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Free-agent prediction fest

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Misc on Nov 18, 2008 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Keeping in mind that trades could well alter what happens with free agents, here are some predictions for some of the top players on the market:

CC Sabathia: It has been nearly five days since the Yankees made him a record-setting offer and not one other team has stepped forward with a rebuttal. The only other offer on the table is the paltry (ha!) $100 million from Milwaukee. The question now is whether agent Greg Genske can scare up a second team to compete with the Yankees. He may be able to, but this is a fight nobody else can win. Prediction: Yankees for six years and $145 million.

A.J. Burnett: Nine DL trips since 2000 aren’t a fluke. Neither is the fact that he only throws 200 innings in a contract year. But he has lockdown stuff and the Yankees seem to have a huge crush on him. If you’re going to make a mistake, you might as well make it with a player with a high ceiling. Maybe Burnett has turned the corner, but I’d be wary. Prediction: Yankees for four years and $60 million.

Mark Teixeira: It has been about 30 seconds since receiving my last e-mail from a fan saying how Teixeira could solve every problem the Yankees have. I agree, he would be great. However the Yankees aren’t dropping $210 million again this season. In these troubling times, we all have to make sacrifices. This is theirs. Prediction: Angels for eight years and $145 million.

Manny Ramirez: From a selfish standpoint, I want him to sign with the Yankees just to see the look on Joe Girardi’s face when his new left fielder walks into the clubhouse at Steinbrenner Field with those Lenny Kravitz dreads. But it’s not happening. Manny can still mash but he’ll be 37 and baseball people can’t forgive or forget what he did to weasel out of his Red Sox deal. The Dodgers risk losing the town to the Angels if they don’t make this happen. Prediction: Dodgers for three years and $72 million with a vesting option for a fourth season.

Frankie Rodriguez: The Mets caught a break when so many closers flooded the market just as they needed one. Rodriguez has designs on breaking the bank. But in the end, he’ll get the best deal from the Mets and have to take it. Prediction: Mets for four years and $52 million.

Andy Pettitte: The Yankees got blindsided by the Mitchell Report last season but gamely hung in with Pettitte and threw their support his way without equivocation. It’s hard to say he owes them one. But he can’t expect his $16 million again, not to be a No. 4 starter. Prediction: Yankees for one year and $12 million.

Derek Lowe: The Red Sox chased him out of town in 2004 like he had stolen something. But Lowe pitched well for the Dodgers and cleaned up his act. Now he’s one of the most attractive free agents on the market thanks to his durability and postseason success. Prediction: Red Sox for three years and $45 million.

Jason Varitek: Scott Boras has been doing some of his best spinning with this guy. At the GM Meetings, somebody asked Scott whether Varitek would want to go to a new team because he would have to learn a new pitching staff. “Jason Varitek doesn’t learn pitching staffs,” Boras said without a pause. “He teaches them.” Priceless. That said, Varitek needs the Sox and they need him. Prediction: Red Sox for two years and $23 million.

Brian Fuentes: His funky delivery and strikeout rate makes him an attractive pickup. He’ll end up in the midwest someplace, with the Tigers, Indians and Brewers all needing a closer. Prediction: Brewers for three years and $33 million.

Adam Dunn: There is a distinct lack of buzz around Dunn for some reason. The statheads love him because he’s a sure thing every year. You live with the strikeouts but he gets on base and hits home runs. The baseball guy hate him because he has no position and doesn’t seem overly interested. Washington, a dying franchise already, needs a spark. Prediction: Nationals for three years and $36 million.

Bobby Abreu: It would be nice for the Yankees if he accepted arbitration and came back for a year. But he makes too much sense for the Cubs. They need a lefty hitter and a right fielder. Prediction: Cubs for three years and $44 million.

Ben Sheets: Here’s the ultimate risk/reward guy. He could be great, he could clutch his elbow at any time. Prediction: Cardinals for two years and $24 million with an option.

Ryan Dempster: Lots of folks e-mailing asking why the Yankees aren’t in the mix. Two reasons: 2008 was his first good season as a starter since 2001 and the belief is he will stay with the Cubs. Prediction: Cubs, three years and $36 million. (Update, Dan Graziano of the Star-Ledger is reporting that Dempster has agreed to a four-year, $52 million deal. So I was close on the AAV, missed by a year).

Jason Giambi: Brian Cashman, among others, believes that Giambi will have a productive 2009 season if he’s in the right situation. That means an AL team that can spot him in the field and give him some DH days. I thought he would go to the A’s before they got Matt Holliday. Maybe he still will. But I see him staying in the AL East. Prediction: Toronto for two years and $24 million.

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196 Responses to “Free-agent prediction fest”

  1. jay destro November 18th, 2008 at 11:09 am

    i like baseball

  2. Mike November 18th, 2008 at 11:12 am

    I love CC and Burnett . .HOWEVER .. our offense needs to replace Giambi and Abreus numbers !. . I think its a big void that can’t go overlooked

  3. Jerry from Queens November 18th, 2008 at 11:16 am

    I think AJ will want the 5th year guaranteed to sign. I think Yankees will need to go 5-years with $80 MM to sign AJ. If Yankees can sign both CC and AJ, they should look into Penny for a 1-year incentive rich contract with a base no more than $6-7 MM over signing Pettite for $12MM. Any thoughts?

  4. trisha - Mike Mussina is a member of my 2009 rotation. November 18th, 2008 at 11:18 am

    http://www.nypost.com/seven/11.....139209.htm

    Hadn’t seen this before.

    YAY!!!! if it’s accurate.

    So far the season is going according to my hopes – offer to CC, potential offer to Burnett, no offer to Tex.

    :)

    I like Pete’s predictions, ceptin for Bobby Abreu – since i want him back.

    GO YANKEES!!! COME BACK MOOSE!!!

  5. Jerry from Queens November 18th, 2008 at 11:20 am

    Yankees are doing the right thing by focusing on pitching first, second and third this off season because of the high end talent available. Yankees can always look into upgrading their offense through trades up until the trade deadline. With great pitching, Yankees should be competitive in all the games they play in. With flexibility on contracts, Yankees can go after a Holliday if the A’s fall out quickly as an example.

  6. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 11:20 am

    Interesting stuff Pete, can’t argue with any of your predictions. But I think the Yankees will pick up one more bat also. Since you don’t have one listed here, do you think they will acquire one by trade? Maybe a David DeJesus? Or will they sign someone like Juan Rivera?

    thoughts anyone?

  7. ray (sox fan) November 18th, 2008 at 11:21 am

    Very interesting discussion in the thread before this one about the merits of signing Burnett to either a four or five year contract.

    I will say this. As a Sox it will scare the _____ out of me if you guys manage to sign both CC and Burnett. That would make you guys very tough and I am not sold on Lowe being that great an addition to the Sox.

  8. 86w183 November 18th, 2008 at 11:22 am

    Definitely prefer Pettite over Penny. He’s proven himself in the AL, which Penny hasn’t and he’s a lefty, which Penny isn’t and he shares my birthday, which Penny doesn’t.

    If the Yanks add CC, AJ and Pettite to Wang and Joba that’s a superb rotation and might free up an extra arm for a young, prime position player.

    Don’t think the Cubs will go three years for Abreu with ownership situation so shaky. They need to keep Dempster or sign a replacement and look for a LH bat/RF in trade.

  9. al arodien November 18th, 2008 at 11:22 am

    I dont get it letting Abrue go ! Who will be our right fielder lets say Nady in right , Damon in left , and Gardner in center that very little preduction from your outfield! Thats not a chapian kind of outfield. NO?!

  10. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 11:23 am

    I would hope to not have to do a trade with Billy Beane for Holliday. My guess is he will try to play the Yankees and the Red Sox against each other at the deadline (like J. Daniels did with Gagne, only more successfully) telling each team that he’ll deal Holliday to the other one if they dont improve their package. Hopefully both the Yanks & RS will stand firm on that one knowing that after the season ends they can engage in merely a financial bidding war, rather than a talent bidding war.

  11. al arodien November 18th, 2008 at 11:23 am

    Correction: champion

  12. Irabu's Son November 18th, 2008 at 11:24 am

    Fun blog post today!

  13. GreenBeret7 November 18th, 2008 at 11:26 am

    ray (sox fan)
    November 18th, 2008 at 11:21 am
    Very interesting discussion in the thread before this one about the merits of signing Burnett to either a four or five year contract.

    I will say this. As a Sox it will scare the _ out of me if you guys manage to sign both CC and Burnett. That would make you guys very tough and I am not sold on Lowe being that great an addition to the Sox.

    ___________________________________________________________

    tell the truth, Ray. Gammons and Luccino sent you here to Yankeeland to spy and soften up the inhabitants, didn’t they? All of the “nice guy” stuff is just a ruse to steal secrets.

  14. kd November 18th, 2008 at 11:28 am

    Arizona was interested in Abreu before. MAybe if the cubs don’t work out for his, he can go there. the schilling can have an ex-yankee to yell at in the locker room

  15. Fran November 18th, 2008 at 11:28 am

    The Yankees may need to add an extra year to get Burnett. The Mets did it with Pedro and Wagner to get them. You may be giving one year too many, but if they really want the player, they may have to overpay.

  16. Wave Your Hat November 18th, 2008 at 11:29 am

    OK, here are some relevant stats (from Baseball Reference) on Burnett (assuming a maximum of 34 starting opportunities each year) since 2002:

    2002: 5 missed starts; ERA+ 122
    2003: 30 missed starts; ERA+ 89
    2004: 15 missed starts; ERA+ 112
    2005: 2 missed starts; ERA+ 115
    2006: 13 missed starts; ERA+ 115
    2007: 9 missed starts; ERA+ 119
    2008: 0 missed starts; ERA+ 105

    His career ERA+ is 111. He will be 36 in the last year of of a five year deal.

    These are the stats of an above average pitcher who misses a lot of starts.

    If the Yanks get CC, why is it so necessary that the Yanks commit to 5 years at around $15MM to this guy? Or even 4 years? Couldn’t the money be applied more profitably elsewhere, i.e. offense? Would Andy or Moose be that much worse on an expected basis, for a lot less total commitment?

    Why is it necessary for the Yanks to lock up 4 out of 5 of their pitching slots for the foreseeable future?

