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The 1980 Yankees Dynasty that never was due to Bad trades
11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 1:54PM #1
FW57Clipper51
Posts: 16,083

I found this interesting post on the 1980's Yankees I thought I shared with the Yankees Yes Board. I have made some remarks in blue bold lettering.


 


Clipper




Sully Basebal Presents THE 1980s YANKEE DYNASTY THAT COULD HAVE BEEN!


















 


The  Yankees have been the dominating force in baseball since the 1920s and  look like they are going to be the team to beat as we begin the 2010s.

They've  won 27 World Series titles... and if you forgot how many they won, just  start a conversation with a Yankee fan and they will remind you

They won multiple World Series titles in every decade since the 1920s... with one exception:
The 1980s.

The 1980s were a strange era in Yankee history.

The  managerial merry go round became comical. In the 18 years between the  1978 and 1996 World Series, the Yankees changed the manager 17 times.  And constantly brought in free agents and traded for veterans, whether  they fit the team's need or not.

And year in and year out, the Yankees were overpaid, bloated, old and with glaring holes.

All  the while, a lot of the young talent they traded away blossomed  elsewhere... creating an interesting "What if...?" for Yankee fans.

What if they held on to some of the young talent? Could there have been a championship (or two) in the 1980s?

Steinbrenner  in the late 1970s and through the 1980s, Steinbrenner dealt away two  future World Series MVPs, a future two time home run champ, two future  Cy Young Award winners and the man who would win the 1985 NL MVP.

While  the Yankees struggled to find a steady shortstop, a former farm hand  was the starting shortstop for two World Series winners.

While the Yankees lacked pitching depth, former Yankee minor leaguers filled the rotations and bullpens of championship teams.

When  the Yankees were in turmoil in 1983, the World Series ended with a  complete game by one former Yankee and the Series MVP was won by  another.

We Yankee haters never had it so good. So this is Sully  Baseball and we do more than just wonder about hypothetical rosters. WE  MAKE HYPOTHETICAL ROSTERS.

The staff at Sully Baseball has been working round the clock for our latest entry...



THE 1980s YANKEE DYNASTY THAT COULD HAVE BEEN!

As with other rosters on this blog, there are 25 spots to fill.
A  starter at each position, 5 starting pitchers, 5 relievers, 2 reserve  infielders, 2 reserve outfielders, a reserve catcher and a 25th man.

Bust out the piano key tie... we're going to the 80s!


Starting Catcher - RICK DEMPSEY

In  the wake of Thurman Munson's death, the Yankees wheeled out Rick  Cerone, Butch Wynegar, Ron Hassey, Barry Foote, Joel Skinner and Don  Slaught at catcher. Meanwhile Dempsey, who was traded by the  Yankees to the Orioles in 1976, was a rock solid defensive catcher for  nearly a decade. He caught some of the best pitchers in baseball while  in Baltimore and started in two World Series for the Birds. He let his  bat do the talking in the 1983 World Series where his .385 average and  1.390 OPS earned his Series MVP honors.

Later while subbing for  an injured Mike Scioscia, he caught the 1988 World Series clincher for  the Dodgers. He would have been loved by Yankee fans as a gritty and  smart catcher and master of handling pitchers.


The Yankees were gromming a young Mike Heath in the minors to replace Munson. Plus the Yankees did get  veteran back-up catcher Elrod Hennricks from the Orioles. The Yankees thought that Jerry Narron could do the job along with C Brad Gulden.


 


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Starting 1st Baseman - FRED McGRIFF

Can you imagine the Crime Dog taking aim at the short right field of Yankee Stadium?

One  of the truly steady power hitters of the late 80s, 1990s and early  2000s, McGriff led both the AL and NL in homers. He was a consistent 30  home run threat. And his 10 homers in 50 career playoff games with a  .303 average and .917 OPS in October. His 493 career homers would  make him a Cooperstown bound slugger with the aura of Yankee Stadium  around him. Alas he was dealt within the Division as a throw in in the  Dale Murray for Dave Collins trade. Some throw in.


McGriff was only 19 years old at the time of the trade, playing single A ball at Fort Lauderdale. The Yankees still had Don Mattingly and Steve Balboni in their farm system




in their farm system2nd Base - DAMASO GARCIA

When  the Yankees dealt playoff hero Chris Chambliss to Toronto after the  1979 season in a trade for Rick Cerone, they were trying to fill the  catching void left by Thurman Munson's death. A toss in in the trade was  Garcia. The two time All Star became a solid fielding and Silver  Slugger winning second baseman as the Blue Jays transformed from a 95  loss team to a Division winner in 1985 (when they edged out the  Yankees.)


