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No deal for Wang and Yankees

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Misc on Feb 08, 2008 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

The Yankees and Chien-Ming Wang seem headed for arbitration.

“I expect there will be a hearing,” Brian Cashman told me earlier today. “There have been talks but they haven’t been productive.”

The Yankees submitted $4 million while Wang and agent Alan Nero countered with $4.6 million. You could think the two sides would settle on $4.3 million and call it a day. But that hasn’t been the case. The arbitration hearing is scheduled for Feb. 14 in St. Petersburg, Fla.

The Yankees have not gone to arbitration with a player since 2000 when they couldn’t come to an agreement with Mariano Rivera. They won that and paid Rivera $7.2 million instead of thee $9.2 he was seeking.


Cashman said no decision has been made about how to use Joba Chamberlain at the start of the season. It will depend largely on how Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy look. Cashman said that Wang, Andy Pettitte and Mike Mussina are in the rotation.

The other two spots are open. At some point, Chamberlain will have his innings restricted. That could come in a variety of ways including being used in the bullpen. “We have to see how it all plays out,” Cashman said. “But Joba will prepare as a starter.”


Carl Pavano showed up in Tampa today and played catch. I’ll just leave that alone for now. … The Yankees officially announced the signings of Morgan Ensberg and Chris Woodward. The Yankees also invited Class A infielder Eduardo Nunez to camp. They’ll have 69 players in uniform along with a manager, six coaches and assorted guest instructors. With all the retired numbers, a lot of players will be wearing numbers in the 90s.





51 Responses to “No deal for Wang and Yankees”

  1. Buddy Biancalana February 8th, 2008 at 5:26 pm

    I’m surprised 300K stands in the way of a deal with Wang.

    I read Pavano made it through 12 minutes of catch w/o hurting himself. Hip Hip Hooray!

  2. gayle February 8th, 2008 at 5:27 pm

    Question is the player required to be present for their arbitration hearings? To me it seems like for a guy like Wang who seems to be sensative etc not something you really want to be involved in from either side.

  3. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 5:27 pm

    give Wang 4.5 and call it a day.

  4. whozat February 8th, 2008 at 5:28 pm

    Maybe Wang’s agents only want to hear offers that start with “three years”

  5. whozat February 8th, 2008 at 5:29 pm

    “Wang who seems to be sensative”

    What? The guy never seems to feel anything.

  6. raymagnetic â„¢ February 8th, 2008 at 5:30 pm

    “Maybe Wang’s agents only want to hear offers that start with “three years””

    I agree. 600K is nothing to the Yankees so it wouldn’t make sense to go to arbitration over it. Guess they want to see if Wang is himself this year before making the long term committment.

  7. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 5:38 pm

    can you believe McNamee said he injected Debbie Clemens with HGH?

  8. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 5:39 pm

    Wang can’t be a free agent until after 2011. there isnt that much incentive to sign him to a long term deal. if he continues to be great, they can sign him for 2012 and onward at market value.

  9. Jeff NJ February 8th, 2008 at 5:47 pm

    The posturing with Wang doesn’t make a lot of sense other than I think there is bad blood brewing between the Wang camp and the Yankees. Last year Wang didn’t accept the Yankees mediocre offer and therefore wound up with less money. I also wonder if he really understood the system when he signed as a minor league free agent, it’s a long wait until the big bucks. Not to generalize, but a lot of Asian cultures emphasize respect, to date the Yankees have not shown a lot of monetary respect for a guy they started in game 1 in the playoffs.

    From the other side, maybe the Yankees were annoyed with his postseason and want to punish him. Either way, this is not going to end well. If the big three live up to expectations and 1 or 2 younger guys pushes his way in, the rotation will fill up quick. I think Wang will be traded before he ever reaches free agency.

  10. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 5:50 pm

    Jeff NJ,

    good point about respect. however, that’s why these players sign experienced agents to handle the numbers and money for them.

