Tag: Javier Vazquez

Bronx Bombs: Ten Years of Yankees Pitching Duds

Quacky curmudgeon Scrooge McDuck had a giant silo of gold coins to swim in.  Eccentric pop icon Michael Jackson owned the Elephant Man’s dirty old bones.  “Big Pants” MC Hammer bought a $12 million mansion that housed nearly 20 racehorses. 

Just because you have loads of cash doesn’t mean you always spend it wisely.

Theatrical New York Yankees radio announcer John Sterling has often chuckled and stated, “You can’t predict baseball”.  To be fair, Sterling churns out a lot of goofy jibber-jabber on a daily basis, but ol’ John really hit the pinstriped nail on the head with that one.

You can be certain any lifelong Yankees fan has heard many a naysayer spin yarns about the team winning numerous World Championships by buying All-Star caliber teams.  The team’s General Manager is named “Cashman” after all. 

The hole in that theory is that play on the field and deep pockets don’t naturally go hand in hand.  Sure, piles of dough can assure that a team can be competitive, but money doesn’t account for injury, team chemistry, or that all-important Rudy-ish “fight in the dog” spirit. 

Simply stated:  Loads of dollars do not a championship make.  Need further proof?  Go count the number of rings on Jason Giambi’s fingers.

For all its success, superstars, and timeless tradition, the so-called “Evil Empire” hasn’t been free from bad signings, especially when it comes to the mound on East 161st Street in the Bronx.  In the blink of an eye, good intentions go sour like milk in the summer sun and what may seem like a wise investment can go flat in a season’s time. 

60 feet, six inches.  Sometimes that short distance can be quite the journey.

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Florida Marlins: 2011 MLB Season Preview


Last Year: 80-82, 3rd in NL East  

Manager: Edwin Rodriguez


C- John Buck (R) 

1B- Gabby Sanchez (R)

2B- Omar Infante (R)

3B- Donnie Murphy (R) 

SS- Hanley Ramirez (R)

LF- Logan Morrison (L)

CF- Chris Coghlan (L)

RF- Matt Stanton (R)

The Marlins definetly have some talent in this lineup, but the team will miss Dan Uggla’s power. Hanley Ramirez is still the most dangerous player on the team. Ramirez still has 25 home run power and the ability to hit over .300 and steal 30 plus bases. The 27-year-old Gaby Sanchez will be moved to the fifth spot in the lineup though he is an ideal sixth place hitter. Sanchez’s numbers are solid for any position on the field but are below average for a first baseman. Sanchez has 20 home run power and should put up a solid line of .275/.345/.455. The versatile Omar Infante will bat in the two hole and should hit .300 with 7-10 home runs and will be holding the spot for some of the franchise’s prospects. Donnie Murphy will got the shot at 3B to start the season, but I don’t envision him there for very long. My bet is that Dominguez gets called up some time this year. 

Marlins fans are excited to see what right fielder Mike Stanton can do with a full season in the majors. In 396 at-bats, Stanton hit 22 home runs, and I think he will hit anywhere from 35-40 home runs with with a .260/.340/.550 line. Stanton will strike out 30 percent of the time, but his power is worth it. Logan Morrison will bat in the lower half of the lineup after getting more than 200 ABs in the second half of last season. Check out Morrison’s projected line in the breakout player section. Chris Coghlan will bat leadoff for the club after hurting his knee in a pie celebration last season. Coghlan struggled in his sophomore season after in impressive rookie campaign, and many are predicting numbers in between the two seasons. A .295/.360/.430 line and 10 home runs can be expected in this rebound season. Offensively, John Buck will be an upgrade of the group the Marlins had in the lineup for 2010. He won’t have the same numbers he had in hitter friendly Rogers Centre, but he can help the Marlins with 15-18 home runs and .250-.270 average down in the bottom of the order. 

