Andy Martino

Andy Martino is SNY's MLB insider.

Mets manager Carlos Beltran and Brodie Van Wagenen (SNY)
Mets manager Carlos Beltran and Brodie Van Wagenen (SNY)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Here's a weird question. Was Carlos Beltran ever the Mets manager?

What we mean is, when the franchise lists its all-time skippers, will Beltran be included despite the fact that the team hired and parted ways with him before he ever saw game action?

The question has implications both trivial and meaningful for Luis Rojas. Is he about to become the 22nd or 23rd manager in franchise history?

Read More
Comments

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

With the wildly different takes on Luis Rojas that have surfaced during a week of reporting rolling around in my head, it was hard to form an opinion on the Mets' managerial choice. 

Then, during SNY's breaking news coverage, Keith Hernandez summed it up in a way that finally made sense: "I'm going to need at least 24 hours to digest this."

Keith was on the right track there. Our only amendment to his take is that we might need even more time -- 24 weeks maybe? -- to formulate an informed take on the news.

Tags: Dominic Smith, Jacob deGrom, Pete Alonso, Robinson Cano, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Credit: Las Vegas Review-Journal YouTube
Credit: Las Vegas Review-Journal YouTube

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

No baseball team wants to find itself searching for a manager in late January, but that's where the Mets find themselves, after baseball's massive electronic cheating scandal swallowed Carlos Beltran.

The team did at least conduct an exhaustive search last October. The Mets will now lean on that work -- which began as two sets of lists on a white board in their offices, and continued on to include many in-person interviews -- as they try to make a quick but thoughtful decision on who should lead the club this year.

GM Brodie Van Wagenen declined comment on the process. Other indications are that the Mets would like to have a new manager by the end of next week.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Carlos Beltran (Treated Image by SNY)
Carlos Beltran (Treated Image by SNY)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

As he did his work on the field in Port St. Lucie on Wednesday, charming fantasy campers and huddling with staff, Carlos Beltran carried around a sadness perceptible to others. His friends in the organization felt it, too -- bummed, perhaps angry, and in disbelief that a promising career was about to end before it started.

There was a path forward for the Mets and Beltran. He could have held a news conference to apologize for his role in the historic Houston Astros cheating scandal. The team could have noted that Beltran was a player in 2017 -- not a team official like GM Jeff Luhnow, manager A.J. Hinch, and bench coach Alex Cora.

The only development that would have made it truly necessary to fire Beltran would have been if he lied to the team. But, according to the Mets' statement, " We believe that Carlos was honest and forthcoming with us. "

Tags: Dellin Betances, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Now-fired Astros manager AJ Hinch (Treated Image by SNY)
Now-fired Astros manager AJ Hinch (Treated Image by SNY)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Brian Cashman spent several years constructing what he hoped would be the next great Yankees team. He took a step back in the standings, traded away stars and focused on his farm system.

Those efforts created a championship window, which opened in 2017 -- also now known as the year that the Houston Astros initiated one of the most significant cheating scandals in the history of the game.

Over the next three Octobers, the Yankees lost to Houston, then to Alex Cora's Boston Red Sox, and then to Houston again. They saw a significant chunk of their window wasted by unethical opponents.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Aroldis Chapman, Luis Severino, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Yankees manager Aaron Boone (David Butler II )
Yankees manager Aaron Boone (David Butler II )

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

On Sept. 15, 2017, Major League Baseball fined the Boston Red Sox an undisclosed amount for using Apple Watches to convey signs stolen from the Yankees.

MLB also fined the Yankees a lesser amount, leading to a common misconception that both teams engaged in espionage at that time.

At the time, the league announced that the Yankees had "violated a rule governing the use of a dugout phone." What MLB didn't say was that no one had accused the Yankees of cheating.

Read More
Comments

Mets manager Carlos Beltran
Mets manager Carlos Beltran

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

As Major League Baseball enters the final stages of its investigation into allegations of sign stealing against the Houston Astros, all indications are that Carlos Beltran will not face a suspension, and will manage the Mets on Opening Day.

Beltran played for the Astros in 2017, when the team engaged in a high-tech sign stealing scheme. As SNY and others have been reporting for months, Houston used a feed from a camera in center field to decode signs, and various audio cues to convey those stolen signs to hitters.