 


The Yankees had a young All Star 2nd named Willie Randolph, so he was expendable


 




 


 


Starting Shortstop - GREG GAGNE

Between  Bucky Dent and the arrival of Derek Jeter, the shortstop position was a  revolving door in the Bronx. They tried Bobby Meachem, Rafael Santana,  Wayne Tolleson, Mike Gallego, Andy Stankiewicz and Spike Owen with  little luck. When the Yanks traded for Roy Smalley, they sent  Gagne packing to Minnesota. For 8 seasons, Gagne was a steady shortstop  in Minnesota. Along the way he hit 4 post season homers and started for  two World Series winners.


George wanted a power hitting shortstop for the Yankees because the Orioles had Cal Ripken Jr. Dumb trade, it also cost us our bullpen set-up man Ron Davis, which eventually lead to Rich Gossage leaving as free Agent after the 1983 season.




Starting 3rd Baseman - REX HUDLER

The  wonder dog was a former first round pick by the Yankees who was sent  packing to Baltimore in the dealfor Gary Roenicke after the 1985 season. While  he was never a star, his hustle and versatility would have made him a  loved Yankee. He stole 29 bases as a part time player in 1988 and hit 16  homers in only 92 games for the 1996 Angels. Roenicke was long retired  by then. Today, Hudler would be a staple on the YES Network.


 


 


 


 



 


Starting Left Fielder - RUPPERT JONES

Jones  was actually a former All Star with Seattle when he arrived in New York  in a multi player deal before the 1980 season. His one season in New  York was a bust and the Yankees gave up on him, trading him to San Diego  in the Jerry Mumphrey trade. He regained his left handed swing  in Southern California, becoming an All Star again in 1982 and  contributed to the Tigers' 1984 World Championship and the Angels 1986  AL West titl


 


The Yankees gave up on Ruppert after one season.


 



 


 


Starting Center Fielder - WILLIE McGEE

Arguably  the worst move the Yankees made in the 1980s was trading McGee to the  Cardinals for Bob Sykes, who never played a game in the Bronx. McGee  exploded onto the scene in 1982, becoming a defensive and offensive hero  in the World Series for the Cardinals. He would win a pair of  batting titles, be a stolen base threat, a Gold Glover in center field  and the Most Valuable Player in the National League for 1985. And year  in and year out be a steady switch hitting .300 hitter. He retired in 1999 at the age of 40 as a member of the Cardinals. Not sure what Bob Sykes was doing then.


The Yankees ended up getting Bobby Mecham and Stan Javier from the Cardinals  as replacements for the injured Bob Skyes


 



 


 


Starting Right Fielder - JAY BUHNER

Some trades are easy to destroy in retrospect. The Jay Buhner for Ken Phelps trade made NO SENSE from the first day.

The  Yankees, desperately in need for an infusion of youth in 1988, had the  young brash right handed slugging Buhner. But for whatever reason, the  Yankees lusted after Seattle slugger Ken Phelps, who couldn't play the  field. They had an expensive DH in Jack Clark, an expensive first  baseman in Don Mattingly, an expensive right fielder in Dave Winfield  and an expensive left fielder in Rickey Henderson. In other words, there  was no room for Phelps. And Phelps had power, but he wasn't a pull  hitter so he wasn't suited for Yankee Stadium. So naturally the  Yankees made the trade. The addition of Phelps made the Yankees play  Clark, Henderson and Mattingly out of position as they faded from  contention. The next year, Phelps was in Oakland. Buhner went on to be a fan favorite in Seattle, smacking 25-40 homers a year and protecting Ken Griffey Jr in the order. The trade had no bigger critic than Frank Costanza.


The Yankees front office had drafted Phelps  but he didn't sign with  the team. Trade was done to block him from being obtained by the Boston Red Sox. Stupid idea. Buhler crying in the Yankees clubhouse when he was told of the news of the trade to Seattle, he kept saying "What did I do wrong?"