    IMO, Burnett will disappoint if the Yanks commit those resources to him. Teixeira at an additional $8 to $9MM per year is a much better risk, again IMO.

    Pete, please explain, on your numbers, why the Yanks would be at $210MM if they signed CC at $23MM per year, and Texeira at $18MM per year, plus Andy or Moose or another FA pitcher (only 1, though) for between $10MM and $15MM. I’m not getting there with my poor addition skills.

  17. CB November 18th, 2008 at 11:30 am

    The guy whose value seems like it could plummet in this market is Adam Dunn.

    At the trade deadline there was almost no demand for him.

    No talk about teams being interested in him now.

    Dunn has some serious limitations to his game. Strikesout. Very unathletic.

    But he gets on base at a .380+ clip and hits for a ton of power.

    He could wind up being a very good value.

  18. bigjf November 18th, 2008 at 11:30 am

    Absolutely amazing that Dunn is going to get 12 per and Varitek 11 per, at least according to Pete’s predictions. Dunn is a huge missed opportunity (at that price, he’s a steal) if the Yanks don’t sign him. I’d rather keep Nady in LF, stick Dunn in RF for now, use Swisher at 1B, and either trade Damon or use him as the DH while living with Matsui on the bench.

    That Boras remark about Varitek sounded like a Chuck Norris fact. “Jason Varitek doesn’t sleep. He waits.”

  19. mel November 18th, 2008 at 11:31 am

    In retrospect, instead of picking up the 1 yr. option, we should’ve renegotiated a nice 2 year deal for Bobby.

    As long as we get some front-line pitching, the bullpen does its job, I think the offense will step up.

  20. bigjf November 18th, 2008 at 11:31 am

    I would also be very surprised if Lowe went back to Boston after the way they drove him out. He doesn’t have to go there to get paid this off-season.

  21. ray (sox fan) November 18th, 2008 at 11:32 am

    “tell the truth, Ray. Gammons and Luccino sent you here to Yankeeland to spy and soften up the inhabitants, didn’t they? All of the “nice guy” stuff is just a ruse to steal secrets.”

    Hello GB7! No need to spy for Hank is most forthcoming about his intentions about signing many of the FA pitchers!

    I wonder how long it will be before some of these top free agents begin to sign contracts?

  22. Fredo Corleone November 18th, 2008 at 11:32 am

    “My guess is he will try to play the Yankees and the Red Sox against each other at the deadline (like J. Daniels did with Gagne, only more successfully) telling each team that he’ll deal Holliday to the other one if they dont improve their package.”

    I wonder how much better a no longer Coors-aided Holliday is than Bay? I could see Boston thinking Bay and his almost .900 career OPS trumps Holliday’s career .803 OPS away from Coors and make a run at keeping Bay to a cheaper, shorter term deal.

  23. Jay November 18th, 2008 at 11:33 am

    Pettitte\’s agent already said he doesn\’t want to take a pay cut for \’09 (which is ridiculous because he shouldn\’t have been making 16 million to begin with). So don\’t think Andy\’s waiting by the phone looking to take some sort of discount.

    Yankee fans continue to amaze with this anti-Teixeira nonsense. Yes, they need pitching, and sure, go after Sabathia and Brunett. That\’s fine. But you can\’t ignore the offense. The offense is why they failed to make the playoffs last year. They had decent starting pitching and a great bullpen. The offense couldn\’t score runs. And what will it look like without Giambi and Abreu, two main components? You think Nick Swisher is going to make up for those two? He won\’t. And while you can expect A-Rod to potentially have a big year, and Cano to bounce back, that\’s not enough either. This offense needs a major addition.

    It\’s possible they get away with a subpar offense next year if they have Burnett, Sabathia and Joba in the rotation, because all three are strikeout pitchers and won\’t be hurt by the so-so defense.

    But not taking a look at Teixeira, who\’s a young switch-hitter with power, who should have NO problem being productive for six years, is frankly really dumb.

  24. Fredo Corleone November 18th, 2008 at 11:33 am

    “I wonder how long it will be before some of these top free agents begin to sign contracts?”

    What? You’re not content that Jeremy Affeldt has set the market and the dominoes will start to fall??? :)

  25. ray (sox fan) November 18th, 2008 at 11:35 am

    bigjf
    November 18th, 2008 at 11:31 am
    “I would also be very surprised if Lowe went back to Boston after the way they drove him out.”

    I understand what you are saying but Lowe has communicated several times that his first choice is to go back to Boston.

  26. Laura - Ready for '09 November 18th, 2008 at 11:35 am

    Not sure I want to sign AJ to longer than 4 years, but what can you do? I still think we need to pay more attention to the offense. Maybe once things start to settle down, there will be a deal to get us another bat.

  27. mel November 18th, 2008 at 11:35 am

    Fredo,

    CC’s just like the rest of us. No one wants to be the first to head towards the buffet. :)

  28. Anthony November 18th, 2008 at 11:36 am

    Why would the yankees give pettite 12 mill a year? you say hes a good FOURTH starter, no way does a 4th starter deserve 12 million bucks, let him walk. his second half was terrible last year, we can let hughes pitch and prob get similar numbers, or aceves, or maybe even kennedy…

  29. Laura - Ready for '09 November 18th, 2008 at 11:36 am

    -I understand what you are saying but Lowe has communicated several times that his first choice is to go back to Boston.

    I read that too, ray. I guess he’s decided to forgive and forget.

  30. ray (sox fan) November 18th, 2008 at 11:36 am

    “What? You’re not content that Jeremy Affeldt has set the market and the dominoes will start to fall???”

    I humbly stand corrected Fredo. :)

  31. jack November 18th, 2008 at 11:37 am

    pitching wins hampionships

  32. jay destro November 18th, 2008 at 11:37 am

    ham wins breakfast

  33. GreenBeret7 November 18th, 2008 at 11:39 am

    ray (sox fan)
    November 18th, 2008 at 11:32 am

    Hello GB7! No need to spy for Hank is most forthcoming about his intentions about signing many of the FA pitchers!

    I wonder how long it will be before some of these top free agents begin to sign contracts?

    __________________________________________________________

    Morning, Ray. Hard to say, but, if NYY signs Sabathia and Burnett, I would think that it happens around the end of the month. They seem to want the comfortable contracts, but, don’t seem that interested in waiting until the last minute. I’d guess they want to get settled in as soon as it’s feasibly posible. Teixiera, on the other hand, may last until January, unless he too, gets blown away by a contract that nobody else can touch.

  34. ariel November 18th, 2008 at 11:39 am

    Since the Yankees gave up no more than a loaf of bread to get him, Swisher was a good deal; however, it remains to be seen whether his off-year in Chicago was a one shot deal caused by difficulties with Ozzie, the team etc, or something much more fundamental ….many posters were quick to “dump Cano” due to his “off-year”, though he bounced back later in the season. Swisher did not bounce back. Whether he can be counted on to do that with the “NY” on his jersey remains to be seen. I would not consider any position that he might occupy (first, left or right) to be taken care of unless and until Swisher demonstrates that last year was an aberration.

    That said, irrepective of how many quality pitchers are signed, supplementation in the form of a Big Bat and more is needed if the Yankees are to effectively compete. We seen to forget that last year the biggest problem was the lack of consistency. There were too many 3-2, 1-5, 0-3, and 15-4 type scenarios.

  35. JRB November 18th, 2008 at 11:39 am

    mmmmmmm…..ham.

  36. bigjf November 18th, 2008 at 11:39 am

    “I understand what you are saying but Lowe has communicated several times that his first choice is to go back to Boston.”

    Interesting. Did they patch things up or something?

  37. Laura - Ready for '09 November 18th, 2008 at 11:40 am

    -Why would the yankees give pettite 12 mill a year?

    I don’t know. Maybe it’s because he is a beloved Yankee, who on several occasions, has come up big for his team. Maybe it’s because he’s got 4 WS rings with a NYY insigna on them. Maybe it’s because he’s a good man and a great teammate, who gives 110% every time he’s on the mound. Maybe it’s because they just feel like it. Need any more reasons?

  38. Garym November 18th, 2008 at 11:40 am

    I just dont get it, it will be a failure if they dont get Texiera. The yanks have 88 million coming off the books, so say they sign CC for 25 mill a yr, AJ for 16 mill a yr and Tex for 20 mill a yr. That is 61 million and they can sign Pett for 8-10 million and still not have spent all the money that is coming off the books. I just dont get it Pete, the Yankees dont have to be cheap, if they have Gardner in center and Swisher at first where is the offense coming from,no protection for Arod. If they dont sign Tex then they should look into Dunn since his value is low, at least you know he will hit 40 or so HR and get on base. I really believe the yankees are playing games and they will go after Tex and probably get him if they really want, i hope the Red Sox jump in because there is no way Hank will let them bid without us going for him then.

  39. Fredo Corleone November 18th, 2008 at 11:41 am

    “I would also be very surprised if Lowe went back to Boston after the way they drove him out. He doesn’t have to go there to get paid this off-season.”

    He’s apparently expressed an interest in going back there. I know he has a kid. Maybe the kid is in the area. I’d be surprised of the Red Sox want him back, but you never know.

  40. darkmoonfire November 18th, 2008 at 11:41 am

    I agree Pete, but …

    No Pavano prediction?

  41. Andrew (Official Scorer) November 18th, 2008 at 11:42 am

    I think Dunn is a missed opportunity for a lot of teams that are starved for offense, but don’t think about opening up their purses for him. Washington is the sexy place to say Dunn is going, but both Bay Area teams (even post-Holliday, the A’s could use him and he’d be a better sign than Giambi), Arizona, Minnesota, Toronto, the Royals (why Mike Jacobs? Dunn is a million times the hitter, and their GM is saying they are increasing their payroll)…there should be a bigger market and more people rumored to be hot for Dunn, because his salary numbers are pretty manageable and he flat-out provides offense even while he butchers the baseball defensively in any position you put him. The disinterest tag is probably similar to what gets thrown at Abreu sometimes, and I don’t really buy into that. Seems like he’s the bargain-hunter’s dream, but only Jim Bowden (?!?!) is smart enough to see it.