    I agree… the Yanks could have just paid him the 4.6M and had a happy Wang. The guy has been a legit Cy Young candidate for 2 years now. Don’t let 300-600k get in the way. If Wang is demanding a long term deal, well that’s a different story. There isnt much incentive for the Yanks to do that when they have him under control for 4 more season before FA.

  11. Jon February 8th, 2008 at 5:54 pm

    Wang has an agent, and his agent should have no problem explaining to him baseball’s economic structure.

    It always amazes me when guys reject pre-arb contract offers and get renewed at a lower amount.

    His agent should explain that pre-arb (and even first year arbitration) players do not, and are not supposed to get “monetary respect”.

    Agree that it’s very possible that Wang rejected offers of, maybe $4.3M or $4.4M because he wants a long-term deal. If that’s the case, then the Yankees have nothing to lose by going to arbitration because their worst case is $4.6M.

    And before anyone says it, there is no evidence of “ill-will” or “bad feelings” being caused by arbitration. A study was done, and players who went to arbitration were no more likely to leave their teams.

  12. NYPD113th February 8th, 2008 at 5:55 pm

    Hey Provincetown Dave!

    I feel bad for sending you on a wild goose chase. Give you one hint……Huntington. ;)

  13. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 5:56 pm


    good points. that is pretty interesting. do you happen to have a link to that study?

  14. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 5:58 pm


    dont feel bad. i certainly wont when you’re saying hi to your uncle.

  15. Jared February 8th, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    Heres something i just thought about. In 1997 Mariano gave up the home run in the division series and the yankees were bounced out of the playoffs. After that, he was basically perfect when it mattered until game 7 of 2001, quite the stretch. Now, lets look at last season. Joba blew game 2 and the yankees ultimately lost the series. I am not tyring to blame joba for giving up the lead, i still blame those damn bugs, but its accredited to Joba. While the yankees werent eliminated after game 2, they surely were demoralized and the series would have been far different if the yankees came home tied. The 2 scenarios are not exactly the same but are very similiar. Lets hope history repeats itself and Joba goes lights out for the next 5 years and the yankees win atleast 3 championships in that time.

  16. NYPD113th February 8th, 2008 at 6:00 pm

    “dont feel bad. i certainly wont when you’re saying hi to your uncle.”

    – Ummmm, OK terrific! My uncle huh? Guess this is a riddle.

  17. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 6:02 pm


    considering Joba’s ERA before the bugs… I think he has a good chance to continue his dominance in the pen. Once he starts, it will be pretty interesting to see if he can dominate the lineup 2-3 times through. i like his chances.

  18. Andrea February 8th, 2008 at 6:03 pm

    Jared: Much harder to be lights out as a starter. But it’s a nice dream.

  19. FAH February 8th, 2008 at 6:05 pm


    The thing about Wang got renewed contract last year was his agent’s idea. Wang just accepted the opinion from his agent. Wang has said times to Taiwanese media that he’d love to have a long term contract, but that’s up to the negotiation between his agent and NYY. He personally is focusing on preparing the coming season and he will listen to the suggestion from his agent about the contract issue.

  20. NYPD113th February 8th, 2008 at 6:06 pm

    Wang seems like a very loyal guy whom will work things out with NY when it’s crunch time.

  21. Jared February 8th, 2008 at 6:10 pm

    andrea, i still hope that joba will be in the bullpen. its an argument we can have all day what the better place for him is, but having him sit in the bullpen setting up for, learning from, and being the heir apparent to mariano seems like the best situation to me.

  22. Jeff NJ February 8th, 2008 at 6:11 pm

    Wang also must be feeling disrespected that his service-time crony, Robinson Cano got a long term deal. He has to go to arbitration. The Yankees are overlooking his contribution last year and Wang is not happy. I don’t think it will effect him on the field, he is highly professional, but let me repeat, he will not want to sign or be signed by the Yankees come free agency time.

