Former Yankees outfielder, Cameron Maybin, hints that he warned of Astros sign-stealing

New York Yankees, Cameron Maybin

When the New York Yankees entered the 2019 ALCS against the Houston Astros, few were aware of their sign-stealing techniques and the illegal activities they were embarking on. However, there was one player on the Yankees that hinted towards their demoralizing ways.

Having signed with the Detroit Tigers this offseason, outfielder Cameron Maybin stated that he had a conversation with his teammates over the Astros’ sign-stealing ways, stating:

“I’m very loyal to who I’m playing for,” he said. “Going into a tough series, you know, these are my brothers. A conversation happened, that I’ll keep between those guys.

“We had a conversation. I’ll keep that conversation between them, but — heads-up.”

The Bombers fell four games to two in the series, and reports have emerged stating that Houston has been cheating throughout the postseason and even in the World Series. As time goes on and players begin to voice their opinion and perspective on the matter, it’s becoming clear that a ton of influential people were aware or suspicious of their actions leading to the unveiling of the truth.

What makes Maybin so credible?

Cameron spent a few weeks with Houston in 2017, when they were at the peak of their scandal.

“I was never really pressured about it,” he said. “I just kind of kept my head down and approached the game how I always approached it.”

Could the Yankees re-unite with free agent Cameron Maybin?

New York Yankees, Cameron Maybin

Cameron Maybin’s return to the New York Yankees should have been clear-cut, especially after Aaron Hicks was ruled out for the first half of the 2020 season with Tommy John surgery. Maybin, though, has failed to cling on with a new team, and his presence on the market might present the Yankees with a final chance to re-sign the speedy outfielder.

The New York Yankees found a gem in Cameron Maybin last season:

When GM Brian Cashman brought Maybin over from the Indians for $25,000, nobody anticipated he would have such a significant impact. He played 82-games with the bombers, hitting .285 with 11 homers.

Maybin has had a lengthy 13-year career and never had the emotional experience he did with the Yankees in 2019, stating:

“Put it like this,” Maybin said in September. “When you get signed out of high school as a young kid and you dream and you think what professional baseball is going to be like, and as you get into an organization and it’s nothing like that? This is what I thought it would be like, as far as the expectations, the professionalism. This is what you think big-league baseball is going to be like when you’re a youth, when you imagine one day playing in the big leagues, the environment, the atmosphere. This is what you dream about. This is what you expect. You don’t get that everywhere. To have an opportunity to get that this yea is a blessing for me.”

The experience Maybin had with the Bombers is similar for most, and his respect for the organization bled into the quality of his play. That just proves how significant a culture can be to the ultimate success of the players.

“I think everybody here knows how I feel about this organization,” Maybin said in September, “just how much respect for how they carry themselves and the expectations that they put out, that they put on their players, the fans’ expectations, how invested the fans are, how invested the group is, the character of the group.

The Yankees don’t necessarily have a pressing need in the outfield, but Maybin’s return would give them a top-tier base runner and reserve option if they need it. His offensive production has been inconsistent at times, but his defense has always been reliable. His ability to move around the outfield is also a positive for the Yankees, and with the lack of trust in Clint Frazier to not treat reporters poorly, Maybin actually fits the bill quite well.

If Cashman is keen on moving another outfield, including Frazier in a trade would make more sense in this theoretical scenario.

Comment below if you’d like to see Cameron Maybin back in Pinstripes!

Yankees News/Rumors: Where are the left-hand bats? Cameron Maybin, and Bill White on Phil Rizutto!

New York Yankees, Cameron Maybin

A daily look at New York Yankee News and Rumors of interest to Yankee fans.

Where are the left-hand bats?

Nitpicking the Yankees:  After 103 wins last year and the return of a healthy staff for spring training, it’s hard to find any significant flaws in the New York Yankees.  Last year’s deficiency of not having a true ace in the rotation has been solved with the acquisition of Gerrit Cole.  In the infield, the Yankees have two players available for all positions, except for 2nd base operated by Silver Slugger DJ LaMahieu, who was one of only two not to go on the IL last year.  Even with Aaron Hicks on the IL to start the season, the Yankees have the outfield covered.  So, where is the flaw?  Possibly that flaw lies in one of the most potent lineups in all of baseball.  Assuming that left-hand hitter’s Mike Ford and Mike Tauchman are not in the lineup, that leaves only Brett Gardner hitting from the left side of the plate.

