Other than very early on in his career, the year that pitcher Javier Vazquez had his highest ERA, was as a Yankee. The New York Yankees have traded Melky Cabrera to the Braves (amongst some other players) and have reunited with yet another former player.
We all knew the Yankees needed a pitcher and it appears as though they have chosen Javier Vazquez. I personally do not remember when all the hating on Melky Cabrera started. Doesn’t he have a great arm in the outfield and didn’t he have all of those walk-off hits?
Vazquez, who will turn 33 in June, had the best year of his career last year going 15-10 with a 2.81 ERA and 238 strikeouts.
Vazquez did pitch well and could be a step up for the Yankees, but the potential for doom still exists. I think Vazquez will struggle more in the AL than in the NL (although he was pretty solid with the Whitesox in ‘07).
The surprising thing with Vazquez is although he is a right handed pitcher, he actually seems to pitch better against the lefties…. in terms of batting average anyway. In terms of homeruns, he has allowed more to left handed batters. Of course the reason I bring this up is because pitching in Yankee stadium with that short porch in right, will not benefit Vazquez.
My prediction for Vazquez with this current team is a 12-12 record with a 4.00 ERA. It is also important to remember that the top 3 in the roatation are already decided. Vazquez will be the number 4 most likely. I would say he is a solid number 4.
Personally, I like Melky Cabrera and I think he has helped the Yankees a lot. I think he provides both good offense and good defense. I know people have been frustrated with him, but he is only 25 years old and I can’t see how nobody saw the potential for this guy.
But now, most of this Yankee team is set. I think all 5 starters are in place. CC, AJ, Pettitte, Vazquez, and my assumption is Phil Hughes will be the number 5.
All the Yankees need now is a left fielder and some bullpen help. The free agent market seems most plausible for these as the Yankees have nobody left to trade. Austin Jackson is gone, Melky Cabrera is gone and unless the Yankees want to part ways with Jesus Montero I don’t think any trade they make would make sense.
We’ll see how Vazquez pans out. But for you Met fans, watch out for the Braves. They now have Melky Cabrera.
**For those wondering the full trade:
RHP Javier Vazquez
LHP Boone Logan
OF Melky Cabrera
LHP Mike Dunn
RHP Arodys Vizcaino