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A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News

Cashman explains arbitration decision

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Misc on Dec 01, 2008 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Here’s Brian Cashman on why the Yankee did not offer arbitration to any of their free agents:

“The determination we made today was to make sure that we control what amount we’d be spending at least in the event that we’re fortunate enough to bring those players back. We did not want to put ourselves in a position of having that determined by a third party without knowing what that figure would be. The arbitration time period falls in early February, so obviously as we attempt to put this team together, in Andy’s case and Bobby’s case, they made $16 million last year. It’s been tough in the past to try and deviate from previous years earnings in an arbitration setting. We wanted to be able to control the cost that we would allocate for every position on the club.

“Even though we wanted draft picks if we lost anybody, by offering arbitration we would lose out ability to determine a final cost. So by doing so, we chose to go a different direction, not offer arbitration and we’ll still stay engaged with the entire free agent market including those two players.”


Or as the honorable Judge Elihu Smails would put it, “You’ll get nothing and like it.”

The Yankees are acting a little small-market here. I can understand not wanting to bring Pettitte back at $16 million. But would a year of Abreu at $16 million or even $17 million be so awful?

They’re showing a lot of faith in Xavier Nady and Hideki Matsui – unless Cashman has something else in mind.





137 Responses to “Cashman explains arbitration decision”

  1. Phil Parcells December 1st, 2008 at 6:46 pm

    Caddyshack = Greatest. Movie. Evah.


    I guess it makes sense that onley means one thing Cashman want to go after Adam Dunn

  3. Buddy Biancalana December 1st, 2008 at 6:47 pm

    Maybe The Yanks re-sign Abreu to a 2 year deal for $30M & trade Hideki, Damon or Nady.

  4. Nick December 1st, 2008 at 6:47 pm


  5. yankeefan91 (sign c.c asap) December 1st, 2008 at 6:48 pm

    i still think we need that ig bat behind arod no protection we need sumbody clutch like manny i dont care hes agin he kan hit a he provede that alreadyyyy arod batting third and manram behind

  6. Phil Parcells December 1st, 2008 at 6:50 pm


    this decision would make a good poll question.

  7. Mr. Exceptional December 1st, 2008 at 6:51 pm

    I disagree with you Pete.

    Abreu at $16 or $17 million is just too much.

    Cashman made the right call.

    Abreu’s defense could not be tolerated for another year.

  8. The Mad Prince in Pinstripes December 1st, 2008 at 6:51 pm

    Wow, you seriously just quoted Caddyshack huh?


    Do you do ___ Danny?
    Then what’s the problem?

  9. Kevin December 1st, 2008 at 6:51 pm

    This is the lull before the storm. No way the Yanks go into their new billion-dollar Stadium acting like a small market team. My explanation is that Tex and CC will be signed. CC because the Yanks need him and it’s the best way to insure a post season in the new Stadium. Tex because it makes too much sense. Swisher will be in right, which is why the Yanks aren’t even taking a chance that Abreau will accept arbitration, and Tex will be at first base. Exciting times ahead!

  10. The Mad Prince in Pinstripes December 1st, 2008 at 6:52 pm


    Remember, we have Posada and Matsui coming back…or at least that is the assumption. Ere go, we don’t technically need a 5 hole hitter if they stay healthy.

  11. Joe from Long Island December 1st, 2008 at 6:53 pm

    These are cold, business decisions. And I would not be surprised if Cash and the Yanks do indeed have something in mind, besides saving money.

  12. AROD fan December 1st, 2008 at 6:53 pm


    Oh, let’s hope!

    Change for America!

  13. no.27 December 1st, 2008 at 6:53 pm

    Based on a 180 day season, the Yankees would have risked less than $9 million to offer arbitration to Abreu, Pettitte, Marte, Pudge, and Mussina with the possibility of getting up to NINE draft picks.

    Does anyone know how many days a 1 year baseball contract is based on?

  14. Mr. Exceptional December 1st, 2008 at 6:56 pm

    Maybe Abreu will join Pettitte in LA…since they’re not signing Manny.

    Torre’s probably been on the horn to both of them.

  15. Steve December 1st, 2008 at 6:58 pm

    Brian Cashman is a penny pinching loser.

  16. PAT M December 1st, 2008 at 6:59 pm

    It’s apparent that the plan is to clear money and roster spots….Cashman was not about to run the risk of Aberu accepting arbitration regardless of the June draft….He must see the market much differently than we do…..Bad time to be an emancipated ballplayer…..More changes to come I think…..Yanks will be writing checks to the selected few……

  17. The Mad Prince in Pinstripes December 1st, 2008 at 6:59 pm


    And then who plays CF?

    Both CC and Tex will not be signed by the Yankees…one or the other maybe, but not both.

    Let it go people.

  18. Mr. Exceptional December 1st, 2008 at 6:59 pm

    Cashman was also asked about the Yankees finances.

    He had this to say: It’s easy to grin when your ship comes in and you’ve got the stock market beat. But the man worthwhile, is the man who can smile, when his shorts are too tight in the seat.

  19. yankeefan91 (sign c.c asap) December 1st, 2008 at 7:02 pm

    we need clutch hittin people we need a clutch hitter we lost alot of games like this but i noe are priorities are pitching but we need that big bat

  20. Kevin December 1st, 2008 at 7:04 pm

    Since when have we been concerned about payroll?

  21. yankee21 December 1st, 2008 at 7:04 pm


    How dare you have optimism in your post and keep a clear head that maybe things will work out.

    Don’t you know this is prime time for knee jerk reactionism and one of the key dates on the calendar for second guessing.

    Haven’t you heard? Many in blog land have all the facts and all the insider information and all the player evaluation sheets, and on the contrary, Cash and his staff idly sit by and make snap judgements seemingly impervious to the consequences. Cash is an idiot and is bent on ruining the franchise. If you were to read many of the comments you’d be crazy not to conclude that Cash probably forgot this was arbitration day, probably could care less about the draft forgets key details and has also already turned his back on ever negotiating with Abreu or Pettitte again.