Starting Designated Hitter - HAL MORRIS

When  injuries starting catching up to Don Mattingly, the Yankees could have  used a new swing swinging left handed hitting first baseman. What they  had was Kevin Maas. Who they could have used was Hal Morris, who  the Yankees shipped off to Cincinnati in a deal for the broken down arm  of Tim Leary. While Leary lost 19 games for the 1990 Yankees, Morris  batted .340 in the regular season and .417 with an OPS of 1.000 in the  NLCS, helping lead the Reds to the World Series title. He would later  bat .500 with an OPS of 1.215 in the 1995 playoffs for the Reds. Leary's career was long over by then.

 


For some reason Hal was disliked by Yankees Owner George Steinbrenner, so he quickly made the Yankees Trade him list


 


 


Starting Rotation

DOUG DRABEK

The  Yankees could always hit during the 1980s, but their starting rotation  was always in shambles as they kept bringing in veterans on their last  legs. One such veteran was Rick Rhoden, who finished 5th in the 1986 Cy  Young voting with the Pirates.

The Yankees sent some youth to  Pittsburgh, including Drabek, and Rhoden came to the Bronx for 1987. By  1989 he was retiring as a member of the Astros. The next year Drabek won  the Cy Young award as he was the ace for the first of three Division  winners in Pittsburgh.


 


 


 




JOSE RIJO

The  1990 post season must have been rough to watch for Yankee fans. While  Doug Drabek pitched like an ace for the Pirates, another former Yankee,  Jose Rijo, helped pitch the Reds all the way to the World Series title.  He would win a critical Game 4 of the NLCS for the Reds and go on to be  the World Series MVP with his Games 1 and 4 victories against Dave  Stewart and the heavily favored A's. Rijo was part of the deal to  bring Rickey Henderson to the Bronx. Of course by the time the 1990  World Series came around, Rijo was facing Henderson... who was back in  Oakland.Bad bad times for Yankee fans.


The Yankees try to make him their own version of the crosstown New York Mets rookie starter Doc Gooden and failed.


 




 


SCOTT McGREGOR

While  former Yankee Rick Dempsey was winning the MVP of the 1983 World Series  for the Orioles, another former Yankee was the pitching hero. McGregor  pitched a complete game victory to clinch the series against the  Phillies.
Twice McGregor finished in the top ten for Cy Young  voting. He was a 20 game winner in 1980 and one of the most consistent  left handed pitchers in the American League for seven seasons. Safe to  say the Yankees could have used his arm. He was part of the same deal  that sent Dempsey to Baltimore for Doyle Alexander, Elrod hendricks, Ken  Holtzman and Grant Jackson.

There is one more player who got away because of this trade... read on.


At the time of the trade Scott McGregor was recovering from a broken collarbone injury, they gamble on his recovery and lost on Scott.



AL LEITER

The  Yankees hoped the New Jersey native Leiter would add youth to their  late 80s rotation. Instead he was dealt to the Blue Jays for Jesse  Barfield after Dave Winfield was lost for the 1989 season. At first the  deal looked like a bust for Toronto as Leiter only pitched 9 games total  in Toronto between 1989 and 1992. But he contributed to the 1993 World  Series champions as a reliever, threw a no hitter for the 1996 Marlins  and helped the fish win the 1997 World Series.

As a long time  Met, he threw the complete game 1 hitter than won the 1999 Wild Card.  The Yankees would get to him in the 2000 World Series, making him the  hard luck loser in the final Game 5. Leiter would ultimately end his  career as a Yankee in 2005, 16 years after he was dealt away.


The Yankees were too quick to trade Al away, afterall he was lefty, who took longer to develope, blisters and all.


 



LaMARR HOYT

The  1983 Yankees finished 7 games out of first place. They lacked pitching  depth in their rotation behind Ron Guidry and Dave Righetti. They could  have used Hoyt that year, whose 24-10 season earned him the Cy Young  award and propelled the White Sox to a division title they won with a 20  game margin. Hoyt led the AL in wins for 1982 and 1983 and won 16 games for the 1985 Padres before drug busts derailed his career. Hoyt  was a toss in when the Yankees traded Oscar Gamble to the White Sox for  Bucky Dent. You've got to watch those toss ins pretty closely.

 


 


 


 


The Bullpen

TIPPY MARTINEZ

Yet another player from the 1976 trade that cost the Yankees Rick Dempsey and Scott McGregor. Like  Dempsey and McGregor, Martinez had a highlight in 1983 that probably  made Steinbrenner's blood boil. He closed out the ALCS that year with 4  shutout relief innings, including the clinching bottom of the 10th in  Chicago. He pitched 11 seasons in Baltimore, saving 21 and  winning 9 over 103 relief innings during his All Star campaign of  1983...all while the Yankees lack of pitching depth sunk their pennant  hopes year after year.


