Sabathia, Indians done talking for now

Larchmont brings in Boston's trophy
Yanks finally issue Paulie's number

We’re moving out of one Hot Stove League and into another. This morning, C.C. Sabathia announced that he will wait until the end of the season to negotiate a new deal with the Indians. This doesn’t necessarily mean that he’ll test the free agency waters. There will be time between the end of the season and the free agency filing period, even if the Indians do go to the World Series. But for now, it appears Sabathia will pitch out the final year of his contract.

Then again, this doesn’t really mean that negotiations are dead. If you’ll remember back to last year, Carlos Zambrano not only said that he wanted a deal done before the season started, he said he’d leave the Cubs if that wasn’t the case. Four and a half months after the season began, he signed a five year, $91.5 million extension. So we can’t really take this as the be all, end all. I’m sure if Mark Shapiro blew him away with an offer, he wouldn’t outright refuse it.

This is good news for the Yanks, though, who have a ton of money coming off the books after this season. We have Farnsworth ($5.5 million), Pavano ($11 million), Giambi ($21 million), Abreu ($16 million), and Mussina ($11 million) this season, and both Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui at $13 million each next year. So there will be funds for this transaction. It’s just a matter of Mr. Sabathia’s demands.

He’s probably going to want six years, and I’d say somewhere around the $137.5 million given to Johan Santana. Is that something you’d do as a free agent signing? It’s very tempting, especially for a horse like Sabathia. Then again, when we were debating the merits of Santana, many of us pointed out the high innings total as a red flag, an indication that he might break down sometime during the deal.

But someone is going to pay CC. Might as well be us.

Larchmont brings in Boston's trophy
Yanks finally issue Paulie's number
  • Wiggum Fan

    That’s $64.5 million off of next year’s books. I think Abreu has 2 – 3 decent years left keeping RF warm for Tabata or Jackson. I see the 2009 OF as Tabata/Jackson, Melky and Abreu with full turnover to Tabata, Jackson, Melky in 2010.

    Abreu, depending on this season, I think can get 2 – 3 years at 12 – 16 million dollars per year.

    Hopefully Farnsworth and Mussina have good years so the Yankees can get draft picks. Type B is fine for me, Type A is wishful thinking. I have no hope for Giambi

  • Jon W.

    Would be great to steal Sabathia from an A.L. competitor, but if Cashman balked at giving that contract to Santana, I can’t imagine him giving that to Sabathia.

    The Yanks do have a lot of contracts coming off the books next year, but they won’t be able to replace them all with low cost young players. Plus, it’s just hard to believe any pitcher ever being worth $20 mil per for 7 years. Even one as durable and productive as Sabathia.

    • Motown Yankee Fan

      Do you think Cashman’s balking was solely the Santana contract, or the Santana contract plus the loss of the less expensive, though potentially equally or similarly as productive contracts of Hughes/Melky/Kennedy/whoever actually went? I’m not so sure Cashman would be as reluctant if it were just a loss of draft pick and mountains of cash.

    • RichYF

      Money + Prospects = Nogo. Money + Draft Picks = Go in my opinion. Given the amount of free agents the Yanks will have, they will be getting enough picks back (hopefully) to justify giving up a couple for Sabathia. Money has been an issue in the past, but a lot of the hefty contracts are coming off the books. Let’s not forget that A-Rod just signed a $300 million contract. The dollars are there.

      • Jon W.

        It’s definitely a much different story if you don’t have to trade any of your top young players (or anyone at all for that matter), but there did seem to be some sentiment that Cash didn’t like the idea of giving that much money to a pitcher, even as an UFA. I know Sabathia’s good, really good. But you’d have to think all those innings will catch up with him eventually.

  • bgood

    Don’t forger Pettitte’s $16 million (assuming that this is his last year)

  • YankCrank20

    sabathia? are you guys kidding me? you think his conditioning and high innings total won’t become in issue in 2-3 years? let the dodgers or mets pay all that money, keep developing our kids and SAVE MONEY FOR K-ROD.

    can you imagine mariano setting up k-rod in the new stadium? absolutely dirty, and that will keep joba in the rotation.

    • Jamie

      K-Rod’s arm is going to explode one of these days

    • Spike

      Mo would never agree to set-up for anyone at this stage of his career. Nor should he.

      • Bo

        Hes got a contract. Not like he can holdout or quit. A lot of closers move to set up positions in later yrs especially if the younger/newer guy is more talented. Its a fact of life. I cannot see Rivera being a Me first guy.

  • Rich

    Depending on how successful the Big Three are this season, and how well the Yankees finish, if Sabathia becomes available, it’s apparent that Hank will likely have interest because he has said that he would have acquired Santana if it was just a matter of money.

    The question then becomes: who makes the call? Hank, Hal, Cash, or any two that agree. As I have said before, I think that Hal and Cash are forming an alliance, and that is the reason that the Santana trade wasn’t made.

    Of course, they could all agree that since only money is required, they would have interest.

  • Jamal G

    I do think money was a real issue with those in Cashman’s croner but I also believe that the issue of the dollars was magnified quite a bit due to the additional lost of top young pitching prospects that would have went in the deal also.

    So does Cashman and his believers go after Sabathia now that they don’t have to worry about the loss of any high ceiling players or do they hold the fort again and draft a high ceiling guy who could have been a Top 10 or Top 15 pick but fell to the Yanks due to money issues?

  • E-ROC

    CC Sabathia would be a good look, but I worry about his condition. He is a pretty big guy, but they’re usually durable. I wonder what his asking price is.

  • Bo

    This is why Cashman didnt want to part with prospects for Santana. When he has Sabathia for free next yr. And Texeira. And Joe Nathan.

  • Realist

    Nathan would be nice but if I remember correctly , KRod may be available as well ;-)

    • Jon W.

      The Yanks just signed Rivera for $15 mil per for 3 years. They’re not going after Nathan or K-Rod.

      • Realist

        Why not? Because of money??? Or because YOU say so?

        It has been written that the Yanks would have interest in KRod if he hits Free Agency…plus do you really think Mo is going to last those 3 years????

        • Realist

          Sorry for the because YOU say so….out of line and off the topic.

          Mo has shown signs of deteriorating and a replacement is needed. If that trend continues this year , then another option needs be explored. I just hope that option isn’t named Joba………hence , the talk of Nathan or better yet KRod shouldn’t be dismissed…regardless of what Mo’s contract is ;-)

  • zack

    Holy crap, 64.5 million in one year, and 90.5 over two years? That is half the payroll tied up in 7 players set to come off, and I would say only 50 Mill needs/should/will be put back on, at most. The payroll dropping 40 million will really piss off Bud and RS Nation, despite their claims of wanting a cap. Less $ going into the pot and a BETTER Yankee team, who will Bud have to point fingers at?

  • Ben B.

    I’m niggling, here, because a ton of money is coming off the books, but Giambi gets a $5 million buyout next year, so what we’re saving is $16 million, rather than $21 million on this contract.

  • Ben B.

    I don’t think *money* will hold the Yankees back on Sabathia. It might years, but it won’t be money. It wasn’t money on Santana, really, it was money plus in-house prospects. I don’t think money plus draft prospects will hold us back.

  • daneptizl

    Teixera-yes. Sabathia-no.

  • J.R.

    With all of this money coming off of the books and Mark Teixeira a free agent next year? You get a gold glove first baseman with some reall power and a switch hitting bat. This would be one of the best corner infield combos in baseball.