    Get with the program….

  22. GreenBeret7 December 1st, 2008 at 7:06 pm

    One thing that it does do is clears the payroll to sign three bigger names than they lost. NYY was restricted to signing three A and B type Free Agents. Conceivably, they could sign Sabathia, Burnett and Teixeira and still keep payroll at around 175-180 million dollars.

    No, I’m not saying this will happen, but, it could be done.

    Another possibility is that owners are flooding the market with their free agents, thereby raising the supply and lowering lowering salaries.

  23. Kevin December 1st, 2008 at 7:08 pm

    Mad Prince,

    Adding Swisher & Tex allows a Gardner experiment in CF. If he can hit, he leads off. If not, he bats 9th. CC is the key to the staff, Tex is the key to run production and Gardner adds another weapon – speed. And it all makes the payroll reasonable, at least in terms of the Yankee Universe. It works for me.

  24. murphydog December 1st, 2008 at 7:08 pm

    What’s the arbitration decision about?

    Well, IMO, a large part of it is that The Dow Jones Industrials was down nearly 700 points today and it was just one more bad day among so many others. Hey, we are officially in a recession and a scary global one at that. These Federal Bozos better know what the heck they are doing. (“Change we can believe in” does not equal living in a cardboard refrigerator box and eating cat food as far as I’m concerned).

    I think most owners are going into shock when it comes to payroll for next year and the year after that and the year after that. Entertainment is an extra, not a necessity. Baseball tickets are going to be a lot lower on everybody’s shopping list for a couple of years, not a couple of months. And if people go to the games, they will buy less beer and no concessions. This economy could do what the league has been unable to do – cause constriction and force a couple of team owners to fold.

    The point: $16 or $17 million is starting to look like a helluva lot of money again – a lot more than it was worth last year especially with any risk attached to the players seeking that kind of moolah. Good luck to Abreu or Pettitte getting anything close to those numbers if not with the relatively rich Yankees.

  25. The Mad Prince in Pinstripes December 1st, 2008 at 7:09 pm


    We got plenty of big bats if we stay healthy.

  26. yankeefan91 (sign c.c asap) December 1st, 2008 at 7:12 pm

    The Mad Prince in Pinstripes

    thats a big ifffffff

  27. JeffG December 1st, 2008 at 7:13 pm

    tap tap tap…this thing on???

    Hello? Stock market collapsed 680 points today.

    Goldman Sachs. Bear Stearns. Citi. JP Morgan. All gone or collapsing. White shoe law firms firing slews of attorneys or folding. Who do you think buys those luxury suites and field level boxes?

    And how much money did the Yankees lose on YES with a mediocre, boring product and no playoff games?

    Economic reality is what it is, and Cashman is operating in a whole different world than existed even three months ago. Dumping $50million next year on Pudge, Abreu and Andy is sheer madness.

    Get used to a new Yankees folks.

    Brother can ya spare a DH?

  28. Tom December 1st, 2008 at 7:14 pm

    The payroll, before the pay raises to Wang, Nady, and Bruney is about 140 million bucks. Throw in the 10 those 3 will make and the Yankees already have 150 locked in.

  29. get cc December 1st, 2008 at 7:16 pm

    I say dont sihn pettite come on guys its time for a change we need to get younger watching pettite pitch 7 inngs and 4 earned runs is what he brings to the table where you could use a younger guy like hughes,kennedy acceves or sanchez its time for a change wee need to get younger wee need young freash faces just like the 1990′s lets someone a shot at glory
    09 rotation

  30. dave December 1st, 2008 at 7:16 pm

    I have a feeling that people would defend Brian Cashman somehow if he said that the yanks were conceding to the sox. This is ridiculous. Just admit it – this is a bad decision.
    I dont even understand your comment. How would the yanks offering abreu arbitration result in a multiyear deal for him? Cash has constantly and consistently said two things: one, he is interested in improving the farm system (sometimes it would seem at the expense of the major league club.) Two, that he loves short one year contracts with higher salaries than long term contracts with lower average annual salaries. This arbitration situation goes completely against cashman’s own philosophies. Not only did he potentially flush multiple first round draft picks down the toilet. But he did that, to ensure that the yanks dont get stuck with two one-year contracts. Cash has done some pretty foolish things in his tenure as GM but this ranks right up there. I just dont see any possible explanation and im sure it is not about the money as he claims. You dont offer the highest pitcher contract in the history of the MLB and the two weeks later snub a franchise player for a couple of million.
    If either of these players sign elsewhere, cashman looks like an idiot because we get nothing in compensation. Furthermore, if either player re-sign for more than one year and/or not at a significantly reduced salary from last year, cashmans again looks like a fool. He really put himself into a corner with this one. But im sure the media will somehow spin it to look like brilliance. Really, the move is incomprehensible and whats worse, there is really very little routes in which the yankees FO comes out of this looking smart.

  31. i am the walrus December 1st, 2008 at 7:18 pm

    That garbage that Cashman gave out makes me wonder even more about him. It seems as though he either doesn’t know the rules in arbitration for these players and the hard hand that the organization has with regard to this, or he is working for some team other than the Yankees.

    This move makes it more likely for other teams to bid on the services of these players. If the Yankees do want to keep them then they have other teams bidding against them and no concerns over having to give up draft picks.

    I was not really concerned over Cashman leaving or staying, now I think it would have been better had he gone. His decisions just do not make a lot of sense.

  32. MP December 1st, 2008 at 7:20 pm

    By 2011,

    Dodgers = Yankees of 07 in roster/coaching/everything.


    get cc your right except for the spelling errors
    09 rotation
    and Pete isnt the blue jays listining to offers for Halladay?