The Marlins were a below-average defensive team in 2010, and I think they will be worse in 2010. Chris Coghlan didn’t play a great LF, and I think he will be even worse in CF coming off of knee surgery. Mike Stanton is the best defensive player the Marlins have, but he is negated in the outfield by the below average Logan Morrison. The team’s only significant upgrade was John Buck behind the plate. Gabby Sanchez and Omar Infante are average on the right side of the infield, but Hanley Ramirez had a tough year in terms of range. Matt Dominguez should help him out one the left side with his above average glove and range. Overall, this is should be one of the league’s poorer defensive units. 


IF/OF- Emilio Bonifacio (S)

IF- Wes Helms (R) 

OF- Scott Cousins (L) 

C- Brett Hayes (R) 

OF- DeWayne Wise (L) 


RHP- Josh Johnson 

RHP- Ricky Nolasco 

RHP- Javier Vazquez 

RHP- Annibal Sanchez

RHP- Chris Volstad

The Marlins’ rotation pitched fairly well in 2010 and it is the strongest component of this 2011 team. Josh Johnson has proved over the last two seasons that he is one of the top five starting pitchers in baseball. Johnson has great control, walking only 2.35 per 9 innings, and strikeout stuff. His 95 MPH fastball has tons of movement and he works a very good slider and average change off of it. Johnson will average almost a stirkeout per innings and with his excellent groundout and HR rates should make him a contender for the CY Young. The inconsistent Ricky Nolasco will start behind Johnson. Nolasco has the talent to be a consistent number two starter in this league, but he has been the recipient of some bad luck recently. His ERA has been 5.06 and 4.51 over the last two years but xFIP says that he should have been pitching at 3.28 and 3.55. His K/BB is an excellent 4.43 over the last three years, but he has been hurt by a low LOB percentage. I expect Nolasco to put up an ERA in he 3.75-3.90 range and K/BB of 4.

Javier Vazquez struggled in his return to New York because of his drop in velocity from 91.7 MPH in 2009 to 88.7 MPH in 2010. In some of those starts, Vazquez was throwing an 84-86 MPH fastball that PITCH/FX misleadingly called a change up. I don’t think his velocity will come back, and it seems all the years of throwing 200 plus innings have caught up to him. No matter what, Vazquez will welcome the opportunity to return to the NL. Annibal Sanchez did well in his first full season in the majors throwing has best fastball in years (91.3 MPH). He relies heavily on his dominant slider, but he will mix his change and curveball effectively. I like his chances repeating similar numbers in 2011 with 7.5 K/9 and having a 3.50 ERA. Chris Volstad relies on his sinking fastball to induce groundouts, but he is BB, K, and HR rate have kept him from being a from being a reliable starter. He needs to work on his command and his HR rate if he is to improve. 


RHP- Leo Nunez (Closer) 

RHP- Clay Hensley 

RHP- Ryan Webb

RHP- Edward Mujica  

LHP- Randy Choate  

LHP- Mike Dunn  

RHP- Burke Badenhop or RHP Brian Sanches 

The Marlins remade the bullpen in the offseason but the team decided to keep Leo Nunez as closer. Nunez had a good season in 2010, using his devastating change-up to strike-out 1 per inning and recording a 3.46 ERA. Nunez isn’t one of the best, but he is cheap and can get the job done for the Marlins. Clay Hensley became Florida’s main setup man after posting a 2.16 ERA. Hensley changed his approach by throwing his curveball more often. It was one of the more effective pitches during the season and transformed Hensley from mop-up man to setup man.

I like what the Marlins did with the rest of the bullpen by acquiring hard throwing Ryan Webb and Edward Mujica from the Padres. Both have decent control and Mujica will strikeout 8-9 per 9 innings. Ryan Webb, a groundball specialist, is the type of reliever the Marlins have lacked in the past. Randy Choate is a sidearming left-handed specialist who is tough on lefties, but gets killed by right-handed hitters. Mike Dunn will join Choate as the other lefty out of the pen. Dunn throws hard (avg 94.8 MPH) but his control leaves a lot to be desired. 


