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Notes from GM Meetings Day 2: Soriano, Cano and Tino

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Notes on Nov 08, 2012 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Surrounded by media standing four or five deep, Scott Boras just spoke in the hotel lobby and left little doubt that his client, Rafael Soriano, will decline the Yankees qualifying offer.

“Most qualifying offers are really for players of the highest value,” Boras said. “When teams make them, they’re acknowledging the value and other teams know that, as well. I don’t anticipate many players accepting single-year contracts that are in that arena.”

As for current value, Boras made the case that Soriano might have been the difference in some teams making or missing the playoffs this season, and he played up the idea that the Yankees shouldn’t easily let go of such late-inning comfort.

“If you look at the Angels, Dodgers, White Sox, Milwaukee; those teams would have been in the playoffs if they had a closer that had the efficiency rating of Soriano,” Boras said. “The Yankees took advantage of that. If that was a really good business decision for the Yankees two years ago, and it proved to be so valued today, it certainly would be a wiser decision when (Mariano) Rivera is older and coming off an injury.”

Brian Cashman said he hasn’t heard and hasn’t asked whether Soriano, Nick Swisher or Hiroki Kuroda will accept or decline their qualifying offers — “We’d be very happy (if they accept), let’s put it that way,” Cashman said — but it’s becoming clear that the Yankees are setting priorities this offseason. One-year deals are one thing, but with $189 million in mind for next year, the Yankees have to pick and choose where they allocate funds.

That alone might be enough to keep the Yankees out of the Soriano bidding should he hit the open market.

“It would be great if we had them both (Soriano and Rivera),” Cashman said. “The only bad side to having them both — and I don’t have Mo, and I don’t have Soriano (right now) — but obviously it would affect dollars to be spent elsewhere. But bullpens are big time, so do I have to replace him? I think it’s relative to how that would impact the other side of it.”

• Boras certainly sounded as if he’s not expecting to come to terms on a contract extension for Robinson Cano any time soon. “He’s there for another year,” Boras said. “I talked to Randy (Levine) a few times this week. I talked to Cash. These are things that, I’m sure as time goes forward, we’ll continue to talk about. But nothing current.”

• Just to be clear, Cashman said that if Soriano does happen to accept the qualifying offer, he has no problem with paying both Soriano and Rivera closer money next season. “That would happen,” Cashman said. “If he accepts, yeah, absolutely. We made that decision when we tendered the offer.”

• Because Tino Martinez was serving as a senior advisor in the Yankees organization, he had to receive permission to interview for the Marlins hitting coach job. “You combine the great player with that type of experience in seeing how things get done, and I think he’s got a tremendous amount to offer,” Cashman said.

• The Yankees never talked about making Martinez their hitting coach. “We didn’t have any vacancies,” Cashman said. “The Yankees, we’ve been blessed to have some tremendous hitting coaches, from Don Mattingly to Kevin Long, so it’s not an area that’s needed to be addressed at all.”

• Although he hasn’t asked whether Kuroda will accept a qualifying offer, Cashman said he has spoken to Kuroda’s agent. “Yes,” Cashman said. “I wouldn’t say, and I couldn’t say (what exactly the conversation was about).”

• Just something to keep in mind: Ken Davidoff brought up that the $189 million luxury tax threshold includes more than player salary. There’s a certain amount of money — something around $10-12 million, Cashman said — that’s automatically factored in for things like travel expenses. So in terms of player contracts, the Yankees have to get closer to $177 million to stay below the luxury tax.

• Cashman dismissed the idea that the Yankees can’t get better while also working to control spending. “Didn’t we get better this year?” he said. “Ninety-five wins. Won the American League East. Went farther in the playoffs (than the year before). Got older, probably. … Improved flexibility. Kept financial costs in check. Lined ourselves up for the long term going that route in certain areas, and we’re better.”

Associated Press photos





33 Responses to “Notes from GM Meetings Day 2: Soriano, Cano and Tino”

  1. fantasygame101 November 8th, 2012 at 8:54 pm

    now have a tremendous hitting coach? yeah right.

  2. austinmac November 8th, 2012 at 9:15 pm

    And everything is great with only about ten vacancies on the 25 man.

  3. NYY_Girl_Penny November 8th, 2012 at 9:16 pm

    got better this year with 95 wins only because Boston stunk and nobody in the AL east was dominant like usual. They got very lucky because they pretty much were a .500 club after the ASG .. Cashman is out of his mind if he is just focusing on W.

    If they got so much better why were playoff tickets a dime/dozen ? Get real Cashman.

  4. LGY November 8th, 2012 at 9:16 pm

    There’s a certain amount of money — something around $10-12 million, Cashman said — that’s automatically factored in for things like travel expenses. So in terms of player contracts, the Yankees have to get closer to $177 million to stay below the luxury tax.


    Amazing it has taken this long for someone to get Cash or Hal to admit the budget is not really $189M.

