The Yankees are still in the Halladay Hunt

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Just because they gave up some prospects in the Granderson deal doesn’t mean that the Yankees are out of the Roy Halladay bidding. Far from it, actually.  So says Joel Sherman of the New York Post, who seems to be having more conversations with Mets and Yankees people with anyone this week:

Even while finalizing a deal in which they gave up three prospects to
complete a trade in principle for Granderson, the Yankees were
continuing to talk — and talk some more — to Blue Jays officials about
a trade for Roy Halladay, The Post has learned.

There’s some doubt as to whether the Blue Jays, despite what they’ve said, really want to trade Halladay within the division, and as I mentioned earlier this morning, the Angels’ interest appears to be intensifying, but “the Yankees certainly are not hiding their interest. Two officials
who have talked to the Blue Jays say Toronto ‘loves’ Yankees catching
prospect Jesus Montero . . . it is possible the Yankees could give them that high-end
quality by including Montero and either Joba Chamberlain or Phil Hughes
in a deal.”

Granderson and Halladay would not quite be the haul of Teixeira and Sabathia, but tell me: if the Yankees pull that combo off, is there any doubt that they’re the favorites to repeat in 2010?

Must-Click Link: “Skunk in the Outfield”

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Sam Miller of ESPN has an amazingly fantastic story today. It’s about a high school tournament baseball game in Rhode Island in 2006. It’s not your typical game story or oral history or look-to-the-past-to-see-the-future kind of thing. The only nod to such conventionality is mention of the fact that former Red Sox prospect Ryan Westmoreland played in the game. That’s mostly a footnote.

No, the article is about a trick play — “skunk in the outfield” — concocted by one of the coaches. About how it played out and what went into it before, during and after it happened. Along the way Miller talks about the nature of trick plays and offers a good three dozen amazing insights into the psychology of young baseball players and the strategy of baseball as it unfolds in real time.

Each of these observations could anchor its own story but here they form a grand mosaic. And that’s only mild hyperbole, if in fact it’s hyperbole at all. Indeed, most treatments of such a play would be some video clip with a “wow, look what happened here!” sort of couching. Miller gives a more than ten-year-old trick play an epic treatment that is every bit as enlightening as it is entertaining.

Set some time aside to read this today.

Rubby De La Rosa to undergo a second Tommy John Surgery

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This is unfortunate: Diamondbacks reliever Rubby De La Rosa will undergo Tommy John surgery. This will be the second Tommy John procedure of his career, the first coming back in 2011.

De La Rosa has had elbow  issues for his entire career. Last year his UCL was barking again and he underwent stem cell therapy to try to avoid a second surgery, but it obviously hasn’t worked out. He’s pitched in only nine games this year, allowing four earned runs in seven and two-thirds innings, striking out 12.

I first saw De La Rosa in spring training in 2011. I thought his stuff was pretty phenomenal and figured he’d be a good one. Great stuff is often a function of heavy strain on an elbow, however, and pitchers breaking is, unfortunately, the rule in baseball far more than the exception.

He’ll miss a year at least. We likely won’t see him until spring of 2019, most likely on a minor league deal.