MLB's department of investigations interviewed Beltran in November. According to a person familiar with the process, he was forthcoming and cooperative.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

In an unexpected Christmas gift to fans, the team has agreed to sign reliever Dellin Betances. SNY was first to report the deal.

The agreement, which is for one year with a player option for 2021, guarantees $10.5 million. Betances had the opportunity to sign for more money elsewhere, according to sources, but several factors pulled him toward the Mets.

As a native New Yorker, Betances liked the idea of remaining in his home city. He also wanted to play for his former Yankees teammate Carlos Beltran.

Tags: Dellin Betances, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Jul 13, 2019; Arlington, TX, USA; Houston Astros center fielder George Springer (4) celebrates with center fielder Myles Straw (26) and hitting coach Alex Cintron (37) after scoring during the first inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports  (Raymond Carlin III)
Jul 13, 2019; Arlington, TX, USA; Houston Astros center fielder George Springer (4) celebrates with center fielder Myles Straw (26) and hitting coach Alex Cintron (37) after scoring during the first inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports (Raymond Carlin III)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Believing that other teams used technology to decode signs, a group of Houston Astros asked the organization for access to a live feed from a centerfield camera in 2017. 

They did not install a new camera for sign-stealing purposes, and the players and coaches involved did not even know which camera the feed was coming from. They wanted a monitor closer to the dugout, because their video room was too far away. They considered their actions to be in line with industry standards.

The above narrative represents the picture painted by some of the interviews conducted by MLB investigators this fall, according to sources with direct knowledge of the investigation. The league has already spoken with nearly 60 people, and SNY can now report some of what they have learned.

Read More
Comments

D.J. LeMahieu/James Paxton
D.J. LeMahieu/James Paxton

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

SAN DIEGO -- The Yankees had agreed to a deal with Gerrit Cole hours earlier, but the world didn't know it yet. A few minutes past eight on Tuesday night, Brian Cashman, Aaron Boone and most of the front office left the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego for some fresh air and dinner at Seasons 52, a restaurant next door.

The group was happy, of course, but somewhat subdued, given the magnitude of the news -- save for Boone, that is, who quietly pumped his fist several times during the short walk, much to the amusement of his co-workers.

Cashman and Co. have been doing this way too long to hoot and holler and act like they'd won anything. Sure, they'd landed their top free agent target, but they still haven't seen the World Series in ten years, and still haven't turned the "Baby Bombers" brand into another generation of Yankee champions.

Tags: Brett Gardner, DJ LeMahieu, James Paxton, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Oct 10, 2019; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Astros starting pitcher Gerrit Cole (45) reacts after a strike out during the fifth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays in game five of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina)
Oct 10, 2019; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Astros starting pitcher Gerrit Cole (45) reacts after a strike out during the fifth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays in game five of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

SAN DIEGO -- Soon -- perhaps very soon, according to people in the know -- the Yankees will know if Gerrit Cole wants to play for them. Until then, the team's strong focus is on the free agent pitcher, and they'll deal with other concerns later.

For example, the Yankees seemed unfazed by the news that Didi Gregorius signed a one-year, $14 million contract with the Phillies. People familiar with the team's thinking believe that the front office decided as far back as September to part with Gregorius. 

Though the team loved Gregorius' production, clubhouse presence, and ability to replace an icon in Derek Jeter, they appeared to believe that they simply had enough in-house coverage at shortstop to let Gregorius walk. 

Tags: Didi Gregorius, Gleyber Torres, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Yankees liked Zack Wheeler, and they like Madison Bumgarner well enough.

But in the wake of Wheeler's five year, $118 million agreement with the Phillies -- and in the face of an intensifying market for Bumgarner -- it is clearer than ever that the team's square focus is on the two big fish, Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg.

Of the two, Cole is the primary target, but the Yanks consider Strasburg elite, too. And that's the entire list of elite starters available via free agency. Bumgarner is no longer in that top tier.