Traditionally legendary Yankees have taken advantage of the short porch at Yankee Stadium.  To maximize that result, you need left-hand hitters behind the plate.  Lou Gehrig, Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson, Tino Martinez, Mark Teixeira, and last year’s Didi Gregorius were all left hand or switch hitters.

With Gregorius gone to the Phillies, the Yankees are heavily right-handed, making it more challenging to take advantage of that short porch in right, making it easier for opposing managers when they select pitchers.  Switch-hitting Francisco Lindor is the only player that can hit from the left side and is the single-player the Yankees actively pursued, and that is dead for the most part.  It looks as though the Yankees will have to deal with the heavy right-handed lineup and use Ford and Tauchman to pinch-hit where needed to break up the lineup. Sometime in August, the left hitting Aaron Hicks will return to help alleviate the situation.   If the Yankees don’t take Cameron Maybin, a dark horse right fielder free agent out there is the former Yankee switch hitter Melky Cabrera who batted .280 last year with the Pirates.

Will Cameron Maybin be a Yankee?

Cameron Maybin stepped up to the plate for the Yankees in 82 regular-season games last year and hit .285 with eleven home runs while manning the outfield as the Yankees suffered unprecedented injuries throughout the lineup.  If you recall Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Hicks and Aaron Judge were all off the field for a time last year.

At the end of the season, when Maybin became a free agent, he made it clear that he wanted to remain a Yankee.   That offer never came from the Yankee front office.  In a statement, Maybin explained why he wanted to stay a Yankee:

“Put it like this,” Maybin said in September. “When you get signed out of high school as a young kid and you dream and, you think what professional baseball is going to be like, and as you get into an organization and it’s nothing like that? This is what I thought it would be like, as far as the expectations, the professionalism. This is what you think big-league baseball is going to be like when you’re a youth when you imagine one day playing in the big leagues, the environment, the atmosphere. This is what you dream about. This is what you expect. You don’t get that everywhere. To have an opportunity to get that this year is a blessing for me.”

Months have passed, and Maybin is still a free agent. General Manager Cashman did contact his agent early in the postseason, but nothing has been heard of regarding any movement since then.  In another statement, he said:

“Yeah, I think it’s a no-brainer that this is somewhere that I would want to be in the future. But I’ve been around this game long enough to know how it works. You’ve got prospects, you’ve got other free agent moves. Again, I’ve done it for a while. I don’t really put any expectations going forward on free agency. But do I think this is by far the best organization I’ve ever been a part of? Absolutely. Without question.”

Maybin has undoubtedly made it known to fans and the Yankee management where he would like play.  Now there are reports from John Heyman of the MLB Network that the Pirates are considering Maybin as well as other outfielders to fill their void.  The Yankees have a situation of having a full, healthy outfield to start the year with the signing of Brett Gardner.   The question is who will act first, the Yankees, the Pirates, or some other team.  Maybin is a valuable asset to any organization, even as a bench player.  Only time will tell if Cameron Maybin is again a Yankee.

Bill White on Phil Rizutto:

Bill White was a first baseman for the Giants, Cardinals, and the Phillies.  While still playing, he got a radio program, and following his retirement, he became a Yankee broadcaster.  He was the very first black major league broadcaster.  He broadcast with a team of he, Frank Messer, and most often with Yankee shortstop legend Phil Rizutto.  Yankee fans remember well Rizutto as a player and broadcaster.

The team of White and Rizutto lasted for seventeen years.  On a broadcast on WPIX, White remembered Rizutto, who died back in 2007.  He said that Rizutto was a great storyteller and quite a character.  At times he would leave the booth and return with a dozen cannoli.  White said he appreciated his honesty, openness, and his vast knowledge of the game.  His storytelling came in very handy during rain delays as he could talk about the game and baseball in general for as long as necessary.  Today when rain delays a game, the YES network goes back to the studio.  Back then (1971-1988), there were just the booth announcers to entertain viewers.  White said that Phil’s love of the game came through in every broadcast.  His distinctive voice was known to fans without actually seeing him.  Fans know different broadcasters’ typical phrases, but none was more unique than that of Phil Rizutto.  On any great play or significant happening during a game, including home runs, Phil would say “Holy Cow.”  White is 85 and living in Lakewood, Florida.

 

Could the New York Yankees reunite with Cameron Maybin?

New York Yankees, Cameron Maybin

The New York Yankees‘ 2020 season relies on two things: Pitching and depth. The starting level talent for the Bombers remains among the best in baseball, but their depth could present an issue, especially if they suffer extensive injuries next season.