  34. LathamJoe December 1st, 2008 at 7:21 pm

    I believe that Cashman makes a run at Manny – 3 years/$85 Mil. He plays RF in Yankee Stadium – not much worse than Abreu. He DH’s in ballparks with more spacious right fields.

  35. dave December 1st, 2008 at 7:21 pm

    Putting abreu in a marte like situation in which he is offered less money for a multiyear deal is not a better situation. I dint like it when cash did it with marte and i especially wouldnt like it for a player of abreu’s age. One year deals are the best deals in baseball. Abreu was our second best hitter – one year and 16 million if a good price for a number three hitter. His defense was tolerable for one more season. Particularly, if we got an upgrade in another position like first base. And abreu would most likely have declined.

    I SWEAR CASHMAN GETS DUMBER AND DUMBER EVERY DAY. He managed to say alot to explain his decision but to me, all it did was explain why they should have offered arbitration. It really read we are being cheap in this situation and andy pettitte will be pissed off when he hears we are standing firm against giving him the same salary as last season (even though he did just as well as 2007) but we are willing to offer CC 140 million as an opening bid and increase the offer even though he hasnt said a word to us. Wow, that should really make Andy feel wanted right! We might as well wave goodbye to him now as we wave goodbye to our draft picks. so much for cash’s unwavering commitment to better the minor league system.

  36. Buddy Biancalana December 1st, 2008 at 7:23 pm


    Do you have to post a novel each time? I bet like myself, most people just skip your posts. The word “concise” is your friend.

  37. Jeff December 1st, 2008 at 7:24 pm

    Its starting to look like the Yankees will be nothing more than a third place team for awhile.

  38. dave December 1st, 2008 at 7:25 pm


    You would rather take manny for 3 yrs and 85 million over abreu for one year and 16 million. And with manny’s horrific defense? Not to mention, where is he playing? And how is his defense in yankee stadium? Seems like a cashman defense to me.

    I think this is the first time ive ever seen cashman criticized by multiple people in one post.

  39. RhapsodyInBlue December 1st, 2008 at 7:25 pm

    Very curious indeed, are things that bad financially for the owners of the other teams who would do the bidding for these free agents?

    There seems to be a pervading fear within the Yankee organization that some or all of these former Yankee players will not be signed by other teams and will return to the Bronx with the salaries awarded through arbitration.

    What possible other reasons would there be to turn your back on this many draft picks?

  40. sabernar December 1st, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    Abreu’s (lack of) defense canceled out any plus side of his offense. Nady is a below average defender, but he’s still light years ahead of Abreu’s defense in 2008. $16M for an average right fielder? No thanks.

  41. dave December 1st, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    Buddy – i have alot to say sometimes. Just browse through it and you can catch the jist anyway.

  42. Yankee Trader December 1st, 2008 at 7:27 pm

    “One thing that it does do is clears the payroll to sign three bigger names than they lost. NYY was restricted to signing three A and B type Free Agents. Conceivably, they could sign Sabathia, Burnett and Teixeira and still keep payroll at around 175-180 million dollars.

    No, I’m not saying this will happen, but, it could be done.

    Another possibility is that owners are flooding the market with their free agents, thereby raising the supply and lowering lowering salaries.”

    Good points. Abreu, IMO, will be lucky to get a two year deal for 24M. Dye on the trade block and there is more interest in him and his 11M contract, which the Sox, will still probably have to pick up a portion.

    Pettitte worth no more than John Smoltz. He should get no more than 11 million, same as Mussina last year.

    Pudge will be lucky to get half per year of last years 12.5 million.

    Something up Cashman’s sleeve??

  43. Dassit December 1st, 2008 at 7:28 pm

    Cardinals also declined to offer arbitration to their FAs. 1 type A and 2 type B’s. (

  44. stuart December 1st, 2008 at 7:29 pm

    besides abreu and pettitte not being worth $16 mill a year they should have signed them. afterall posters here think the Yanks overpaying by a lot is OK.. They think it has no affect on other siginings or the Yanks overall profitability.

    Didn’t you know the Yanks can print money just like the Fed……

    Clowns you think the present economic downturn will have no affect on salaries???

    Dream on…. Ask K rod how the increase in salaries is working out for him…….

  45. Kill.Schill(ing) December 1st, 2008 at 7:30 pm

    Will the stupidities of Brian Cashman never cease to amaze.

    Theo Epstein he wants to be compared to?

    I’m not even sure he’s a better GM than Jim Duquette.

    Want to know why the Red Sox are better right now than the Yankees go look at the players they selected as draft compensation when Pedro, Lowe, and Orlando Cabrera left after 2004.

    I wonder how all the Cashman sycophants who frequent this site will rationalize this decision. I can’t wait to laugh.

  46. bobo December 1st, 2008 at 7:30 pm

    ABSOLUTELY PATHETIC. We have 2 set guys in the rotation right now, pettitte accepting arbitration is the least of their worries. How can they get so cheap when they offered $140 million to sabbathia will presumably offer a significant package at least one more free agents such as burnett, lowe, manny etc. The chance to have acquired extra picks like this is not something that comes along often for the yanks. they completely botched this.

  47. David December 1st, 2008 at 7:32 pm

    Here’s one more reader who thinks Cashman made an obvious mistake regarding Mussina and a probable mistake regarding Abreu.

    I honestly wonder if the Yanks accidentally missed the deadline for offering arbitration and Cashman is fumbling around to trying to justify their error.

  48. stuart December 1st, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    Manny is not getting $85 mill for 3 years besides that Dave your arguement makes sense.

    People throw out these numbers like they are playing Monopoly.

    PEOPLE THE ECONOMY SUCKS, baseball players will learn sooner that it affects them also….

    Who is sponsoring these teams? WHo is buying the luxury suites? Merril or Lehman buying boxes at the stadium???

