CC Sabathia may be the only starter you may bet the house on every time he pitches, the Yankees are getting contributions from all 25 players on the roster. One of their strengths is their depth, and that has enabled them to survive injuries to key players such as Rivera, Brett Gardner and Pineda.

Let’s give props to some of those who have played a supporting role.

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New York Yankees: Could Chicago Cubs Star Starlin Castro Soon Don Pinstripes?

In January of this year, the New York Times ran a story that said the Yankees are saving now for a potential free-agency splash next winter. The story highlighted hurlers Matt Cain of the Giants and Cole Hamel of the Phillies as potential targets for the pinstripes.

But could the Yankees be loading up the ole piggy bank for the heir apparent to Derek Jeter?

Could it be that the Bronx Bombers are eyeballing Starlin Castro, the sweet-swinging shortstop for an annually afflicted Chicago Cubs franchise?

At first this question seems preposterous, especially in light of how well Jeter has been playing thus far this season.

But looking big picture, a few things have occurred in the past month that points to the potential for Castro to eventually become a Yankee.

First, Castro is eligible for arbitration after the 2012 season. While the Cubs have signed Castro through 2012, new Cubs GM Theo Epstein has yet to commit to Castro long-term. Reasons for this vary, which will be highlighted in a moment.

Second, Castro’s at-times attention deficit at shortstop has sparked Chicago radio pundits to float the opinion balloon that Castro should move to the outfield.  

To this, I say perfecto!

Yankees outfielder Nick Swisher is a free agent after this season.  According to ESPN New York writer Wallace Matthews, Swisher intends to test the free agent market in 2013.

Andruw Jones will also become a free agent. And there is no guarantee the Yankees will re-sign him.

The Cubs could give Castro some serious on-the-job-training in right field. Castro could then learn the ins and outs of the position, en route to becoming the right fielder for the Yankees next season.

Once a Yankee, Castro would receive mentorship from Jeter on how to properly prepare to play shortstop every day for one of the greatest baseball teams in world history.

Who better for a young phenom like Castro to receive mentorship from?

Then when Jeter finally hangs the spikes up in a few campaigns, the Yankees can seamlessly slip Castro into Jeter’s position.

Castro and Cano.

Has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

Two .300-hitting ballplayers playing middle infield together in New York over the next decade.

Let daydreaming by Yankee fans out school and office windows begin.

Let collectors of skyrocketing Castro rookie cards and memorabilia feel like kids once again.  

Hark the Herald Angels [who for the record love the New York Yankees] Sing…

All right, all right; snap out of it!

Back to reality, we all know Mr. Epstein is much smarter than letting the Cubbies best player in years get away without receiving anything in return. After all, Epstein did not shrewdly transform the Red Sox into World Champions without some intelligent aggressiveness.

Barring insanity, Epstein will keep Castro at shortstop for now, amid a backdrop of taking trade offers from other ball clubs. Perhaps in time, Epstein will ship Castro out of Chicago as part of a mega deal. 

What a great way for a struggling club to load up on young arms and bats, than to trade away a phenom like Castro to a contender. A phenom, by the way, who makes just $567K. In baseball, this is chump change.

And do not think for one hot second the Boston Red Sox do not have their scopes set on Castro, either. If Jose Iglesias’ bat does not join his spectacular defense at shortstop, Boston will also enter the Castro sweepstakes.

Then again, Epstein could just step in and sign Castro this summer, and thus make him the face of the Cubs for the next decade. Trade or sign, the opinion Castro becomes a New York Yankee will thus become null and void. And Castro could go on to become our generation’s Ernie Banks.

But as all baseball fans can attest, the Yankees have proven time and time again throughout their history, when they want someone, they usually go all-out to get them.

James is a huge baseball fan who loves to write and make new friends. You can follow James on Twitter by clicking HITHA!

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New York Yankees: With Jesus Montero Gone, Who Will DH in 2012?

The Yankees finally addressed their starting rotation yesterday, when they shipped top prospect Jesus Montero and right-hander Hector Noesi to the Mariners for All-Star right-hander Michael Pineda and 19-year-old right-hander Jose Campos.

The team also signed Dodgers free-agent right-hander Hiroki Kuroda to a one-year, $10 million deal as the rotation now looks significantly stronger and has plenty of depth with Phil Hughes and Freddy Garcia likely headed to the bullpen.

