New York Giants: Eli Manning Not Worried About Hall Of Fame Says Archie Manning

New York Giants, Eli Manning

Eli Manning has retired from the New York Giants and the NFL, and one of the debates that will surround him in the coming years is whether or not he will make it into the Hall of Fame. There is, of course, support from this within the Giants fanbase – but that support doesn’t necessarily extend around the entire league, and a question of whether or not Manning will make it into the Hall of Fame still remains and is likely to go unsettled until the decision itself is finally made.

Manning has already received a lot of support from various figures who believe he deserves the honor, but one important source has stated that Manning himself isn’t bothered by the debate surrounding himself and the Hall of Fame. That figure is Manning’s father, former NFL quarterback Archie Manning.

“I don’t think it bothers him at all. He’s fine. Very content,” Archie told TMZ after dining with sons Eli and Peyton in Miami. “Eli’s just finished up a long career… [he’s] looking forward to doing some things with his family.”

Interestingly enough, Archie Manning also had some good words for the Giants organization, saying that they have a good quarterback in Daniel Jones and that the team as a whole is on the rise under new head coach Joe Judge.

The Manning Hall of Fame debate hasn’t let up since Manning announced his retirement, of course, with a lot of names chiming in one way or the other with their thoughts.

It wasn’t long ago that Kurt Warner, the player that Manning replaced during his rise as a starter, also joined in the conversation and said that he believes Manning should make it in.

“It is such a weird process of going into the Hall of Fame and what all goes into making someone a Hall of Fame player… And when you look at stats, without question Eli Manning has the stats to be in the Hall of Fame,” Warner told Ralph Vacchiano.

We’ll still have a fair amount of time to find out if Manning makes it in or not, but at the end of the day, it seems there’s more support for it than against it – just how much of the NFL community outside of the Giants supports Manning, we’ll have to wait and see.

New York Yankees 2020 Season Preview: Adam Ottavino

New York Yankees, Adam Ottavino

Adam Ottavino was one of the New York Yankees‘ most trusted relievers in 2019. Although he struggled in the postseason, he had a significant impact on the team in the regular season.

Like DJ LeMahieu, Ottavino was signed after spending several years in Denver as a member of the Colorado Rockies. He was drafted in the first round in 2006 out of Northeastern University by the Cardinals and he made his MLB debut in 2010. After the 2018 season, the Yankees inked him on for a three-year deal expiring in 2021.

The 34-year-old New York native had a 1.90 ERA with a 6-5 record over 73 appearances in 2019. He struck out 88 in 66.1 innings pitched with a 1.312 WHIP. Ottavino also registered two saves.

The 6’5 righty can throw hard but is most known for his big, swooping slider.

2020 Expectations

The Yankees have the same expectations for Ottavino in 2020 as they had in 2019.

They need him to pitch in high leverage situations and pitch in almost half of the team’s games. He needs to continue to have success with his slider and be able to throw his fastball for strikes.

The only thing that they would like different from him is better postseason performance. He had an 11.57 ERA in the ALCS against the Houston Astros. But for all we know, the Astros could’ve been stealing signs.

His ERA was a career-low in 2019, but the Yankees want it lower. Realistically, if he can keep it in the low twos, then I’d call it pretty good.

Adam Ottavino is ready to have another successful season in 2020 and shake off his postseason struggles.

 

New York Giants: Top Three Edge Rushers To Target In Free Agency

New York Giants, Yannick Ngakoue

Free agency is just around the corner. In March, each of the thirty-two NFL teams will be competing with each other to sign free agents on the open market. The New York Giants are estimated by Spotrac to have over $69 million in cap space before they start trimming the fat and cutting veteran contracts. They can be big-spenders in free agency if they want to be.

The Giants have a need at one of the sport’s most premium positions. Pass-rushers always get paid the big bucks in free agency because they have such a great impact on the game. Luckily for the Giants, the 2020 free agents class is loaded with big-name pass rushers. If the Giants break the bank, they could turn this position of weakness into a position of strength.

Jadeveon Clowney

The top free-agent edge rusher in 2020 is Jadeveon Clowney. The former number-one-overall pick was traded to the Seattle Seahawks this year. It is very possible that Clowney’s stint in the Emerald City will only last one year.

Jadeveon Clowney has never had a season with double-digit sacks. However, he is still regarded as one of the NFL’s most disruptive pass-rushers. Clowney is constantly in the face of the quarterback. He had 48 pressures in 2018 and 30 pressures in 2019.

Jadeveon is also a dependable player. He will show up and perform week-in and week-out. He has played over 800 snaps in each of the last three years (PFF). Clowney is also one of the best run-defending edge rushers in the league. If the Giants want to improve both their run defense and their pass-rush, Clowney is their best option. However, he will not come cheap.