  42. JRB November 18th, 2008 at 11:43 am

    I love Pettitte as much as any other self-respecting Yankee fan, but judging from the second half last year I think it would be more beneficial to the team to let him walk. Loyalty to a pitcher is great and giving him 12 million because of what he means to the franchise is fine, but when it starts costing you victories, especially late in the season, it’s time to move on.

  43. mel November 18th, 2008 at 11:45 am

    Did you guys see this yet?

    A time-lapse video of the stadium going up.

    http://newyork.yankees.mlb.com.....8;c_id=nyy

  44. kd November 18th, 2008 at 11:45 am

    Regardless of the CC/AJ situation, the Yankees need to bring back Andy. Moose isn’t coming back, and I think we can all agree that Andy’s a better option right now than an unknown prospect. Injuries happen to starters. That’s a simple fact. We can never have too much pitching.

    mlbtraderumors says that pedro wants to pitch next year. does aanyone think he’d be a good closer. i don’t want him on the yankees other than to see posada beat him senseless

  45. Fredo Corleone November 18th, 2008 at 11:45 am

    “Interesting. Did they patch things up or something?”

    Didn’t know it was all that bad between them. I think they drove him out of town only because he was too drunk to drive himself.

  46. ANSKY November 18th, 2008 at 11:46 am

    Look we just got out from under Carl Pavano’s contract … do we really need a guy with sketchy reliability like Burnett?

    No doubt he has great stuff “when healthy” but over the last 8 seasons he’s had innings totals (in order) of 173, 204, 23, 120, 209, 135, 165 and 221. I know I’m stating the obvious, but he has 3 seasons with 200+ innings and 5 seasons with less than 180 innings. Health is the issue here. Each time he pitched 200, look at the next season. Big red flag to me.

    I would rather give Lowe 3 years plus an option knowing he’s good for 200 innings a year, each year.

    Similarly, Ben Sheets.

    Think about Carl Pavano. Think about Jaret Wright. We can’t have another big free agent announcement where the two stars of the announcement are on the DL more than they’re not.

    Also, given the pitching we’re expecting to get, I’d stay away from any rumored trade packaging Hughes for Peavy. Moose or Pettitte for one more year would be enough to fill the void until Hughes comes along.

    CC, Lowe, Wang, Joba, Moose/Pettitte would work, with Hughes coming up in a year or two.

  47. Kill.Schill(ing) November 18th, 2008 at 11:48 am

    I never criticize the Yankees for spending money; it’s what they do best. Even when they overpay for player, I rarely quibble.

    But when Brian Cashman says, on the one hand, the Yankees can’t afford both CC and Teixiera and then, on the other, tenders (or is set to tender, or is planning to tender, or is imagining he’s tendering or is discussing paramenter or playing with his pud or whatever)—and then tenders a $75-$80 million offer to Burnett and perhaps a $45 million to Lowe, I begin to wonder whether he can add.

    You tell me which is the more prudent way to spend $120, (i) offering $80 million on a five year contract for a 32-year old pitcher who has pitched 173 innings or more 3 times in his 8-year career and (ii) offering $45 million on a 3-year contract to a 35-year old pitcher (I would have though Pettitte and Mussina’s recent inconsistency would have cautioned about the risks of 35+ year old pitchers) or (iii) offering a 6-7 year deal worth $20 million to a 28-year-old position player who has been healthy his entire career, is among the best at his position in both offense and defense, and will be in his prime for almost the entire duration of his contract.

    Burnett @ $80 million + Lowe $45 million or Teixieria at $125 million.

    If you’re going to spend $125 million either way, it’s clear to me you maximize your value with the 28-year position player who’s among the top 5 or so all-around players at his position in the league.

  48. We Miss Paulie November 18th, 2008 at 11:48 am

    I’d love it if they signed CC but also kept Pettite and Abreu.

    We absolutely need pitching, but with Giambi and Abreu gone, how do we replace 150 RBI’s and 40+ homers?

  49. Fud Selig November 18th, 2008 at 11:48 am

    Laura, there’s no crying in baseball.

  50. GreenBeret7 November 18th, 2008 at 11:48 am

    JRB
    November 18th, 2008 at 11:43 am
    I love Pettitte as much as any other self-respecting Yankee fan, but judging from the second half last year I think it would be more beneficial to the team to let him walk. Loyalty to a pitcher is great and giving him 12 million because of what he means to the franchise is fine, but when it starts costing you victories, especially late in the season, it’s time to move on.

    ___________________________________________________________

    Why don’t you give as much thought about Pettitte’s forst 4 months as you do about his last two months?

  51. We Miss Paulie November 18th, 2008 at 11:48 am

    ANSWER: TEXEIRA

  52. GreenBeret7 November 18th, 2008 at 11:49 am

    ***Pettitte’s first 4 months***

  53. jason November 18th, 2008 at 11:50 am

    Mel – For some reason I don’t think CC has ever been shy about being the first one to the buffet!
    I vote on the side of pitching. You can never have enough of it.
    CC, Wang, AJ, Mussina/Pettite, Joba, Hughes, Aceves, Kennedy, Hacker, Garcia, Horne – will most likely all get some shots in the next season and a half. This is probably the best and deepest rotation around.
    Rivera, Marte, Bruney, Albaledejo, Veras, Ramirez, Melancon, Coke, Dunn, Whelan, Kroenke, Wright, Kontos, Jackson probably all get shots in the next season and a half. This is probably the best and deepest bullpen around.
    If CC and AJ sign you likely have the best all around pitching in the majors. Then you have a wave of high end pitching coming from the farm which is among the top tier in the league (in terms of pitching).
    Next comes upgrading the defense – Swisher, Gardner, right field will all be vital.
    Then finally comes the offense. Posada and Matsui will help. Jeter being healthy (without wrist problem) will help. Cano recovering will help (and I predict a big time year from him). Then you can get creative with trades or other free agent signings – like Dunn on the cheap.

  54. Wave Your Hat November 18th, 2008 at 11:51 am

    The Yankees do not need to sign CC, AJ AND one of Andy or Moose. IMO, that is an enormous misallocation of resources. It is fighting the last war – Hughes and Kennedy burned us last year, so we are going to fix it by having a rotation of five All-Stars (or former All-Stars).

    What happened to the big emphasis on the minors? We have good minor league pitchers now. There’s almost no minor league hitting anywhere near ready.

    Meanwhile, we have no bench whatsoever. Our offense is likely to be no better, or not much better, than last year if all goes well. If anyone gets hurt, there is no one to fill in. What happens if the 2008 version of Cano or the 2008 version of Swisher is the 2009 version of Cano or Swisher? What happens if Gardner can’t hold down CF? What happens if Posada’s not ready to catch full time?

    Pete is predicting the Angels sign Teixeira for $18MM per. If that happens, I’ll be disgusted with the Yanks’ front office. What a huge missed opportunity.

  55. Bronx Jeers November 18th, 2008 at 11:51 am

    How much less is CC willing to take from LAA or LAD and can either team afford such an offer anyway?

    The Angels have Escobar returning late spring? and no real competition in the West. They need to sign a 1B and a closer and will need to replace Vlad’s production next year.

    The Angels have more need with Lowe leaving but if they do end up signing Manny for 70 mil, do they have the cash?

    The Padres? next

    The Giants have no need on the mound and plenty of need at the plate.

    The A’s? Billy Beane’s got 14 potential aces germinating in the East Bay as we speak.

    What about Texas. Granted the term CC will take on an entirely new meaning as in “How many CC’s of intravenous saline solution will Sabathia require between innings pitching in the Dallas heat?” but can you ever really count Tom Hicks out in these situations?

  56. JRB November 18th, 2008 at 11:51 am

    GreenBeret7
    “Why don’t you give as much thought about Pettitte’s forst 4 months as you do about his last two months?”
    _______

    I do give thought to it, but what it may show is that as he gets older, he may not be able to physically handle the grind of an entire season.

  57. Bronx Jeers November 18th, 2008 at 11:53 am

    Angels = Dodgers. The second one.

  58. Laura - Ready for '09 November 18th, 2008 at 11:53 am

    I think that we all know that Andy was injured during the last part of the season, yet he still pitched. If he’s healthy next year, he will get us some wins.

  59. Brad November 18th, 2008 at 11:54 am

    I dont want any part of Burnett, 9 DL trips, I would rather save the money on him and sign sheets for 2 years, and get insurance on him and get Teixeira. If we dont get CC and Tex, this offseason is a failure. Our two biggest needs our a #1 started and a 1B/#4 hitter. Cashman is a terrible GM, he screwed up the draft by taking Cole instead of Shooter Hunt, he didnt get Michael Inoa, he signed Kei Igawa, Cashman is clueless.

  60. SJ44 November 18th, 2008 at 11:54 am

    JP Riccardi’s comments about Dunn has killed him in the marketplace.

    I can’t remember the last time a GM’s comments about a player has hurt so much.

    Seems to me a lot of teams are backing off of him because they don’t believe he has a passion for the game.

    The Orioles and Nationals are throwing money out there like they haven’t done in years. In the Nationals case, ever.

    I can’t see Baltimore getting shutout in the FA Derby. They have to sign somebody or their fans are going to revolt.

    I think Dunn to the Nationals is a good call. Although, I wouldn’t put them out of the Tex Derby just yet.

    I think Dempster is going to get a 4th year from the Cubs.

    Out of all the guys on that list, the guy that scares me most is KRod.

    By the end of last season, he was throwing 89-91. He was throwing a ton of sliders and changeups down the stretch because his fastball had no life.

    I think that’s the guy we will look back on in two years and attach the word “bust” next to his name.

    Violent delivery + diminishing fastball = trouble to the team that signs him, IMO.

  61. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 11:54 am

    CB: I couldn’t agree more with your post about Dunn. I’ve been advocating looking into signing him since the beginning, but it’s a pretty empty bandwagon. I know the Yankees are determined to get more athletic and better defensively, but considering we’re losing Abreu and Giambi, how do you say no to that kind of offense and OBP especially when it’s priced below market value? (I say that b/c a Ryan Howard would get twice what Dunn will in FA, but where’s the big difference between the 2 players? Not much that I see).

    Despite his defensive woes, Dunn would net more in offense than he would cost in defense. And he could be shifted to DH full-time starting in 2010. I know a guy like him goes against the Yanks gameplan, but given the value and our need for offense, you’d have to think they’d at least consider it, no?