Read More
Comments

Zack Wheeler, Madison Bumgarner and Gerrit Cole (SNY)
Zack Wheeler, Madison Bumgarner and Gerrit Cole (SNY)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Since the beginning of the offseason, the Yankees have made Gerrit Cole their top free agent target, without knowing if Cole wants to play closer to his West Coast roots.

While many in the industry believe that Cole prefers California, the Yankees don't have any information to that effect from the agent, Scott Boras, or the player. They are left to prepare to meet with Cole this week, as The Athletic first reported they would.

According to people familiar with the Yankees' thinking, the team is trying to balance the Cole pursuit with engagement in at least two other free agent starting pitchers, Madison Bumgarner and Zack Wheeler. They see flaws and concerns with both, but they see upside, too, and will stay engaged.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Oct 21, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; New York Yankees players look on from the dugout in the ninth inning during game seven of the 2017 ALCS playoff baseball series against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports (Thomas Shea)
Oct 21, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; New York Yankees players look on from the dugout in the ninth inning during game seven of the 2017 ALCS playoff baseball series against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports (Thomas Shea)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Imagine if you took the virtually unprecedented step of initiating a partial rebuild in the Bronx, trading major league players for prospects. Then you resisted all temptation to move your own young players.

You cultivated a core of homegrown stars, and they started winning. You did what a responsible team is supposed to do … and then you found yourself defeated in the postseason twice by a team caught in the worst cheating scandal the game has seen in more than a decade.

You would probably feel like you got screwed by an opponent acting in bad faith, and that you had lost opportunities you could never get back.

Read More
Comments

 (David Kohl)
(David Kohl)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Jon Updike, the scout responsible for making Pete Alonso a Met, has left the organization, SNY has learned.

Updike was the area scouting supervisor in North and Central Florida. He signed both Alonso and Mathew Allan, a high-ceiling pitcher who the Mets drafted in the third round this year.

The Mets named Updike their scout of the year in 2018 -- and that was before his signature pick won Rookie of the Year and set a home run record.

Tags: Pete Alonso, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Apr 1, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets pitching coach Dave Eiland (58) at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports (Wendell Cruz)
Apr 1, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets pitching coach Dave Eiland (58) at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports (Wendell Cruz)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

In a story published Thursday about trends that are bringing dramatic changes to the pitching coach position, we reported that former Yankees and Mets pitching coach Dave Eiland was seen by some as less than receptive to analytics and technology.

Eiland is pushing back against that perception.

Read More
Comments

Feb 22, 2019; Lee County, FL, USA; Minnesota Twins assistant pitching coach Jeremy Hefner (45) poses for a photo on photo day at Hammond Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Feb 22, 2019; Lee County, FL, USA; Minnesota Twins assistant pitching coach Jeremy Hefner (45) poses for a photo on photo day at Hammond Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

When the Yankees fired longtime pitching coach Larry Rothschild last month, they did not do it because Rothschild lacked knowledge of his craft, or work ethic, or a connection to his pitchers. In fact, the front office largely believed that Rothschild was performing well at his job.

Unfortunately for Rothschild, the job itself had changed.

The Yankees wanted to push to the edge of contemporary trends, and hired 34-year-old Matt Blake out of the Cleveland organization. Last season, the Mets fired pitching coach Dave Eiland for similar reasons, and are soon to make their own leap into the future.

Read More
Comments

Sep 15, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches in the first inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 15, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches in the first inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

After signing catcher Yasmani Grandal on Wednesday, the White Sox are expected to pursue free agent pitcher Zack Wheeler, according to major league sources.

Wheeler, who has spent his entire big league career with the Mets, is also on the Yankees radar -- though the team seems initially lukewarm on him, at least compared to the big prize of the pitching market, Gerrit Cole.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

 (Thomas Shea)
(Thomas Shea)

After the Yankees asked Major League Baseball to investigate the Houston Astros for whistling to convey signs in this year's American League Championship Series, the league announced that it found no evidence of wrongdoing, and left it at that.

As it turns out, the reality of the situation was a bit more complex.

A league official sitting on the dugout level did not report whistling. But when MLB reviewed video of Game 1 in Houston, officials did hear frequent loud whistling on the footage, sources told SNY. However, the league could not conclusively determine if the sounds were coming from the Astros dugout or the crowd.

