Tag: Derek Jeter

Aaron Judge Named Unanimous AL Rookie of the Year

Fifty-two home runs. 127 walks. Home Run Derby champion. No rookie had ever done that until Aaron Judge took Major League Baseball by force.

The Baseball Writers’ Association of America named Judge the unanimous winner of the 2017 AL Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year award today in New York. The 25-year-old beat out Red Sox OF Andrew Benintendi and Orioles 1B/OF Trey Mancini for the title.

“It means everything. It’s quite an honor,” Judge said. “It’s an honor and a privilege. I’m just one piece in an organization. The impact my teammates, family and friends have had on me this year have been huge. I can’t thank them enough.”

Judge also won a Silver Slugger for his offensive output, and was a finalist for a Gold Glove in right field. He is a finalist for the American League’s Most Valuable Player Award alongside Astros 2B José Altuve and Indians INF José Ramírez.

Before breaking out in 2017, Judge struggled in a late-season audition for a starting outfield job in 2016. He struck out in 44.2 percent of his plate appearances, and finished the season on the disabled list with a grade 2 right oblique strain. He came into camp as the team’s No. 4 prospect, and in a competition with Aaron Hicks for the starting job in right field.

Judge won the job, and the rest is history. He slashed .284/.422/.627, and led the American League with the aforementioned 52 home runs. Despite leading all of the MLB with 208 strikeouts, Judge managed to lead the AL in walks with 127. His 10.4 AB/HR led the AL.

The last Yankee to win the Rookie of the Year award was Derek Jeter in 1996.

Aaron Judge Named Finalist for AL MVP, ROY; Luis Severino for AL Cy Young

The Baseball Writers’ Association of America clearly are feeling the Yankees’ youth movement going forward. Today, Aaron Judge was announced as a finalist for the American League Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year award. Luis Severino was named a finalist for the AL Cy Young award.

Judge’s season was downright incredible for a guy who batted .179/.263/.345 with a 44.2% strikeout rate during a 27-game audition at the end of the 2016 season. He finished the season on the 15-day disabled list with a right oblique strain. Despite opening 2017 as the Yankees No. 4 prospect, Judge still had to compete with Aaron Hicks for the starting job in right field. He won the job, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Judge demolished a rookie-record 52 home runs, and also drove in 114 RBIs. Despite a slightly inflated 30.7% strikeout rate, the 25-year-old led the American League in runs created (149) and walks (127). Judge is also a finalist for an AL Gold Glove in right field, thanks to his 6.1 UZR and 9 DRS.

His Competition

Judge faces some formidable competition in the Houston Astros 2B José Altuve and the Cleveland Indians 2B/3B José Ramírez:

  • Altuve: .346/.410/.547, 24 HR, 81 RBI, 32 SB, -1.9 UZR, 3 DRS (7.5 fWAR)
  • Ramírez: .318/.374/.583, 29 HR, 107 RBI, 17 SB, 0.3/3.8 UZR (2B/3B), 5/0 DRS (2B/3B) (6.6 fWAR)
  • Judge: .284/.422/.627, 52 HR, 114 RBI, 9 SB, 6.1 UZR, 9 DRS (8.2 fWAR)

I think it will come down to the importance of defense and the importance of a high batting average vs. high power output. Despite a 62-point difference between Altuve and Judge’s averages, Judge maintains a 12-point advantage in on-base percentage. Ramírez almost certainly finishes third behind these two. Fangraphs says Aaron Judge is the most valuable of the three, and I have to agree with them.


Judge is also a finalist for Rookie of the Year. I will simply let the statistics speak for themselves when I say that Judge might just win the award unanimously. His competition is Boston Red Sox LF Andrew Benintendi and Baltimore Orioles 1B/OF Trey Mancini:

  • Benintendi: .271/.352/.424, 20 HR, 90 RBI, 20 SB, 0.9 UZR, 9 DRS (2.2 fWAR)
  • Mancini: .293/.338/.488, 24 HR, 78 RBI, 1 SB, -1.2/-7.9 UZR (1B/OF), -4/-1 DRS (1B/OF) (1.8 fWAR)
  • Judge: .284/.422/.627, 52 HR, 114 RBI, 9 SB, 6.1 UZR, 9 DRS (8.2 fWAR)

Judge is worth six wins more than Benintendi. I don’t think this one will be close.


Luis Severino‘s 2016 was simply awful. He went 0-6 in his first seven starts, and was placed on the disabled list May 13 with right triceps inflammation. Once activated 15 days later, he was optioned to Triple-A until July. He came up July 25, and was used mainly in relief. He pitched to a 0.39 ERA in 23⅓ innings with a 9.64 K/9.

That stint as a reliever was enough for the Yankees to try him again in the starting rotation. And it was so worth it. Severino went 14-6 (which does not include the countless times the bullpen blew leads after his exit) with a stellar 2.98 ERA (3.08 FIP) and 10.7 K/9. One year after only making 11 starts, Severino became the ace of the Yankee rotation and made 31 starts. He was named an All-Star in 2017.

His Competition

Severino faces a stacked field for AL Cy Young: Indians RHP Corey Kluber and Red Sox LHP Chris Sale.

  • Kluber: 18-4, 2.25 ERA (2.50 FIP), 265 K, 36 BB, .192 BAA (7.3 fWAR)
  • Sale: 17-8, 2.90 ERA (2.45 FIP), 308 K, 43 BB, .206 BAA (7.7 fWAR)
  • Severino: 14-6, 2.98 ERA (3.08 FIP), 230 K, 51 BB, 207 BAA (5.7 fWAR)

Severino’s season was an incredible bounce back. But, I think both Kluber and Sale have him beat. Kluber’s ability to miss bats, but not walk people and Sale’s sheer stuff make them tough to overcome. I think it goes to Kluber this year.


History

Here are the last Yankees to win each award:

  • MVP: Alex Rodriguez (2005)
  • RoY: Derek Jeter (1996)
  • Cy Young: Roger Clemens (2001)

The Yankees are certainly hoping that their players can get some hardware as the offseason gets underway.

Yankees Name Kevin Reese Senior Director of Player Development

UPDATE (Nov. 3 at 10:42 a.m.): The Yankees have made the hiring official, according to tweets from reports Bryan Hoch and Mark Feinsand.


The New York Post is reporting that the Yankees have promoted director of professional scouting Kevin Reese to become the head of the organization’s minor league operations.

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Reese, who played in 12 games with the Yankees from 2005 to 2006, began scouting for the Yankees in 2008. He rose up the ranks to become the director of pro scouting in 2016. This move replaces Gary Denbo, who was poached by now-Miami Marlins CEO and part owner Derek Jeter to assume the same role in Miami.

George A. King III of the New York Post reports that the other candidates interviewed within the organization were Eric Schmitt (director of minor league operations), John Kremer (director of performance science) and Carlos Mendoza (field coordinator).

The hiring is also significant because prior reports indicated that the Yankees would wait to pursue a new manager until they hired a new directior of minor league operations. Now that Reese will replace Denbo, we can expect the Yankees will push their mangerial source into a higher gear. Names mentioned in connection with the position include current bench coach Rob Thomson (whose contract expired Wednesday) and current Dodgers analyst Jerry Hairston Jr.

H/T New York Post