RHP- Shawn Hill

IF/OF- Greg Dobbs (L)

IF- Ruben Gotay (S)

OF- Dewayne Wise (L) 

IF- Donnie Murphy (R) 

BREAKOUT PLAYER- Logan Morrison  

Logan Morrison has the ability to become a consistent .300 hitter for this Marlins team. While he does have the tendency to strikeout, he does possess wonderful plate discipline and the ability to get on base consistently. He isn’t a power hitter, but I can see Morrison can hit to all fields and to the gaps. I see Morrison hitting close to .295/.390/.440 with 12-15 home runs this season. 

PROSPECT TO WATCH- 3B Matt Dominguez

Dominguez is considered the Marlins’ top prospect, but there are questions concerning whether or not his bat is ready for the show. Defensively, he is considered above average and ready to make an impact. He has the ability to hit approximately 15 home runs but only expect a line around .250/.320/.400 in his first season. He might not be ready, but I say its worth the risk for the Marlins to throw him out there. 


The Marlins have a good enough rotation and enough offense to make a run in the AL East. I don’t think they will stay in it for the entire season, but the Marlins should finish above .500. The group has talent but the young players just are not ready yet to be a contender. The team has a good rotation, solid lineup, and improved bullpen. I get the feeling they will finish 3rd in this division, but crazy things have happened over the years.  

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Fantasy Baseball 2011: 5 Florida Marlins to Consider

Everybody knows about Hanley Ramirez: 2009 batting champ, five-tool stud and perennial first rounder.

Everybody should know about Josh Johnson: Cy Young contender, career ERA of 3.10, a ton of potential.

But what else, if anything, do the Marlins have to offer fantasy owners?

In spite of the organization’s everlasting dedication to penny pinching, the Marlins have a handful of players that are sure to impact this year’s fantasy season.

Here they are, by order of importance, along with their 2011 projection:


1. Michael Stanton—.265 BA, 36 HR, 93 RBI 

The first thing you notice when you watch Michael Stanton is how hard he hits the ball. He is listed at 6’5″, 235 pounds, and he’s only 21-years-old. The guy is like an athletic version of Adam Dunn. However, his plate discipline is abysmal. He’s going to challenge Mark Reynolds for the major league lead in strikeouts. Nevertheless, his upside is still tremendous. He’s going to hit his fair share of home runs this year, but it’ll just be the tip of the iceberg. If you’re in a keeper league, Stanton is your guy. 


2. Javier Vazquez—15 W, 3.65 ERA, 194 K 

So the guy with a 4.41 ERA in three years with the White Sox wasn’t a success as a Yankee? Big shocker there! Yes, he was coming off of a career year with the Braves, but let’s face it, no one expected much out of him, and the NL is a pitcher’s league. I’m not counting on Javy to replicate his superb 2009 season, but he will be successful as a Marlin. He won’t have to worry about New York City expectations or intense media scrutiny. He will get comfortable in front of embarrassingly small crowds and become the No. 2 starter. 


3. Chris Coghlan—90 R, .283 BA, 11 HR, 62 RBI, 13 SB

The party was over very quickly for the 2009 Rookie of the Year as he hit .195 to start 2010. His 2009 batting average was impressive, .321, but he only hit nine HR and stole eight bases in 128 games. We know that he has the potential to hit for big average, as confirmed by his .377 average last June, but his season ended in July because of a torn meniscus (it’s hard to throw a pie sometimes, you know). His erratic performance makes it hard to predict how he will do long-term, but he is an extremely hard worker, so don’t count him out. He will likely be a top of the order staple, in front of three powerful hitters (Ramirez/Stanton/Sanchez). I’d look to steal him in the mid-to-late rounds because he has the potential to contribute in multiple stat categories. 