  23. Jeff NJ February 8th, 2008 at 6:11 pm

    I’m ok with Joba in the pen as long as he is starting come October. The Yankees never have an ace anymore, they need one desperately.

  24. Jared February 8th, 2008 at 6:14 pm

    jeff you can have joba in the pen all season and then starting in october, just cant make that transition overnight.

    i agree tho that joba as a starter in october is so intruguing. as we saw with the indians, that 1-2 punch of dominance is just unreal.

    time will only tell where joba makes his mark, but i think we can all agree that he will probably be dominant in either role.

  25. Jared February 8th, 2008 at 6:14 pm

    *i meant to say CANT make the transition midseason

  26. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 6:15 pm

    Jeff NJ,

    There wasn’t that much incentive in signing Cano long term now but its less of a risk signing a 2b. There is almost no incentive whatsoever in signing Wang to a 6 yr deal right now when they have him under control for 4. Wang is loyal to the Yankees and I doubt going to arbitration is going to change that. he will stay with the yankees as long as they want him there.

  27. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 6:16 pm

    prediction: Joba is in the pen until the all-star break, starting after that.

  28. bodhisattva February 8th, 2008 at 6:19 pm

    Groom Joba under Mo? Melancon is our closer of the future, and he should be ready to go in July. Joba has four pitches – he starts. The Yankees had an ace is the 80s, but they insisted on making him a reliever. He could have been a 20-game winner for us, too. His name was Dave Righetti.

  29. Andrea February 8th, 2008 at 6:30 pm

    Jared: got it. When you think of him as a closer, then your theory makes sense :)

  30. bodhisattva February 8th, 2008 at 6:31 pm

    not much incentive for signing Cano? he’s bound for a MONSTER year and a monster CAREER, and they know it. Locking him up before he unleashes, vesuvian-like, on major league baseball, means the Yankees have their wits about them. There’s not turning back, once the genie’s out of the bottle.

  31. Boston Dave February 8th, 2008 at 7:00 pm


    yes, NOT MUCH incentive.

    do you understand that he was locked up for 4 more seasons? al they did was guarantee him the money he would get IF he performs at an all-star level. If he doesn’t, or if he gets hurt, then they lose.

    i love your optimism… but not your reasoning or logic.

  32. Larry February 8th, 2008 at 7:37 pm

    I am not sure how I feel about this…a 600K difference seems moot when the Yankees are about to drop $1.3 billion on a new stadium. I find this mildly ridiculous.

    On the other hand, Wang is not a guy I would build my staff around. Rather, I’d package him in a deal for an elite pitcher or some young, studly prospects.

  33. NJ Mike February 8th, 2008 at 7:54 pm


    I imagine the Yanks offered 4.3M and Wang’s agent held steady at 4.6. I think the Yanks should have given him 4.5999.

    who said the Yanks are building their staff around Wang? I believe, after they passed on santana, they are hoping they don’t have to build their staff around any 1 guy.

  34. hmmm February 8th, 2008 at 8:26 pm

    “I find this mildly ridiculous.”

    of course, i remember an entire thread filled with similar comments when the Yankees made their offer to Cano. numerous accusations of “low-balling” Cano. then boom, a 6 year deal.

    none of us know what is going on between the yankees and wang’s agent.

    maybe the Yankees did offer $4.3M already and it’s Wang’s agent who thinks he can win the arbitration case.

  35. Mark Alan February 8th, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    The problem is, Wang’s agent is Alan Nero. I have heard a rumor, which I’m making up off the top of my head right now, that Nero’s Mandarin translator is a drunken Red Sox fan who makes up numbers and giggles. Again, that is a rumor I’ve heard, but it was whispered to me by the little purple guy in my head.

  36. Paolo February 8th, 2008 at 8:36 pm

    Who cares if Wang get disrespect from the Yanks and eventually pissed off? We have Carl here…

  37. Whitey Fraud February 8th, 2008 at 8:46 pm

    Who played catch with Pavano? We need some reporting here, Peter!

