Yankees sign journeyman right handed pitcher to compete in spring training

shelby miller, yankees

The New York Yankees aren’t done adding competitors to the roster this spring, with Opening Day quickly approaching on April 7. After an impressive win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday, general manager Brian Cashman looked to the free-agent market for a bit more support in the pitching department.

The Yankees inked Shelby Miller to a minor-league contract, providing him an opportunity to compete over the next week for a potential roster spot.

Per the Yankees PR team:

The Yankees have signed RHP Shelby Miller to a minor league contract and invited him to Major League spring training.

Miller, who is currently 31 years old and a former first-round pick in the 2009 MLB June amateur draft, played in 10 games last season with Pittsburgh and three with Chicago. In total, he recorded a 9.24 ERA, down significantly from the 3.02 ERA he posted in 2015 with the Atlanta Braves.

Looking at Miller objectively, his stuff has fallen off a steep cliff over the past few seasons, but he offers a middle-of-the-road fastball at about 94 mph and incorporates a cutter, curveball, and changeup into the mix. He’s primarily a fastball and cutter pitcher, but he’s dabbled with a slider recently, throwing it 14.3% last season.

Realistically, Miller might land with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre if he’s willing to fight his way through the minor-league system, but at this point in time, not many major league teams are going to see the value in a pitcher that has posted back-to-back disappointing seasons over a 29 game sample size.

Yankees have lowkey ‘weapon’ relief pitcher who could make an impact in 2022

yankees, ron marinaccio

The New York Yankees could use all the pitching support they can get entering the 2022 season, especially with liabilities littered across the starting rotation. Relying on the bullpen to pick up the slack seems likely moving forward, and the Yankees have several lowkey options who could make an impact this season.

One of the lesser-known relief pitchers is Ron Marinaccio, who looked stellar against the Toronto Blue Jays on Friday. A New Jersey native, Marinaccio was drafted in the 19th round of the 2017 draft out of Delaware. After hovering around 92 mph with his fastball, Marinaccio hit 96 against Toronto, showcasing a massive increase in velocity.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if this guy all of a sudden is throwing 97-98 mph because we turn the lights on in Yankee Stadium and there’s an adrenaline bump,” pitching coach Matt Blake told NJ Advance Media.

Marinaccio spent last season with Scranton and Somerset, climbing the farm system. He is well on his way to making his MLB debut this year after recording a 2.36 ERA over 18 appearances and 26.2 innings of action. In Double-A, Marinaccio also posted a 1.82 ERA with Somerset, giving up 17 hits and eight runs over nearly 40 innings.

“He could be a weapon for us this year,” Blake said, “especially with the expanded roster. He’s done a nice job just going out and attacking and learning from the last outing and hopefully building up as we keep going.”

Ron features a dominant change-up, impressive slider, and increasing fastball with above-average velocity. Marinaccio hit 98 mph with his fastball at one point, showcasing MLB pitch speed but adequate location as well.
With the Yankees expected to be without Zack Britton for the majority of the 2022 campaign, they will need a bit more support in the bullpen. Nestor Cortes could fill that role admirably, but having a minor-league prospect make a positive impact would smooth over any concerns considerably.

New York Giants 1st Round Mock Draft: Trading back at No. 5 for a massive haul

New York Giants

New York Giants general manager Joe Schoen is keen on the idea of trading back in the first round and acquiring more draft capital. However, the return depends heavily on the quarterback market. If teams view Malik Willis out of Liberty and Kenny Pickett from Pittsburgh as premium level prospects, the Giants can price gouge opposing clubs looking to move up. The Giants already have an advantage with their picks in the 1st round.

In this mock draft, the Giants maximize their draft spot while providing insurance for Daniel Jones in case he fails to take a big step forward.