  62. Brad November 18th, 2008 at 11:55 am

    And paying Andy more than $6-8M is a joke, he was terrible last year 14-14 4.7 ERA. This isnt the old juiced up Andy, this is the old washed up Andy.

  63. mel November 18th, 2008 at 11:56 am

    Oohhh. jason & WYH look like alter egos. Both making sense. The correct answer likely a combination of the two.

    As long as we get 1 or 2 FA pitchers, shore up our defense, put 9 healthy guys in the lineup we will be fine.

    Your opening day roster rarely stays that way. The good news is that we’re improving the team. A team that won 89 games with Murphy’s Law taking control and an offense that didn’t even crack 800 runs.

    Everything’s going to be a-ok.

    (like your glass half-full look, jason)

  64. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 11:57 am

    “I wonder how much better a no longer Coors-aided Holliday is than Bay? I could see Boston thinking Bay and his almost .900 career OPS trumps Holliday’s career .803 OPS away from Coors and make a run at keeping Bay to a cheaper, shorter term deal.”

    I could see that, too. Offensively they are pretty close. Holliday may have more power, but the main difference is in defense.

  65. CB November 18th, 2008 at 11:57 am

    “These are the stats of an above average pitcher who misses a lot of starts. ”

    I agree AJ hasn’t been very durable or pitched up to his stuff.

    But a couple of things on focusing on his ERA+. To some extent that’s doing him a disservice given that he’s been pitching in the AL East with the unbalanced schedule.

    Pitching in the AL East is one thing for guys on the Sox and Yankees – at least they don’t have to face their own line ups.

    11 AJ’s starts last season were against the Sox, Rays and Yankees. He made three more against Texas.

    Given that competition his ERA+ of 105 is somewhat misleading.

    His FIP was also 3.45 for what it’s worth and his tRA was 3.69.

    Here’s the other difficulty in how to distribute resources, specifically with respect to AJ vs. Tex.

    Part of the complexity of making that decision is the “opportunity cost” of signing Tex given how delayed his signing will likely be.

    Assuming we believe that the Yankees do have some kind of finite budget, the yankees would have to let certain opportunities pass them by in order to bid on Tex’s services. And of course there’s no guarantee that they sign him.

    Say they pass on AJ or Lowe and decide to focus their resources on Tex and the bidding does got to 8yrs/160 or 10/200? Arte Moreno decides he has to sign Tex and is willing to approach Tex in a manner similar to what he did with Torre Hunter?

    I agree that signing AJ for 5 years would be a move in which the risk outweighs the rewards.

    But this year there is likely to be two distinct free agent periods. An early period where all of the decent arms get signed. And a late period when Tex and other hitters get signed.

    Allocating resources in this kind of bifurcated market requires conditional probabilities that make using resources efficiently very difficult.

    It’s not one market – its two. Wait to spend and your putting a lot of risk on passing up opportunities and betting a lot on Tex.

    That’s one of the chief ways Boras gets teams to sign such bad deals. He gets them on the hook early and keeps stringing them along. Essentially he drives up the opportunity cost of the negotiation and makes it more and more expensive to not sign his client as alternate talent signs and comes off the board.

  66. GreenBeret7 November 18th, 2008 at 11:58 am

    JRB
    November 18th, 2008 at 11:51 am
    GreenBeret7
    “Why don’t you give as much thought about Pettitte’s forst 4 months as you do about his last two months?”
    _

    I do give thought to it, but what it may show is that as he gets older, he may not be able to physically handle the grind of an entire season.

    ___________________________________________________________
    Or, it may show that Pettitte had basically what would be considered a tired shoulder, since there was no structural/muscular injuries when he was examined after the season. It happens. If he comes back and joins a rotation of Sabathia, Wang, Burnett and Chamberlain, with pitchers like Aceves and possibly Mussina on hand, he won’t need to make 35 starts. He can skip a start, here and there and stay healthy.

  67. 86w183 November 18th, 2008 at 11:58 am

    I think the offense will be upgraded/addressed after the first priority, pitching is handled. The Yanks may have communicated as much to agents for Tex, Dunn and others.

    If Mussina and Pettite both wanted to come back for a year I would be fine with that in addition to CC. But you gotta love to the potential of opening the year with CC, Wang, AJ, Pettite and Joba.

    Also the Yanks are virtually certain to be improved offensively at C, 2B and CF which were three weak positions. They do need to add a bat, even if that means Damon has to be the primary CF. Melky and/or Gardner could be late inning defense for any OF position should Abreu accept arbitration or Dunn end up in pinstripes

  68. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 11:58 am

    SJ44: Just wondering, how much stock do you put in Ricciardi’s comments about Dunn? And do you know if other people around baseball also feel that way about him?

    For me, it’s a pretty damning accusation, but Ricciardi has always seemed like a weird guy. I’m just not sure whether to take him seriously or not.

  69. al arodien November 18th, 2008 at 11:59 am

    My prediction:
    1b= Nick Swicher
    2b=Cano
    SS=Jeter
    3b=A-rod
    C=Molina
    C=Possada
    Rf=Abreu
    Lf=Nady
    Cf=Gardner
    DH=Damon
    Inf=D. Mankevich(i know i cant spell his name)

    Pitchers:
    Wang
    Burnette
    Pettite
    Lowe
    Moose
    Revera
    Joba
    Marte
    + middle relievers
    I DONT BELIVE CC WILL COME TO THE AMERICAN LEAGE. PERIOD

  70. Andrew (Official Scorer) November 18th, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    “What happens if the 2008 version of Cano or the 2008 version of Swisher is the 2009 version of Cano or Swisher? What happens if Gardner can’t hold down CF? What happens if Posada’s not ready to catch full time?”

    This question is answered in your own post where you said “What happened to the big emphasis on the minors?”. Either guys from the minors will be summoned, or guys from the minors will be traded to fix these type of problems. Also keep in mind that back-up plans are usually the last things that get resolved. I think it’s still possible Cashman brings in another OFer or another corner infielder as an insurance policy, or potentially as a starter (instead of Gardner/Melky/Swisher). I also don’t think this focus on signing 2 starters is an indictment of Hughes and Kennedy, I think it’s a way to keep them from being preordained when they’re not ready. In the current 2009 scenario (where CC and one other pitcher are Yankees), their jobs will be to refine their stuff and pitch in AAA as if they’re showing the big club that they are ready and waiting. When AJ is out for a month or two, or someone tweaks a groin or hammy or something along those lines, they will be waiting–along with maybe a Phil Coke or an Alfredo’s Sauce.

  71. Brad November 18th, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    Sheets has a higer upside than Burnett, they are the same risk, and sheets will get less years and less $$ per year. signing AJ over sheets makes no sense, but our GM is clueless so I expect him to get AJ, even though sheets is a much better option.

  72. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    One thing’s for sure, with Dunn and AJ, the Blue Jays would no longer be the same kind of thorn in our side they were this past year! Are there two players anywhere in baseball that want to stick it to a GM like these two want to stick it to Ricciardi, who called them indifferent to baseball and a pansy, respectively?

  73. Dan November 18th, 2008 at 12:03 pm

    I have to say, all of these are pretty solid predictions.

  74. Jeremy November 18th, 2008 at 12:03 pm

    I suspect we will end up with Dunn and make some moves that clear space for him in a corner outfield position. He just seems too good and too undervalued to pass up.

  75. jay destro November 18th, 2008 at 12:03 pm

    this is the worst excuse for paying a player i have ever seen. you don’t give guys big contracts for warm and fuzzy feelings.

    —-

    # Laura – Ready for ’09 November 18th, 2008 at 11:40 am

    -Why would the yankees give pettite 12 mill a year?

    I don’t know. Maybe it’s because he is a beloved Yankee, who on several occasions, has come up big for his team. Maybe it’s because he’s got 4 WS rings with a NYY insigna on them. Maybe it’s because he’s a good man and a great teammate, who gives 110% every time he’s on the mound. Maybe it’s because they just feel like it. Need any more reasons?

  76. trisha - Mike Mussina is a member of my 2009 rotation. November 18th, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    About offense. Though you can’t say for sure since that’s why they play the games, I am willing to think that Cano and Jeter will have better years than they did last year, overall. Add to it a healthy Sui and Jorge for the entire season, I feel pretty confident about our chances. (Not saying I am averse to getting someone who hits well, just saying I am not worried if we don’t.) If we shore up our pitching – which it really looks like we are attempting to do – we will be sitting mighty pretty.

    The Yanks with a heck of a bad pitching situation was still in the running to make the playoffs up to the last week. And that’s with a floundering offense to boot.

    That said, PLEASE SIGN BOBBY ABREU, YANKEES!

  77. SJ44 November 18th, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    I never really thought much about Dunn until JP trashed him.

    However, when you see how little noise there has been about him, it makes me think JP said something publicly that a lot of GM’s have felt privately about him.

    KS,

    The Yankees aren’t signing Lowe and Burnett. The only way they do that is if they don’t sign CC.

    If they sign CC and AJ, they won’t sign Lowe.

  78. Wave Your Hat November 18th, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    CB-

    Burnett’s career ERA+ is 111. Granted, that’s a lot of starts against the Yanks and the Sox. But also a lot of starts against the Orioles and the Rays (when they stunk).

    If we commit early to CC, AJ and one of Moose or Andy, we have locked ourselves out of the Teixeira market. I just don’t think that’s the way to go. Having one kid in the fifth starter slot is just not a bad risk. Plenty of teams have won the World Series with a mediocre to poor performance from their starters.

    If we don’t get Teixeira, we could still always try to trade for Cameron or, as you suggest, try to sign Dunn. I don’t think gambling on Teixeira is all or nothing.

  79. rover November 18th, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    Because I have had two knee surgeries in my youth, I believe Hideki will have a very sound bounce back year! One cannot undervalue playing painfree, even if the knees are not 100% as strong as they once were. Not having to do everything different while on your feet to alleviate pain can do a great deal for focus. There is every reason to believe he will be the player he should be. Could be depending on how many years he played with discomfort, possibly better.There is that possiblility! Have to wait and see.

  80. ariel November 18th, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    Having been a lifelong Yankee fan (60 years), two things I have learned over the years are to totally ignore (i) management/ownership droppings as to what players will/will not be signed etc, and (ii) comments from the press and other pundits, especially those that focus on someone being or not being a “good fit”..whatever that means.

