The Yankees are reportedly interested in Ryne Stanek. Why?
The New York Yankees already tried to be like the Tampa Bay Rays in Game 2 of the ALDS. Remember how that turned out? That awesome Deivi Garcia start that lasted … one inning before he was taken out in favor of JA Happ, who the front office somehow thought would be effective against a team that mashes lefties.
Oh yeah, there’s also the fact that Happ isn’t very good. It’s not like Garcia was guaranteed to deliver a vintage performance, but Happ imploding in a game in which he was relied upon to not do that was … pretty much expected.
So when you hear this latest free agency rumor involving the Yankees, you’re going to ask yourself, “Why are we still trying to be like the Rays?” It just doesn’t work.
Ryne Stanek? A career 4.00 ERA reliever who had 100 good games with Tampa and then crashed hard in Miami. This is a pitcher that works for the Rays and the Rays only. Nobody else. We don’t know why. It’s just the way it is.
The Rays are the Rays for a reason. They have a cheap billionaire owner who doesn’t want to spend money, so they force themselves into becoming an operation dictated by spreadsheets and equations. There’s no doubt some of those analytics are useful for the Yankees, but they don’t need to operate in that manner at every single turn. Signing Stanek would be like when the Giants added former Patriots Nate Solder and Dion Lewis. If the Rays let someone go … it’s over.
Sprinkling in analytics and spending big money is the way to go in New York, but it seems the Yankees’ front office is insistent on being analytics-first for whatever reason. And it needs to stop. Because they don’t have the type of scouting department that goes out and finds a bunch of oddballs who throw 100 MPH for pennies on the dollar.
Enough with the spin rates and all the stuff we “don’t see.” We’re not in a position to experiment with players who have a limited track record of success. There are a ton of relievers out there that’d seamlessly contribute without a question mark. Spend a few extra million and call it a day.
If signing Stanek for depth purposes is the move, then so be it. But if the front office views him as a bridge to the Chad Green-Zack Britton-Aroldis Chapman trio, then nope. Don’t want this.