New York Giants 1st round mock draft:

Giants trade the 5th, and 112th picks to the Seattle Seahawks for the 9th overall pick and a 2023 1st rounder:

The Giants need to be seriously considering life after Daniel Jones. With a new offensive line consisting of bargain-priced players and likely rookies scattered across the unit, protecting Jones will once again be problematic. The fourth year quarterback is entering his third offensive scheme and third head coach, putting him at a massive disadvantage regarding scheme related verbiage and experience.

While Brian Daboll and Mike Kafka are well known for their abilities to build star quarterbacks, it might be too little too late for Jones, so the Giants look ahead to the future to bolster their draft capitals while retaining two first round picks this year.

7th Overall: EDGE Kayvon Thibodeaux

There is a serious possibility that Oregon star pass-rusher Kayvon Thibodeaux drops beyond the 5th pick. If that is the case, only the Carolina Panthers will stand in the Giants’ path for his services, and they may be looking for a quarterback themselves.

Thibodeaux brings elite pass-rush traits and quality production of the collegiate level to East Rutherford. Last season, the 6’5″, 250-pound outside linebacker recorded seven sacks, 12 tackles for loss, and 49 tackles in total.

Pairing Thibodeaux with second-year pro Azeez Ojulari would provide the Giants with a dynamic young pass-rush off the edge, which should excite any Giants fan that remembers the defensive line being a Super Bowl catalyst years ago.

9th overall: OT Charles Cross

One way or another, the Giants need a right tackle to solidify the line this upcoming season. After missing out on Evan Neal and Ikem Ekwonu in this scenario, they find themselves with an opportunity to land the third best tackle and arguably the best pass protector in the draft. Charles Cross out of Mississippi State dominated his Pro Day, providing proof of position flexibility.

Giants’ offensive line coach Bobby Johnson had Cross practicing right tackle drills, which he effortlessly conquered. If the Giants have an opportunity to land Cross with the 9th overall pick, it should be an easy decision.

Walking away with a 2023 first round pick, arguably the best pass rusher in the draft and a stud pass protector would be an absolute home run for the Joe Schoen in his first year as the teams general manager.

The truth behind the Yankees passing on Carlos Correa as their big SS free agent signing

carlos correa, yankees

The New York Yankees had five star-level shortstops available in free agency, but opted to go with Isiah Kiner-Falefa, a trade acquisition, for the 2022 season. Carlos Correa, Corey Seager, Trevor Story, Marcus Semien, and Javier Baez ended up going to other teams because the Yanks wanted to trust young prospects Anthony Volpe and Oswald Peraza to take over sometime in the next two years.

Correa, in particular, made perfect sense for the Yankees: he hit 26 homers in 2021, with 104 runs, 92 RBI, and a Gold Glove award at shortstop. The Twins showed Carlos Correa $105.3 million and they signed him.

Several things happened in the offseason and the Yankees soured on Correa

The Yankees, according to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman, weren’t actually that keen on signing Correa. Here’s what the insider said via the Big Baseball Podcast:

“The Yankees had a couple things that were going on with Correa that — I don’t know that it was him, necessarily — but he was with Houston. They didn’t love that. He did make that comment about Derek Jeter early in the offseason (he said the Captain didn’t deserve any of his Gold Glove awards). They didn’t love that. He was very close to Alex Rodriguez. I’m not sure that he is now. But I don’t think they loved that either, though Alex Rodriguez was the key guy that helped them win their last World Series championship. But he’s not exactly Mr. Popularity around the Yankees now.”

Correa, however, could return to the market in the next offseason, as his three-year deal has opt-outs after 2022 and 2023. Could the Yankees consider a move then? It will likely depend on the progress of Peraza and Volpe.

There may be, however, some animosity between the Yankees and Correa at this point, making any move unlikely.

It’s baseball, so anything can happen, though.

Report: Giants eyeing trade back in 1st round if team’s come calling

new york giants, joe schoen

New York Giants general manager Joe Schoen indicated several weeks ago that more “swings of the bat” would be preferable in the 2022 NFL Draft. Laying the foundation of the team is a priority, especially after years of neglect and inferior moves from Dave Gettleman.