Once Tippy was in Yankees Manager Billy Martin's doghouse, Tippy was gone as a Yankee.


 


 



TIM BURKE

As  the Yankees thin pitching staffs were their undoing in the late 1980s,  Tim Burke quietly put up tremendous seasons in Montreal. No season was  better than his 1987 campaign. He went 7-0 and 18 saves with an ERA of  1.19 over 91 innings. He made the All Star team in 1989 and consistently  kept his ERA under 3.00. The former Yankee farm hand was dealt away to Montreal for Pat Rooney, who never played a game in a Yankee uniform. Burke returned to the Yankees in 1992 but retired to do Missionary work.


 


 




 


 


JAY HOWELL

Dave  Righetti could have used some solid set up men during the mid to late  1980s. Meanwhile former Yankee Jay Howell made three All Star teams as a  closer. Part of the Rickey Henderson trade before the 1985  season, he saved 29 games and won 9 for a sub .500 A's team that year.  Somewhat maligned because of his suspension in the 1988 playoffs and  letting up a walk off shot to Mark McGwire in the 1988 World Series, he  returned to throw nearly three innings of clutch relief to win Game 4 of  the '88 series. In 1989 he made his third All Star team by  saving 28 games for the Dodgers and posting a 1.58 ERA. Not bad for a  maligned pitcher.




JIM DESHAIES

A  native of New York state and a left hander, Deshaies was exactly the  kind of young pitcher the Yankees of the mid 1980s needed. So naturally  the Yankees traded him for the ancient Joe Niekro.He won 12  games as a rookie for the 1986 Astros and set a big league record when  he struck out the first 8 batters of a game that September. As the Yankees collapsed in the 1989 season, Deshaies won 15 games with a 2.91 ERA in Houston.


I was at the game at Yankee Stadium, when it was announced that the newest Yankee pitcher Joe Niekro was warming up in the bullpen for the Yankees, fans in the stands were dumbfounded by the trade news.


 


 




BOB TEWKSBURY

Tewksbury was a young, hungry and talented pitcher on the 1986 Yankee squad. You know what THAT means?

TRADE BAIT!


Tewksbury  was dealt to the Cubs for Steve Trout. They could have traded for an  actual trout and it couldn't have gone any worse for the Yankees. Trout  was a complete bust. Meanwhile as a Cardinal, Tewksbury became an  All Star, going 16-5 in 1992 and winning 17 in 1993... both years that  the Yankees could have used a starting pitcher other than Steve Trout.

Steve Trout was a head case in New York City, the Yankees were burned by the Cubbies

 


 


The Bench


Reserve Infielder - JOE LEFEBVRE

The  versatile utility man could play the infield and the outfield, and  batted .310 for the 1983 National League Champion Phillies. The former Yankee farm hand was included in the deal with Ruppert Jones (and Tim Lollar) to the Padres for Jerry Mumphrey.


 


 


 


 



 


Reserve Infielder - JOSE URIBE

As  the Yankee merry go round of shortstops continued in the 1980s, the  late Jose Uribe was a steady glove for the Giants. He got a key hit in  the 1987 NLCS and was the starting shortstop for the 1989 National  League champions and was loved by the fans who chanted "Oooo-Re-Bay!"

Nobody was chanting "Bobby Mea-CHEM!" He was cut by the Yankees minor league system during the 1977 season.


 


Jose was another victim of Yankees AL All Star 2B Willie Randolph presence in the Yankees starting line-up.




 


 


Reserve Outfielder - STAN JAVIER

Along with Rijo and Howell, the A's also picked up Stan Javier in the Rickey Henderson trade. While never a star, he was a super reliable outfielder and steady veteran for 17 seasons. He played in 6 different post seasons including the 1989 World Champion A's and was a switch professional hitter with speed.


 


 


 



 


 


 


Reserve Outfielder - OTIS NIXON

The need to trade for Rickey Henderson wouldn't have been so great had Otis Nixon been allowed to develop in New York.

A  switch hitter with dazzling defensie skills, he became a 40-50 stolen  base threat in Montreal and a post season hero in Atlanta. His cocaine problems kept him from being a superstar, but he would have been electric in the Bronx.