Tags: Aroldis Chapman, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

As MLB investigators intensify their probe into allegations of high-tech cheating against the Yankees, Mets and other clubs, a key element of their process will be comparing the accounts of interviewees, and searching for inconsistencies in the various testimonies, according to people familiar with the investigation.

As SNY reported, Mets manager Carlos Beltran and Red Sox manager Alex Cora will be interviewed but appear unlikely to be suspended. The Athletic reported that MLB has also contacted former Astros pitcher Mike Fiers, who alleged that the Astros used cameras to steal signs in 2017.

However, if the accounts offered by Beltran, Cora or any other witness contain inconsistencies or falsehoods, they and any other witness could end up facing harsher discipline.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Yankees manager Aaron Boone (Troy Taormina )
Yankees manager Aaron Boone (Troy Taormina )

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

During the first game of this year's American League Championship Series at Minute Maid Park, as the Yankees started jawing at the Houston dugout about sign stealing, Astros hitting coach Alex Cintron raised his middle finger and directed the gesture toward the opposing bench.

This infuriated New York's third base coach Phil Nevin, who yelled at Astros third baseman Alex Bregman, "Tell your f--king hitting coach I'm going to kick his f--king ass."

Managers A.J. Hinch and Aaron Boone also exchanged words, and the Yankees ultimately asked Major League Baseball to investigate the Astros for using whistling to convey pitches to their hitters (MLB said they found no evidence of wrongdoing in that instance).

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Although Major League Baseball will interview Carlos Beltran and Alex Cora about sign-stealing allegations involving the Houston Astros, the league does not have either accusations or evidence that would point to severe discipline for either, according to a person familiar with the investigation.

Beltran was a member of the 2017 World Series champs, and Cora was the bench coach. The Athletic this week quoted former Astros pitcher Mike Fiers confirming longstanding allegations that Houston uses cameras and audio signals to cheat.

The story came less than a month after SNY reported that the Yankees believed the Astros were whistling to convey signs during this year's American League Championship Series.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Gerrit Cole (Thomas B. Shea)
Gerrit Cole (Thomas B. Shea)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Brian Cashman confirmed on Tuesday that the Yankees will engage with free agent starter Gerrit Cole. That pursuit is likely to take months, but early word is that another potential Yankee target might choose his next team sooner than later.

According to industry sources, agent Scott Boras has indicated to teams that Cole is unlikely to sign anywhere before January, but the markets for Stephen Strasburg and Anthony Rendon should move faster than expected.

The Yankees will also pursue Strasburg, at least to some extent. They are almost certainly not interested in Rendon because of their belief in the futures of Gio Urshela and Miguel Andujar.

Read More
Comments

Free agent reliever Daniel Hudson (Troy Taormina)
Free agent reliever Daniel Hudson (Troy Taormina)

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- When Brodie Van Wagenen suggested last week that Seth Lugo and Robert Gsellman might be in the 2020 rotation, he appeared to telegraph that the Mets were more likely to play in the free agent reliever market this offseason than sign a starter.

That makes sense, when you consider that a better bullpen would likely have delivered the team to the postseason.

That bit of context helps to inform our understanding of the first li'l nugget of the team's post-managerial search offseason, that the front office met Monday morning with the agency that represents both Zack Wheeler and World Series champion reliever Daniel Hudson.

Tags: Robert Gsellman, Seth Lugo, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Oct 7, 2019; Minneapolis, MN, USA; New York Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius (18) hits an RBI single during the ninth inning of game three of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: David Berding-USA TODAY Sports (David Berding)
Oct 7, 2019; Minneapolis, MN, USA; New York Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius (18) hits an RBI single during the ninth inning of game three of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: David Berding-USA TODAY Sports (David Berding)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Not long ago, it seemed assured that Didi Gregorius would remain a member of the Yankees' new core, not a homegrown player but one essential to their culture.

He had already effectively replaced an icon in Derek Jeter. Fans liked that he tweeted emojis. The front office liked his personality and production.

After a tough season returning from Tommy John surgery, Gregorius' future is far murkier. There are signs that the player and team are apart on value, and that other clubs are more likely to pursue him in free agency.