4. Gaby Sanchez—.278 BA, 23 HR, 88 RBI

Everybody in South Florida fell in love with Gaby Sanchez when he rushed to Chris Volstad’s defense and violently clothes-lined Nyger Morgan (MLB villain and 2010 fantasy disappointment). Aside from his WWF moves, Sanchez had a productive rookie year (.273/19/85). He likely will bat cleanup or fifth, behind three players with the potential to consistently be on base (Prado/Coghlan/Ramirez). He represents a favorable option for those teams who were unable to secure a top 1B. 


5. Ricky Nolasco—14 W, 4.41 ERA, 182 K

Some people picked Nolasco over Josh Johnson in last year’s draft. That would not be a good idea this year, to say the least. Nolasco is very streaky as he usually puts together a string of good starts, but he will similarly devastate you with a few awful starts here and there. Depending on where he is projected, fantasy owners may pay a high price for a largely over-rated pitcher. I’d steer clear unless you can pick him up late. 

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Brian Cashman’s Wasted Winter Leaves New York Yankees Buried


The holidays, and 2010 along with them, are over.
We head into the second day of the first work week of 2011, and Brian Cashman, well, he continues to do what he’s done all winter…NOTHING.
Well, that’s not exactly true. Cashman did manage to wake up long enough to sign a lefty specialist, who has never pitched a day in the American League before.

Oh, and don’t forget about those broken-down scrubs like Mark Prior and Russell Martin. Now, if Cashman could just track down Doc Brown and his DeLorean, those guys might actually do what they’re being counted on to do this season.
But while the Boston Red Sox have made the moves that vaulted them to heavy favorites in the American League, our sorry sack-of-dog-$#!t general manager has gone from playing dress-up to alternating between long naps and burying our beloved Yankees in a massive hole of his own digging.
With just six weeks to go until the start of Spring Training, here’s what Brian Cashman has to show for the largest payroll in the game:

  1. ONE reliable starting pitcher.
  2. NO reliable setup man.
  3. $56 million worth of charity wasted on a 36-year-old SS with NO range, NO bat speed, NO power and a mediocre arm.

That’s about it. Oh, and Cashman also has Eduardo Nunez and Ivan Nova. Those are the guys who Cashman declared were deal-breakers when he had a chance to add Cliff Lee before the trade deadline last season.
Just remember that when you’re watching Nunez sit on the bench this season and Nova hit the showers after five innings. The Mariners, after balking at the medical records on infielder David Adams, asked the Yankees for ONE of Nunez or Nova to complete the Lee deal, and Cashman said no.
Just another in a long line of hideous decisions made by “Elf” Cashman in the last year plus. And that decision, combined with others like re-acquiring Javier Vazquez, cost the Yankees their best chance at the 2010 World Series, and their best chance at signing Cliff Lee.

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Fantasy Baseball Impact of Some Recent Moves (Vazquez, Tejada and More)

There has been a flurry of moves the past few days, so let’s take a look at the fantasy implications: 


Javier Vazquez signs with the Florida Marlins

This is the biggest move of the past few days.  After struggling mightily in the AL East (5.32 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 6.9 K/9), he returns to the NL East.  Let’s not forget, in 2009 while with the Braves, Vazquez put up Cy Young-esque numbers (2.87 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 9.8 K/9).

It’s easy to expect an improvement just from escaping the new Yankees Stadium, though it’s not like he only struggled at home in 2010 (5.29 ERA at home and 5.34 ERA on the road).  He was simply bad, there’s no other way to put it. 

The most important thing to look at isn’t his peripherals, considering his BABIP (.276) and strand rate (71.9 percent) were both realistic numbers.  The problem was that he seemingly lost his fastball.  Just look at his average fastball over the past four years:

  • 2007 – 91.8 mph
  • 2008 – 91.7 mph
  • 2009 – 91.1 mph
  • 2010 – 88.7 mph

That is a huge drop-off and easily helps to explain the dramatic falloff in strikeouts.  He also had a huge loss in his control, with a 1.8 BB/9 in 2009 to a 3.7 BB/9 in 2010.  Granted, his 2009 mark was a career best, but he had not posted a mark worse than 2.6 since 2000. 