    GM go out of business or Ford and then things will get much much worse…

  49. stuart December 1st, 2008 at 7:34 pm

    Yeah give Pettitte $16 mill after all he kept his ERA under 5 and at 37 he will have a Moose like reevival this year..

    Oh my god only 2 starters under salary 3 months before spring training, panic time…

  50. BBFan December 1st, 2008 at 7:36 pm

    Initially it looked strange, but Cashman’s decision seems logical.

    Especially given the current financial situation.
    A few of my friends lost jobs. I commute to NYC for work and I find the trains nearly 15%-20% empty these days. This kind of situation is going to hurt even the Yanks. They will not have as much revenue thru ads on YES.

    One more thing. When every other club sees that Yanks are careful with their finances, they will be scared and scale down thier own budgets. Unless you are CC, it is the wrong time to be a FA. That includes Tex and Manny too.

    It is absolutely the right thing not to offer arbitration to Pettitte. I do not think he deserves more than 10 mil in the current market conditions and he will find out very quickly that no other team will offer him even that. The fact that other teams do not have to give up adraft picks will not make any difference. People who think otherwise are simply dreaming.

    Regarding Abrue, they may still sign him for a couple of years if the price is right. So far, no one even pursued him and that is reason enough to not offer arbitration. If he accepts, you are probaly stuck with about $18 mil (he had a good year unlike Pettitte)

    So, it seems Cash’s decison is logical :)

  51. Patrick December 1st, 2008 at 7:36 pm

    Really dumb decision by Cashman. I thought the team was going to put a large focus on strengthening the farm system? He just pissed away potentially 4 draft picks.

  52. LathamJoe December 1st, 2008 at 7:38 pm

    “You would rather take manny for 3 yrs and 85 million over abreu for one year and 16 million. ”

    Absolutely. He’s the greatest clutch hitter in baseball today – clutch in BIG GAMES! And he’s not any worse than Abreu in RF, especially at Yankee Stadium.

  53. Tom K December 1st, 2008 at 7:41 pm

    Yes, the economy is in bad shape…but it’s very hard to say that with a straight face when you see the money the Yankees offered to Sabathia…and since it has been rumored that the Yankees won’t be stopping with Sabathia.

    If the Yankees were scared about economics, we’d see them bargain shopping right about now. Something tells me though that we won’t be seeing John Garland or Randy Wolf in a Yankees uniform next year, though. Abreu’s money is simply going into the “Free Agent X” fund.

  54. Drive 4-5 December 1st, 2008 at 7:45 pm

    I don’t drink from the “Brian Cashman Is A Genius Kool Aid” like a lot of folks here do, but I do give him the benefit of the doubt here.

    They did offer CC Sabathia $140mil. It’s not like they are unwilling to spend. He’s trying to get some control over how he spends it.

    Cashman stockpiled minor league pitchers at the expense of position players with the thought in mind that pitchers are more valuable. I think the Yankees future very much depends on how he uses those assets. There is nothing above AA ball to help offensively,unless he chooses to rush Austin Jackson like he did Phil Hughes & Ian Kennedy.

  55. manny(yanksfan) December 1st, 2008 at 7:45 pm

    Get Manny!!!!!!
    And is not because we have the same name.

  56. bodhisattva December 1st, 2008 at 7:45 pm

    You sure you’re NOT Schilling? Bombast much?

  57. bru December 1st, 2008 at 7:48 pm

    it doesn’t matter what our rotation looks like now,it matters on opening day.

    cash will fill the slots.

    i just can’t understand not offering pettitte & abraeu arbitration.the picks turn teams around very quickly.

    am i missing something.i thought a team can cut a player in st after they accepted arbitration if the team does not wan’t the players?

    maybe there are cba rules,not sure.why not offer arbitration,cut them & collect the picks if it is allowed??

  58. yanksfanmc December 1st, 2008 at 7:48 pm

    Cash knows that Pettitte getting 16million next year probably makes Burnett an 18million year pitcher

  59. miggs December 1st, 2008 at 7:50 pm


    I agree with your post at 7:16 PM 100%

    Couldn’t have said it better myself.

  60. Drive 4-5 December 1st, 2008 at 7:50 pm


    The biggest difference between Bobby Abreu and Manny Ramirez is that Abreu never stood at home plate and purposely took 3 strikes just because his manager didnt get the memo that he was taking the night off.

  61. bru December 1st, 2008 at 7:51 pm

    i might understands it if it is not allowed & if they all accept adding 42-45 million might prevent the yankees from signing free agents.

    it seems like a lot of picks to pass up.

    thes picks can turn into more money in the long run than the yankees are trying to save.

  62. Stephen December 1st, 2008 at 7:52 pm

    Hey Andy and Bobby…the world needs ditch-diggers too!

  63. no.27 December 1st, 2008 at 7:52 pm

    I don’t mind not offering Pettitte arbitration because I am still hoping they will sign him to a 1 year deal for around $11mil.

    Not offering Abreu arbitration makes no sense. Even if he did take a 1 year deal, he could be cut and wouldn’t cost the Yankees that much. It’s really unlikely that Abreu would choose to accept that if they made it clear he was going to be cut.

    Pudge would be more likely to accept arbitration, but he would obviously be cut. It would be hard for him to find another team to sign him right before the season begins.

    Marte’s situation has already been dealt with, but it was another chance for Cashman to get draft picks and he chose against that.

    So Cashman is unwilling to risk about $5 million to get 5 draft picks. At the same time, he’ll offer Burnett a huge contract, give up a draft pick, and risk all that money on an injury prone pitcher.

  64. Beanietown December 1st, 2008 at 7:55 pm

    “They’re showing a lot of faith in Xavier Nady and Hideki Matsui — unless Cashman has something ese in mind.” – Peter Abraham
    That’s brings us to Manny Ramirez. Sometimes the forest is hard to see because of all the trees in the way.

  65. Whatever December 1st, 2008 at 7:57 pm

    Quick! Somebody get the torches, clubs and pitchforks and we’ll storm… uh…something..!!!