However, the firing of Matt Krause and hiring of Eric Cressey, a renowned strength and conditioning coach, should lower the amount of soft-tissue injuries and help the Yankees remain healthy moving forward. With depth being an issue and a lack of quality base runners, the return of Cameron Maybin is possible.

Maybin joined the Yanks on cash considerations in April of last year, playing in 82 games and posting some of the best production he’s seen during his career. His .285 batting average and 11 homers were both career highs, and factor in his nine stolen bases, and you can justify bringing him back on a one-year deal.

Just several years ago, Maybin posted 33 stolen bases, putting his speed and agility on display. The Yankees could use another top base runner, especially with the plethora of slower, sluggers that have in the batting order. Also, Maybin’s defense is solid, as he logged a .984 fielding percentage over 77 games. The only position he struggled in was left field, but he was perfect in right and center.

Cameron has yet to sign with another team and would be a cheap return option. Manager Aaron Boone raved about his veteran leadership in the locker room, which could be an important factor after the departure of both CC Sabathia and Didi Gregorius. The Yankees did keep CC in the organization, which will undoubtedly benefit the plyers.

One reason GM Brian Cashman might pass on the veteran outfielder is due to Estevan Florial, who has similar tools to Maybin. If Florial can impress during spring training, he could get the call in 2020 to act as a reserve option.

New York Yankees: Three Free Agent Outfielders To Consider

New York Yankees, Cameron Maybin

The New York Yankees will need another outfielder on their 26 man roster in 2020. They have in house options like Mike Tauchman and Clint Frazier, or they could choose to sign a free agent. Here are three free agent options that the team could consider signing on for the 2020 season and beyond.

Kevin Pillar

Kevin Pillar spent most of the 2019 season with the San Francisco Giants after an early trade from the Toronto Blue Jays. He hit .259 with 21 home runs and 88 runs batted in overall. He’s a slightly above average batter, but a gold glove outfielder and can steal bags.

If the Yankees signed him, he would play centerfield as Brett Gardner would play left with Giancarlo Stanton as the DH.

Steven Souza Jr.

Steven Souza Jr. missed the entire 2019 season after a freak injury in a pre-season exhibition. He hit .220 in 2018, missing half the season due to injuries.

He would be used as a backup in New York, as his bat isn’t good enough to play every day. But, he’s shown how dominant he can be at times and he could finally break out if the Yankees signed him.

Cameron Maybin

Cameron Maybin had a very successful season with the Yankees in 2019, and should be considered again for the 2020 season. He hit .285 with a career high 11 home runs with the team after starting the season in AAA for the Cleveland Indians.

The only thing holding the Yankees back is his interest. He is likely looking for an everyday job somewhere, and New York might not be that place.

The only reason the Yankees would move on from Brett Gardner in 2020

New York Yankees, Brett Gardner

Aside from starting center fielder, Aaron Hicks missing significant time in 2020 after succumbing to Tommy John surgery, the New York Yankees could have another reason to let Brett Gardner walk in free agency.

Garnder had a stellar season in 2019, racking up 28 homers, the most in his career, but he was not expected to play a significant part in the outfield. A slew of injuries forced him into a starting role for a majority of the regular season, and he performed valiantly as players went down like flies.

All three starting outfielders (Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, and Aaron Hicks) missed extended time, forcing Gardner to pick up the slack. His reliable defensive attributes came in handy, but his bat remained alive at 36-years-old. He played a massive part in helping the Yankees reach 103 total wins, even with injuries littering the pitching corps as well.

It’s hard to argue against the Yankees bringing back Brett Gardner:

There’s little evidence to argue against Gardner making a comeback on a one-year deal, similar to his contract last season. Earning $7.5 million in 2020 is unlikely, considering the Yankees are preparing to smash the luxury tax threshold with a massive deal for a premium starting pitcher.

In the scenario that general manager Brian Cashman elects to retain as much money as he can, sticking with Mike Tauchman could be the better option. Tauchman is a reliable outfield option, and despite being a career-average player, his qualities reached a peak with the Yankees last season, along with Cameron Maybin and Gio Urshela (something must have been in the water).

Tauchman finished the year with a .277 batting average, 13 homers, and 47 RBIs (baseball-reference). Before falling to the injury bug, he was a consistent starter for New York, giving them quality performances regularly. His value is probably similar to Gardner’s at this point, considering the ultimate toll of age. With such a team-friendly price-tag, keeping Tauchman should be a priority, but it also makes Gardner expendable.