 



 


Reserve Catcher - MIKE HEATH

Like  Rick Dempsey, Heath was not a spectacular player. Just a steady leader  behind the plate which is what you need from a catcher. He had some pop  in his bat, but mainly was a solid receiver. He caught the A's deep rotation under Billy Ball in 1981 and platooned with Matt Nokes for the Tigers 1987 Division Title. He was shipped off to the Rangers in the Sparky Lyle for Dave Righetti deal.


 


He was a converted infielder who was being groomed to replace Munson as a starting catcher.


 


 



 


25th Man - STEVE BALBONI

With all due respect to Willie Upshaw who was probably a better all around hitter, you had to love "Bye Bye  Balboni." He was what slugger looked like before everyone started  juicing. Big with a belly, striking out a ton but when he got a hold of  one, it was long gone. He was a product of the Yankee farm system but was shipped off to Kansas City after the 1983 season for Mike Armstrong.

He  hit 36 homers for the 1985 World Champion Royals and is the answer to a  fascinating trivia question. Who is the only person to hit 35 or more  homers for a World Series winner between 1981 and 2000? You can look it  up... during the peak of the steroid era, no World Series champ had a 35  homer guy. Tell me the Yankee fans with beer bellies wouldn't fall in love with this guy!


Don Mattingly told the Yankees Front Office that he was willingly to play the outfield to let Balboni have a chance at 1B for the Yankees, no one wanted to take him up on his offer


So  that's an interesting team. And it would even be better when you  consider some of the mainstays of the 1980 Yankee teams could be  inserted into the line up... Don Mattingly at first, Willie Randolph at  second, Dave Righetti in the closer role, Dave Winfield in the outfield,  Mike Pagliarulo at third.

The best thing that ever happened to the Yankee franchise was Steinbrenner's suspension in the early 1990s.

(Remember the "George must go!" chants? He wasn't the beloved figurehead that he is now.)

With  George gone, the Yankees developed some young players like Bernie  Williams, Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, Derek Jeter and Jorge Posada  and didn't deal them away.

Although remember when George came back, he wanted to deal Jeter for Bryan Harvey. Old habits die hard.

Oh what could have been... a Yankees dynasty in the 1980s. Yankee fans have to live with the consolation that they dominated EVERY OTHER decade since Warren G. Harding was president.

11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 2:01PM #2
T15D23A46
Posts: 5,953

What stopped us was one man. His name was Georger Steinbrenner.


Spent more time berating players and threatening to move the team to New Jersey than he did anything else.


If it wasn't for 2 suspensions from baseball, we would still be sitting at 20 WS championships.

-------------------------
T15D23

- 11/25/03 GBMA

- 6/11/04 GBCJ

- 6/9/07 God Bless Leo

- 10/16/07 God Bless Huck

- 11/12/11 God Bless Mom

- 09/24/14 God Bless Dad

-------------------------
11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 3:05PM #3
FW57Clipper51
Posts: 16,083

Jan 9, 2011 -- 2:01PM, T15D23A46 wrote:


What stopped us was one man. His name was Georger Steinbrenner.


Spent more time berating players and threatening to move the team to New Jersey than he did anything else.


If it wasn't for 2 suspensions from baseball, we would still be sitting at 20 WS championships.




T,


 


I agree with you 100%. It was never great be a Yankee when you were young player  in the 1980's.  The Yankees front office was a battle zone to work in. George probadly would have traded Don Mattingly too, if he wasn't talked out it.


Clipper


 


11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 7:01PM #4
yank0428
Posts: 18,446

Jan 9, 2011 -- 3:05PM, FW57Clipper51 wrote:


Jan 9, 2011 -- 2:01PM, T15D23A46 wrote:


What stopped us was one man. His name was Georger Steinbrenner.


Spent more time berating players and threatening to move the team to New Jersey than he did anything else.


If it wasn't for 2 suspensions from baseball, we would still be sitting at 20 WS championships.




T,


 


I agree with you 100%. It was never great be a Yankee when you were young player  in the 1980's.  The Yankees front office was a battle zone to work in. George probadly would have traded Don Mattingly too, if he wasn't talked out it.


Clipper


 





Hey Clipper, Larry Gura would have helped also. Got into Martins doghouse for some reason and after he left the Yanks had some pretty good years.

