July 18, 2011

Nate’s Takes: Jesus Montero, Phil Hughes, Ivan Nova, Sergio Mitre, Joe Girardi’s dog

After an anti climatic All-Star Game the Yankees got off to a rough start in Toronto. Before that, Robinson Cano brought the Home Run Derby crown back to New York after his teammate Derek Jeter was bashed for making the first mistake in career full of perfection. In the past couple of days, CC Sabathia showed why he should be the front-runner for the AL Cy Young award and Brett Gardner showed why he should replace Jeter in the leadoff spot.

The Yankees right now find themselves in an interesting spot. With the trade deadline looming it’s hard to find a legitimate trade target that makes sense for them. The signing of Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon have worked out well so far, but who knows if they can keep it up. While the bullpen has suffered injury after injury, they still remain one of the best in baseball. While the lineup has had its ups and downs the Yankees feature one of the best lineups in baseball and have very little room for an acquisition.

One trade target the stands out is Ubaldo Jimenez. While the name sounds good, Jimenez has struggled for almost a year now. The Rockies would want a huge package in return starting with at least Jesus Montero. With the trade deadline approaching here are my takes.

For a while now I have been very opposed to trading Montero. However if there is anything that this year has shown, it is that the Yankees can get by with a catcher that is not an elite hitter. Russell Martin has done a great job and the Yankees minor league system is stacked with solid catchers.

While Phil Hughes looked better against Toronto I am still not convinced. Hughes should be throwing in the mid 90s as he did in the minors. Hughes needs to show something this year or else his time in the Bronx might be numbered.

Could you imagine if the Yankees could get Pedro Feliciano and Damaso Marte back in pinstripes this year? That would be a huge boost for a bullpen that has had one lefty since last year.

What is the over-under on how much longer Ivan Nova is in the minors? Meanwhile Sergio Mitre continues to hold Joe Girardi’s dog hostage for a roster spot.

The Yankees take on the Rays for four games, before heading home to play the garbage of the American League. This would be a good time for the Yankees to put together a winning streak and take over first place in the American League East.

Hopefully by next week the Red Sox are looking up in the standings.

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