According to Spotrac, Jadeveon Clowney has an estimated market value of $20 million on average annually. This would make him one of the highest-paid players at his position. It might be hard for the Giants to commit that amount of money to a player that has a career-high of 9 sacks.

Shaquil Barrett

Shaquil Barrett is another player that switched team in 2019. Barrett is a stud young pass-rusher that started his career in Denver and spent five years there before signing a one-year deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2019.

Barrett signed a one-year “prove-it” deal last offseason worth $5 million. He definitely proved himself worthy of a higher salary this season and is bound to get paid big-time in 2020. Shaquil led the NFL this season with 19.5 sacks. He was constantly getting to the quarterback with 51 pressures.

The 27-year-old edge rusher is going to get a massive deal this offseason, though not as expensive as Clowney’s. Shaquil Barrett has an estimated market value of $15.7 million on average annually (Spotrac). This is a more competitively-priced contract. If Barrett can uphold his 2019 production standards then this salary will be well worth it. Unfortunately, it seems like Barrett plans on staying with the Buccaneers (Sports Illustrated).

Yannick Ngakoue

The Jacksonville Jaguars have made it clear that resigning stud edge rusher Yannick Ngakoue is their “number one priority.” However, the two sides have not come close to making a deal. Last offseason, Ngakoue held out of training camp in hopes of a contract extension. The two sides have not been able to agree on a deal, which will lead to Yannick testing the market in 2020.

Through 4 seasons, Ngakoue has totaled 37.5 sacks. He has not had a single season in his career with less than 8 sacks, hitting that number in all 4 seasons including a career-high 12 sacks in 2017. Additionally, Ngakoue has totaled 122 combined tackles over 4 years.

At only 24 years-old, Yannick Ngakoue would be a vital building block for the future of the Giants’ future. However, Yannick’s talents would not come cheap. The pass-rusher has an estimated market value of $17.1 million on average annually, according to Spotrac.

Curtis Granderson’s New York Mets Career

When the New York Mets signed Curtis Granderson before the 2014 season, it was one of the beginning steps they took towards becoming a contender. Granderson was a winner on an off the field providing veteran leadership the Mets needed.

Granderson announced his retirement after a terrific 16-year career, which resulted in three All-Star selections and a silver slugger. He only spent three and a half seasons with the Mets, but instantly became a fan favorite. Granderson solidified himself as the leadoff hitter the Mets needed and was one short of having 20 home runs in all four of his Mets seasons.

Creating Moments On and Off the Field

Granderson’s World Series home run and robbed homer in the 2015 NLCS were just a couple of the memories he left with Mets fans. He also won the Roberto Clemente award in 2016 for his charity work in Chicago. Throughout his career, Granderson showed precisely how to be a complete professional.

He played on two successful and two struggling Mets teams. Throughout his demeanor never wavered and always played the game to have fun. Granderson loved Mets fans, and they showed the love back. When he signed with the Mets, he said: “true New Yorkers are Mets fans.”

Granderson fell on tough times with his production in his last couple of seasons. Whenever he arrived back in New York, both Yankee and Mets fans showed him support. It will be exciting to see what he will accomplish next as he transitions to retirement.

There’s only one thing that can stop the New York Yankees in 2020

New York Yankees, Giancarlo Santon

The New York Yankees are packed full of talent, stretching from their bullpen to the outfield. Spending $324 million on Gerrit Cole and allocating resources towards weak spots has kept the Bombers in prime contention for their 28th World Series ring. However, they must not fall ill to last year’s fate.

The Yanks set records in 2019, for all the wrong reasons. They had 30 players spend 39 sperate stints on the injures list, with multiple missing the entire season, virtually. Both Giancarlo Stanton and Miguel Andujar, two essential players, made almost no impact on the season. Despite losing both offensively proficient players, the Yankees still climbed to 103 wins and reached the ALCS, just to lose to the Houston Astros, who subsequently have been cheating for years now.

Manager Aaron Boone should have been given a gold medal for his patch-work last season, but that’s a different story. The only factor that could spark the demise of the team is injuries, and the Bombers are taking all precautions towards avoiding that reality.

Having fired Matt Kraus, their former strength and conditioning coach, they went out and hired Eric Cressey, a renowned option know for working with some of the league’s top names. He has worked with All-Star pitchers Noah Syndergaard, Corey Kluber, and Max Scherzer, Cressey will work closely with Gerrit Cole to ensure his health.

The new system should help mitigate soft-tissue injuries, something Gary Sanchez (groin) and Stanton (lat/bicep) suffered through in 2019.

Steve Donohue will be moved to the Head Athletics Trainer position, also featuring as Director of Medical Servies.

“Steve brings a wealth of information in terms of the flow of baseball, the travel schedule that dynamic. He knows all the players incredible well, but he is also very, very networked within the game,” Creesey said. “We can lean on Steve’s network really heavily so there’s a wealth of information we absolutely plan to to tap into that a ton and I’m really excited to work with him.”