    After all, these are the Yankees, the organization that (i) acquired, nurtured and prospered from the great, but boorish though charasmatic Babe, (ii) hired and prospered with the master of the non-sequiter, Casey Stengel,and, most significantly, more than prospered during the “active” ownership of George….hiring and firing Billy five times, signed Reggie when Billy was the manager..oil and water if there ever was such a situation etc…obviously a “fit” from the getgo.

    So when one mentions “clubhouse harmony”, “this player won’t get along with so and so, or the manager”, etc, it’s all meaningless babble.

    Let’s see what happens…after all, this is the organization that from top to bottom, and in no uncertain terms also said “if A-Rod opts out we will not sign him”, and when he took that path, that mantra was repeated more emphatically. As Derek Jeter then said, “when Mr Steinbrenner says he going to do something or not do something, he is a man of his word”.

  81. mel November 18th, 2008 at 12:07 pm

    lol. Everyone is in wait and see mode.

    According to Pete, no other teams have made offers to CC.

    The Jays are taking a wait and see approach with AJ to see if the ante’s too much.

    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/articl.....;fext=.jsp

  82. Brandon (TEIX IS NOT WORTH IT, GET CC !)..."Don't trade Robi !" November 18th, 2008 at 12:07 pm

    2nd tier players due to economics are not getting big $$$ so I wouldn’t be surprised if Sheets ends up in NY.

  83. Wave Your Hat November 18th, 2008 at 12:07 pm

    Oops, bad typo. I meant to say plenty of teams have won the World Series with a mediocre to poor performance from their FIFTH starters.

  84. Jeremy November 18th, 2008 at 12:09 pm

    If Pettitte will take 1 year/$12 million, the Yankees will sign him without hesitation. He’s still a good bet for 200 innings of above-average ERA, and one-year contracts are very hard to find.

    All the stuff Laura wrote is nice, but when it comes down to it, the Yankees will probably sign Pettitte because he is still a valuable pitcher.

  85. JohnC November 18th, 2008 at 12:09 pm

    Sheets is NOT a better option than Burnett. He has never pitched in the AL, and is a big injury risk like Burnett. At least Burnett has had sucess in the AL, particularly in the AL East. Sheets is an unknown. I do agree that they would need to go to 5 years to get AJ though, otherwise he would probably go back to Toronto.

  86. SJ44 November 18th, 2008 at 12:11 pm

    How can a guy with a torn muscle above his elbow (Sheets) be a better option than a guy (Burnett) who is healthy? I don’t get that one.

    I think Trisha hits the nail on the head when it comes to the Yankees offensive issues.

    If you come from the school that Cano, Jeter and Arod will have better seasons than last year, and Matsui (who was having an all star season prior to his injury) and Posada will produce more than last year, a lot of their offensive issues will be solved.

    Their offense will also be helped by improved starting pitching. I don’t care how good your offense is, when you are in multi-run holes early in games, which the Yankees were in quite a bit last season, it makes it tougher for the offense.

  87. Laura - Ready for '09 November 18th, 2008 at 12:13 pm

    –All the stuff Laura wrote is nice, but when it comes down to it, the Yankees will probably sign Pettitte because *he is still a valuable pitcher*.

    Well, there’s that too! :)

  88. Bronx Jeers November 18th, 2008 at 12:13 pm

    Burnett turned down 4/56 mil form Toronto but will take 4/60 mil from Yanks?

    That’s a lot of booing to swallow for 1 mil a year!

  89. mel November 18th, 2008 at 12:13 pm

    Jeremy,

    Absolutely correct. People want the Livans and the Washburns to eat innings. Why not Andy, who’s pitched in the AL most of his career? It’s one year, folks.

    JohnC,

    Don’t rule out Burnett to Boston. They need a pitcher, he’s filthy nasty, he and Josh are business partners, he’s a Yankee killer.

  90. ariel November 18th, 2008 at 12:13 pm

    Since my sense as to what the Yankees will or will not do, is no better or worse than the next guy, I will go “out on a limb” and “predict” that the Yankees will:

    (i) make a run for Teix; and if not successful, will

    (ii) sign Manny.

  91. GreenBeret7 November 18th, 2008 at 12:14 pm

    Wave Your Hat
    November 18th, 2008 at 11:51 am

    Meanwhile, we have no bench whatsoever. Our offense is likely to be no better, or not much better, than last year if all goes well. If anyone gets hurt, there is no one to fill in. What happens if the 2008 version of Cano or the 2008 version of Swisher is the 2009 version of Cano or Swisher? What happens if Gardner can’t hold down CF? What happens if Posada’s not ready to catch full time?

    ___________________________________________________________

    Ok, I’ll bite and play the “What if’ game with you.
    What if none of that happens?

    This is fun. We could play this for months.

  92. CB November 18th, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    “If we don’t get Teixeira, we could still always try to trade for Cameron or, as you suggest, try to sign Dunn. I don’t think gambling on Teixeira is all or nothing.”

    That’s reasonable. On the flip side, I do think you are underestimating conditional nature of signing Tex and the lost opportunities involved in trying to sign him.

    I agree that waiting for Tex won’t prevent them from getting additional offense.

    However, waiting on Tex would most certainly block them from getting a second starter on the free agent market.

    So if you wait to sign Tex you very well could end up empty – no Tex and a hole in your rotation at spot #3. That is a definite possibility in that and with all risks – there is a cost to them that needs to be accounted for.

    Essentially your bullets will remain in their chamber unfired if you come up short on Tex/ 3rd starter.

    A lot this gets back to how one evaluates Burnett and Lowe.

    But there’s no doubt in my mind that getting strung a long in the attempt to sign Tex has both real opportunity costs associated with it and real monetary costs.

    If Boras sees that the yankees have passed on Burnett and Lowe and they sign elsewhere he will have a ton – a ton of leverage.

    He’ll definitely know the yankees passed up on a significant need (#3 starter) in order to bid on tex.

    If that’s the case Boras will get an enormous deal for Tex.

  93. ZMAN7777 November 18th, 2008 at 12:16 pm

    Pettitte and his agent don’t want to take a haircut from last year’s $16 million. Are you kidding me?? The guy’s not even worth $10 million anymore. Let him wait.

  94. Laura - Ready for '09 November 18th, 2008 at 12:16 pm

    -Their offense will also be helped by improved starting pitching. I don’t care how good your offense is, when you are in multi-run holes early in games, which the Yankees were in quite a bit last season, it makes it tougher for the offense.

    You would think, but how many 2-1 or 3-2 games did they lose? The pitchers did their jobs in those games. The offense was no where to be found. I believe that in the end, pitching is king, but you can’t win a game if you don’t score enough runs. I think that we need to focus on both. This business of praying that Cano, Matsui and Posada are going to return to form might be wishful thinking. We just don’t know.

  95. Wave Your Hat November 18th, 2008 at 12:18 pm

    “If you come from the school that Cano, Jeter and Arod will have better seasons than last year, and Matsui (who was having an all star season prior to his injury) and Posada will produce more than last year, a lot of their offensive issues will be solved.”

    That basically gets us back to even, maybe a little better than even. Plus, that’s a lot to go right at the same time. On the other hand, Damon had a better than expected year last year, so combined with his age we might get less from him. Also, are you so sure the 2008 Jeter isn’t the real Jeter now? And, we haven’t had an injury free season in years. What’s the likelihood we will in 2009?

  96. Laura - Ready for '09 November 18th, 2008 at 12:18 pm

    –Ok, I’ll bite and play the “What if’ game with you.
    What if none of that happens? This is fun. We could play this for months.

    That shouldn’t be a problem. The season doesn’t start until April. You’ve got time. :P

  97. Laura - Ready for '09 November 18th, 2008 at 12:20 pm

    -The guy’s not even worth $10 million anymore. Let him wait.

    I see that some fans have very short memories.

  98. Nick in SF November 18th, 2008 at 12:20 pm

    If Moose announces that he’s not retiring, I think that will help Pettitte and his agents come to their senses pretty quickly.

  99. mel November 18th, 2008 at 12:20 pm

    CB,

    Are you saying this is a big chess match between Cash & Boras using sleight of hand and smoke & mirrors?

    That signing Swisher has “appeared” to fill our 1B needs.

    That taking on 2 big FA pitching contracts “appears” to have emptied the coffers?

    And the Yankees “apparently” out of the mix decreases Tex’s leverage?

    And if the Yankees really wanted to, they could swoop in and sign Tex on more reasonable terms?

  100. GGTM November 18th, 2008 at 12:21 pm

    Thanks Pete … great work!

  101. Josiah from NC November 18th, 2008 at 12:22 pm

    What Buster Olney says on the Yankees possibly getting Burnett
    http://insider.espn.go.com/esp.....ney_buster

  102. Wave Your Hat November 18th, 2008 at 12:23 pm

    CB, you could be right and the Yanks could get stung. But if Teixeira signs with another team in the $18MM to $20MM per year range the Yanks will have blown it big time. Sometimes, you need to take some big chances to get a big return.

    I also think with the Cameron and Dunn plays out there, and others I’m sure I haven’t considered, Boras could not be too comfortable.

  103. bigjf November 18th, 2008 at 12:25 pm

    I can live with not getting Teixeira if the Yanks would get Dunn. Seems to me like there’s some inside conspiracy against Dunn, or maybe it is just Ricciardi and his dumb comments. But the idea that this guy stands to make less than Abreu makes him a great signing. At this point, he stands to have better offensive value and about equal defensively. For a guy who considers baseball a job and not a passion, he hasn’t called in sick very much at all in the past 5 years.

  104. Hunky Dave November 18th, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    My prediction for the yankees:

    1b=Swisher
    2b=Cano
    SS=Jeter
    3b=A-rod
    C=Posada, Molina
    Rf=Abreu
    Lf=Nady
    Cf=Damon
    DH=Matsui

    Gardner, as much as I love him, will primarily used as a pinch runner.

    The pitching I feel will be exactly like Pete has it. Moose won’t be back, we’ll have CC Wang Lowe/Burnett Pettite and JOBAWAWAWA

  105. Andrew (Official Scorer) November 18th, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    “Also, are you so sure the 2008 Jeter isn’t the real Jeter now? And, we haven’t had an injury free season in years. What’s the likelihood we will in 2009?”