Tags: Didi Gregorius, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Perhaps the most telling detail about Carlos Beltran's ability to relate to all factions of a major league clubhouse is that he is close friends with both Carlos Gomez … and Brian McCann.

The two players who famously jawed at home plate in 2013 over old school/new school baseball etiquette both consider Beltran a confidant and mentor.

On many occasions during Gomez's career, after he angered an opponent over some perceived violation of the game's unwritten rules, he would wake the following morning to a text from Beltran gently explaining what had happened and how to make it better.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Somewhere in the offices at Citi Field, there is a whiteboard, and on that whiteboard are the names of well over a dozen managerial candidates.

During the Mets' broad search for a new skipper, names that haven't surfaced publicly, from John Gibbons to Dusty Baker to Robin Ventura, have appeared on this board. A section of this board was used for a secondary list of sorts, intended as a backup if none of the interviews yielded a fit.

A few weeks ago, a person involved in the process warned us of a potential "bombshell" candidate whose name was not only on the board but about whom the Mets were doing extensive research.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen (Charles LeClaire)
Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen (Charles LeClaire)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets will hold a third round of managerial interviews this week, with Eduardo Perez, Tim Bogar and Carlos Beltran among those getting another callback, according to multiple major league sources.

Those are not the only candidates who are coming back for the third round.

Luis Rojas is not believed to be in the mix any longer.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Jul 28, 2018; Miami, FL, USA; Washington Nationals manager Dave Martinez (right) talks with Nationals first base coach Tim Bogar (left) in the dugout during the fifth inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports (Steve Mitchell)
Jul 28, 2018; Miami, FL, USA; Washington Nationals manager Dave Martinez (right) talks with Nationals first base coach Tim Bogar (left) in the dugout during the fifth inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports (Steve Mitchell)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Every story about the Mets' managerial search must begin with the qualifier that Brodie Van Wagenen, along with his bosses and staff, have maintained a disciplined silence all month. The team hasn't announced or confirmed a single nugget since firing Mickey Callaway.

Because of that, all of us reporters are left to piece this together from sources outside the inner circle of decision making -- a circle that is, by the way, unusually tight: There are plenty of typically influential Mets officials who are plugged out of the manager search.

Having said all that, we have at least been able to gather that Washington Nationals first base coach Tim Bogar has interviewed well and has become a strong contender for the job.

Read More
Comments

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Remember last October, when we reported that the Yankees did not plan to strongly pursue Manny Machado, and weren't interested in Bryce Harper at all?

Well, we bring more hopeful news today. Slightly.

Our early feel, based on conversations with major league sources, is that the Yanks are expected to engage on Gerrit Cole, for the simple reason that he's currently the best pitcher in baseball and would look great at the top of their rotation.

Tags: Domingo German, James Paxton, Jordan Montgomery, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

WFAN New York Yankees broadcasters Suzyn Waldman and John Sterling call the game between the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports (Winslow Townson)
WFAN New York Yankees broadcasters Suzyn Waldman and John Sterling call the game between the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports (Winslow Townson)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

In her long and accomplished career, Suzyn Waldman has endured numerous forms of abuse and harassment, from MLB players, fans and members of the media.

Her crime? Broadcasting Yankees games on TV and radio while being a woman.

Waldman, the first woman to call a World Series game, blazed a trail that many followed. And now she is watching as the Houston Astros seemingly demonstrate how deep-seated misogyny remains a problem in the game.

Read More
Comments

Brodie Van Wagenen
Brodie Van Wagenen

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Over the past several weeks, we've been working every day to bring you news of the Mets' manager search. We've reached out to everyone who might know anything, and spoken to many of them. We've smoked out many of the first-round candidates and finalists.

But we haven't been able to do the most important thing: Peek inside Brodie Van Wagenen's brain. And neither, it seems, has anyone else.

Because of that, it's impossible to label a frontrunner. There remains a high level of mystery and intrigue in this process, including a potential "bombshell candidate" yet to emerge, in the words of one plugged-in source.