If Cashman can convince Gardner to come down to around $3 million for one-year, it would be worth bringing back the Yankees dugout leader and elder.

Yankees’ Clint Frazier’s time in the Bronx could be coming to an end

New York Yankees, Clint Frazier

The New York Yankees came close to trading away outfielder Clint Frazier last offseason at the deadline, but he stayed put in their minor league system after creating a disturbance in the locker room due to defensive issues. The Yankees don’t tolerate negative emotions tarnishing their image or atmosphere, which is why Frazier was sent back down to AAA ball faster than he could swing his bat.

He commented back at his anger and frustration following an error-ridden night against the Boston Redsox in June:

“I don’t regret [not speaking to the media]. To be fair, I don’t think I owe anyone an explanation, because it’s not a rule that I have to speak.”

Frazier was having a nice season offensively, despite his defensive woes. His .267 batting average and 38 RBIs helped the Yankees survive a slew of injuries throughout the season, which ultimately helped them win their division and skip right to the ALDS with 103 total wins.

The New York Yankees need to find a use for Clint Frazier:

There’s no question Frazier holds value, but how much is the question. After grading above average in several categories offensively, his defensive skills saw his stock plummet. Multiple errors and dropped fly balls put him in the dog house rather quickly, and the Bombers could look to leverage him for pitching support this offseason.

After spending a few weeks in the minors, Frazier earned a second chance at life with the Yanks and manager, Aaron Boone. His return was abysmal, though, as he slashed .176/.243/.353 with just one homer and 11 strikeouts over 37 plate appearances. That spelled the end for Clint, and he was subsequently left off the postseason roster following his inconsistent season — defensively and emotionally.

However, with Cameron Maybin and Brett Gardner potentially moving, and Aaron Hicks recovering from Tommy John surgery, the Yankees could still use Frazier as a reserve option. If they elect not to trade him away, he has a serviceable bat and could provide value defensively if he works on his trade.

Having a 0.1 fWAR this past season, Frazier’s contribution towards the 2019 campaign wasn’t significant. The team didn’t rely on him for the most part, even during stretches of injury. That argument would indicate that Frazier could be on the trading block, but it all boils down to who the Yankees bring in as reserve options.

New York Yankees: Who likely won’t return next season?

The New York Yankees are notorious for having a stacked lineup and to have a deep farm system. As it was seen this season, they called up guys that consistently contributed to the Major League team like it was nothing. With that being said, they have a lot of talent being buried in their organization.

Didi Gregorius

One of the biggest question marks for the roster next season, Didi Gregorius is believed by many that he most likely won’t be the Yankee shortstop next season. It’s believed that Gleyber Torres showed enough at shortstop this season that the Yankees could make him the starting shortstop.

Emotionally, this hurts. Logically, it kind of makes sense. Gregorius just built himself in the Bronx and is loved by the fans. However, it does make sense that Torres could be the starting shortstop.

There’s no word on where Gregorius is going to land next season, but any decision the Yankees make will be justifiable.

Clint Frazier

Despite his success at the beginning of the regular season, nobody feels more buried in the Yankee organization more than Clint Frazier. Behind stars, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton, the only place Frazier would fit in the Yankee lineup would be in the DH role.

The New York Yankees definitely know that Frazier has talent. If they didn’t think so, they would’ve traded him away in the July 31st trade deadline this season. With that being said (given that the outfield stays the same), Frazier would still be buried behind Stanton, Judge, Hicks, and there’s even an argument for Mike Tauchman.

It’s very likely that the Yankees use Frazier in order to get better pitching. He’s a young talent that any team would love to have in their organization. He’s far from his peak and he has the potential to be the leader in any lineup.

Edwin Encarnacion

After being traded to the Yankees in mid-June, the 36-year-old veteran batted .249 with 13 home runs and 37 runs batted in. Edwin Encarnacion had an unbelievable ALDS performance and then went ice cold in the ALCS.

The Yankees have a decision to make: they could bring him back for the 2020 season and pay him $20 million, or pay him a $5 million dollar buyout to let him go.

I think the Encarnacion trade was a one-year deal for the Yankees. It was a promising pickup, getting a veteran that has playoff experience and can pop 30+ home runs in a season. Good move for one season, but not for multiple years.

Cameron Maybin

After being picked up by the Yankees for a mere $25,000 dollars, Cameron Maybin picked up the slack that was left by the injured starters. He played in 82 games, batting .285 with 11 homers and 32 runs batted in.