If all goes to plan, the Yankees can remain healthy in 2020, which would increase their chances of bringing home the gold. After their monetary allocations this year, there’s no room for failure.

New York Mets news: Five questions; Bryant, Arenado and the balance of power in the NL East and more!

New York Yankees, Nolan Arenado, Colorado Rockies

The New York Mets signed Matt Adams, which could have an impact on Dominic Smith’s future with the club. The team is, however, not actively shopping its homegrown slugger.

MLB.com has some burning questions for the Mets, and SNY talks about how a big trade could change the landscape in the division.

Here are the New York Mets’ news and links of the day:

MLB.com: Will Leitch, in his latest piece for the league’s official website, wrote five questions that every National League East club will need to answer on the field.

When touching base with the New York Mets, the writer wonders things like what does Robinson Canó has left or whether the top three starters can stay healthy. He also openly questions whether there is enough depth in the field, if Edwin Diaz has a rebound season in him or if the young stars have what it takes to bring back the good times.

SNY: This week, it was made public that the Cubs will have an additional season of team control over Kris Bryant. As the team looks to trim payroll, their All-Star third baseman just gained a lot more trade value with the development, and Chicago could pursue a trade.

The NL East has four contending teams that could use Bryant or Nolan Arenado, the Rockies’ star performer at the hot corner. The Atlanta Braves lost Josh Donaldson, the Washington Nationals lost Anthony Rendon, and the Philadelphia Phillies have Scott Kingery at the top of the depth chart.

The Mets have Jeff McNeil, but SNY speculates that they could pursue one of the stars and then move McNeil to second. That would present an uncomfortable situation with Robinson Cano, but is an idea worth considering. Could the Mets have the assets to pull off a big trade?

MLB.com: Manny Randhawa reviewed each team’s best defensive performer. He used Statcast metric Outs Above Average (OAA) to make his assessments, and there were a few surprises.

As it turns out, the New York Mets’ best performer hasn’t even played with the organization yet. It is Jake Marisnick, who came to the big Apple this offseason from the Houston Astros.

The writeup about Marisnick says that “he hasn’t played an out for the Mets yet, but he instantly becomes a strong right-handed-hitting defensive complement in center field to Brandon Nimmo. Marisnick recorded +8 outs above average last season, coming off a +13-OAA season in 2018.”

New York Giants: Nate Solder opens up on hiring of Joe Judge as head coach

New York Giants, Joe Judge

The New York Giants hired their new head coach in Joe Judge just a few weeks ago. Since then, they have pieced together their coaching staff and begun their player evaluations. The process will be swift as the 2020 NFL Draft creeps up on us, and prospects are analyzed for their fit on the team.

However, Judge must break down the current players on the roster to see where the ultimate weaknesses lie. The offensive line will be a priority for evals, considering their lackluster performance in 2019. While he might see left tackle Nate Solder’s struggles on film, Solder had only fantastic things to say about the Giants’ head coach.

”I think it’s a fantastic hire,” Solder said. “I think he brings a lot of the qualities that we need, so I’m really looking forward to that. I think his commitment to details, his discipline, his history of winning a lot of championships (five, including two at Alabama and three with the Patriots), I think those are all fantastic attributes.

”He’s a young guy (38), but he’s also a charismatic guy. He was in front of the whole team a lot as the special teams coach. I always kind of thought he was socially a ringleader of the other assistant coaches. I think it makes a lot of sense (that he’s a head coach).”

What should we expect from the New York Giants’ Joe Judge?

Judge initially expressed his obsession with running the football and focusing on the details, which was extremely attractive during his press conference. However, actions speak louder than words, and Pat Shurmur also made encouraging remarks when he joined Big Blue.

It’s time the Giants found the ‘right’ head coach for the organization, someone who will keep the players disciplined and manage the game to perfection. Previous head coaches have had terrible time-management skills and personnel decisions, which has hurt the team’s chances of winning.

Hopefully, Judge can break that trend.

New York Rangers Ignore Trade Talks, Beat Detroit to Start Playoff Push

New York Rangers

The New York Rangers have had to endure a bunch of trade news that is swirling around their team. It could easily have been too much of distraction coming off a nine-day all-star/bye break, but it wasn’t. On Friday night, the Blueshirts subdued the Detroit Red Wings 4-2 to get things rolling on a playoff push that may influence what the Rangers due before the Feb 24 trade deadline.