    2008 featured an unusual amount of devastating injuries. That kind of thing doesn’t happen too often in back-to-back years, I don’t think. There will be injuries, but I think in 2008 the normal garden variety injuries would not have killed the Yankees like losing Wang, Posada and Matsui for almost the entire year did. As for Jeter, I think “2008 Jeter” is not a real certainty one way or another–for a big chunk of 2008 he was playing (probably) with a broken bone in his hand. His offense picked up later in the year. I think his doubles/home runs power is probably going to keep diminishing, but he will still get on base and he will still score runs.

  106. CB November 18th, 2008 at 12:28 pm

    mel,

    I have not idea what the yankees true projected budget for 2009 is nor what their true interest in Tex may be. No idea if they’ve decided it’s either CC or Tex, precluding both.

    But I do know this – the worst possible position they could be in in any negotiation with Boras for Tex would be if they don’t sign CC.

    If the yankee’s have not gotten CC done and go into January trying to sign Tex Boras will extract a ransom from them.

    The strongest position the yankees could possibly have is if they’ve signed CC, a #3 starter and have Swisher in tow.

    Again – I don’t think the yankees budget will allow for all of these signing. But going into negotiations for Tex with no outlandish needs will be the best way to deal with Boras.

  107. Wave Your Hat November 18th, 2008 at 12:32 pm

    CB, if Moose came back, under your scenario would he be a good enough #3 starter?

  108. mel November 18th, 2008 at 12:33 pm

    CB,

    Makes sense. Contrary to popular belief, I don’t think Swisher’s blocking Teixeira at 1B.

    If we lose out on Tex, I hope we can have a little fun driving up the price for Moreno. Lord knows it’s been done to us countless times.

  109. 86w183 November 18th, 2008 at 12:33 pm

    Sheets has made 28 FEWER starts than Burnett in the last four years and is unproven in the AL. To claim he is a better option is to announce your own lack of knowledge.

    I agree with concerns about the offense, but the Yankees are doing things in the right order. Settle the pitching with some combination of CC, AJ, Pettite, Mussina and then turn attention to one needed bat. Then you focus on the bench since the bullpen already has more good candidates than it has room for.

    If the Yanks can put together a killer rotation they will be extremely attractive to other FA who want to win. Money shouldn’t be a big issue since Mussina, Pa-guano and Pettite cost $ 42 M last year. CC, AJ and Pettite should cost about $ 50. Swisher is costing $ 5 M, while Giambi and Abreu cost over $ 40 M (buyouts count in previous contract under MLB tules).

    Thus they could sign Tex for $ 18-22 and still be under the 2008 payroll. They have plenty of money and leverage to put together the final roster. And they have plenty of time. First things first, and that’s the rotation.

  110. Fredo Corleone November 18th, 2008 at 12:36 pm

    “But going into negotiations for Tex with no outlandish needs will be the best way to deal with Boras.”

    The REAL best way is if there is little to no market for him. That won’t be the case.

  111. Lauren November 18th, 2008 at 12:36 pm

    Since you predict Abreu is going to the Cubs, who do you think will be hitting in the third hole in front of A-Rod???

  112. S.o.S.(first 11-10 nfl score in history.) November 18th, 2008 at 12:39 pm

    “CC’s just like the rest of us. No one wants to be the first to head towards the buffet.”

    mel,
    Im not sure whats worse. That or the person taking the last slice of Pizza.

  113. mel November 18th, 2008 at 12:39 pm

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/danpatrick/

    Great entries today.

    -The Philadelphia writer made some good points about the MVP voting.

    -The SI model Brooklyn Decker is Andy Roddick’s fiance

    -Heyman’s comments were good, but he lost me with his K-rod for MVP choice.

    -And finally, lots and lots of Erin Andrews.

  114. CB November 18th, 2008 at 12:40 pm

    “if Moose came back, under your scenario would he be a good enough #3 starter?”

    If it were up to me and Moose was willing to come back on a one year/short term deal I would sign CC and bring back Moose and Andy to be the #3 and #4.

    To me that would be the optimal arrangement. But it sounds like the yankees are convinced Moose will retire.

    The risk with depending on Moose and Andy is obviously their age but also what to do in 2010. Good chance they could both retire after 2010 (moose has a bad season, andy wants to pitch one season in the new park…). If that’s the case then they will have two gaping holes in their rotation in 2010 with a very bad free agent market for arms.

    I think they’ve made it a priority to only try integrating one young starter into the rotation in any given year.

    So part of the counterfactual that needs to be considered in passing on AJ is who would you sign next year if there are two empty slots in the rotation?

    I think all of these factors are coming into their decision making process – just as I think the liklihood of CC being available this year was part of the reason why they didn’t want to pay twice in talent and money for Johan last year.

  115. A-Fraud.. November 18th, 2008 at 12:40 pm

    damon will not be the centerfielder this year..

    Gardner will get extended playing time there. And sry to say it but abreu is gone. Unless he signs for a lot less then expected.

    On the pitching, i think we are making a mistake on burnett. Do i think he can be great yea? But how great? Thats to be determined. The thing that scares me his injuries. Why dish out soo much money to this guy, when he is injury prone. He reminds me of Carl Pavano. Once Burnett gets injuried, he has no incentive of getting back, he just sit and relax and look at the cash flow into his bank account.

  116. S.o.S. November 18th, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    Hunky Dave,
    If im not mistaken Cash has already stated that Damon wont play center this year.

  117. jason November 18th, 2008 at 12:43 pm

    Question about draft picks:
    Can you lose more than your one first round draft pick by singing a free agent?
    The Yankees have their 1st round, their replacement 1st round (Cole), their 2nd round, their replacement 2nd round (Bittle).
    Assume you lose Pudge and Abreu. You get a conditional for Pudge and a 1st and conditional for Abreu. Marte resigned so we lose that potential.
    Now: 1st round, replacement 1st round, 1st round Abreu (or a conditional if he goes to a bad team), supplemental Pudge, supplemental Abreu, 2nd round, replacement 2nd.
    Then: What if they sign CC and/or AJ and/or Lowe and/or Tex etc.
    Is the max they can lose their own 1st round pick? Or, can they lose the replacement and or compensation 1st round for Abreu? If they lose only their own first round pick, that theoretically gives them 2 picks in each of the 1st, supplemental and 2nd rounds.
    Thanks

  118. Laura - Ready for '09 November 18th, 2008 at 12:44 pm

    -Since you predict Abreu is going to the Cubs, who do you think will be hitting in the third hole in front of A-Rod???

    My guess would be Swisher.

  119. Ed - sign CC immediately November 18th, 2008 at 12:47 pm

    “Since you predict Abreu is going to the Cubs, who do you think will be hitting in the third hole in front of A-Rod???”

    Matsui will.

  120. mel November 18th, 2008 at 12:47 pm

    SoS,

    Did you just call someone hunky? :shock:

    Oi. Whattup with your Spurs? OT win over the Clippers? Manu’s traveling with the team, has he started practicing yet?

  121. SJ44 November 18th, 2008 at 12:48 pm

    Arod could hit third with Matsui 4th.

    Or, you can reverse the two.

    Or, you can hit Cano third.

    Swisher isn’t hitting third. He will hit in the bottom third of the order.

    That’s one reason why he is so valuable. A guy that sees as many pitches as he does, hitting in the bottom of the order, can really help an offense.

  122. Fredo Corleone November 18th, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    Jason:

    Yankees will lose their SCHEDULED 1st and 2nd round picks with the signing of Sabathia and Burnett. Their comp picks for Cole and Bittle are protected. Assuming Abreu signs with a Top 15 team (Cubs seem a likely destination) they’d have two late 1st rounders, two sandwich round picks, and their comp pick for Bittle late in the 2nd.

  123. bigjf November 18th, 2008 at 12:50 pm

    Swisher could eventually earn his way to hitting 3rd, or Cano could. I would start out with Matsui there, unless the Yanks make another acquisition.

  124. GreenBeret7 November 18th, 2008 at 12:51 pm

    Not likely that Swisher is batting anywhere in the top five spots. Matsui in the #3 and Posada in the #5 spot (unless Teixiera is signed), Nady #6, Cano at #7, Swisher #8 and center field in the #9 spot.

  125. Fud Selig November 18th, 2008 at 12:52 pm

    thanks Mel. There can never be too much Erin Andrews.

  126. Jeremy November 18th, 2008 at 12:54 pm

    I think the Yankees will add one more bat. My guess is Dunn, but the end result will probably be someone no one could see coming, like Swisher.

    Adding another bat could make the “who bats third” question moot, but in the meantime I’ll say ARod bats third, Matsui bats fourth. If we get Dunn, then he replaces Matsui.

  127. Wave Your Hat November 18th, 2008 at 12:55 pm

    CB-

    I guess it’s pretty clear I’d sign one of Moose or Andy, and pass on AJ. That means you have one starter slot this year among Hughes, Aceves, Kennedy and Coke. If you believe in your system, you have to think it’s a good bet that one of them will prove himself this year and can be a solid #4 starter next year even if Moose or Andy does not come back. Then you only need to find one guy next year.

    So, to need two guys, you need all of the minor league guys to not pan out, and both Andy and Moose not to come back. That seems like a pretty low probability event.

    If you sign CC AND AJ, chances are you won’t sign Teixeira. Chances are AJ gets 5 not 4 years. Chances are AJ won’t be great all five years. Chances are your offense will need help.

    Danger lurks around every corner. Gotta go to lunch.

  128. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 12:55 pm

    “Since you predict Abreu is going to the Cubs, who do you think will be hitting in the third hole in front of A-Rod???

    My guess would be Swisher.”

    The way the team is presently constituted you would be right, but I really hope they have a better plan for the no. 3 hitter. Swisher isn’t going to cut it there IMO, and we all saw what happened to him in Chicago when he was batting in an unnatural lineup spot for him.

    This is why I’m not sure the Yankees can say no to Adam Dunn. We need a guy with power and OBP to bat 3rd, and he has both AND is being undervalued in the marketplace. Unless anyone has a better suggestion for a no. 3 hitter (trading for DeJesus and batting him or Jeter 3rd is the only other plan I can think of) how can we not sign Dunner?