We can easily expect for him to improve with the move back to the NL, but the velocity is another problem altogether.  If he doesn’t get it back, he likely won’t be able to return to the days of a K/9 of at least 8.0, meaning his value is just not going to come back as much as fantasy owners hope. 

His new location certainly makes him a better player to take a flier on, but he is far from a lock to rebound.  I wouldn’t overdraft him based on the transition.  He remains a late round flier at this point. 


Juan Uribe signs with the Los Angeles Dodgers

After hitting .248 with 24 HR, 85 RBI and 64 R, Uribe leaves the Giants for their division rivals.  The first thing that jumps out is his average, which we would’ve expected him to improve upon regardless of where he signed. 

He actually improved his strikeout rate (17.7 percent) but suffered from extremely poor luck (.256 BABIP).  He’s had struggles there in the past, so while it isn’t a lock that he improves, you would have to expect him to be at least a little bit better.

While the majority of his struggles did come on the road (.215 average), it’s hard to read too much into that.  In 2010, he hit .258 with 3 HR, 9 RBI and 4 R at Dodgers Stadium.

What may be most appealing is that he joins a lineup with more offensive punch.  With Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier and Co., there should be plenty of opportunities for Uribe to continue to produce. 

He is likely to play 2B, meaning he may lose his SS eligibility long-term (though, does anyone expect Rafael Furcal to remain healthy).  It’s worth keeping in mind but shouldn’t sway his value in 2011 (as he will have eligibility there).

He was a low-end option to begin with and should remain as one now. 


Miguel Tejada signs with the San Francisco Giants

It didn’t take long for the Giants to find a replacement for Uribe, at least at some level.  It’s possible that Tejada plays 3B, depending on their stance on Pablo Sandoval, but that would still leave a void at SS.

Does the move change his fantasy value?  Not really.  His power is diminishing (I can’t put too much stock in his eight home runs after the trade to San Diego), he has no speed and is likely to hit for a good, not great, average. 

Just leave him valued the same as you would’ve. 


Yorvit Torrealba signs with the Texas Rangers

His presence in Texas likely means the end of Bengie Molina’s tenure there.  Taylor Teagarden and Max Ramirez will likely get looks as well but will likely be more of the backups.

Even if Torrealba does get the bulk of the at-bats, he has a career .257 average with no power (he’s never hit more than 8 HR in a season).  At this point, Texas catchers are not worth owning, even in two-catcher formats. 


Ryan Theriot is traded to the St. Louis Cardinals

The Cardinals needed help in the middle infield and Theriot is a nice fit.  If he finds himself hitting at the top of the Cardinals order, he gets a huge boost in value. 

He has a career OBP of .348 and certainly could push 90+ runs scored with Albert Pujols and Matt Holliday hitting behind him.

Couple that with a little bit of speed (20+ stolen bases each of the past four years) and you get a player with value in deeper formats. 

He has little to no power, which hurts his overall appeal, but don’t rule him out because of it.  A solid average, runs scored and stolen bases…you could do worse in deeper formats.

What are your thoughts on these moves?  Whose value increases?  Whose doesn’t?

Make sure to check out our early 2011 rankings:

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MLB Free Agent Signings: Troy Tulowitzki, Javier Vazquez, Juan Uribe

Two Thumbs Up

The Colorado Rockies locked up Troy Tulowitzki through the 2020 season with the announcing of a seven-year, $134 million contract earlier today.

Basically, Tulowitzki is going to be a member of the Rockies for the majority of his playing career. He’ll be 36 when his current contract is up.

You can’t blame the Rockies for this one. The 25-year old shortstop is quickly developing into one of the best shortstops in the game, if he isn’t already.