New York Rangers Trade Update

During TSN’s “Insider Trading” on Thursday, The Athletics’ Pierre LeBrun noted that there are at least eight teams interested in Chris Kreider but the Rangers asking price, for now, is steep. LeBrun feels that it will take an NHL caliber player and a number one pick to land him. Kreider did nothing to discourage suitors Friday night as he tallied a goal and an assist. Alexandar Georgiev is also been mentioned recently, as he appears to be the odd man out in the Rangers’ three goalie situation. The Toronto Maple Leafs has been mentioned for a while but recently the San Jose Sharks have entered the rumor mill as they try to address their weak goaltender situation. A likely player the Sharks would give that would interest the Rangers is Kevin LeBlanc. The Brooklyn born native is in the midst of a down year after breaking out last season. However, LeBlanc is young, cheap, and controllable and he fits the mold of a player the Rangers are looking for.

The New York Rangers have a big stretch of games coming up

Following tonights win, the Blueshirts have a quick turnaround and will face the Red Wings in Detroit on Saturday night. After that, the Rangers have four straight games at home against Dallas, Toronto, Buffalo, and Los Angeles. Not that they necessarily have to, but all of these games are winnable. Dallas will be the most interesting game of the bunch, as the Stars are currently setting in third place in the Central Division, hoping to hold off a few hard-charging teams that want to steal their playoff position.

 

The New York Mets “aren’t actively shopping” Dominic Smith after signing Matt Adams

New York Mets, Luis Rojas

The New York Mets secured the signature of first baseman Matt Adams in the last few hours. The deal is of the minor league variety, and comes with an invitation to spring training. The former Washington National won’t have a roster spot waiting for him: he will have to earn it on the field.

The news came as a surprise, since the Mets already employ to solid first baseman. Pete Alonso is the starter and Dominic Smith is the backup who can also play in the outfield. However, no minor league signing is bad, and that applies here.

As a result of Adams’ signing, the future of Smith in the organization gets a little more cloudy. After all, there were already rumblings that the Mets would be looking to package him with an undesirable contract, such as Jed Lowrie’s, to get teams to bite on the package.

However, and according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the Mets are not actively shopping Dominic Smith. For now, general manager Brodie Van Wagenen is happy with keeping all three in the fold.

It helps that Smith is also capable of playing the outfield, although defensive metrics say that he’s not very good out there.

The New York Mets’ first base picture

As far as playing time goes, only Alonso is guaranteed everyday at-bats. The other two will have to earn them.
Smith is a very valuable piece for the New York Mets. He is only 24 years old and has five seasons of cheap team control remaining. He had a breakthrough performance in 2019 despite limited at-bats: after struggling in 2017 and 2018 in the bigs, he slashed .282/.355/.525 with a .368 wOBA and a 133 wRC+ in 89 games and 197 plate appearances. He cranked 11 home runs, scored 35 times and drove in 25 runs.

The powerful IF/OF can be a regular someday, either at first base with the Mets, in the outfield (if he improves defensively there) or with another team. He doesn’t have a pronounced platoon split, as he mashed both against lefties (132 wRC+) and righties (133 wRC+) in 2019.

Adams is better suited to bench duties. He has 11 pinch-hit home runs and 49 RBI in his career, and has a pronounced platoon split (59 wRC+ vs. lefties and 117 wRC+ vs. righties.) Will there be room in the roster for both? We will find out soon enough.

New York Yankees: A Few Minutes With Aaron Boone

New York Yankees, Aaron Boone

For those of us who are not part of the New Yankees beat writers, every once in awhile, the stars are aligned, and good things happen. Such was the case when I had a chance to meet and pose a few questions to Yankees manager Aaron Boone. The Yankees skipper is entering his third season and has a loaded lineup to look forward to in the 2020 season.

Non-committal on the Robot Umpire

One of the questions that came up right away was the possible implementation of the Robo-Ump. Helping to lead to that question was having a picture nearby with the famous argument between Boone and umpire Brennan Miller that led to the  “Savages” quote that has resonated throughout the Yankee kingdom. After getting a nice chuckle out of the fact that managers are losing their opportunity to engage in epic rants with umpires, Boone could only say “We’ll see” about the alleged effectiveness of the new system to call balls and strikes. Recently,  news broke that MLB will be operating an electronic zone for nine games in Florida this spring.

Looking Forward to a Healthy Season

As Yankee fans know, the Bronx Bombers had numerous players dealing with injuries in the 2019 season.  The question about the Yankees health brought a little smile to his face, and he responded that “everyone is looking really good so far.”  In an attempt to make sure they are healthy, the Yankees announced in early January that they are overhauling their people and processes for their training and conditioning. Nobody wants to see a return to the Bronx injury epidemic of 2019.

Sign Stealing: “Disappointing, Frustrating”

Of course, you can’t be with a group of people asking questions and not have the recent sign-stealing scandal brought up. Boone, in his usual diplomatic way, said that he was “excited that some things were identified” and that “we will have a better game moving forward.” Boone also stated that he felt like the penalties imposed will go a long way into cleaning that up.” He finished off the answer to the question by saying that “now the focus can be where it should, which is in between the lines.”