    Sure, JP Ricciardi called him lazy. But, although this is before my time, people used to call Mickey Rivers lazy too didn’t they? It’s not impossible to win with a character question mark like that, as long as the team by and large is being led by guys like Posada, Jeter, Mo and Swisher.

  129. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 12:57 pm

    okay, raise your hand if you’d rather have Matsui batting 3rd than Dunn.

    whats that? nobody? yeah, thats what I thought. Hideki really needs to hit 5th, A-Rod needs protection behind him too.

  130. jay destro November 18th, 2008 at 12:58 pm

    11:47am: Dan Graziano of the Newark Star-Ledger has a source saying the Cubs and Dempster have agreed on a four-year, $52MM deal.

    http://www.nj.com/yankees/inde.....ubs_s.html

    pretty good haul for a guy with one really good season considering. this sets the market for burnett and gets him closer to 58M – 65M over 4 years or 75 over 5

  131. SJ44 November 18th, 2008 at 12:58 pm

    Swisher isn’t hitting third.

    If the season started tomorrow, it would probably shake out pretty close to the following:

    Damon
    Jeter
    Matsui
    Arod
    Posada
    Cano
    Nady
    Swisher
    Gardner

    You could reverse Arod or Matsui, or even change spots between Cano and Matsui.

    Either way, Swisher isn’t hitting third. That’s not why they acquired him.

  132. S.o.S. November 18th, 2008 at 12:59 pm

    mel,
    Ill take a win anyway we get it. Manu and TP are expected to come back mid December. Not sure if Manu has started practicing with the team. Never thought we would see a 3 game winning streak before those guys came back. It seems like we will probably end up with a lower seed. Maybe we can replicate what the Rockets did in a lower seed between Jordans retirement. Do you guys have any injuries yet?

    Colts and Pats might be fighting for a wild card and Chargers look out of it. Who would have predicted that at the start of the season. The tie breaker we have with Pats,Ravens and Steelers might be the difference.

  133. Fredo Corleone November 18th, 2008 at 12:59 pm

    “okay, raise your hand if you’d rather have Matsui batting 3rd than Dunn.”

    Consider mine raised.

  134. SJ44 November 18th, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    Where does Adam Dunn play on this team? He’s an awful OF and can’t play first base.

    Matsui is the DH. Don’t see where Dunn fits in the equation unless they trade Matsui, which is unlikely.

  135. mel November 18th, 2008 at 1:02 pm

    SoS,

    Knock on wood, no. Weird season, all around. The Wolves & Grizzlies looking good and the Clips have won only 1 game. Dallas & Hornets look off-kilter, but the Suns look like they’re back.

    Pats need a lot of help. The young QBs look good. Cassell, Quinn (!), Flacco, and Ryan.

  136. Matt November 18th, 2008 at 1:03 pm

    CC can bat 3rd!

    joke of course, but that guy can do a lot with the bat

  137. Andrew (Official Scorer) November 18th, 2008 at 1:03 pm

    “Good chance they could both retire after 2010 (moose has a bad season, andy wants to pitch one season in the new park…). If that’s the case then they will have two gaping holes in their rotation in 2010 with a very bad free agent market for arms.”

    In that fake scenario, you have to think that there could possibly be trade partners, or that it’s possible that in 2009 more than just one of the young starters will break through due to injury. Obviously it is all a guessing game and way too premature at this point, but the Yankees have so many young pitchers that it’s a possibility that they could go into 2010 with either a)even more valuable trading chips than they have this offseason or b)more than just 1 young starter that has succeeded at the ML level. Most people know who the candidates are for 2009 breakthrough success, and I personally hope that the rotation looks something like CC/Wang/Joba/2010 trade-acquired starter/Young starter who succeeded in 2009 if your scenario of Moose and Pettitte both coming back plays out. I think there is always the off-chance of a Japanese import, as well, since isn’t Yu Darvish due for posting one of these days?

  138. ariel November 18th, 2008 at 1:04 pm

    Matsui and Posada sandwiching A-Rod!! If that doesn’t cry out for Teixeira, I don ‘t know what does!!.

    What is the likelihood of both Posada, a lifetime .277 hitter, now at the ripe old age of 38 ,coming back from a serious injury and manning a burdensome defensive position, and Matsui, with two reconstructed knees both being (i) injury free…playing at least 125 games, and (ii) having productive seasons ?

    Possible, but not very likely..not of such probability to “bet” your season on it. If they don’t the lack of consistency issue that was the black plague all of last year will continue to rear its ugly head.

  139. saucY November 18th, 2008 at 1:07 pm

    “Pettitte and his agent don’t want to take a haircut from last year’s $16 million. Are you kidding me?? The guy’s not even worth $10 million anymore. Let him wait.”

    Pettitte should definately expect a haircut.. especially if he signs with the yankees.

    NO HIPPIES!

  140. Fredo Corleone November 18th, 2008 at 1:07 pm

    “Pats need a lot of help.”

    They beat Miami this Sunday, they’re fine. If they lose, they’re in deep dutch.

  141. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 1:10 pm

    ““okay, raise your hand if you’d rather have Matsui batting 3rd than Dunn.”

    Consider mine raised.”

    OK, well I’m interested to hear your rationale. If Matsui hit 3rd, who would hit 5th? Would A-Rod be protected adequately? Would love to see him get more pitches to hit this year and I’m a proponent of that by any means possible. Matsui will be serviceable in front of or behind him, but IMO there’s nobody else on the team right now that would be serviceable in the other spot he doesnt fill. Maybe Cano when he’s red-hot in July, but if we dont win enough games in April and May, that wont matter.

  142. Jeremy November 18th, 2008 at 1:11 pm

    Dunn plays LF, Damon plays CF, Matsui is the DH.

    It’s doable unless Damon is incapable of playing CF.

  143. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 1:12 pm

    “mel
    November 18th, 2008 at 1:02 pm
    SoS,

    Knock on wood, no. Weird season, all around. The Wolves & Grizzlies looking good”

    My Heat look pretty decent too! Maybe not a playoff team, but definitely better than the Wolves and the Grizz if you ask me. Theyre inconsistent though but thats to be expected with 2 rookies in the starting 5. Theyre a lot of fun to watch though and are almost never out of a game. Sometimes they even play defense!! :0

  144. ariel November 18th, 2008 at 1:15 pm

    I would like to think that Cashman will wake up and not engage in a “Santana like” folly. To stand pat on the starting lineup because there is no dry powder left, will be an irreversible error in judgment.

  145. Fredo Corleone November 18th, 2008 at 1:20 pm

    “Would A-Rod be protected adequately?’

    1) He shouldn’t need protection.
    2) Injuries aside, his ’08 season with Giambi behind him was slightly better than his career average.
    3) Dunn isn’t a 3 hitter. In his 560 PA’s as a #3 hitter, he hit .221 with an .800 OPS
    4) Dunn’s a .225 hitter with RISP. .242 with men on. .269 with runner on 3rd and less than two out. Matsui is .302, .300 and .460 respectively in those spots.
    4) You want a career .247 hitting strikeout machine, who’d be learning a new league, hitting 3rd on this team instead of a proven entity like Matsui?

    That about covers it.

  146. SJ44 November 18th, 2008 at 1:20 pm

    Dunn is a terrible OF and Damon can’t play 140+ games in CF anymore.

    They would be doing precisely what they said they don’t want to do…..sacrifice defense.

    What’s the sense of upgrading your pitching staff by downgrading your pitching?

    They have said time and time again Damon isn’t playing CF next year. Yet, some fans still don’t want to believe it.

  147. Ed - sign CC immediately November 18th, 2008 at 1:21 pm

    update >>>>>

  148. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 1:25 pm

    “Dunn plays LF, Damon plays CF, Matsui is the DH.

    It’s doable unless Damon is incapable of playing CF.”

    My thoughts exactly. Damon can still play some CF, not every day but thats where Gardner comes in. Dunn could also play 1b on the days Swisher plays the OF although I also wanted to see Miranda get a look at 1b on those days. But Dunn could also DH some when Matsui needs time off. I think Matsui will rebound from his injury, but we can’t act like his age and recent health aren’t issues. I’d feel much better about having some sort of insurance policy at DH for him, and Dunn is also that.

    Out of Swisher, Damon, Matsui and Dunn, 3 of those 4 guys can play more than 1 position so I don’t think we’d have too tough a time finding AB’s for everyone. It’s only for 1 year then Dunn becomes the full time DH. And if, worse comes to worse, by July all 4 of those guys plus Gardner are making a case for daily playing time, then we just deal Damon or Matsui at the deadline.

    It’s easy and makes too much sense.

  149. John in DC November 18th, 2008 at 1:27 pm

    Pete – your predictions look solid, but I’d say your short in terms of years of the contracts on a few of them. I suspect, Burnett is likely to get 5 years, Manny 4, Lowe 4, Dunn 4, Sheets 3 and Dempster 4. I personally think it’s nuts to give Burnett a 5 year deal or Lowe a 4 year deal, but it seems like that’s what the market is bearing.

  150. SJ44 November 18th, 2008 at 1:32 pm

    What part of Dunn is a horrible defensive player gets lost on you?

    What has Cashman said the priority is for the off-season? Upgrade starting pitching and defense.

    Signing Adam Dunn accomplishes none of the above.

    If Adam Dunn played LF, you wouldn’t need Johnny Damon in CF. You would need Usain Bolt to cover the ground needed to make it work.

    Adam Dunn isn’t the answer to anything. In fact, signing him would create more problems because no matter where you put him, you can’t hide his hideous defense.

    The only place he fits is as a DH and the Yankees have a DH.

    Its not a fit.

  151. BBB (just say no to Peavy for Cano) November 18th, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    “Injuries aside, his ‘08 season with Giambi behind him was slightly better than his career average.”

    Wow, I did not know that. Imagine how much better his season would have been with someone better than Giambi hitting 5th though? I don’t have numbers in front of me but I looked a few weeks ago and Dunn’s OPS with RISP absolutely killed Giambi’s. There was about a 200 pt difference. By the middle of the season, opposing pitchers knew Giambi wasn’t going to hurt them much with RISP, so they used all their best pitches on A-Rod. I’d love to see that not happen this year, and as much as I love most things Matsui brings to the table, even with a strong rebound he won’t scare opposing pitchers like Dunn does.