  38. Vdlred February 9th, 2008 at 1:21 am

    When Pavano is coming off the mound, I believe Cashman is waiting for him with a 3year contract extension

  39. Chris February 9th, 2008 at 2:39 am

    Lemme get this straight:

    The Yanks are willing to pay Morgan Ensberg $1.75M if he makes the team and as much as $4M to be a backup 1B/3B, but they won’t give Wang $4.6M, $600K > they’re offering him?

    Cashman once again shows he’s an idiot.

    Give the kid the extra $600K and next time make sure you offer a backup 1B/3B who was released twice the previous season and who no one wanted cuz he had to take a minor-league deal from you (Ensberg) the chance to make $1.15M not $1.75M so you have that $600K extra to give to your ace, jacka ss. How is Ensberg who wasn’t even good enough to get a major-league contract from someone worth $250K > 2007 Doug Mientkiewicz who was good enough to get a guaranteed $1.5M for ’07?

    What a joke that the primary reason for the Yankees living the past two years (yes, even more than Mo, Jeter, or A-Rod)
    has to go to arbitration and sing for his supper! If I was Wang, I would refuse to sign long-term, that way I get top dollar once I’m a free agent, ef ‘em. I mean say they settle on $4.3M. From what I’ve read about him, that plus what he’s made before that is more than enough for him to live on. The kid is all about winning, he just wants a respectable, respectful, and deserved cut. I mean I love Cano but you telling me he’s worth an average of $7.5M a year for 4 years and up to $9M a year for 6 years if he’s good enough but Wang isn’t worth $4.6M for one year? G T F O H ! B.t.w. he’s winning his case cuz he won 19 games, started over 30 games,
    pitched 200+ IP, posted an ERA under 4, was hands down the best starter the Yanks had last year and one of the top 5 starters in M.L.B. last year when you consider he plays in a division with all good hitting teams esp. Boston, the league with the D.H. thus a much tougher average 7-8-9 batting order, and for a New York team (where the pressure to success is greatest).

  40. Chris February 9th, 2008 at 2:55 am

    Oh yeah, if Alan Nero read about Ensberg’s minor-league contract, he should send Cashman this email:

    “Hi Brian,

    My client Chien-Ming Wang and I are very disappointed with you and the Yankees. I checked the details on Morgan Ensberg’s contract and it says he could make as much as $4M which is what you’re offering Chien-Ming. While Morgan is a good player, you have basically insulted us by telling us a backup 1B/3B (which is what he will most likely be for the 2008 Yankees from what I’ve read, heard, and been told) at his best is as valuable as your ace which Chien-Ming most certainly is. We will go to arbitration this year and every/ any year after that if we have to.

    If he posts another 17 wins or better season with an ERA under 4 next year and we don’t get a long-term contract after it, Chien-Ming is not re-signing with the Yankees when he becomes a free agent, and if it reaches that point, you might as well trade him before then and if you do, he’s not re-signing with a team he’s traded to who doesn’t give him an extension after 2011.

    It is incredulous to me that my client has to go to arbitration with you after he has won 19 games in each of his first two full seasons (after a good callup in 2005) including be second in the 2006 A.L. Cy Young Award voting.

    Alan Nero”

    Hardball you say? So what? Who’s playing with who here? I mean you give LaTroy Hawkins $3.75M but you won’t give Wang $4.6M? You offer Wang only $250K > Hawkins? If I were Wang I’d be furious with the Yankees.

  41. Chris February 9th, 2008 at 3:13 am

    Oh yeah, Wang made only $489,500 last year, he’s asking for $4.6M for this coming year thus $5.0895M across the past two years, an average of only $2.54775M a year 2007-08.

    Where are the Yankees finding a #3 or better starter for $5,250 shy of $2.55M a year? Where they finding a decent #4 starter for that?

