Stark: No Santana deal until Spring Training?

New York baseball history
Report: The King is in trouble

Twins rookie GM has some case of cold feet. According to’s Jayson Stark, White is sitting on offers from the Yankees, Red Sox and Mets but doesn’t plan to move on them for several weeks.

Stark writes:

The Twins continue to stay in contact with the Red Sox, Yankees, Mets and Mariners about a Johan Santana deal. But those talks have moved so slowly it’s now possible a Santana trade may not get done “for several weeks,” according to one source with knowledge of the discussions…

The Twins are now telling other teams that they may hold Santana until spring training to get the package they want. But it’s also possible at some point that Santana and his agents may step in and say that if a deal isn’t completed sooner, he may no longer be willing to waive his no-trade clause.

So for now, the biggest prospective deal of the offseason remains stuck in quicksand. And that won’t change until one of these teams flinches.

Interestingly, the Mets seem very much in these trade talks. This is exactly the kind of move Omar Minaya needs to make after the 2007 collapse and subsequent failure to do much of anything this season.

So for now, nothing doing. Again.

New York baseball history
Report: The King is in trouble
  • Chris

    You just so sick of this Gm. He has his head so far up his a$$. I dont even wanna deal away Hughes, but im shocked he hasnt pulled the trigger. He gets a cheap (supposed to be good) pitcher in Phil, a serviceable CF another solid prospect. He cuts payroll, adds youth all at the same time…. The Joke sox want nothing to do with Sanatana they will pull out of it once the yanks do..they are just along to beef up the yanks price. If you dont know by know what kind of deal you are getting, then ur a moron, thank god we dont have this fool as our gm.

    • Spike

      Warm it up, Chris!

  • Steve S

    I wonder if old Joel got paid for writing this cause he doesnt deserve it.

    I dont know how many different ways these sportswriters can say the same thing. If Johan wants to get this done he should step it up and make the demand.

    • Mike

      I just don’t believe these reports anymore, for two reasons:

      1) It’s in the Twins and Sox interests to describe the Sox offer as the best.

      2) If it really was the best offer, the deal would be done by now (as many claimed it would be).

      The Sox have made clear they aren’t budging. So the best the Twins can hope for is to get the Yankees to up their offer. What better way to do that than to say the Sow are in the lead?

  • Mike

    I think Smith is doing exactly what he should be doing. The big mistake people are making is that he doesn’t have to trade Santana. So he’s holding out to be blown away (that reported Mets off is absurd) or he’s not trading him. That’s a fair approach. He knows that the Twins will have very good starting pitching and so can contend, and if not, the market isn’t going to go completely dry out by July. If anything, the price could change significantly if the Sox or Yanks are desperate (see Clemens and 2007 Yankees). Or not. Worst case he takes two draft picks and those got the Yanks Kennedy and Chamberlain. But the point is: Smith can’t be made to look bad by a trade he never makes. Don’t underestimate that for a new GM.

    There is also a chance that Smith thinks Pohlad will pony up some cash, maybe if he can show they’re a contending team with Santana and Liriano.

    The best case for the Yanks is actually Smith not trading him at all. Then they can swoop in next off-season with the biggest, baddest offer and keep all their young guns.

  • JRVJ

    The best case for the Yanks is actually Smith not trading him at all. Then they can swoop in next off-season with the biggest, baddest offer and keep all their young guns

    Been saying this for a while….

  • Chris

    I actually do not believe that the Yankees have an offer on the table. They want to keep Hughes and used the excuse of not wantingt o include IPK as an excuse. Now that Minny supposedly has backed off that demand there still has been no deal.

    Minny is waiting for the Yanks to put Hughes back on the table – he is far and away the best player being offered up by any team. Its clear the Red Sox package is a back-up plan. The onlhy way I see Santana in the Bronx is if Minny turns around and tells the Yanks they will take IPK, Horne, Melky, and a ower player rather than the same package with Hughes and Maquez substituted for IPK and Horne.

    Hughes is not going anywhere – he is the symbol of the Yankee’s youth movement even though he has been surpassed by Joba as far as value. He was the first player of this new movement much like Pettite was in the youth movement of the mid 90s

  • TurnTwo

    I honestly see more value for MN taking 2 top 5 SP prospects (IPK and Horne) over one (Hughes)… but maybe thats just me.

  • TurnTwo

    Maybe it’s just me, but isnt there more value in taking 2 top 5 pitching prospects (IPK and Horne) over accepting just one (Hughes), albeit the best one of the 3?

    It seems like the GM, or maybe its the press, that is just insisting on Hughes because he’s been the name, and top prospect the past couple seasons… but when you take a look at these other pitchers being offered, they arent exactly that far behind on their development to just throw their names aside…

    • TurnTwo

      sorry for the double post… didnt think the first one went through.