  66. Beanietown December 1st, 2008 at 7:57 pm

    “They’re showing a lot of faith in Xavier Nady and Hideki Matsui — unless Cashman has something ese in mind.” – Peter Abraham
    That brings us to Manny Ramirez. Sometimes it is hard to see the forest because of all the trees in the way.

  67. bru December 1st, 2008 at 7:58 pm

    no.27 :

    where are you getting a 5 million dollar figure?

  68. bru December 1st, 2008 at 8:01 pm

    until i know all the facts i can’t be upset.

  69. Mclovin December 1st, 2008 at 8:03 pm

    Abreu is gonna get a three year deal somewhere.And Rodriguez isn’t gonna be a third catcher.

    Cashman talks about youth but to offer nobody anthing is stupid.

  70. vinny-b *Behold the sword of Urlacher* December 1st, 2008 at 8:03 pm

    “The Yankees are acting a little small-market here”


  71. AROD fan December 1st, 2008 at 8:03 pm

    I have to say I like this decision.

    I don’t think the Yankees (or these players) are really what arbitration is designed for anyway. Is some arbitrator really going to decide that Giambi needs 30 million AND decide that howard needs 15 million?

    …It leaves us more options for the rest of the off-season.

  72. nyyfaninlaaland December 1st, 2008 at 8:05 pm

    For all the geniuses here who clearly understand the inner workin gs of the baseball market better than the Yanks GM, the point of all this is that the player market is shifting in a direction the owners want it to. The economic uncertainties are impacting demand for FA’s as more and more teams start reigning in their horns, and more players will be put on the trade block to clear salary.

    As a result, players are going to become more willing to sign shorter deals, even 1 year deals, and hope next years’ economy is a bit better. Meaning they’ll be more willing than anticipated to accept arb offers, as their shot at getting more cash may well be better there. FO’s view arb as virtually a guaranteed raise, so they’re more willing to take their chances on the market. There may even be an element of collusion here – Bud’s constant harping and economic guest speaker tour sure borders on that.

    I too was surprised Abreu wasn’t offered, but there’ve been no rumors about significant demand for him, so the concern he’d accept could be real. And the “flexibilty” from the Swisher dealwould go out the window if he accepted. Now they can continue to pursue Tex, Abreu, etc. With Pettitte, he’d very likely have accepted and the Yanks would wind up paying more than desired, perhaps taking that 3rd FA starter (with 1 likely Andy) out of play.

    It seems the owners are constraining the market by being cautious – planned or prudent. Works to their advantage. But we’ll see in the next 2 weeks what happens, as players and their agents might start pushing the pedal on making deals.

    Tough that the Yanks won’t get a couple of picks, but the makeup picks from ’08 in rounds 1 and 2 can’t be lost, so they’ve got that going.

    The dealsthat do comedown might be surprising on the low side this year. Lot of pressure on Tex and CC to act and make the market look healthy, but they’ll get their cash. It’s what follows that will tell the tale.

  73. Fredo Corleone December 1st, 2008 at 8:07 pm

    “Good points. Abreu, IMO, will be lucky to get a two year deal for 24M.”

    Disagree. I think a lot of teams were waiting on who would get arbitration. Abreu’s road to a contract just got a lot smoother.

  74. Drive 4-5 December 1st, 2008 at 8:07 pm

    A Rod fan,

    “…It leaves us more options for the rest of the off-season.”

    Not to mention 2 holes that still have to be filled.. 4th starter & #3 hitter.

  75. Beanietown December 1st, 2008 at 8:08 pm

    Can you smell what the Yankees are cooking?

  76. dave December 1st, 2008 at 8:08 pm

    So the explanation is that the yanks decline to offer arbitration in order to increase player supply thereby making FA much more affordable for other teams. Guess what guys? Other teams are the yankees competition. Why would the yanks make a decision which negatively effects them in order to lower salary costs for other teams? That is a horrendous explanation.


    After the yanks offered 140 million to CC (the largest contract in history for a pitcher) you cannot LOGICALLY assume that this decision is trying to tell teams that the yanks arent going to spend big so they shouldnt either. They are also opening up a new stadium – despite the current economy they are also probably raising ticket prices dramatically as well. You cannot say that this is a reflection that they feel they wont make any money next season – they will probably make the most in the history of the franchise.

    And teams would get detracted by the fact that they would have to give up draft picks. I remember cash siting that as a reason for a decision or two in the recent past. Finally, giving abreu a multiyear deal regardless of the avg annual salary would be less beneficial than giving him one year. Because he is old and probably will only be good for one more season. This decision is NOT LOGICAL whatsoever and the arguments have many holes.

  77. nyyfaninlaaland December 1st, 2008 at 8:09 pm

    And for those advocating just cutting players for the termination pay, apparently the union could file grievances in these cases. And 1/6 of $16+mil is still a lot of money to hand somebody to then play for someone else who will then get a great deal on the player.

  78. Vrsce December 1st, 2008 at 8:09 pm

    Well Peter, perhaps you should spend a few minutes with the business editor of your paper, then pass along a few pointers to the dreamers on this blog, who do not get that the world has changed.

    There is no need to offer arbitration to Andy P. and Bobby A. and be forced to overpay for them when no other team will come close to offering close to 16mm for either of them. Simple.

  79. Corey December 1st, 2008 at 8:10 pm

    I totally agree with Kevin…we dont need a new CF. Signing Tex, moving Swisher to RF, keeping Damon in LF and having Gardner in CF is a very feasible possibility. I say theres a very good chance Nady gets moved after that great season, but thats just me.

  80. bru December 1st, 2008 at 8:13 pm

    nyyfaninlaaland :

    very insightfull.if abraeu & pettitte accept arbitration can the yankees cut them in st & just pay the fee that is attached to the rule & still collect the picks.

    if they can is 4 picks worth whatever it would cost the yankees for pettitte’s & abraeu’s services for a month or so???