  42. hmmm February 9th, 2008 at 9:01 am

    1. The only way Ensberg makes $4M is if he becomes the STARTING 1Bman. he won’t make $4M as a backup. i keep pointing this out, you keep ignoring it, b/c it ruins your argument.

    2. Bringing up LaTroy Hawkins couldn’t be any more irrelevant. Hawkins was a free agent. Wang has 4 years until agency. if Wang were a free agent, he’d be making $13-15M. but he’s not. this is simply the way it works, fair or not.

    your rants are horrible and uninformed.

  43. hmmm February 9th, 2008 at 9:05 am

    “Where are the Yankees finding a #3 or better starter for $5,250 shy of $2.55M a year? Where they finding a decent #4 starter for that?”

    this has nothing to do with anything. it doesn’t even make sense. it’s just an irrelevant emotional outburst.

  44. SAM February 9th, 2008 at 9:18 am

    Before ST player and team should work closely to ensure player is physically and mentally healthy (comfortable).Yankees insist not to give 4.6M is no win-win. Yankees must give reason not accept 4.6M by Undermining their good player in Arbitration. It’s not necessary and stupid. only give player a satisfied contract would encourage player and help relationship. Yankees history tell homegrown good Pitchers Andy, Mo they all underpaid before free agent. System give teams a power to play their MERCHANDISEs whatever they want before free agent. Especially Yankees care no more when they have big three they feel so good. So, they don’t care much about Wang’s issue.

  45. hmmm February 9th, 2008 at 12:22 pm

    um, ok.

  46. Chris February 9th, 2008 at 8:58 pm

    Hey hmmm it’s your problem that you’re a stupid as shole too dense to get the THREE points I made, not mine.

    Who died and made you “informed”? Cuz you live on here with a b. s. username?

  47. Chris February 9th, 2008 at 9:04 pm

    Here were the three points I made your peabrain too concerned about being a getting personal little coward behind a keyboard who calls my posts “rants” missed:

    1. Wang the Yankees ace who the Yankees are dead without is not worth as much as Morgan Ensberg starting at 1B.

    2. Wang the Yankees ace who the Yankees are dead without is not worth only $250K > Hawkins who was grossly overpaid.

    3. Wang the Yankees ace who the Yankees are dead without is a bargain at a little over $5M across 2007-08 like he was a bargain in 2005-06 and 2006-07 thus he will be a bargain for 2005-09.

    Here’s a new point: You don’t antagonize your ace. The Yankees are antagonizing him.

  48. JEFF AR February 10th, 2008 at 12:45 pm

    I think Wang’s agent should pay 16M to Yankee to buyout Wang’s contract. Because Yankee think he only worth 4 M per year.

  49. Wei Min Yu February 15th, 2008 at 1:34 am

    The poor guy, a sole national hero for my corruptive mother country Taiwan, is been envisioned as a God with brighten future and role model. The radio talk show and whole national media are talking about this arbitration , I think it is way too much to have a young guy carries a whole nation’s hope for just as little as 60K. I think the local folks in Taiwan should learn there are lots funs to go for other than Wang’s 60K, and I think Cashman or the junior boss just wants to set a sort of rules for their increasing young pitching staff to come. And for Wang himself, he said, he just couldn’t raise his arms, his arms were exhausted, plain simple, Torre should know better than anyone else.

  50. TW expat February 16th, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    Wei-Min-Yu, Wang never said that, all he said was he is looking forward to the next season.

    Before the results he had said multiple times that he did not care about the results one way or another. And it was good to see what areas the Yankees think he can improve on.

    He probably just listened to the advices by his agent.

    In the TW news the .3M-.6M was a non-issue, and was barely mentioned, since he is going to be the highest paid TW baseball player, besides which it is TW election time with all the political BS news.

    Personally I think he should not be paid the same as Igawa (who?). Even an extra .1M would show the Yankee’s appreciation. (Even with the post-season nightmare) and the Yankees can probably afford an extra .3M-.6M on top of 4M, considering the results. (Even with the post-season nightmare)

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