  5. Jerkface November 8th, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    Chad, where you been? Your comment section has been all over the luxury tax limit stuff :)

    Jeters silver slugger increases his 2014 option, so he will count as more than 14 if he doesn’t opt out.

  6. yankeefeminista November 8th, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    Right, like great planning… why do we have such “gaping holes” in the first place???

  7. austinmac November 8th, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    What’s amazing is no reporter called them on it before. When Hal said a 10% reduction, we all knew it was untrue.

  8. blake November 8th, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    “Amazing it has taken this long for someone to get Cash or Hal to admit the budget is not really $189M.”

    They are just hoping they can say they will reduce payroll by 10 percent or whatever And nobody will notice…..

  9. austinmac November 8th, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    Cashman speaks of flexibility. Translation is one year contracts.

  10. NYY_Girl_Penny November 8th, 2012 at 9:25 pm

    Kuroda isn’t limiting his choices to the Yankees or a return to Japan, reports Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times. “I never said anything like that,” Kuroda explains, adding that he is open to several options and hasn’t yet made any decisions. (Both links go to Hernandez’s Twitter account.)

    Don’t think for a sec this isnt about yankees bats leaving pitchers high and dry and the unwillingness to do what the NYY need to do and that SURE AS HECK ISNT PINCH PENNIES.

    If Kuroda goes to another team that sends a very loud message about Yankees current state of affairs. Nice Work Cash and Hal.

  11. blake November 8th, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    It’ll likely be closer to a 20% reduction in functional payroll…’s a big cut from where they normally operate……

  12. austinmac November 8th, 2012 at 9:28 pm

    Kuroda has to see the changes to the team when considering where to play.

  13. Tar November 8th, 2012 at 9:42 pm

    “It’ll likely be closer to a 20% reduction in functional payroll…’s a big cut from where they normally operate……”

    I would respect the whole 189 bull if there was a some sort of plan in place to get younger and more athletic. But what I see is more like a dumpster diving manifesto and an unwillingness to give their own youngsters a fair shot to contribute. I’m not buying that.

    You want 189… trade away the expensive veterans who can bring back real prospects and re-tool. At the same time play some of your youngsters. I would buy into that, But I know that would never fly in Yankee land.

  14. tucker November 8th, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    Really, if you are a guy like Andy or Kuroda, why would you want to come back if management is not making a serious effort to improve the team?

    Andy doesn’t need it. He’s got his rings, and surely he knows the team as constitutes does not have a serious shot at the WS.

  15. austinmac November 8th, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    The 189 plan cannot work with existing contracts and current philosophy and have any chance of success.

  16. austinmac November 8th, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    Tucker ,

    Good point on Andy. It would influence me.

  17. blake November 8th, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    “I would respect the whole 189 bull if there was a some sort of plan in place to get younger and more athletic. But what I see is more like a dumpster diving manifesto and an unwillingness to give their own youngsters a fair shot to contribute. I’m not buying that.”

    I totally agree….it’s very difficult for a fan to get on board with all this until they show us they can be smart enough to come up with a real plan to make it work

  18. austinmac November 8th, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    I am rather amazed with the directionless team. Unless they are far smarter than I see, it is not going to end well. Yet, Cashman says all is well. Look how good they were last year. Without discussing that point, they no longer look like that team.

    The gaping holes will be filled with flexible(one year)players. They have no farm replacements so the only other options are necessarily low end players who can get nothing but a one year contract.

  19. Bo knows November 8th, 2012 at 10:06 pm

    Just skimmed today’s posts. Gewalt! and I’m not even Jewish. “Woe, despair and agony on me” “That way be dragons”. It’s not even Friday, the day of reckoning.

    Let the off season develop for goodness sake’s.

    Hey, Soriano looks gone – Good news, one.

    Side note- Why is everyone focusing on established players to sign? The Yankees need a kid that’s ready in AAA or even AA that could be brought up mid season. Might even be Heathcott.

    “The night is darkest before dawn”. Stealth ninja – can’t think of any more cliches.

  20. Tar November 8th, 2012 at 10:10 pm


    “It’s a process”.

    If they are serious about 189 ( i’m not convinced) then they need to blow up their current roster and start over.

    Trade Cano and Granderson for starters. Offer Alex and 50 ( or ?) million to the Dodgers. If they are going to be cheap then go all in. Use next year as your rebuilding and re-tooling year and go for it again in 14 and beyond. I would much prefer that, then shopping at dollar general.

  21. Bronx Jeers November 8th, 2012 at 10:11 pm

    Ya know that 189MM mark could just be a one-and-done goal.

    They’re not getting any of that rebate money and I don’t even see why they care if they have to pay a 50% tax.

    They should be happy the cap is that high.

  22. blake November 8th, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    @JonHeymanCBS: redsox seen meeting on russ martin. might require more moves. but boston isnt anti-yankee. also like kuroda, tried for tino

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