He plays solid defense, runs well and swings a mighty bat.

The Rockies will end up with a huge bargain in the end and that’s what they are hoping for—but it doesn’t come without risk.

Tulowitzki has missed significant time in two seasons now. He sat out most of 2008 with a torn quad muscle. This past season, he suffered a broken wrist after being hit in the hand. The injury caused him to miss a month of the season.

Had he not suffered the injury, Tulowitzki would have been well on his way to another 30 homer, 100 RBI campaign.

I think we will see a 40-homer season from Tulowitzki at some point.

2011 Forecast: .299, 33 HR, 115 RBI, 15 SB, 105 R


Two Thumbs Down

In other news, the Dodgers are reportedly close to signing a three-year, $21 million deal with SS Juan Uribe.

Uribe hit .248 in 148 games with the Giants last season, while posting career highs in homeruns (24) and RBIs (85).

I don’t know why the Dodgers insist on paying Uribe that kind of money to play infield for them. He provides decent pop, but I doubt very seriously that he’ll reach 20 homeruns again.

His defense is average at best, and he produces a lot of outs (career .256 average, .300 OBP).

Uribe hit .280 with 13 homers and 34 RBIs in 261 ABs at AT&T Park last season. To extend upon that, he hit .346 in 182 ABs at AT&T Park with 9 homers and 32 RBI in 2009.

In contrast, Uribe hit a paltry .215 on the road in 2010 and .241 in 2009. Maybe the team that signs him should consider benching him on the road.

This will be another waste of money for the Dodgers organization.

2011 Forecast: 400 ABs, .250, 17 HR, 60 RBI, 45 R


Marlins Bolster Their Staff

Javier Vazquez also cashed in, signing a one-year deal worth $7 million.

Normally, I would say this is a good move, given his poor history pitching for the Yankees, but there are too many red flags here.

He isn’t getting any younger, for one, but he also lost velocity on his fastball last year.

Couple that with career worst ratios in HR/9 (1.8), BB/9 (3.7) and his worst K/9 since his last stint with the Yankees (6.9) and you’ve got yourself quite a risk.

Vazquez likes to use his fastball up in the zone after working his breaking pitches down in the dirt to produce strikeouts. It’s harder to do that when you don’t have your old velocity.

Don’t expect a miraculous recovery in velocity, either. That’s unlikely at his age.

He will really have to use his other pitches effectively if he wants to avoid another 2010 season.

The good news is that he is a different pitcher in the National League—for the better. Another positive, Vazquez only allowed hitters to hit .258 against him last year and 18 of his 32 homers allowed came at Yankee Stadium.

It’s a risky deal for Florida, made even worse by his no-trade clause. That will make dealing him at the break very difficult should he register any success with the Marlins.

2011 Forecast: 165 IP, 6-8, 4.35 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 140 Ks


More to Come

The Winter Meetings are upon us and there are still some very high-profile free agents on the market. It should make for an interesting conclusion to the offseason.

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comment box below. You can e-mail me suggestions or questions at jtmcadams@aol.com. Follow me on Twitter @JoeSportswriter.

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MLB Hot Stove: Yankee Fans Happily Say Adios To Javier Vazquez

The second time was not a charm for Javier Vazquez as a New York Yankee

After almost winning the NL Cy Young in 2009, Vazquez bravely returned to the Bronx in 2010. He had high hopes to end the Yankee fans smear campaign, which dated back to the 2004 season.

Just in case you were subconsciously blocking out 2004 (trust me I do), it was the year the Boston Red Sox finally beat the Yankees in the ALCS. The Yankees blew the series after being up 3-0 in games, with three outs to sweeping the series.

Obviously, Vazquez is by no means to blame, as the Yankees imploded pretty well as a team.

Vazquez started a tremendous emotionally charged Game 7, by giving up two homeruns, one of which was a grand-slam, to than Red Sox Johnny Damon.  It was the breaking point for Yankees fans and no need to reminisce anymore.