Read More
Comments

Oct 19, 2019; Houston, TX, USA; New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone (17) looks on during game six of the 2019 ALCS playoff baseball series against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina )
Oct 19, 2019; Houston, TX, USA; New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone (17) looks on during game six of the 2019 ALCS playoff baseball series against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports (Troy Taormina )

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

HOUSTON - The sense of devastation was acute in the Yankees clubhouse on Saturday night, in the minutes after Jose Altuve shocked Aroldis Chapman with the home run that ended their season.

Teams lose in October all the time, of course, and typically take it as a normal part of the game - but the hugs, tears and downcast glances marked this one as different.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Aroldis Chapman, Clint Frazier, Didi Gregorius, DJ LeMahieu, Domingo German, Gary Sanchez, Giancarlo Stanton, Luke Voit, Masahiro Tanaka, Miguel Andujar, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments


Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Injuries finally catching up

All year, the Yankees have overcome injuries. This became a point of pride for the team, and even spawned the Aaron Boone motivational phase "next man up."

But the missed time finally appears to be catching up to the offense, in a number of ways. Edwin Encarnacion, Gary Sanchez and Aaron Hicks -- a full third of the lineup -- missed significant time late in the season, and do not appear sharp.

Tags: Aaron Hicks, Gary Sanchez, Giancarlo Stanton, Luke Voit, Masahiro Tanaka, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Oct 7, 2019; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Houston Astros manager AJ Hinch (14) gestures while in the dugout during the seventh inning against the Tampa Bay Rays in game three of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports (Reinhold Matay)
Oct 7, 2019; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Houston Astros manager AJ Hinch (14) gestures while in the dugout during the seventh inning against the Tampa Bay Rays in game three of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports (Reinhold Matay)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Yankees players and coaches became angry with the Astros during Game 1 of the ALCS when they noticed a whistling sound in the Astros' dugout -- which they believed was an over-the-line example of sign stealing, and a violation of the game's unwritten rules.

According to three sources, a Yankees coach noticed a whistling sound in the opposing dugout on certain pitches on Saturday night in Houston. The Yankees started yelling across the field, and people in the dugouts argued back and forth.

"The whole dugout was pissed," said one source. "Everyone was chirping."

Tags: Masahiro Tanaka, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Oct 15, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees relief pitcher Adam Ottavino (0) hands the ball to manager Aaron Boone (17) during the fifth inning of game three of the 2019 ALCS playoff baseball series against the Houston Astros at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 15, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees relief pitcher Adam Ottavino (0) hands the ball to manager Aaron Boone (17) during the fifth inning of game three of the 2019 ALCS playoff baseball series against the Houston Astros at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Sanchez's receiving
 
In the seventh, Gary Sanchez struggled to receive two consecutive pitches, costing the Yankees a run -- though it was questionable whether he should have been able to handle the second one.
 
The first, a sinker from Zack Britton with a runner on third, hit umpire Kerwin Danley, preventing the runner from scoring. The second, another sinker was ruled a wild pitch, but it was one that Sanchez might have stopped. This time, the run scored.
 
"Sanchez needs a good catching coach," tweeted former Yankees pitcher David Wells. "Wow."
 
Another former pitcher texted to disagree.
 
"I don't [think he should have caught it]," the pitcher said. "It was a nasty sinker in the dirt."
 
Perhaps Sanchez could have at least moved more quickly in an attempt to stop a tough pitch.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Chad Green, Didi Gregorius, Gary Sanchez, Gleyber Torres, James Paxton, Luis Severino, Zack Britton, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone watches the game from the dugout against the Houston Astros during the eighth inning at Minute Maid Park. (Erik Williams/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone watches the game from the dugout against the Houston Astros during the eighth inning at Minute Maid Park. (Erik Williams/USA TODAY Sports)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Eduardo Perez is a popular broadcaster with a famous baseball father, and he is now interviewing for a managerial opening in New York.

Sound like anyone else you know?

"Yeah, it's very similar [to me]," Yankees skipper Aaron Boone told SNY. "He grew up in the game, too."

Read More
Comments

As he prepared to interview for the Mets' managerial vacancy, popular former player and broadcaster Eduardo Perez has sought advice from a person who made the same transition, according to major league sources: Yankees manager Aaron Boone.