    Don’t get me wrong, though. I’m not saying it’s the perfect marriage. You guys have very valid reasons for not wanting to sign him, I just think that there are also some valid reasons TO sign him. And I think the lineup has to get deeper than it is now, I’m fine with doing it some other way, but I can’t think of any other ways besides Dunn or perhaps Juan Rivera.

  152. Tarheelyank November 18th, 2008 at 1:39 pm

    Sign CC and O Hudson. Trade for D. Haren and C. Jackson With Hughes,Cano, Ajax and dollars starting our package. Our 1-4 SP for a long time will be:
    CC
    Wang
    Haren
    Joba
    Diamondbacks are hurting financialy. Haren makes a lot more sense long term then Burnet or Lowe. Am I dreaming or could we pull it off.

  153. dirtysouthyank November 18th, 2008 at 1:52 pm

    come on, haren? no way. as pete has said multiple times, hughes is too you AND too good to give up on. For me, cano is the same. And what are we going to do in the OF in a couple of a years without Ajax? Its the same problem we’ve talked about in the past, where you’re plugging holes short term just to screw yourself in the future. We’ve fallen into that trip for the last 5 years, and we can see how it worked out.

    I would be much more comfortable with burnett for 4 years. I think we do need another started to shore up the rotation, and I think he’s a food fit, but his risk makes him not worth five years.

  154. Taylor November 18th, 2008 at 1:53 pm

    I can guarantee that Dunn will get more than 3/$36M. Why would Abreu, a guy that is older, has less power, gets on base less, and plays worse defense (not that Dunn plays good defense), get a bigger contract than Dunn? Dunn will get 4/$60M at the very minimum.

  155. dirtysouthyank November 18th, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    HOWEVER, if we can do burnett AND lowe like the post suggests, i would be ok with burnett getting 5, even though he’s not worth it. I think we almost should get both, and not go after Pettite. I love Andy, he’ll always be a true yankee to me, but I think he should finish up in the NL. I think missing an opportunity to sign lowe AND burnett would be a mistake just to bring pettite back for one. Give lowe the 12/year that we want to give Pettite but for four years, then our rotation is:

    CC
    Wang
    Burnett
    Lowe
    Joba

    With many viable options for any injuries.

  156. dirtysouthyank November 18th, 2008 at 1:57 pm

    * first post, hughes is too young

  157. dirtysouthyank November 18th, 2008 at 1:59 pm

    and also, for all this talk about not thinking posada/matsui can back up ARod, we don’t have a choice but to go with that. If we sign a dunn or a giambi while matsui and posada are healthy we’re stuck with too many bats, again. Which means less reps for the players, which leads to none of them being consistently good. I think matsui CAN come back and will come back strong, and you have to give posada a chance after what we signed him for.

  158. Eric November 18th, 2008 at 2:02 pm

    Not only is Burnett injury prone, he also has a very flaky personality that I don’t think will co-exist with Girardi very well.

    I think your rotation for 09 looks like…
    CC, Wang, Lowe, Pettitte, Joba/Hughes

  159. Adam in LA November 18th, 2008 at 2:02 pm

    The more I look at what Cashman has said about Swisher, the more I see this move as brilliant. As SJ44, having a number 7 or 8 batter with the amount of walks he gets is phenomenal. Having a guy who can play so many positions is great. But I personally think this is going to be classic stealth Cashman. To me Swisher is also about going after Texeira. The Yankees look like they are out of it, but I think they will make a run at him after all. The Swisher move seemingly takes the Yankees out and potentially reduces the what Boras will come to accept on the Texeira deal right now. However, after Boras gets a large offer from Angels and can’t get the red sox to beat it, that is the perfect time for the yankees to beat the Angels offer.

  160. rconn23 November 18th, 2008 at 2:13 pm

    If the reports of the Yankees offering a 5-year $80 million for A.J. Burnett are true, it’s an unqualified disaster.

    I’m sure he’ll take it. No other team would be silly enough to offer a pitcher with so many question marks such a bloated contract. Awful decision making, a case of throwing bad money after good.

    Five years for an injury riddled power pitcher who will be 37 at the end of the contract is laughable.

    I question overbidding on C.C., but he’s clearly the number one pitcher on the market, and the Yankees desperately need an ace.

    However, overbidding for a pitcher with as many questions as Burnett just makes no sense.

  161. Bryan November 18th, 2008 at 2:22 pm

    Burnett ranked third in the majors in strikeout ratio among starting pitchers, at 9.39 per nine innings.

    After the All-Star break, Burnett was one of the best pitchers in the majors, going 8-2 with a 2.86 ERA, while striking out 105 batters and walking just 29 in 94 1/3 innings. In other words, at the end of the ’08 season, he was throwing better than he has for any extended period in his career.

    Among starting pitchers who threw at least 20 innings against the Red Sox — and there weren’t many of them — Burnett was better than anybody other than Roy Halladay against Boston, going 2-0 with a 2.60. He had a 3.15 ERA against the Rays, with a record of 1-2. And he completely dominated the Yankees. In other words, the Yankees know he can handle the stress of pitching in the AL East.

    Burnett, who turns 32 in January, made 34 starts and 35 appearances and threw 221 1/3 innings, all career highs.

    Some stuff that would scare you:

    He has had three seasons in his career in which he pitched more than 173 innings.

    He has had five seasons in which he has thrown fewer than 173 innings. Burnett’s overall numbers from 2008 are excellent, but he ranked 75th in the majors in quality-start percentage, just ahead of Jeff Karstens.

    http://insider.espn.go.com/esp.....ney_buster

  162. ariel November 18th, 2008 at 3:03 pm

    A pre-emptive bid for CC is a worthwhile gamble, for Burnett, it is not. A market bid for Lowe demonstrates desparation but fortunately he will find his way back to Boston.

  163. David November 18th, 2008 at 3:04 pm

    The Yankees have never been bashful with spending…so all 3 (CC…Burnett…Tex) should be signed…if they don’t go after Tex, then they probably have a deal they’re working on for a 1B that would include Hughes.
    Jacobs would’ve been a perfect fit at the new stadium…and still might.

  164. Tom K November 18th, 2008 at 3:09 pm

    “He has had five seasons in which he has thrown fewer than 173 innings. Burnett’s overall numbers from 2008 are excellent, but he ranked 75th in the majors in quality-start percentage, just ahead of Jeff Karstens.”

    I bet if you take the guys who only made a handful of starts (like Karstens) out of the equation, Burnett moves up the list.

    I am not in favor of Burnett, myself – but I am going to doubt he was ranked 75th amongst pitchers who made a significant number of starts last year.

  165. 86w183 November 18th, 2008 at 3:53 pm

    Derek Lowe was terrible his last two seasons in the AL with a road ERA over 6 both seasons. His LA numbers are artificially impressive because of pitching in Dodger Stadium and in the wesakest division in the game. He’ll be 36 in June. This is the worst kind of FA to go after. Old, overrated and lacking an AL resume’.

    SJ— I get the idea of improving the defense, but Swisher alone is not enough to make a major impact in that regard. He’s better than Giambi, but I don’t think Nady is appreciably better than Abreu. If Cashman is serious about improving his defense he’s sign Teixiera, play Swisher in RF and make the best deal he can for Nady, Matsui or Damon with Damon the player I’d least want to see moved.

  166. Dave November 18th, 2008 at 3:58 pm

    These projections are a bit too Yankee-centric for even the most die-hard fan. I’m a huge Yankee fan too but come on….it might help if you placed at least one of these pitchers with someone like the Braves or another club with a lot of money to spend this winter.

  167. E-Man November 18th, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    “Bobby Abreu: It would be nice for the Yankees if he accepted arbitration and came back for a year. But he makes too much sense for the Cubs. They need a lefty hitter and a right fielder. Prediction: Cubs for three years and $44 million.”

    NO WAY!

    As good of a hitter as Bobby is, his biggest weakness is that he’s afraid of the wall. How do you think he’d react to that BRICK wall at Wrigley? It makes no sense for him to go there.

  168. XYFloyd November 18th, 2008 at 4:36 pm

    Wow this site is amazing I can’t believe its completely free.. i didn’t believe it at first but tried it because it was so easy to make money.. anyhow I made like 5 bucks in 5 mins of works and they paid me that night.. so this site is legit. Its seriously so easy to do you won’t believe you are getting paid to do it..
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  169. Kevin November 18th, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    Why don’t you just say “I’m a homer” EVERYONE is coming to the Yankees…I mean whats the point of posting a prediction thread if you’re going to be completely biased about it…Use some real reporting and actually find a reason to write a column.

  170. Doctor D November 18th, 2008 at 5:00 pm

    Ok, here we go.

    Sign Teixeira. He is an excellent investment, and you are going to need him in an Abreu/Giambi free line-up.

    CC will then sign, so will Burnett. Then get Moose back, let Andy go, or get Andy back and send Moose a retirement gift.

    Make the moves. We then won’t need Lowe because we will have the following:

    CC
    WANG
    BURNETT
    ANDY MOOSE
    JOBA
    HUGHES
    ACEVES

    That’s not bad

  171. bru November 18th, 2008 at 7:14 pm

    Laura – Ready for ’09
    November 18th, 2008 at 11:40 am
    -Why would the yankees give pettite 12 mill a year?

    I don’t know. Maybe it’s because he is a beloved Yankee, who on several occasions, has come up big for his team. Maybe it’s because he’s got 4 WS rings with a NYY insigna on them. Maybe it’s because he’s a good man and a great teammate, who gives 110% every time he’s on the mound. Maybe it’s because they just feel like it. Need any more reasons?

    ————————————————————

    thank god laura is not running the yankees..

    that formula is why boston pulled ahead of the yakees,the yankees have the highest payroll with the smallest return on investment and can’t move a contract to save their lives.

    pettitte has gotten rich many times over and can sit by the pool every day for the rest of his life.it is time he takes a discount and returns to his roots and plays for the love of the game if they remember how.

  172. Michael November 19th, 2008 at 10:50 am

    Peter,
    There is no way Tex signs for $18 million/year. Vernon Wells and Torii Hunter both make this. The bidding will start at around 21-22 million per/year. Its going to take more like 8yrs./ 175-180 million to sign Tex, mark my words.

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