11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 7:50PM #5
FW57Clipper51
Posts: 16,083

Jan 9, 2011 -- 7:01PM, yank0428 wrote:


Jan 9, 2011 -- 3:05PM, FW57Clipper51 wrote:


Jan 9, 2011 -- 2:01PM, T15D23A46 wrote:


What stopped us was one man. His name was Georger Steinbrenner.


Spent more time berating players and threatening to move the team to New Jersey than he did anything else.


If it wasn't for 2 suspensions from baseball, we would still be sitting at 20 WS championships.




T,


 


I agree with you 100%. It was never great be a Yankee when you were young player  in the 1980's.  The Yankees front office was a battle zone to work in. George probadly would have traded Don Mattingly too, if he wasn't talked out it.


Clipper


 





Hey Clipper, Larry Gura would have helped also. Got into Martins doghouse for some reason and after he left the Yanks had some pretty good years.




 


 Larry gura for C Fran Healey, what a blockbuster trade !! With Yankees Manager Billy Martin  you can add Ken Holtzman, Rawley Eastwick, Elliot Maddox and quite few other Yankee players to the in the dog-house  with Billy list.


 


Clipper

11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 7:53PM #6
TheIronHorse
Posts: 845

I disagree with most of what the author of the article wrote. Although I did enjoy your comments in bold, Clip. I thought your comments gave a great background to what the Yankees were thinking at the time of some of the trades.


Back to the article. The author is really grasping at straws to field this team. A lot of the players that the Yankees had at certain positions are much better than the ones they traded away. Willie Randolph should be an HOF'er, so the Yankees didn't need a 2nd baseman in the 80's. They didn't need Otis Nixon because Rickey Henderson was a far superior player. Henderson is one the key reasons the Yankees won more games than any other team in the decade of the 80's.


The Yankees didn't need McGriff because they had Don Mattginly. They didn't think they needed a catcher because they had Thurman Munson, and no one could predict what would happen to him in 1979.


The big loss was Willie McGee. That was the player that they lost who would have made a huge difference. He was the star. Jay Buhner would not have helped much in the 80's, and by the 90's the Yankees had Paul O'neill.


As for pitching, that was the reason the Yankees didn't win any championships in the 80's. However, they didn't trade away any pitchers who would have made a difference. Drabek wasn't good until 1990, and that is after the 80's. The Yankees would not have been a winning team in 1990 after Mattingly was injured and Henderson was gone. So not having Drabek made no difference. The rest of the pitchers would not have made much of a difference.


Al Leiter was a loss, but his best years were in the mid to late 90's. The Yankees won 4 Championships in that time period, so they didn't need Leiter.


Ultimately, I found this article inaccurate. The author tried to shoe-horn inferior players traded away into positions that were occuppied by superior stars by the Yankees in the 80's. Also, the author tried to suggest that pitchers who saw their best years in the 90's would have somehow helped the Yankees in the 80's. This is just an attempt at revisionist history. The Yankees of the 80's were very good. They lacked ace starting pitching. There were no aces in the Yankees farm system.


The real reason the Yankees didn't win in the 80's was collusion. Had they been able to sgn an ace starter they would have won a championship or two in the 80's. However, collusion handicapped the Yanks from filling their most glaring need. Willie McGee would have made a difference, but the Yanks were still an ace short, and that's why they only won the most games in the 80's, but have no championships to show for it.


The author of this article is just buying into the myth that the Yankees were not good in the 80's. In reality they were very good, just not great.

11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 8:19PM #7
FW57Clipper51
Posts: 16,083

Jan 9, 2011 -- 7:53PM, TheIronHorse wrote:


I disagree with most of what the author of the article wrote. Although I did enjoy your comments in bold, Clip. I thought your comments gave a great background to what the Yankees were thinking at the time of some of the trades.


Back to the article. The author is really grasping at straws to field this team. A lot of the players that the Yankees had at certain positions are much better than the ones they traded away. Willie Randolph should be an HOF'er, so the Yankees didn't need a 2nd baseman in the 80's. They didn't need Otis Nixon because Rickey Henderson was a far superior player. Henderson is one the key reasons the Yankees won more games than any other team in the decade of the 80's.


The Yankees didn't need McGriff because they had Don Mattginly. They didn't think they needed a catcher because they had Thurman Munson, and no one could predict what would happen to him in 1979.


The big loss was Willie McGee. That was the player that they lost who would have made a huge difference. He was the star. Jay Buhner would not have helped much in the 80's, and by the 90's the Yankees had Paul O'neill.