Pérez has been on Brodie Van Wagenen's radar for at least several months, according to sources. A highly respected former player, he has showcased his knowledge of the contemporary game as an analyst on ESPN's occasional Statcast broadcasts.

He is also a colleague at that network of Mets advisor Jessica Mendoza.

Read More
Comments

 (Thomas Shea)
(Thomas Shea)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

HOUSTON -- Dellin Betances tore his Achilles in September. Domingo German is on the restricted list because of a domestic violence allegation. On this night, the Yankees missed both of those pitchers (and, of course, the baseball impact of German's situation is insignificant compared to what his alleged victim experienced).

Jonathan Loaisiaga appeared overwhelmed and unable to find the strike zone. Betances would have inspired much more confidence in that spot, or at least lengthened the bullpen by having another high-leverage guy and not ever needing Loaisiga. The left-handed and homer-prone J.A. Happ in the game as the bulk guy in extra innings, was a far less favorable matchup against the Astros' righty-heavy lineup than the righty German would have been.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Brett Gardner, Cameron Maybin, Chad Green, Dellin Betances, Domingo German, J.A. Happ, James Paxton, Jonathan Loaisiga, Tommy Kahnle, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The right call to remove Tanaka

HOUSTON -- Masahiro Tanaka threw 68 pitches through six innings, allowing just one hit and dominating the Houston offense. Because of that, the knee-jerk response when Adam Ottavino trotted out of the bullpen to begin the seventh might have been outrage.

But one simple fact made it the right call: Opponents have a .387 wOBA (weighted on-base average) against Tanaka the third time through the lineup this year, which was where the Astros found themselves after six.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Carlos Torres, DJ LeMahieu, Giancarlo Stanton, Masahiro Tanaka, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Joe Girardi (Troy Taormina)
Joe Girardi (Troy Taormina)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The most telling aspect of Joe Girardi's candidacy for Mets manager so far has probably been the enthusiasm of his former employers. If the Yankees did not feel a deep respect for Girardi, they would not be boosting him as wholeheartedly as they are.

It's not just Brian Cashman telling SNY's John Harper that he would "highly recommend" Girardi to anyone seeking a manager. It's the many other Yankees officials who, while focusing on their own team's postseason game planning, have taken time to compliment Girardi to reporters and wish him well in the Mets search.

Cashman and others have offered very strong references in private conversations with the Mets, according to people briefed on those conversations.

Tags: Pete Alonso, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Oct 7, 2019; Minneapolis, MN, USA; The New York Yankees celebrate their victory in the locker room after defeating the Minnesota Twins in game three of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)
Oct 7, 2019; Minneapolis, MN, USA; The New York Yankees celebrate their victory in the locker room after defeating the Minnesota Twins in game three of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Aaron Boone has always had an elite human touch, but he famously struggled with pitching moves in his playoff managing debut last year against Boston. It's worth noting then, that he remained calm and followed the game plans in this series.

He took a few risks, and made a few moves that could have left his bullpen short, but it's impossible to accuse him of anything close to managing tight or choking. Quite the contrary, he assigned his pitchers to the lanes determined by pregame planning, and didn't make a single move because of passion or panic.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Brett Gardner, Carlos Torres, Didi Gregorius, Gio Urshela, Luis Severino, Tommy Kahnle, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Sep 25, 2017; Arlington, TX, USA; Houston Astros designated hitter Carlos Beltran (15) smiles after the benches clear during the second inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Dieb-USA TODAY Sports (Andrew Dieb)
Sep 25, 2017; Arlington, TX, USA; Houston Astros designated hitter Carlos Beltran (15) smiles after the benches clear during the second inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Dieb-USA TODAY Sports (Andrew Dieb)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Carlos Beltran-as-Mets-manager speculation has now grown legs and turned into an actual story.

Mets officials have been doing background work on Carlos Beltran in recent days, trying to determine if he is ready to be a manager, according to major league sources.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Oct 5, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees second baseman Gleyber Torres (25), right fielder Aaron Judge (middle), and shortstop Didi Gregorius (right) celebrate defeating the Minnesota Twins in game two of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Oct 5, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees second baseman Gleyber Torres (25), right fielder Aaron Judge (middle), and shortstop Didi Gregorius (right) celebrate defeating the Minnesota Twins in game two of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

When to lift your starter?