Still, I have to give credit to the Red Sox, as Boston deserved to win the 2004 World Series. That ALCS is hands down one of the greatest comeback stories in sports history.

If you are really interested in Vazquez’s round one in pinstripes ESPN did a 30 for 30 called Four Days In October – Don’t Let The Red Sox Win! Yankees Self Destruct. You might have caught it on October 5, 2010, when ESPN debuted the short film the night before Game One of the 2010 ALDS.

So, Javy’s second chance did not go over well with the Yankee fans making it quite an unhappy reunion to say the least. This was evident when Vazquez got booed before throwing his first pitch at the Stadium.

Call it ill-fated timing with Alex Rodriguez finally being clutch in the post-season set the precursor for Yankee fans to open a can of whoop ass on Vazquez. It was pretty ruthless and pointless, as the only place that should want to remember 2004 is the city of Boston.

Vazquez couldn’t hide his sadness and the damage clearly affected his production in 2010. The proof that it was New York and not Vazquez was that he had been first-rate everywhere else he has pitched.

Vazquez as an Atlanta Brave finished 2009 with a 2.87 ERA, throwing for 219 innings, giving up 20 home runs, 44 walks and striking out 238 batters.

As a Yankee in 2010 he only pitched 157 innings, with an ERA of 5.32, giving up 32 bombs, 65 walks and striking out over 100 less batters with a total of 121.

Skipper Joe Girardi had no choice but to cut Vazquez from the 2010 playoff roaster. Translation is that AJ Burnett was more reliable than Vazquez had been.

The Yankees and Vazquez were done. Vazquez couldn’t be happier to get the hell out of the Bronx, and I don’t blame him.

So when the Florida Marlins came knocking Vazquez ran and took a significant pay cut from the Marlins due to the Yankees offering him aberration. Textbook call by GM Brian Cashman as there was no way Vazquez would accept it, and the Yankees came away with the Marlins best draft pick. Presumably, this is the reason for the discount given by team Vazquez to get the deal done.

It’s about darn time the Yankees have no reminders of the 2004 season on there roster, and let’s hope we never do again.

All I have to say to Javy Vazquez is “Adiós para siempre!” (“Goodbye Forever”)

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MLB: Starter Javier Vazquez Receives $7 Million, No-Trade Clause from Marlins

Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal has reported that the Florida Marlins have inked former Yankee, Javier Vazquez to a one-year deal worth $7 million. The deal also includes a full no-trade clause.

This is a risky move for the Marlins because Vazquez is coming off a terrible year with the New York Yankees. Fortunately for the Marlins, Vazquez has been a better pitcher in the National League. It’s a big move for Vazquez because he needs to bounce back after his sub-par 2010 season.

This move adds a veteran to the Marlin’s young starting rotation and can potentially be a great move if Vazquez returns to his 2009 form. Vazquez will need to forget about his 2010 season in which he post a 10-10 record with a 5.32 era. Just a year before his dreadful season with the Yankees, Vazquez won 15 games with a 2.87 era with the Atlanta Braves. The question for the Marlins is which Javier Vazquez will show up for them?

Vazquez has been known to be an innings-eater and a strikeout pitcher, but he will need to regain his confidence in Florida. The National League is where Vazquez belongs as it seems he just could not deal with the pressure of the American League and New York.

Vazquez is entering his 14h MLB season, and the Marlins will be his sixth different team that he has pitched for. 

Vazquez has had stints with the Expos, Yankees, Diamondbacks, White Sox and Braves. During his time with five different clubs, Vazquez has earned his way to a 152-149 record with a 4.26 era.


Source: Ken Rosenthal on Twitter

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MLB Hot Stove: Javier Vazquez Signs One-year Pact with Florida Marlins

The Florida Marlins have agreed to a one-year contract with free-agent starter Javier Vazquez worth in the $7 million range, along with a full no-trade clause and the inability to offer arbitration next offseason. 

