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Posts Tagged ‘Rob Thompson’

Courtesy: AP/Seth Wenig

As the 2011 preseason is now officially underway for the Yankees, it’s time for Yankee fans to fire up the hot stove and begin contemplating what the team will look like next Spring. But before you can take the first step forward, it helps to know where you are. After all, every destination has a starting point. It just happens that 2011 and #28 begins from the rubble of what was a once promising season in 2010.

So, where are the Yankees right now?

Front Office: The Yanks front office appears more stable than at any time in more than a generation. Gone are the days when Mount Steinbrenner might erupt at any moment, causing the Yanks management team a severe case of angina and filling the back pages of NYC’s tabloids. Brian Cashman, love him or hate him, seems certain to retain the General Manager’s position for the foreseeable future. While the Steinbrenner sons seem to have placed their faith in Cashman, I wouldn’t advise him to repeat last year’s disastrous offseason. While they strike me as the polar opposite of their Dad in the way they approach running the team, I also can’t imagine that the Steinbrenner demand for winning is sublimated to profits under their watch. Cashman is excellent at the operations side of the baseball business – but more player moves on par with Nick Johnson and Javy Lopez will end his run.

Field Management: Cashman already announced that bringing back skipper Joe Girardi is “job 1” this offseason. That probably says more about the lack of available managerial talent than Girardi’s skill in guiding the team, in my opinion. The only other decent manager available right now is Bobby Valentine. Somehow, I can’t see Bobby V’s penchant for grabbing the spotlight and the current front office’s desire to avoid controversy co-existing. Joel Sherman
made an interesting point about the skipper needing to loosen up a bit and have fun in an earlier column today. It’s a point that hopefully Girardi will take to heart in 2011. Oh, and hopefully he loses that infernal binder along the way, too.

Earlier today, the coaching staff shake-up began in earnest, as Dave Eiland was jettisoned. No real reason was given, but I suspect Eiland wanted out as much, if not more; than the brass wanted him gone (he did disappear for nearly a month during the regular season, for reasons nobody has ever explained). Regardless, the Yankees now need a pitching coach. I imagine with AJ Burnett due back and the real possibility of having a rookie in the starting rotation, the Yankees will look for somebody with not only pitching expertise, but a psychiatry degree. With Cliff Lee an obvious target of Yankee affection, expect a pitching coach Lee respects to be targeted.

Otherwise, don’t expect major changes on the bench. Kevin Long is still regarded as one of the best hitting coaches in the business and 3B/IF coach Rob Thompson is widely regarded as helping Robinson Cano realize his potential in the field. Bench coach Tony Pena seems likely to stay – but I’m certain if a managerial job opens up for him, he’ll jump on it.

Coming tomorrow: Core Four

Coming Wednesday: Pitchers

Coming Thursday: FIelders

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This year’s All-Star Game is now being called “Challenge the Yankees”….just like the card game from the 1960’s! Think about it…the whole American League roster is filled with New York Yankees.

Joe Girardi, Dave Eiland, Mike Harkey, Mick Kelleher, Kevin Long, Tony Peña, Rob Thompson, Nick Swisher, Derek Jeter, Robinson Cano, Phil Hughes, Andy Pettitte, CC Sabathia and Alex Rodriguez are all headed to the Midsummer Classic in Anaheim, California. With the possibility of Cliff Lee landing on the Yankees, the roster could consist of 15 people associated with the New York Yankees organization. And this list doesn’t even include Mariano Rivera..think about that!

National League vs The Bronx Bombers…are you ready?

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The other day, the Yankees front office invited the beat writers, coaching and staff to go paint balling with them at a place called ’Jungle Games’ in Lutz, Florida. These pictures below are before and after the battle. These photos are priceless.

The notable people involved: Mark Feinsand, Joe Girardi, Mick Kelleher, Brian Cashman, Jason Zillo, Tony Pena, Bryan Hoch, Erik Boland, Kevin Long, Rob Thompson, Sweeny Murti, Marc Carig and Mike Harkey.

Paintball 1.jpg

Paintball 2.jpg

(Photos Courtesy of Bryan Hoch)

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Isn’t it nice to know who ran the organization of the team you root for? Well here is a list of all the executives and coaches that helped run this team:

Yankees Executives & Coaches

Executives

Ed Barrow β, general manager, 1920-45, Brian Cashman, general manager, 1998-present, Pat Gillick, player development and scouting coordinator, 1975-76, Ralph Houk, general manager, 1964-66, Larry MacPhail β, general manager, 1945-47, Lee MacPhail β, ass’t farm director, 1947; farm director, 1948-56; player personnel director, 1956-58; general manager, 1966-73, Gene Michael, general manager, 1990-95; vice president, 1996-present, Lou Piniella, general manager, 1987-88, Al Rosen, president, 1978-79, George Weiss β, vice president, 1931-44; farm director 1944-47; general manager 1947-60, Roy Hamey, assistant general manager 1951-54, 1959-60; general manager 1960-63, Bill DeWitt, assistant general manager, 1954-58, Roy White, ass’t general manager, 1985, Bob Watson, general manager, 1996-98, Woody Woodward, vice president, 1985-86; general manager, 1986-87

Coaches

Yogi Berra β, 1963 (player-coach), 1976-83, Larry Bowa, 2006-2007, Chris Chambliss, 1996-2000, Tony Cloninger, 1992-2001, Earle Combs β, 1936-44, Pat Corrales, 1983, Bobby Cox, 1977, Frankie Crosetti, 1947-68, Bill Dickey β, 1949-57, 1960, Dave Eiland 2008- (pitching coach), Lee Elia, 1989, Darrell Evans, 1990, Whitey Ford β, 1964, 1968, 1974-75, Joe Girardi, 2005, Ron Guidry, 2006- 2007, Mike Harkey, 2008- (Bullpen Coach), Willie Horton, 1985, Elston Howard, 1969-79, Frank Howard, 1989, 1991-92, Dick Howser, 1969-78, Bob Lemon β, 1976, Kevin Long, 2007- (hitting coach), Eddie Lopat, 1960, Mickey Mantle β, 1970, Don Mattingly, 2004-2007, Lee Mazzilli, 2000-03, 2006, Bobby Meacham 2008- (third base), Fred Merkle, 1925-26, Bill Monbouquette, 1985, Graig Nettles, 1991, Tony Pena, 2006- (first base), Lou Piniella, 1984-85, Willie Randolph, 1994-2004, Johnny Sain, 1961-63, Joe Sewell β, 1934-35, Buck Showalter, 1990-91, Luis Sojo, 2004-2005, Mel Stottlemyre, 1996-2005, Rob Thomson, 2008- (bench coach), Jeff Torborg, 1979-88, Mickey Vernon, 1982, Roy White, 1983-84, 1986, 2004-2005, Stan Williams, 1980-82, 1988, Don Zimmer, 1983, 1986, 1996-2003

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Here is a breakdown of the Yankees farm system. I think they did an excellent job of scouting the players.

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