  • dre

    The longer Smith waits the less leverage he will have! Santana is the key because he can wait for free agency and the bidding war would almost certainly garner him the 150mil 6 or 7yrs deal he so much desires. In fact I would say that Smith has bungled this situation and will end up losing out; for he we will more likely end up with just compensation picks for his trouble!
    He should have taken the Yankees offer of Hughes and Cabrera or Boston’s Lester and a minor leaguer.
    The Red Sox are posturing and are really trying to provoke a unwarranted response on the behalf of the Yankees. ( speculative! )
    If the Red Sox’s really wanted Santana they would have given them the prospects and signed him to a long term deal just like when they signed Matsusaka without fear of the outcome! They know that signing him would have placed a virtual lock on the division championship! However,they also kjnow the cost of signing him would have had a tremendous effect on their long term budget and more importantly the sign- ability of Beckett in the not to distant future!

  • E-ROC

    I have a feeling that Omar Minaya is going to give up what’s left of his farm and land Santana. It seems like that’s going to happen. They probably should. Do they even have any healthy starting pitchers beside John Maine?

  • Steve S

    One thing I have to disagree with is the concept that Smith can allow him to walk away at the end of the season. yes its possible. BUT, this is a team that will lose their most popular players in consecutive years (assuming Johan remains for the year). This is also a team that just got a new stadium built which means increased revenues and greater demand from the fan base. And this is a team that was willing to offer Johan $20M for four years. So were not talking about the Marlins here. AND they have Morneau and Mauer, two superstar caliber players in their prime, that make them competitive NOW. And a young staff that could be immediately effective (depending on Liriano). And Smith is following in the footsteps of a guy who managed to make this team good with lesser resources. So the concept that he has a couple of years to rebuild, and that he can let Santana and Nathan walk away and get four draft picks, is ridiculous. Yes the players he would get may be better than what he could receive now, BUT there is no immediate return on those guys and there is no demonstration that the team is going to be competitive in the new building,

  • Jeff

    I bet you Omar is kicking himself right now for trading away Lastings Millage… I think Milliage would have helped boost their offer for Santana.

  • Steve S

    Keith Law: I think this is actually the first time Law has actually said this. Interesting coming from a former scout.

    “Ben (LA, CA): Keith, you’re frickin funny. Love the chats. Unless the Yankees really are having second thoughts about trading Hughes for Santana, I don’t know how they pull a Hughes/ Melky/ Marquez/fourth prospect less than Marquez off the table, if the Twins are willing to make that trade.

    SportsNation Keith Law: To me that deal is Hughes vs Santana. Do you give up six more years of Hughes for one of Santana? I wouldn’t, but there is nothing in the rest of that deal that would bother me.”

  • Lanny

    The Mets shouldnt make moves because they ahvent done much and “need” to do something.

    The worst thing they can do is gut their farm system and trade their 5 best prospects for a 25 mill a yr player.

    How does that help?

    Minaya needs to do what Cashman did in 05. Hold onto every top prospect and find useful discards and pray.

    • Ben K.

      Well, they’ve already traded their best prospect for, basically, nothing, and the rest of their kids don’t project to be anywhere nears as good as the Yanks’ kids. If Minaya wants to turn lead into gold, he should pull the trigger on a Santana deal.

  • http://LookingforWork T. Kim

    What do you think of swapping in Ian Kennedy for Phil Hughes and adding some more prospects to the list? Let’s say

    1. Ian Kennedy
    2. Melky Cabrera
    3. Alan Horne
    4. Brett Gardner
    5. Jeff Marquez

    for Johan Santana? That’s 2 major league ready players including 4 top 15 prospects in the Yankee organization for the best pitcher in baseball, for any other team that could mean stripping the farm and ruining the future but in a system as stacked as the Yankees’ I think its a pretty fair trade.

    So that’s saying that Phil Hughes is worth Ian Kennedy, Alan Horne and Brett Gardner, I think a future ace in Hughes is worth a future number 2-3 starter with possible ace production in Kennedy, a 3-4 starter or solid setup man in Horne and an average to above average outfielder in Gardner. If they ask for more than that I would even throw in a another lesser prospect. Or… even better imagine a package of the following:

    1. Melky Cabrera
    2. Jeff Karstens
    3. Alan Horne
    4. Austin Jackson
    5. Dellin Betances
    6. Damon Sublett
    7. Jeff Marquez
    8. Juan Miranda/Zach McAllister

    This is a pretty huge haul, wouldn’t you say? That’s two major league ready players in Melk-man and Karstens, and 5 top 15 prospects including 3 top 5, not to mention McAllister/Miranda are ranked in most top 25’s. Is this too much? Maybe we could get away with offering less, like making it a 6-7 player deal, subtracting Marquez and/or Miranda/McAllister? Ask the Twins, but I highly doubt it. Either way I hope you catch my drift… we can give them quantity while still providing much quality. They are asking for 2 major league ready players, we give them Melky and maybe they would take Moose, Karstens or Igawa as the other? An 8 player deal huh? We would likely ask for some prospects back but wouldn’t get any value in them.