  81. murphydog December 1st, 2008 at 8:14 pm

    It’s not inconsistent to offer CC $140 mil and refuse to offer arbitration to Abreu, Pettitte and Pudge. CC is young, strong and is still peaking and is a cornerstone player. Abreu Pettitte and Pudge are plateu-ing, declining or toast (respectively). Why should the Yankees put themselves in a position to overpay for anyone with a serious, obvious downside/risk in this market? It’s not as simple as “offer arbitration and get draft picks.” Arbitration has to be offered and DECLINED, which means that the FA thinks he can sign somewhere else for better than the arbitration award. Then and only then are draft picks given as compensation.

    To borrow Clinton’s first presidential campaign slogan: “It’s the economy, stupid.” A lot has changed since the predictions of mid season ’08 and there’s even been a new economic reality since the end of the regular season. IMO, owners are re-evaluating their balance sheets. A dollar is going to be worth a dollar again – or maybe more like 55 cents.

    Is Pettitte really going to incite a bidding war? Sorry, but not offering arbitration to Pettitte was the right call. And Andy is still willing to talk to the Yanks despite no arbitration. As for Abreu, it’s not as clear. But I think the FA market is going to remain risk averse. Thus, late 30′s rightfielders who are statistically about to leap off the plateau into decline are not going to excite lots of huge offers.

  82. Drive 4-5 December 1st, 2008 at 8:14 pm


    Do the dreamers of the world also include Lonn Trost & Randy Levine? Are they still dreaming that in this economy $325 a ticket is market value? The fans arent the only ones with high expectations.

  83. boooo December 1st, 2008 at 8:15 pm

    screw draft picks, the yankees would just f them up anyway

  84. LathamJoe December 1st, 2008 at 8:15 pm

    “The biggest difference between Bobby Abreu and Manny Ramirez is that Abreu never stood at home plate and purposely took 3 strikes just because his manager didnt get the memo that he was taking the night off.”

    Drive 4-5:
    I agree that Manny is a headcase and his attitude sucks. But that is the biggest difference between the two????

    Ramirez is a world above Abreu as a clutch player. Even you can admit to that.

  85. dave December 1st, 2008 at 8:16 pm


    Manny hasnt played RF since 2002 and he wasnt even good back then. Manny could barely play LF in Fenway Park. He is only getting older and he is already 2 years older than abreu. He would clash with many of the personalities in the bronx. And you are talking about a 3 year deal at more than 25 million per season to a 36 year old player. And a player with a huge ego that manipulated the sox into trading him because he care about himself far more than the franchise he won a world series with. I am afraid to see how much he will “care” about the yankees. I would take abreu for one year and 16 million over manny for 3 years and 85 million any day of the week. Despite the difference in offense, abreu is clearly a better RF than manny. i DONT even think manny is capable of playing RF for a whole season – i dont even think he could played left field in yankee stadium. He would end up being our DH for two years and then, try to get the yanks to trade him so he can screw another team over.

  86. Drive 4-5 December 1st, 2008 at 8:20 pm


    IMO Manny Ramirez is one of the 10 best right handed hitters I’ve seen in the last 50 years. He’s that good.

    But his conduct over the last 3 years is inexcusable. If anything, he has proven that as soon as he feels “unhappy”, that he is willing to purposely undermine his performance. Is there anything worse in a professional athlete than to purposely withold their effort?

  87. AROD fan December 1st, 2008 at 8:21 pm


    Do the dreamers of the world also include Lonn Trost & Randy Levine? Are they still dreaming that in this economy $325 a ticket is market value? The fans arent the only ones with high expectations.


    Great post Drive 4-5!

  88. paulie December 1st, 2008 at 8:23 pm

    So what Cashman is saying is: Expect to see Man-Ram in the starting lineup in April 09.

  89. bru December 1st, 2008 at 8:25 pm

    we do not need manny to win.we don’t need cc,burnett,lowe,sheets either.

    we need to draft & develope players the right way at all cost.then and only then will we have a respectable payroll & a team that competes for years.

    i did not like the arod contract,posada one either.

    mo i like because mo is worth more than all of them combined.

    teams do it all the timw with much lower come the yankees can’t?

    i also believe that the owners will take advantage of the economy to the fullest to lower these crazy demands by players.

  90. nyyfaninlaaland December 1st, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    Finally – some here suggest that in arb Abreu would get $16MM – and no speculation on Pettitte.

    The latter would be guaranteed no less than $12.8 – hard to imagine an arbitrator saying Andy deserved a 20% cut over the likely request from AP’s side for a wash or small raise. So you’re looking at maybe $14 mil for him in settlement.

    Hard to justify a big cut for Abreu as well, so he could easily get upwards of $16 in arb. The fact is the Yanks have long term holes at 1B and the OF corners – Swisher provides some cover there, but I doubt they’re banking on him. Seems now they’ll chase Tex – if that doesn’t work, then perhaps shift back to Abreu and perhaps trade 1 of the 3 FA’s next year or even flip Swisher. Risky strategy, but with the market tightening more possible than thought before.

    Still think offering to Abreu would have been a better play. Would depress his value.

  91. Vrsce December 1st, 2008 at 8:31 pm

    Drive 4-5

    I do not think that Levine is expecting the same revenue as he might have 3 months ago. In any case the market(rest of MLB teams) surely isn’t ,which is why the market value of Petitte and Abreu is no where near 16mm. So why should the Yankees pay that or more via arbitration?

    As I said simple.

  92. Ariel December 1st, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    “Acting like a small market team?”. Absolutely no way. Cashman is playing it correctly for a change. Abreu is a fall back option if we do not get one of the two Big Bats on the market. His language “fortunate enough” is poppycock to assuage the uninitiated and give Abreu “hope” that he indeed has an option if no one else wants to put up with his wall-phobic foibles; and a message to Boras….we’re interested in your guys, but don’t get carried away…we do have a viable alternative if the price is not right.