As for pitching, that was the reason the Yankees didn't win any championships in the 80's. However, they didn't trade away any pitchers who would have made a difference. Drabek wasn't good until 1990, and that is after the 80's. The Yankees would not have been a winning team in 1990 after Mattingly was injured and Henderson was gone. So not having Drabek made no difference. The rest of the pitchers would not have made much of a difference.


Al Leiter was a loss, but his best years were in the mid to late 90's. The Yankees won 4 Championships in that time period, so they didn't need Leiter.


Ultimately, I found this article inaccurate. The author tried to shoe-horn inferior players traded away into positions that were occuppied by superior stars by the Yankees in the 80's. Also, the author tried to suggest that pitchers who saw their best years in the 90's would have somehow helped the Yankees in the 80's. This is just an attempt at revisionist history. The Yankees of the 80's were very good. They lacked ace starting pitching. There were no aces in the Yankees farm system.


The real reason the Yankees didn't win in the 80's was collusion. Had they been able to sgn an ace starter they would have won a championship or two in the 80's. However, collusion handicapped the Yanks from filling their most glaring need. Willie McGee would have made a difference, but the Yanks were still an ace short, and that's why they only won the most games in the 80's, but have no championships to show for it.


The author of this article is just buying into the myth that the Yankees were not good in the 80's. In reality they were very good, just not great.





Iron Horse,


Thank you for a very good post. At third base the Yankees had Graig Nettles around until 1984, Russ Davis, Bam-Bam Muelens, Brian Dayette were never really given a chance to play; the rest of the Yankees infield they had  veterans like Sandy Alomar Sr. and Fred Stanley around, with kids like Greg Pryor, George Zuber, Dennis Werth, Brian Doyle, Pat Tabler, Mickey Kluttz and Garth Irog around. The relief pitching really hurt the Yankees with George trading away set-up man Ron Davis, breaking up the deadly Davis-Gossage closing the door to the game duo.  George Fraiser, Mike Armstrong and Dale Murray were not strong bullpen pitchers. The loss of the young starters was fatal for the team, trading  them for over the hill veterans, who usually ineffective living of their MLB career names. As far as catching the injuries were starting to catch up with Munson, that's why they converted young  infielder Mike Heath into a catcher. Munson was working with him during the 1978 AL season. Putting him in the Lyle-Rightetti  Texas trade was stupid, they should have gotten him back in 1979. George wanting Brad Gullen from the Dodgers, because he had a hit with the Oakland A's off of Ron Gudiry was another stupid trade.


Clipper


 

11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 8:22PM #8
yank0428
Posts: 18,446

Jan 9, 2011 -- 7:50PM, FW57Clipper51 wrote:


Jan 9, 2011 -- 7:01PM, yank0428 wrote:


Jan 9, 2011 -- 3:05PM, FW57Clipper51 wrote:


Jan 9, 2011 -- 2:01PM, T15D23A46 wrote:


What stopped us was one man. His name was Georger Steinbrenner.


Spent more time berating players and threatening to move the team to New Jersey than he did anything else.


If it wasn't for 2 suspensions from baseball, we would still be sitting at 20 WS championships.




agree with you 100%. It was never great be a Yankee when you were young player  in the 1980's.  The Yankees front office was a battle zone to work in. George probadly would have traded Don Mattingly too, if he wasn't talked out it.


Clipper


 





Hey Clipper, Larry Gura would have helped also. Got into Martins doghouse for some reason and after he left the Yanks had some pretty good years.




 


 Larry gura for C Fran Healey, what a blockbuster trade !! With Yankees Manager Billy Martin  you can add Ken Holtzman, Rawley Eastwick, Elliot Maddox and quite few other Yankee players to the in the dog-house  with Billy list.


 


Clipper




They probably didn't drink. Martin never gave Holtzman a shot. He was a control pitcher and he rarely got a start. It always bugged me to watch MacGregor pitch for the O's. If they kept him , Martinez and Gura I think a couple of those teams would have made the playoffs.

11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 10:25PM #9
northernclipper
Posts: 2,598

I agree with most of what Iron Horse is saying with the following excetpions:  Buhner was a big loss, considering we got Phelps in exchange.  Gagne would have been a nice link to Jeter.  Losing Lyle and McGee still rankles.  thanks for posting, clipper.  nc

11 years ago  ::  Jan 09, 2011 - 10:29PM #10
KILLER
Posts: 156

Great post Iron Horse

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