    Imagine being able to keep the big 3 and adding Santana? You would be killing the farm, but it’s so stacked that the Yankees still have some sort of life. Doing this could even move Joba to the bullpen and our rotation would be:

    1. Santana
    2. Wang
    3. Pettitte
    4. Hughes
    5. IPK/Moose

    IPK could even be the long man/spot starter to limit innings, and then when Moose falls apart he could take over as the number 5. Sign Texiera next year to clear up the first base problems, heck if the Twins want another big bat give them Giambi for a year as a filler even pay his entire contract, with Joba able to fill the 8th we could even give the Twins Farnsworth if they want so they could trade Nathan (to us hopefully as part of the Santana deal) and get even more prospects. Or we could just give them a bunch of fillers and add Moose to the mix (if he’d waive his no-trade) We saw the Diamondbacks get Haren and a throw in for 6 players, none of which seem to be major leaugue ready. So imagine another scenario:

    1. Mike Mussina
    2. Melky Cabrera
    3. Jeff Karstens
    4. Kyle Farnsworth

    5. Alan Horne
    6. Austin Jackson
    7. Dellin Betances
    8. Damon Sublett
    9. Jeff Marquez
    10. Juan Miranda/Zach McAllister

    Is a 10 person trade even possible? Obviously we would be getting Santana plus Nathan in this deal, maybe something else too, like a lefty reliever or 4th outfielder, doubt it. We would also have to send cash to cover Moose’s contract as well as Farnsworthless’. Unless we get Nathan, I would stick to the 6-8 prospect trade listed before this one. We would be swapping 2 one year contracts in Mussina and Farnsworth for a one year contract in Nathan, not to mention we would be adding some amazing talent to their farm while also allowing them to contend somewhat in ’08. Mussina and Karstens fill out their rotation, filling the void left by the departures of Silva and Garza, I actually think Mussina and Karstens will do better in ’08 than the combination of Silva and Garza. Yet, the Twins become the ’07 Yankees and have no true ace; Santana’s void is filled by the farm system that has just become one of the best in the league, as well as the return of Liriano. Nathan’s void is filled either through the farm system or some magical reinvention of Kill Farnsworth. Imagine this for the Yankees then…

    1. Santana
    2. Wang
    3. Pettitte
    4. Hughes
    5. IPK
    CL: Mo
    Setup: Joba, Nathan
    Relivers: Hawkins, Albadejo, Ohlendorf, Britton/Igawa (Igawa is a situational lefty/long-man)?
    All of a sudden our bullpen is the best in the league, as is our starting pitching. Our lineup barely takes a hit as well, our farm system may be somewhat depleted, but nothing too damning… we still have an average at worst system.

    1. Damon (CF)
    2. Jeter (SS)
    3. Abreu (RF)
    4. Arod (3B)
    5. Cano (2B)
    6. Posada (C)
    7. Matsui (LF)
    8. Giambi/Duncan (DH)
    9. Minky/Betemit (1B)

    Until we sign Teixera to a 5-7 year contract with an average salary of approximately $20-25 million we could sign Minky to a 1-year $1.5 million contract and have him and Betemit handle the bulk of 1B duties while having Giambi and Duncan switch off at DH. That’s some nice platoon action for both DH and 1B. I think that leaves us 2 more spots? We could add more bullpen help, or sign two more bench players preferably an outfielder who can handle center in case Damon gets injured. Maybe bring back Bernie for the 4th outfielder spot unless anyone sees a better option?

    Now a lot of this is just me messing around, but who knows, I think some is at least feasible. We, of course, sell out and strip our entire farm system for Santana, yet we keep the big 3 which is fine by me, since we won’t be needing any pitching prospects for at least another 10 years… and we can always just buy Cy Young winner C.C. Sabathia in ’09 in the range of 4-6 years and an average salary of approximately $15-20 million annually. The only gaping hole with the Santana trade is the void in the outfield defense left by Melky’s departure, but he was part of all the trade talks anyway, plus above average fielders with average bats are a dime a dozen. You know what else is a dime a dozen? $4 million contracts for relievers that can’t pitch… cough… Killin’ Me Farnsworth.


  • Realist

    Make Minnesota HAVE to trade him and then lowball them. The Sox offer isn’t as good as the supposed Yankee’s asking price via Minn……….The Sox won’t budge , the Yanks won’t and shouldn’t. Let Minn fall into 3rd place and HAVE to trade johan and let’s ALSO see if he merits any of the aforementioned “rumored” scenarios. I am betting NOT!

    Time is on our side………….