    This is so very basic that I am surprised at some of the comments on this board. It’s Negotiation 101…. If you don’t like Abreu, you probably find the possibility of him again patrolling frightfield abhorrent; if the worst possible scenario is Mannywood East, you should be very much upset. If Teix is your guy, applaud Cashman’s move.

  93. dave December 1st, 2008 at 8:32 pm


    the yanks cant develop players because they make idiotic decisions like this and flush away multiple first round picks for no good reason other than a bad economy which really has little impact on any of their free agent decisions clearly. They are also not willing to risk paying pettitte or abreu a little more than they are worth for great draft picks but they are willing to risk giving 3 years and 50 million to a pitcher that is injured more often than he is healthy (AJ.) And this, is why the yanks cant do well at the moment – horrible decision making.

  94. We Miss Paulie December 1st, 2008 at 8:33 pm

    Got have faith in Cashman here, just have to.

  95. no.27 December 1st, 2008 at 8:33 pm

    I get to around $5 mil by assuming that Abreu, Marte, and Pudge all accept arbitration and get small raises. Then you take that ($17mil, $14mil, and $5mil) and pay them for 30 days instead of 180. These are all obviously rough numbers but it comes to $5.8 mil.

  96. John in Ohio December 1st, 2008 at 8:35 pm

    “There is no gambling at Bushwood.”

  97. dave December 1st, 2008 at 8:35 pm


    Because without offering arb they risk losing four draft picks over a couple of million to a franchise player and a number three hiter who would fill to of our biggest holes. They are counting pennies on one table while they throw out 140 million to CC on another. How do the yanks feel that pettitte and abreu arent worth last years salary on the market while CC who is not the best pitcher in history by a mile deserves the biggest contract for a pitcher in history?

  98. bru December 1st, 2008 at 8:39 pm

    The Yankees are acting a little small-market here. I can understand not wanting to bring Pettitte back at $16 million. But would a year of Abreu at $16 million or even $17 million be so awful?

    They’re showing a lot of faith in Xavier Nady and Hideki Matsui — unless Cashman has something ese in mind.

    abraeu & pettitte are not going to make or break the yankees especially andy.

    the yankees need to go in a different direction.

    abraeu for one year does what?he will have to be replaced eventually.
    we are not losing much if anything between nady & abraeu.

    hopefully melky,gardner will suprise us & ajax is the real thing.

    it will be very interesting to see what our starting rotation looks like on opening day.

    i would be happy with cc,wang,hughes,kennedy,joba,acevez,coke,giese & maybe one trade for a pitcher like greinke or someone similar.

    we have a ton of pitchers & i believe a few of them are going to be good.we could have our starting rotation in house for several years & not even know it yet.

    even as one simple thing like hughes turning it around in 09 happens we are heading in good direction because we will have wang,hughes,joba.

    look at the phillies.their rotation was not that good outside of hammells.

  99. Vrsce December 1st, 2008 at 8:41 pm

    How about this?
    The Yankees’ revenue will now be shielded by the Stadium so a big decrease in revenue sharing. Payroll is lower, so less luxury tax. Yankees’ revenue suffers during the recession, other teams suffer more and also get much less Yankee money.

    Any possibilities under this new paradigm?

  100. bru December 1st, 2008 at 8:56 pm

    i just read on mlbtr that the angels offered 4 players arbitration.

    the yankees made the mistake of giving all these huge contracts preventing them from taking advantage of arbitration & collecting picks.

    other teams offer arbitration because even if they get stuck with the player it will still be for less than they get on the open market,example tex,krod.

    example being wang for the yankees.they are getting him at a very reasonable price.

    the yankees by overpaying all these players are getting hurt now because they do not wan’t to get stuck paying players above market value & in the process lost picks because of it.

    pettitte,pudge,abraeu will accept arbitration because their salaries are so high & most teams will not top them.

    this seems like a bad way to run a team.

  101. duh December 1st, 2008 at 9:01 pm

    hey dave, you are by far the dumbest poster on this cesspool of idiocy.

    you should be careful who you call dumb. people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

    you’re boring and stupid, it’s not a good combination.

    you post the same drivel over and over and you really have no idea what you are talking about.

    it’s people like you that make this place the joke that it is.

    have fun.

  102. duh December 1st, 2008 at 9:03 pm

    “How do the yanks feel that pettitte and abreu arent worth last years salary on the market while CC who is not the best pitcher in history by a mile deserves the biggest contract for a pitcher in history?”

    holy crap are you dumb.

    this doesn’t even make sense.

    the Yankees will re-sign Pettitte for less than $16M.

    the arbitration decision is just paperwork.

    what does it have to do with Sabathia? nothing.

    shut up. you are a moron.

  103. duh December 1st, 2008 at 9:05 pm

    “Still think offering to Abreu would have been a better play. Would depress his value.”

    you just said in your own post that Abreu would probably get at least $16M in arbitration.

    if offering him arb depresses his value on the open market, doesn’t that make him a lot more likely to accept arbitration?

  104. ham fighters December 1st, 2008 at 9:06 pm

    im down with cash money here. i dont think either (abreu or pettitte) are worth $16M. it shows that they actually do intend to cut payroll over the next 2 yrs. personally im sick of the all-star at every position plan anyway, i say bye-bye bobby, and andy’s invited back for $12M for one year, and move on.

  105. AJW December 1st, 2008 at 9:07 pm

    Pete I loved your reference to the Judge Elihu Smails. “I’ll have a hamburger, I’ll have some french fries… “You’ll get nothing and like it!!!!!!. LOL. :)

  106. duh December 1st, 2008 at 9:08 pm

    “Not offering Abreu arbitration makes no sense. Even if he did take a 1 year deal, he could be cut and wouldn’t cost the Yankees that much.”

    no, you can’t just cut a player. you have to demonstrate that the player has shown a “failure to exhibit sufficient skill or competitive ability.”

    so no, the Yankees could not just cut Abreu in Spring Training without a major grievance from the union.

    it’s amazing how many experts we have all of a sudden.