It seems that Maybin already knows that he won’t be returning next season. This tweet two days after the Yankees heart-breaking loss to the Astros in Game 6 of the ALCS says it all:

New York Yankees: Cameron Maybin Hints That He Will Not Return In 2020

New York Yankees, Cameron Maybin

Recently, New York Yankees outfielder Cameron Maybin hinted on Twitter that he won’t be returning to the Yankees in 2020. Here’s the tweet:

Just the way he phrased everything in the tweet seems like a farewell, especially the part of “Y’all have a special place in my heart.”

In 239 at-bats this season, he bat .285 with 11 home runs and 32 RBI. He had a 1.5 WAR.

Maybin began the season in AAA for the Cleveland Indians before the Yankees picked him up due to injuries. We thought that he would only last on the roster temporarily, but stayed with the team all year due to his consistent play and clubhouse presence. He did miss a little bit of time with a calf injury.

I personally hope that the Yankees can find a way to hold onto him for at least one more year. Aaron Judge, Aaron Hicks, and Giancarlo Stanton would be your starting outfielders while you have Brett Gardner and Maybin off the bench and DHing. That’s if the Yankees choose to resign Brett Gardner (which they likely will).

Maybin is currently better overall compared to a guy like Clint Frazier and also much more mature. Who knows, maybe the team could shop guys like Frazier, Tyler Wade, and Deivi Garcia for Francisco Lindor or starting pitching.

Maybin was already a clubhouse presence, but coming back in 2020 could help fill the role of CC Sabathia in the non-pitching aspect (obviously).

But if he indeed doesn’t return to the Yankees, it would be disappointing but understandable in a sense. He could be leaving to try and find another starting job.

Thanks to Cameron Maybin for everything he did as a Yankee. He was seriously a huge part of team in 2019.

New York Yankees: Aaron Boone makes another huge batting order mistake

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres

The New York Yankees and manager Aaron Boone took a different approach to their hitting order on Thursday night, slotting second-baseman Gleyber Torres into the cleanup spot. That move resulted in Torres going 0-for-4 on the night, and striking out in a bases-loaded situation early on in the contest.

Boone has continuously fielded Edwin Encarnacion, who’s parrot has a better chance of making contact with the baseball than he does. The designated hitter finished the night with two strikeouts (0-for-3) and a groundout. Outfielder Cameron Maybin would have been a more suitable option for the DH spot in the scenario that he didn’t replace Brett Gardner.

The ultimate reality of the situation is that the Yankees are down 3-1 in the series against a better team with more proficient pitching. Their starters are too powerful and efficient to bat around, despite the Yankees leaving plenty of men on base and opportunities missed.

To make matters worse for the Yanks, their bullpen has been putrid as well. Adam Ottavino has been torched by Houston, and Chad Green, who has been fantastic, allowed a timely three-run blast to give the Astros a 6-1 lead in the 6th inning.

Going into game five, Boone not only needs to make numerous changes to the batting order, but he needs to lift the emotions of his team. If Houston can win three straight games, the Yankees can surely do it too.

For the Astros, starter Zach Greinke pitched 4.1 innings, allowing just one run and three hits before handing the ball to the bullpen. The Bombers had their chances to strikes, especially in the first inning where they recorded only one run on a bases-loaded scenario with one out.

Who should the New York Yankees switch out in the batting order?

First off, Encarnacion should be benched for eternity. His 1-for-14 cold streak is hurting the team significantly, not to mention fellow slugger, Gary Sanchez’s issues hitting as well. At least Sanchez smashed a two-run homer in the bottom of the 6th to give the Yankees a glimmer of home.

Here’s a look at what the lineup could theoretically look like in game five:

1.) DJ LeMahieu

2.) Aaron Judge

3.) Gleyber Torres

4.) Giancarlo Stanton (?) –> Gary Sanchez

5.) Aaron Hicks

6.) Brett Gardner

7.) Cameron Maybin

8.) Didi Gregorius

9.) Gio Urshela

The defense needs to step up:

Aside from the offensive woes, the New York Yankees struggled defensively on Thursday. They allowed four errors, two coming from LeMahieu at first base and two from Gleyber Torres at second, which allowed two runs on separate occasions. Two of the mistakes occurred in the seventh inning, where the Astros recorded a run and put the game out of reach.

They must elevate their defensive quality and prepare to play a clean game in Houston on Friday night.