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Posts Tagged ‘Mike Dunn’

Not an unfamiliar look for Javy

One year ago, the Yankees decided to bring back Javy Vazquez. I, like many people was certainly surprised at the move and the players they gave up for him. I originally hated the deal — and still do at this point — but there were many on the other side of the fence that indicated that things had changed for Javy and to mearly look at his stats. From 2000 through 2009, Javy pitched 200 innings and struck out more than 184 in 9 seasons out of 10. In those seasons between 2000 and 2009 Javy averaged a 3.9 WAR and had a cumlative WAR of 39. Initially, the trade seemed to be a decent trade and most Yankees fans expected a decent year out of Javy who was going to slide into the 4th slot in the rotation.

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Yes, you read right, Javy Vazquez is going to be a Yankee again and Boone Logan will be coming with him. When I saw this I literally went ‘What the hell!’ I almost wanted to rise up out of my seat and threw my computer out my second story office. Guess who the Yankees gave up? Melky Cabrera, Arodys Vizcaino, and Mike Dunn.

Gut reaction to this deal is still bewilderment. Javy Vazquez, in his time in the American League wasn’t that great. His best year in the AL was in 2007 when he was 15-8 with a 3.97 ERA with the Chicago White Sox. Otherwise his ERA in the other years was: 4.91 (2004 Yankees), 4.84 (2006 White Sox), 4.67 (2008 White Sox). In 2004, Vasquez was decent for two months, April (2.55 ERA) and June (2.66 ERA). The other months he had an ERA above 5. After the season, in a move Brian Cashman didn’t want to make, he was sent to Arizona in the deal that brought the Big Unit to the Bronx.

Cashman is likely being sucked into the illusion of Vazquez pitching in the National League again. In 2003 with the Expos, Vazquez was 12-10 with a 3.24 ERA with 241 K’s in 230.1 innings. In 2009 with the Braves, Vasquez was 15-10 with a 2.87 ERA, 238 K’s in 219.1 innings. We found out that didn’t translate into results in the American League.

This raises a few questions, does this mean that Cashman will want to start 2010 with Brett Gardner in LF? Or does this deal open the door for a potential deal for Johnny Damon? The Yankees will take on Vasquez’s full contract according to David O’Brien. This also spells the departure for either Phil Hughes or Joba Chamberlain from the 2010 rotation. While Cashman will likely say that they’ll prepare as starters in Spring Training, I think it is likely that we’ll see Hughes fall back into his setup role for Mariano.

Let me go on record to say that I don’t like this deal at all. Vazquez’s track record in the American League isn’t good and it isn’t likely Cashman acquired him to setup Mariano in 2010. While I think he has great stuff (and I did in 2004), I am not sure how great he’ll be in the AL East, but I guess we’ll find out this year, won’t we? Your thoughts?

Zell’s Take: I love this deal. I was one of those people who couldn’t wait until Melky left this team. They are supposedly giving up Dunn and Vizcaino, but nothing is final. They have now added Granderson, Johnson, and Vazquez and they haven’t dealt either Hughes or Joba. I call that a successful off-season.

The Yankees finally got that starting pitcher they needed. We all know what Vazquez did for the Yankees, but maybe it will be different this time around. He had a 2.87ERA in the NL last year, while racking up 238K’s. We all know how important power pitchers are when it comes to the postseason. Vazquez as a #4 starter? Many teams would kill to have that. Does this mean Hughes takes the 5th spot..and Joba goes back to the bullpen where he belongs?

I have a feeling the Yankees won’t be going into next season with Gardner in LF, and they will go after an outfielder. I would guess Mark DeRosa.

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As recently as the last few days ago a majority of Yankees fans likely haven’t heard of Mike Dunn, which is reasonable since he only pitched 4 innings for the Yankees this year. In the Yankees 3 way trade for Curtis Granderson, the Detroit Tigers originally wanted Mike Dunn, however, the Yankees did not want to trade him for Granderson.

If you have been following Zell’s and read our forums, you would know that I am high as a kite on Dunn and so are the Yankees. Dunn is a 24 year old power lefty that throws a mid-90’s fastball and also features a slider and change up.

Dunn was originally drafted in 2003 by the Houston Astros, but did not sign and thus was drafted as the 999th overall pick in the 2004 draft by the New  York Yankees. Originally an outfielder by trade, the Yankees in their infinite wisdom converted him into a pitcher because he couldn’t hit himself out of a wet paper bag. He did not make his pitching debut until 2006 in the Gulf Coast League. In his 4 years in the Minor Leagues, he had an era of 3.62 in 375.1 innings with 390 K’s with 166 BB’s. In 2008, Dunn was added to the 40-man roster to be protected from those filthy prospect hungry teams in the Rule 5 Draft.

Tommy Phelps, Trenton Thunder pitching coach had this to say about him earlier this year:

Another power, left-handed arm.  He’s got a really good slider and a really good changeup, too.  Them having him as a starter has prepared him well to be long relief or a lefty-lefty situational guy, because he’s got three pitches he can use to both hitters.  He goes out there and he attacks hitters, he’s not afraid.  I think he had one game where he had a few walks, but other than that, he goes right after them.  He’s real aggressive.

Dunn pitched 4 years in the minor leagues before getting the call to come up to the Majors in September 2009. While his short time in the Major Leagues wasn’t that great as he allowed 3 ER’s, 5 BB’s in 4 innings. However, being a power lefty and having the ability to strike out batters in bunches certainly appeals to the Yankees and most major league teams, however they have to deal with his occasional wildness. Considering he’s a converted outfielder, I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt, for now.

In the trade for Granderson, it is of my opinion that the Yankees might have not traded Phil Coke if they didn’t have Mike Dunn waiting in the wings in AAA. It is likely that the Yankees will break camp in 2009 with Mike Dunn in their bullpen and if not, it won’t be too long until he receives the call for good.

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Well, the end of the season for the Surprise Rafters has come and passed, so it is time to let you know how the Yankees of tomorrow have done.

Grant Duff (RHP) pitched 9.1 innings compiling an ERA of 2.89, 2 saves and an opposing batting average of .212

Mike Dunn (LHP) was 1-2 with a 4.35 ERA in 10.1 innings with 20 K’s and 10 walks.

Ian Kennedy (RHP) lead the league with 29.2 innings with an ERA of 4.25 and 28 K’s

Zack Kroenke (LHP) posted a 5.28 ERA in 15.1 innings over 10 games.

Brandon Laird (3B) batted .333 with 6 HRs, 24 RBIs and an OPS of over 1.000

Colin Curtis (LF) batted .397 with 5 HRs, 18 RBIs and an OPS of over 1.200.

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This years rookie hazing theme was “Batman” from the 1960s television show.

Mark Melancon= Batman, Catwoman= Ramiro Pena, Mike Dunn= The Riddler, Anthony Flynn (Video Coordinator)= Robin, Brett Weber (Radar Gun Operator) = The Joker and Lou Potter (Massage Therapist) = The Penguin.

CC Sabathia will take the cast to dinner. Jason Giambi used to take care of that when he was with the team.

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