  107. AJW December 1st, 2008 at 9:19 pm

    Here’s another Judge Smails reference. This one is for CC Sabathia “Well, we’re waiting.”

  108. Jake December 1st, 2008 at 9:24 pm


    that’s an interesting take…that the Yankees prevented themselves from taking advantage of arbitration because of the massive contracts they gave Andy, Abreu, Giambi, etc.

    perhaps this will play into their decision making in the future.

    I am convinced that if Andy and Abreu took the Yankees to arbitration, they would have ended up getting more in 2009 than 2008 and I’m sorry, but IMO, they both deserve decreases, Andy especially.

    I still think, however, that re-signing Pettitte is crucial right now. If you can lock in three rotation spots, then that relieves at least SOME pressure, right?

  109. Jake December 1st, 2008 at 9:31 pm


    Why don’t you temper the insults man?

    Everyone is entitled to their opinions on here. childish insults are not effective or mature.

    just offer a counter-argument and explain your logic…

  110. OldYanksFan December 1st, 2008 at 10:13 pm

    Does anyone remember that Andy almost retired last year? At $16m, he was very well paid this year… overpaid for how he performed. We expected him to retire this year, but he said he would like to pitch in the new Yankee Stadium.

    So, the Yankees have already made Andy an offer, probably a reasonable one, as the Yankees don’t typically lowball players they want. Now there are rumors about LA, even though the only reason Andy doesn’t retire, is he wants to open the new stadium. But he turns down an offer from the Yankees?

    It seems Andy is playing hardball.
    And I guess the Yankees are too.

    Does anybody think this decision was made by Cashman alone in a vacuum? That all FAs weren’t discussd and debated for many hours, between many people, before the decision was made? Cashman may have the final say so, but he listens to people around him. My guess is that Hal is behind this, and probably other members of the FO.

    Andy WOULD have accepted arb.
    Pudge probably would have.
    Bobby may have.
    So, this decision may have cost a few draft picks. However, I will reserve judgement until April.

  111. nyyfaninlaaland December 2nd, 2008 at 2:55 am

    Duh -

    By offering Abreu arb, his value would decrease as the buyer would have to surrender a draft pick. But it wouldn’t be negligible, so either he’d decline hoping for a multi-year deal (not a bad strategy for a guy turning 35) and the Yanks get the picks, or accept and the Yanks would have to pay him big for 1 year or come up with a longer offer at a lower rate. I agree with Dave that the 1 year would be preferable in this case.

    Not a huge problem for the Yanks, but it would probably preclude getting Teixeira. And I’d like to see the Yanks get Teixeria. We’ve got no real prospects in our system for 1B – sorry, I don’t think Brandon Laird or Juan Miranda are sure things, and I don’t think in this climate Mr. Boras is gonna find a taker for a 10 year deal. It’s hard for me to believe the Red Sox are really interested in Tex with Youk and Lowell there now and their #1 prospect being a 1B at AA, but they do have the cash available. It seems to be us and the Angels eyeballing each other over the top 2 guys on the market.

  112. Larry December 2nd, 2008 at 5:51 am

    I believe that there is more to why the Yanks are willing to let Abreu go.
    This is just speculation on my part.
    Though he has a great arm, and is a decent hitter, he never was willing to sacrifice himself in the field.
    I also came to believe that he may have been a poor influence on Cano and Melky, again this is just speculation, but there seems to be a few articles that mention that the Yanks are looking for guys that are good teammates and good clubhouse influences, so this very well could have played a role in their dealings with Abreu.

  113. Paul December 2nd, 2008 at 9:39 am

    Pete — Shows what I know, I thought that they would offer to everyone who made Class A or B.

    The only thing that makes sense here is that the economic reality is that there will be less money in the game and that players are going to get less. When companies feel a pinch, luxury boxes go, then advertizing gets cut, and that will cut into revenues for the teams. Individuals will change habits as well. Take the subway to the game rather than pay overpriced parking (or, if you’re a big shot, take a limo). Skip the $8 hotdogs and the $12 draft beers and the $10 scorecard (I’m using exaggerated numbers to illustrate the point). And the players will have to understand that, with people out of jobs, they can’t expect to keep earning the unreal amounts they’ve been making. That is what a market means — it’s been going up, up, up for a long time and now it’s going to go down, down, down, notwithstanding all Scott Boras’s efforts. He’d better let CC sign the Yanks’ offer if he doesn’t want to end up with enough egg on his face to make a classic NYC omelet.

    One event that fits with this scenario is that Hal Steinbrenner is running the team. Hal is a bottom line guy who is going to try to run the team at a profit, as opposed to Hank whose motto was “whatever it takes.” Maybe they want Andy back, but it will be for one year and less money than some arbitrator would award based on the economics of before the market crash; ditto Bobby Abreu. This may be a signal to Boras and the other agents that the days of “the sky’s the limit” from the Yankees are over, and there isn’t another team or owner in the game who will.

    The bottom line for us fans is that the free agent market may take some time to adjust. On the other hand, I don’t see any other team making an offer for CC that is close to what the Yanks put on the table. I for one have no doubt that Cashman and Hal Steinbrenner have a plan bosed on economically realistic assumptions and we have to wait and watch it develop.

  114. Bellylard December 2nd, 2008 at 2:18 pm

    If Cashman likes Nady and Damon in the corners with Swisher as depth, why would he want a year of Abreu at several million above market rate? He many not get enough at bats on the Yanks to even be worth what he is to other teams. Plus, next year, don’t you have to make the same decision and risk no picks and paying way too much? Or does the arbitration deal no longer apply?

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