However, in dealing Montero, the Yankees now have a hole at DH that will need to be addressed in the weeks to come leading up to spring training. Luckily, there is never a shortage of DH options for a team both internally and on the free-agent market.

Here is a look at who could step into that role for the Yankees in 2012.

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New York Yankees: Andruw Jones Remains in Pinstripes

Andruw Jones and the New York Yankees have come to terms and settled on a one-year contract.  The agreement will not become official until Jones completes a physical.

His contract is for $2 million, plus additional potential performance incentives of $1.4 million, according to CBSSports.com.

Jones has been a benefit to the Yankees as a fourth outfielder who is able to come off of the bench cold and perform well.  He is a powerful hitter and has had great success against left-handed pitching.  According to Yankees.com, this may open up the possibility of Jones replacing Brett Gardner against left-handed pitchers.

During 77 games that he played in the 2011 season, Jones batted an average of .247, 13 home runs and 33 RBIs.  Against left-handed pitching, he batted .286, and out of 36 hits, 16 of them he took extra bases.

Over the course of his career beginning in 1996, he accumulated 420 home runs, which makes him eighth in the major leagues.  He is one of only four players who have 400 home runs or more, and 10 Gold Glove Awards.

When the 2012 season begins in April, Jones will turn 35 years old.  This will be the start of his 17th season.  He has continued to show that he has the ability to put up solid numbers.  His age doesn’t seem to be slowing him down, but at 35 years old, I think that a one-year contract was wise.

Signing Andruw Jones to keep him in pinstripes was a smart move.  The Red Sox expressed some interest in Jones, but Brian Cashman played this well and kept him in Yankee blue.

In no way was this a major or blockbuster Yankee singing, but Jones delivers.  He is solid, dependable and consistent.  He’ll have another good year.

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MLB Free Agency: 5 Reasons Andruw Jones Is Important to the New York Yankees

The New York Yankees will ring in the New Year by re-signing their utility outfielder and big bat off the bench, Andruw Jones.

Jones had a solid year off the bench for the Bombers in 2011, hitting 13 home runs and 33 RBI in 190 at-bats.

It might be one of the most underrated signings this offseason for New York (although there isn’t much competition) and here’s why.

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New York Yankees: How Curtis Granderson Missing Time Would Impact the Lineup

The Yankees just can’t catch a break.

After dealing with an ailing Joba Chamberlain, Sergio Mitre and Greg Golson this spring, the oblique strain is back and is now affecting key player Curtis Granderson.

The right muscle strain caused the hitter to be scratched from the lineup on Tuesday and may deprive Granderson of participating in Opening Day on Thursday against his former team, the Detroit Tigers.

Despite improvement from Granderson, there is still a change he may not be ready for Opening Day. Although it only took Mitre days to overcome the strain, it took Chamberlain 10 days and Golson two weeks to fully recover.

Rushing players back with this type of strain will most likely end badly.

Yankees Manager Joe Girardi told the Daily News, “We told him, look Curtis, we don’t need to rush this back where you say ‘I have to play by Friday or Saturday.’ You don’t have to do that. Let’s just make sure that when you’re ready to go, you’re ready to go.”

Despite starting off 2010 as one of the more dominant Yankee players, Granderson has had his ups and downs with the team, posting a .247 batting average with the Yankees last season.

Facing some difficulties on the plate, Granderson finished April with just a .211 batting average; this slump continued throughout the summer.

Thankfully for the Yankees, Granderson performed to his full potential from September throughout the playoffs, recording a .455 batting average in the ALDS against the Minnesota Twins and a .294 in the ALCS against the Texas Rangers.

Before becoming injured, Granderson’s success continued throughout Spring Training, recording a .385 batting average in 15 games.

“I know the guys more, I know the facility more, the coaching staff more,” Granderson told reporters of the Daily News, “This year will be very similar in mentality to every other spring training except for last year. I’m excited about that. Everything is just normal again.”

With Granderson feeling more comfortable and apart of the Yankees, when he is fully recovered from this strain (hopefully by Thursday), Granderson is expected to play as well as he has been.

If unable to play by Thursday, Brett Gardner will go back to his old position and replace Granderson in center field as Andruw Jones is a candidate to play left field.

