What If the Yanks kept Soriano?

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Again, hear me out.

162 game averages :

Player Hits 2B HR RBI SB BB SO GDP
                 
A-Rod 177 29 39 125 18 85 135 16
                 
Soriano 171 40 35 99 19 47 148 11

Another interesting number when comparing the production of these two players is the location in the batting order that they produced these numbers in. In A-Rod’s career (throughout the whole span) he has hit in the 3-4 spot 71.85% compared to Soriano who has hit there 21.17%, but has batted in the lead-off spot 41.21% of his career. Think about the numbers Soriano put up for the Rangers, Nationals and Cubs when they were all last place teams and hitting lead-off almost half the time along with being moved around the line-up. Now think about what he could have produced if he was hitting anywhere in the Yankees lineup from 2004-2012. Soriano came up and was a speed demon with power in the lead-off spot and his speed went underutilized after 2008 with the Cubs, which is head-scratching. A-Rod’s speed was also an asset of his but he was more known for his pure power and great contact. What’s shocking is how close the home run numbers are over the past 9 years since they were traded. Let’s also not forget to factor in the proven notion that Yankee Stadium is a launching pad, and who knows what Soriano could have done here.

Now listen I’m not saying we would have or would have won the 2009 World Series without A-Rod and the actually clutch performance he put on throughout that postseason. But the headaches, the drama and the disappointment that has followed ever since trading for A-Rod in the 2004 season. We reached two world series when we had Soriano and only one since we’ve acquired A-Rod.  Let’s take a look at this financially speaking too now. Since being traded to Texas, Alfonso Soriano has averaged a $13.322 million salary per year, with most of that money coming after 2008 in a bad contract offered by the once “spend-happy” Chicago Cubs. Now in the other pocket, we have the worst contract in baseball history. A-Rod’s contract since 2004 has averaged over $27.555 million, helping the Yankees break the luxury tax threshold by milestones. Consider the fact that there would have been more money for the Yankees to spend on other superstars and stay around that total salary number they hovered around for years during the early 2000s, but adding another player rather than spending it on one guy. Hindsight is always 20/20, and call me crazy but I would have kept Soriano and built from there if I were the Yankees going back. There are some things that would have been changed guaranteed: less headaches, less insults, less boos and less scrutiny. We can’t go back, but now the Yanks seem to be in somewhat of a rebuilding mode after mistakes made in years past. Tell me what your thoughts are on this!

-Anthony

To Lin-Finity and Beyond!

A Lin is a Lin is a Lin! … or something along those lines. It’s a lot of what Knicks’ fans have been able to say as their team has stormed back to a .500 winning percentage by winning 8 of their last 10 games. Even non-Knick fans have been singing a similar tune, due to one player, and he of course is Jeremy Lin.

Jeremy Lin is the newest lin-sation of the NBA, his image has overshadowed all over the past few weeks, including Miami’s Big Three, Lob City in LA, those other purple and gold guys from LA, and whoever else you can think of. Lin was cut by two teams this year, the Rockets and the Warriors, and almost the Knickerbockers. Carmelo Anthony, looked at Coach Mike D’Antoni during the Knicks game against the New Jersey Nets on February 4th and told him to give the kid a shot. Needless to say the “kid” erupted for 25 points, 7 assists to and 5 rebounds, much to the chagrin of Deron Williams.

Lin has thrived since averaging, 23.9 points and 9.2 assists. His turnover’s have been an issue, as he is averaging over 5 per game through his run as the newest Knick starting point guard. Most in New York overlook this factor, but his nay-sayers pinpoint on that statistic. The turnovers must come down, and have started to with the return of Carmelo Anthony. Carmelo knows that the entire city is behind this kid now after he was for a brief moment during the Nets game. Melo must mold back in as they seem they might be able to, and a good test will be the game against the Miami Heat. But, back to Lin here.

Lin is humble and plays his heart out every game. He has been averaging over 35 minutes per game, and that number has been dragged down because of the beating the Knicks put on the Kings, when the starters were able to rest most of the second half. Lin has no regards for his own health or body, as he constantly drives to the basket toward bigger defenders. This is what New York needs, it is after all a basketball town, and will only become a bigger one when the Nets move into Brooklyn. Lin has put life into the Garden and into the prices of tickets as they have skyrocketed over the past few weeks. Lin is great for the NBA, because after a debacle of an off-season and stand-offs between owners and players that resulted in a shortened season, where good ankles are a hot commodity, he has provided a spike in publicity and excitement. Not only that, but the Asian population is clearly paying more attention now than ever before, even when Yao-Ming was peaking during his career.

Lin has not slowed down as many expected throughout his run, and we shall all see and witness how can he run D’Antoni’s offense for the rest of the year as both superstars are finally healthy, and the Knicks have added more pieces in J.R. Smith, Baron Davis, and Steve Novak. Landry Fields, only seems to be playing better with Lin, and Tyson Chandler has benefited from great passing as he is shooting an astounding 70% from the field. Rookie, Iman Shumpert, a somewhat of a combo-guard has some of the quickest hands in the NBA and is perfecting his on ball defense. The Knicks, if all things click, could be a force in the East hoping to contend with the likes of Chicago and Miami.

Those are my two cents … cash em in if you wish!

T-Catz