Coming off the Dan Uggla trade, the Florida Marlins were looking to use the intended salary on free agents to fulfill other areas of need. The Marlins signed catcher John Buck to a three-year deal worth $18 million earlier this month. 

Vazquez struggled in his second stint with the New York Yankees this past season, going 10-10 with a 5.32 ERA. Yet the Puerto Rican has a history of being a National League pitcher, with a career 4.02 ERA in over eight seasons there. He went 15-10 with a career-low 2.87 ERA in 219 1/3 innings with the Atlanta Braves in 2009.

In Vazquez, the Marlins are getting an innings eater who has averaged 211 innings in the past decade, and his acquisition could provide relief to the bullpen if they have been used too frequently on a given stretch in the season. 

Baring any injuries or struggles, Vazquez’s addition to the starting rotation will make the Marlins a legitimate threat in the NL East, if not a dark horse like this past seasons’ San Diego Padres and Cincinnati Reds. He joins an all right-handed staff that has Josh Johnson, Ricky Nolasco, Anibal Sanchez and Chris Volstad. He is expected to be the teams’ No. 2 or No. 3, depending on spring-training performance. 

In his career, Vazquez is 2-2 in eight games at Sun Life Stadium, with a 4.95 ERA and 1.28 WHIP.


Fish Frying the Hot Stove 

The Marlins have been among the most active teams in the early weeks of the offseason as part of their plan to increase payroll as they get closer into the new ballpark.

The Marlins have traded Dan Uggla, Cameron Maybin and Andrew Miller in separate deals for a combined package of infielder Omar Infante and pitchers Mike Dunn, Edward Mujica, Ryan Webb and Dustin Richardson. 

With the winter meetings coming up, the Marlins seem far from done in making major moves. The team has been rumored as one of the teams interested in Arizona’s Justin Upton, and Vazquez’s arrival could pave the way for the team to deal Ricky Nolasco if contract talks don’t progress. 

The Marlins have another possible starter in Alex Sanabia, who was 5-3 in 15 games (72 1/3 innings) with a 3.73 ERA as a rookie this past season, if any such trade leaves a hole in the rotation. 

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Javier Vasquez Agrees To Terms with Florida Marlins

Right handed pitcher Javier Vasquez agreed to a one year deal with the Florida Marlins.

It was reported that Vasquez had turned down a multi-year deal from another team, which only shows he wants to make himself a front of the rotation guy again, and get a great offer after 2011.

But for now, the deal is known to be somewhere around $7 million, according to baseball insider Ken Rosenthal.

Vasquez, 34, joined the New York Yankees early this year, hoping to carry over his dominant stuff  from the Atlanta Braves to the American League. He failed, posting a 5.32 ERA which is certainly not impressive.

But now that he will be back in the National League, it looks as if Vasquez can regain his 2009 form, where he finished 4th in the Cy Young voting. That year, he finished at 15-10, with an ERA of 2.87. Notice the fact that all the other interested teams in Vasquez were all National League teams: the Colorado Rockies, Washington Nationals, and the Chicago Cubs.

This all makes sense for the Marlins.

The team’s priority this offseason was to add depth to the entire team, and this agreement helped.

Also, Vasquez is an experienced veteran, so this was an excellent addition to the young staff.

This $7 million deal was possible, after the Marlins let go of slugger Dan Uggla to the Atlanta Braves. At least there was some positive side to that.

Florida now has added two veterans, Vasquez and catcher John Buck. They had also received a good hitter in Omar Infante and a bullpen upgrade in Mike Dunn.

The best guess at this point is that Florida will go for a playoff run, and if that does not work, they will trade some of the players, like they did with Cameron Maybin, or Uggla and get even more prospects for the future.

It looks as if this team is up this, but it’s hard to tell this early. Only time will tell.

Javier Vasquez just needs to pass a physical, and this great deal will be official.

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