Jones recorded a .230 batting average last season with 19 home runs, 12 doubles and one triple with the Chicago White Sox.

Another favorite to replace Granderson is outfielder Chris Dickerson (.267). The player went 3-for-3 with a RBI and a double on Saturday against the Pirates at Steinbrenner Field before getting taken out of the game due to cramps and hamstring spasms.

If healthy, he will most likely replace Granderson over Jones in left field.

Granderson being unable to play on Opening Day would impact the lineup, as he has more experience than Dickerson and is a better hitter and outfielder than either of these players.

However, the Yankees offense is performing up to par, leaving them to be in good shape until the Grandy man returns.

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MLB Hot Stove: Bombing In The Bronx? Grading Yankees’ Offseason Moves

Is it just me, or are there any other people scratching their heads over the Yankees’ personnel decisions this offseason?

This is the time of the year that the Pinstripes are supposed to re-tool for another run at another World Series crown, isn’t it?

So far the Yanks have failed to sign a top-tier free agent outside of Rafael Soriano who will be paid $10 million to pitch the eighth inning in front of Mariano Rivera.

Perhaps the most telling fact about the Bronx Bombers’ offseason mediocrity is the rejection of Cliff Lee when he turned down the Yankees and signed with Phillies for less money. You have to go back to 1992 to find the last time that a free agent turned down a better offer from the Yankees to sign with another team when Greg Maddux opted to sign with Atlanta rather than wear pinstripes. That’s almost 20 years!

Do the Yankees make the grade with their offseason moves thus far?

Let’s take a look at some of their notable offseason transactions. Then, you decide.

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Andruw Jones: New York Yankees Looking to Revitalize His Career

Pitchers and catchers report in 23 days and, to be expected, the pickings on the free-agent market are slim. The biggest news in the past few weeks has been reliever Rafael Soriano signing with the New York Yankees.

The 31-year-old who previously closed for the Tampa Bay Rays was given $35 million over three years to be Mariano Rivera’s set-up man—money the Yankees always seem to have at their disposal no matter how much they spend.

New York remained busy, adding outfielder Andruw Jones on a one-year pact worth $2 million. He will fill the role left by Marcus Thames, who recently signed a deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers after providing some pop with the Yankees last season as their fourth outfielder.

The last few years of Jones’ career have not gone the way he would have liked. He was one of the two Jones Boys on the Atlanta Braves from 1996-2007—teaming up with Chipper—but his final year with the organization was the start of his downturn.

Coming off a 2006 season in which he clubbed 41 homers, drove in 129 and batted his usual .262, he hit 15 fewer homers, drove in 35 fewer RBI and batted 40 points lower while appearing in only two fewer games. That sudden decline in production made him a platoon player in suitors’ eyes.

He was just that for the next three seasons. And not a very good one, either.

Over those seasons spent with the Dodgers, Texas Rangers and Chicago White Sox, Jones hit rock-bottom. With Los Angeles he hit .158 in 72 games. With Texas he batted .214. And with the White Sox he mustered a .230 average.

There was a silver lining in Chicago, though, which helped land him the contract with New York: He hit 19 homers. The Yankees have always looked to add power, and given Yankee Stadium’s hitter-friendly dimensions, there is a chance he can expand upon that total, albeit in a limited role.

He is a low-risk, high-reward signing. If he performs well, good for the Yankees. If he doesn’t, they have the money to find someone else to fill his role. As a fan of Jones, I want him to do well.

He does have 407 homers in his career—51 coming in 2005—and is closing in on 2,000 hits. These statistics complement his five All-Star selections and 10 Gold Gloves. What he did during his prime makes his downfall painful to digest. Chipper was my favorite, but Andruw made the Braves especially enjoyable to watch as a kid.

Five years ago, it appeared Jones would be a serious candidate for the Hall of Fame once he hung up his spikes, despite hitting in the .260s over the course of his prime. But, in hitting a measly .212 over the next four seasons, any chance of being enshrined washed away.

Now, suiting up in pinstripes, he won’t be the player he was long ago, and he probably will not hit .280 as Thames did. But he will bring an excellent glove, an ability to play all three outfield positions and power from the right side of the plate.

His agent, the infamous Scott Boras, has touted him as an everyday player. But I’m sure Jones is just looking to improve the disappointing numbers put up over the past three seasons and help the Yankees contend with the Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays.

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