Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The one thing I didn't want to see this winter

The ink has not yet been applied - let alone dried - on a Kerry Wood contract with the Indians and a little bit of the joy of the likely signing has been zapped.

Zapped by the following headline found this morning on the New York Post Web site:


Although it didn't make most of today's editions of the Post's ink-on-paper product, the tabloid's Web site reports Sabathia has agreed to the Yankees six-year, $140 million offer to play in the new Yankee Stadium.

The agreement apparently came after Yankee GM Brian Cashman slipped away from the winter meetings in Las Vegas and went to Sabathia's SF-area home yesterday evening to talk with the big guy about playing in the Bronx.

I had no illusion that Sabathia would be back with Cleveland. It was never even a thought.

But as a Tribe fan living in the New York area it is going to sting to watch CC pull on the pinstripes or road grays every fifth day for the Yankees.

As time passed, I became increasingly hopeful that Sabathia would just say no to all the bucks and take someone else's money. The Dodgers or Giants would have been nice. Out of site (out on the West Coast) out of mind. Milwaukee would have been fine too - a small market team making a splash is something I could root for.

But knowing that CC will be pitching for the Yankees just because they have the most money to throw around, and just because they decided he's the guy they wanted and they can do whatever they decide, that is the hard part.

The Yanks are said to also be among the final suitors for A.J. Burnett - willing to top a four-year, $60 million offer from the Braves - and Derek Lowe.

Suddenly Chien-Ming Wang becomes their No. 4 starter - or at least No. 3.

Just in case they don't get Burnett and/or Lowe, they've also been in on Ben Sheets, and they have Andy Petttite twisting in the wind. Pettitte likely would retire if he's not offered a chance to come back to New York.

And, for No. 5, the Yanks have Joba Chamberlain. Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy - two-fifths of last year's start-of-season rotation - would be toiling in the minors as insurance.

With Sabathia averaging $24 million, and Burnett and Lowe being offered something a little north of $15 million per, the Yankee starting rotation (even though Wang and Chamberlain have not hit the free-agency bonanza yet) would still come in north of $60 million. Throw in $15 million for Mariano Rivera out of the pen and you're already higher than some teams' total payroll.

The worst part about this news is that Yankee fans will be back at full smugness this season, as their store-bought (Tiffany's) rotation likely returns them to the post-season and their fans will act as though their GM is a genius, just because he - like everyone else in baseball - knew who the best three free-agent pitchers were this winter.

1 comment:

the moose said...

its 161 millon for 7 years - who were the yankees bidding against ? ansswer - themselves

I dont get it - I dont think CC wanted to go to NY but NO west coast team made an offer

wood - 20 million for 2 years
for a one year closer - too much

thats the mooses view