Analytics-driven game planning calls for managers to remove starting pitchers before they start to struggle. This is a major change from the traditional approach, when you waited for the guy to labor before taking him out.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Brett Gardner, CC Sabathia, Chad Green, Didi Gregorius, DJ LeMahieu, Giancarlo Stanton, Gleyber Torres, James Paxton, Masahiro Tanaka, Tommy Kahnle, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Oct 4, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge (99) makes a diving catch during the third inning in game one of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports  (Brad Penner )
Oct 4, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge (99) makes a diving catch during the third inning in game one of the 2019 ALDS playoff baseball series at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner )

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Bullpen decisions

Aaron Boone and pitching coach Larry Rothschild spent the past several days communicating to their relievers how they would be deployed, and that planning was evident in the explanations for moves that at first seemed surprising.

"He told me exactly how I was going to be used," Zack Britton said of his manager.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Chad Green, Giancarlo Stanton, Gleyber Torres, James Paxton, Tommy Kahnle, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Mets higher-ups weren't talking publicly earlier this week about potential replacements for Mickey Callaway, but that doesn't mean we couldn't dig around with other sources. Folks in the game had anticipated this managerial opening for months, so there was no shortage of conversation around the subject.

Here's some reporting on a variety of potential candidates to replace Callaway, who the Mets announced was relieved of his duties Thursday. This list is not intended to be comprehensive. We're only presenting candidates here on whom we have a concrete nugget of information.

Joe Girardi

Read More
Comments

Noah Syndergaard and Zack Wheeler
Noah Syndergaard and Zack Wheeler

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

As all teams do when their season ends, the Mets will hold organizational meetings this week to set an offseason plan.

But one area that won't require much work is their starting rotation, which is likely to look like this next year: Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Marcus Stroman, Steven Matz and a fifth starter yet to be acquired.

The July acquisition of Stroman was made with the intention of replacing either Wheeler or Syndergaard in 2020. The Mets and Wheeler's agent discussed parameters for a contract extension in July, and did not come close to an agreement, according to sources.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments

Aug 31, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets manager Mickey Callaway walks back to the dugout after making a pitching change in the seventh inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: James Lang-USA TODAY Sports (James Lang)
Aug 31, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets manager Mickey Callaway walks back to the dugout after making a pitching change in the seventh inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: James Lang-USA TODAY Sports (James Lang)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets do not expect to make a formal announcement about the future of manager Mickey Callaway until after the season ends on Sunday.

According to people with direct knowledge of the process, team brass plans to meet early next week to discuss their decision. Those people insist that nothing is final.

Internally, the front office feels that the team was talented enough to reach the postseason, so by that definition has underachieved.

Read More
Comments

 (Kim Klement)
(Kim Klement)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

St. Petersburg, Fla. -- The script when you use an opener, as the Yankees did on Wednesday and will likely do at least once in the division series, is supposed to flow like this: The opener blazes through a dominant one or two innings, then a starting pitcher -- the "bulk guy"  -- enters to more favorable matchups down the lineup.

These innovations, pioneered by the brilliant Tampa Bay Rays last season and since imitated by other clubs, have helped teams maximize their pitchers' strengths and steal wins from what would have been back-of-the-rotation slogs. The opener is a fascinating hack of the game, and will only become more widespread.

But what happens when the strategy goes sideways, as it did for the Yanks and Jonathan Loaisiga on Wednesday?

Tags: CC Sabathia, Chad Green, J.A. Happ, Tommy Kahnle, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments


Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

St. Petersburg, Fla. -- From the front office down to manager Aaron Boone, the Yankees have been loath in recent weeks to discuss specifics of their playoff pitching plans.

But with internal discussions intensifying and the regular season drawing to a close, the team is finally beginning to tip its thought process. There's no way to audition pitchers for new roles without showing the public, and the Yanks need to peek at CC Sabathia and J.A. Happ during this two-game series at Tropicana Field.

Tags: CC Sabathia, Chad Green, J.A. Happ, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Andy Martino
Read More
Comments