There are a significant number of holes on the roster and tough decisions that Schoen has to make regarding salary space and acquisitions. However, there is one reality that was always clear-cut, he would be using the draft to plug voids at several impactful positions.

While Schoen has done a good job landing value-grab offensive linemen this off-season, giving quarterback Daniel Jones a fighting chance, the majority of his strategy relies on drafting players who can compete and offer value on Day 1.

Fortunately, he’s projected to have around 10 selections this year, which could potentially increase if he strikes a deal in the first round to move back and acquire more draft capital.

SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano reports that “According to multiple NFL sources, the Giants have signaled they are open to trading either the 5th or 7th overall pick in this year’s draft for a package that includes a first-rounder in 2023.”

The Giants have been interviewing first-round talents frequently, but if they can leverage their position with a quarterback-needy team, they can add even more talent around them with immediate production.

Teams like Seattle, Washington, New Orleans, Houston, and Pittsburgh all make sense as potential trade partners. All five of these squads have an interest in the quarterback position, so the Giants could look to move back from the 5th overall spot in exchange for a sizable haul.

The problem with moving back is that you may pass on an elite talent in exchange for additional swings of the bat, but given the situation the Giants are currently in, they may not have a choice.

The pass-rush, offensive line, tight end, linebacker, and cornerback positions all need a bit of support. The Giants are expected to trade James Bradberry in the coming days with the Kansas City Chiefs showing interest, which would leave an opening opposite Adoree Jackson.

The middle of the first round still has plenty of talent to choose from, notably several high-profile linebackers. However, if Schoen managed to execute a deal with Seattle or Washington, they would still have a fighting chance at acquiring a big name that slips past the top-10 due to a run on offensive lineman and quarterbacks.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Schoen accepted a deal that included a 2023 first-round pick, providing the team with more ammo in case they need to move on from Daniel Jones. That is another realistic probability that could unfold on draft day.

Good news and bad news as Yankees lose slug-fest against Toronto

New York Yankees, Giancarlo Stanton

The New York Yankees have struggled this spring in several areas, specifically, their starting pitching. Against the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday, the Bombers fell 10–9, showcasing elite offensive play but failing to hold down Toronto with their pitching.

Michael King got the start for the Bombers, allowing four hits and three earned runs over 2.2 innings. King also gave up two homers, one apiece to Josh Palacios and Cavan Biggio.

The Yankees are now 2–6 this spring, which is completely irrelevant given the starting lineup has been shifted daily, but the pitching has been quite lackluster, which could end up being problematic to start the year.

Good news:

The good news revolves heavily around the Yankees hitters, with Giancarlo Stanton, Joey Gallo, Micheal Andújar, and Rob Brantly all hitting homers.

Stanton seems to be finding his swing alongside Gleyber Torres, which is a great sign ahead of opening day on April 7. New Yankees hitting Coach Dillon Lawson has done a tremendous job getting his guys into form in just a few days after the lockout ended.

This spring, Stanton is hitting .625 and Gallo .364, recording three RBIs in the loss. Last season, the Yankees bullpen stepped up big, supplementing a ton of deficiencies. However, the offense went quiet toward the end of the season, forcing them to settle for a playoff game at Fenway against the Boston Red Sox.

While the pitching was a bit spotty, Lucas Luetge did have an impressive outing, striking out two batters and allowing just one hit over 1.1 innings. Chad Green struck out a batter and got out of a single inning, and Wandy Peralta also struck out three batters, escaping a potential dangerous situation after giving up two hits in the 5th inning.

Bad news:

The bad news starts with Michael King and ends with Reggie McClain. King, as stated above, allowed four hits and three runs in just 2.2 innings. The Yankees offense picked up the slack, but Vinnie Nittoli entered the contest in the sixth inning, giving up three hits and four earned runs before McClain gave up three runs in the seventh.

Luckily, the team’s primary relief options performed well, pitching three scoreless innings. That was the best sign for the Yankees pitching on the day, but their depth was abysmal, which is something to be aware of.