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Posts tagged ‘Shane Greene’

One Offseason Move…

Spring training is just days away. We’re on the verge of a whole new year of baseball with amazing potential, and we’re starting to get a glimpse of what each team will look like for the 2015 season.

No team is exactly the same from year to year. Even with a returning core of players, there will inevitably be trades, free agency, or retirements that change the makeup of the team. Change is part of life, and baseball life is no exception. Maybe one of the downfalls of being a female fan is becoming too attached to one favorite player, or a player on one specific team. Still, life goes on and we adapt to the change.

Earlier this winter I wrote about my off season thoughts. Most of the moves I’ve seen for my favorite teams have been disappointing. Some of my favorite players left for other teams – but at the same time, my favorite teams have acquired a few new players I am excited to see. Again, adapt to the changes.

But there’s one move I’m still not comfortable with, and that’s Shane Greene going to Detroit. Is he the best pitcher MLB ever saw? Absolutely not – and he’s not even the best pitchers the Yankees have ever had. But from the very first time I saw him pitch, I liked him.

I’ve mentioned before that I was lucky enough to be in Cleveland on July 7, Green’s first start after being called up the majors. He remained in the Yankees rotation for the remainder of the 2014 season, finishing the season with a 5-4 record and 3.78 ERA. Those aren’t jaw-dropping stats, but for a 25-year-old rookie, who had previously lost a pitching scholarship and transferred to a community college when after had to undergo Tommy John surgery, it was respectable. And enough to catch the attention of the Detroit Tigers.

Like with any rookie, things weren’t always perfect. There were innings where the pitching simply fell apart. There was a game he seemed to forget how to field anything. But for the most part, the kid walked out to pitchers mound, took a deep breath, focused – and got to work.

(Losing Greene doesn’t mean I’m not excited for the acquisition of Didi Gregorius, who came to the Yankees in the same three-team trade. Considering the moves two separate events, I would have loved to somehow get the young shortstop and keep the young pitcher.)

For all the injuries and uncertainties for the 2014 Yankees, pitching became the team’s strength. Going into 2015, pitching is much less secure – primarily due to injuries. Having Greene in the rotation wouldn’t necessarily solidify the team, but as a fan I would feel more confident than I do going into the upcoming season.

While it may suck to see him with another team, I hope Shane Greene continues to grow and develop into a solid pitcher. My fear is he does exactly that, and the Yankees are left kicking themselves for letting him go. He likely doesn’t have a Hall of Fame career ahead of him, but you never know. Regardless of where his career takes him, I can honestly see him being a productive pitcher for the Tigers, and any other teams he may pitch for.

Good luck Shane Greene – it was a great to witness the start of your career.

Off Season Thoughts

Baseball friends…it’s already December and the off season is in full swing. The Winter Meetings have passed and there have been big roster moves. The countdown to spring training and Opening Day have gotten a little closer and we can start to set our expectations for the 2015 season.

Personally, December has been a difficult month for me and many people close to me for many reasons – which is why I haven’t written anything in more than two weeks. While dealing with these difficulties, I’ve of course followed baseball news and have some thoughts on the off season so far. Some of these topics could be an entire post themselves, but here are the highlights –

Corey Kluber wins the A.L. Cy Young Award

Cleveland is my hometown, and I couldn’t be more excited about this. Throughout the season, a friend and I often discussed the possibility of Kluber winning and both thought that if it didn’t happen this year, it never would. No, we don’t have psychic abilities and have no idea how his career will progress from here, but it was a gut feeling for both of us. Unfortunately, I do not see the Indians being a big threat in 2015 – but I do believe they will be a decent team. Kluber winning the Cy Young is great for team morale, and great for the city of Cleveland. (I’m over Lebron’s “coming home” – it’s time to get excited about Kluber/the Indians.)

Nelson Cruz signs with the Seattle Mariners

There’s a lot I could say about this, and not much of it is good. It’s not that I have anything against the Mariners, or free agency, or even any of the details of the deal (4 years, $57 million). It does piss the Orioles fan in me off that he didn’t seem to give much consideration to staying in Baltimore after they were seemingly the only team who would sign him after his PED suspension.

Nick Markakis signs with the Atlanta Braves

This move hurts – it’s like your best friend is moving away. I’m not sure there was any other guy on the team more well liked and respected than Markakis. Since he was drafted by the Orioles, he’s been a solid part of the team and, along with his wife, has been very involved with the community. He seems like an all around nice guy. I fully expected him to retire as an Oriole and see him at team celebrations in the future beside Cal Ripken. Going to Atlanta means going home for him, but he will truly be missed in Maryland. Fans have already said they were putting their Markakis shirts away – for now – but that his name would always be popular in Baltimore. To me, that shows just how well this guy is liked here.

New York Yankees trade Shane Greene to the Detroit Tigers

I’m not sure what it was about the kid, but I thoroughly enjoyed watching Greene pitch this year! Obviously, the Tigers also really liked him, and I definitely understand his trade value. Aside from a few rough patches (which I attribute to age and inexperience in the major league), he was a pretty solid pitcher for the Yankees. I saw a lot of potential in him and expected him to continue to develop into a strong pitcher – and still do, although he’ll be doing so for another team.

David Robertson signs with the Chicago White Sox

At the top of my off season wish list was for the Yankees to resign Robertson. (I wrote about how that should have actually happened months ago.) Of all days, it was my birthday when I woke up to see the report that Robertson signed with the White Sox – of all teams in Major League Baseball. (There are two MLB teams I hate – the Red Sox, and the White Sox.) The only thing that made me hate this deal more was hearing reports that the Yankees met with Robertson/his representative(s) only to tell him they would not be making him an offer. I’m not saying he’s the best pitcher in the world, and I’m not even sure he’s worth the money he will be making ($46 million for 4 years), but he was a product of the Yankees farm system and learned from the greatest closer ever. While I love Brett Gardner, it’s a little disappointing to think he’s the only veteran homegrown Yankee.

Chase Headley signs with the New York Yankees

This deal makes a lot of sense. Headley may not be the most outstanding third baseman in history, but he was very reliable after being traded from the Padres. Something very important he brings to the team that no stat can reflect is his enthusiasm – which most of the team seemed to seriously lack last year. He seems like a great guy to have in the clubhouse and was one of the first players to celebrate any victory last season. With Francisco Cervelli gone, the team needs someone who will get excited and fire up other teammates.
What I dislike about this deal is the intense focus on what it means for Alex Rodriguez. While I am one of the biggest Rodriguez fans ever, Headley’s return really isn’t about him (and so far he’s said nothing – so he isn’t making it about himself). Of course this is a topic that would eventually be discussed. Instead of overshadowing Headley’s return with speculation about Rodriguez’s future, just let Headley have his day. The Rodriguez story will inevitably come up again, but for now it should be about Chase Headley, his return, and what he will bring to the team.

There’s still plenty of off season left, but just remember – spring training is getting a little closer each day!