The Jason Giambi market

Game 123: Baseball for the fun of it
Not-so-fondly remembering 1993

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How’s this for a little Saturday morning reading? According to Ken Rosenthal, Jason Giambi is playing himself toward a free agent bidding war. With Giambi’s putting up excellent on-base and power numbers this year, Rosenthal sees the Indians, Mariners, Blue Jays and A’s as potential suitors for Giambi.

There is, of course, a catch – a five-million-dollar catch. The Yanks hold a $22 million option on Giambi’s contract but have to pay him a $5 million buyout if they don’t exercise that option. If Giambi’s services are truly in demand, the Yanks will have to decide if they want to pay Giambi five million to play for a potential competitor. Right now, it’s tough to say if Rosenthal is just speculating on Giambi’s future or if he has a sense of what the Indians and others are thinking.

I don’t believe the Yanks will be tempted to exercise their option, and Rosenthal agrees. But the Yanks are going to face a tough decision on Jason no matter how this season plays out. He’s old; he’s not in the best of health. But he can still launch the ball, and his batting eye remains among the game’s best. What to do, what to do.

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Game 123: Baseball for the fun of it
Not-so-fondly remembering 1993
  • Chris

    All of those teams seem like they would look for a bargain in Giambi… maybe a contract like Frank Thomas got. If the Yankees want him, they can certainly offer more and still not offer a ridiculous contract.

  • Guiseppe Franco

    Let him walk. And Abreu too.

    They need to get younger and more athletic.

    That can’t happen if they keep bringing back players 35 and up when they have the opportunity to get rid of them.

    • bkight13@hotmail.com

      Exactly. The ideal scenario is to get Teixeria, but it’s time to clean house. I would also let Pettitte walk(keep Mussina now that he has learned to pitch like Moyer) and try to get CC, Sheets or at worst Burnett.

      • Guiseppe Franco

        I don’t think they’ll sign Teixeira either, especially when you consider the uncertainty around Posada and whether he’ll be able to catch everyday.

        If he can’t, he’s gotta play somewhere and DH will be occupied by Matsui.

        That leaves first base.

        • radnom

          Eh I dont see Posada playing a significant amount a 1B next year, and thats the last year on Matsui’s deal.

          I guess it all depends how well the recovery is going.

  • nick blasioli

    i agree,,let him walk…tex is a great replacement…i cant remember how many times the game was on the line and he popped up or struck out..like last night…also, i hope abreu walks as well…i cant see the yankees getting anything but better, next year…..

  • http://therabblewithout.blogspot.com NC Saint

    I don’t really see the relevance of the $5 million, once you concede that the option isn’t getting picked up. You can think of it as paying him to play for someone else if you like, but it’s a sunk cost, and it doesn’t make signing him any cheaper for us than it is for anyone else. If you don’t pick up the option, it doesn’t make sense to think about the 5 million at all. Decide if he’s worth paying for on the merits; if there’s legitmate interest in him, I’d say he’s clearly not.

  • http://RiverAve.Blues Joseph M

    I wish the Yankees would give some consideration to ending their relationship with Cashman. I don’t want Brian in charge of the work that now needs to be done to this overpriced mess. I would love to see a change made before the season ends so whoever they pick (maybe Buck) could hit the ground running.

    Giambi still has value and so does Abreu, but this team has to get some players in the prime of their careers. Both Giambi and Abreu are well past their prime with erroding skills both offensively and defensively.

    The Yankees should be looking to make waiver deals at this point maybe they can pick up a real prospect or two (position players please).

    • 27 this year

      Sorry to say it this way, but how in the HELL do you get a good young position player on a waiver deal. Not a freakin chance.

      • http://yankeesmtom.blogspot.com steve

        Players not on the 40 man roster can be traded.

      • http://RiverAve.Blues Joseph M

        There are a few, I’ll throw one name on the table to burn our Red Sox friends, Aug 30, 1990 , Jeff Bagwell to Houston for Larry Anderson.

        I can see the Rays in the market for some veteran talent in the next few weeks the Yanks might be able to pick someone half decent up from them (I can’t believe I’m writing this).

        • 27 this year

          The thing is, most good position prospects are on the 40 man and aside from that, I just don’t know who to replace in the field. This is the first year these guys are that bad, it is kinda hard to get out from under these contracts. I think that is why Tex is a bad idea because that would be adding one more big contract to a position that we need for future people who get old and slow. We can’t afford to sign another Giambi.

  • tools of ignorance

    Giambi’s played as much as he has this season because he is in his option year. I guarantee that if you bring him back he will spend much of next season hurt again, especially at his age. He is poor defensively, slow, not a clutch hitter any longer, and injury prone. Is that what you want for $20 million a yr? Get Tex to hit infront of AROD & get Manny to protect him in the 5 hole.

    • Mike Pop

      hell yea get tex and manny.. be the best 3 4 5 6 in the game with nady hitting 6..

      • 27 this year

        About Tex, do you really want to see Tex on the Yanks because five or six years into the deal, he will just be another Giambi, good eye and power. Batting average has nothing to do with it because Giambi had a great average before the big deal. Also, is it worth taking away a roster spot for 1B where we have other players who might need to move there? One more point, is better defense worth a 200 mil deal?

        • radnom

          Yes, because every single power hitting first baseman ages the EXACT same way. Also you can’t compare what you have get in 5-6 years to what you would have next year and completely discredit the whole 4-5 year stretch where you have a significant improvement.

          • 27 this year

            So you’re saying he would age like Giambi because Giambi was a power hitting 1B and Giambi was a .300+ hitter. We don’t want another Giambi.

      • Steve

        Nady should be hitting 3 right now. He’s the best hitter on the team. Nady has a .945 OPS and Abreu has a .820 OPS. Plus, Abreu doesn’t walk as much as he used to, and has ALWAYS struck out a LOT more than people realize. Abreu is more suited to be a #5 at this point.

  • bklynJT

    This team needs a change. Let him walk.

  • r.w.g.

    He’s hitting around .200 with RISP. Pay him the buyout and move on.

    • Steve

      Bingo.

      A-Rod gets all the attention, but in the last 5 years he was useless in 2 of them and disappointing in the other 3. With the way we have had trouble scoring runs this year, I CAN’T FATHOM bringing him back.

      Now, For anyone who wants to bring him back, I have some #s for you. His clutch stats for this year.

      On second .179

      Bases loaded .071

      Close and late .127

      Scoring position .212

      Been nice knowing you Jason. You’re one of the biggest reasons why this season has turned into a failure.

      http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/.....yerId=3226

      • Kevin Papa

        you guys honestly believe well get tex? id rather keep Giambi through the option, let him have a .260- .270 average with 35 or 40 hrs than spend ANOTHER 200 mil on a huge contract…giambi really isnt that bad and whoever said hes one of the biggest reasons this season was a failure…first off this season ISNT OVER and how about melky cabrera or cano, who both SUCK defensively and offensively…at least Giambino can get it done at first without making errors

  • steve

    is he a type A or B free agent at all ?

    • Steve

      At best he’d be on the bubble, but I’d imagine he’s a type B.

      Don’t forget, he did NOTHING last year, it goes by the past 2 seasons.

    • http://yankeesmtom.blogspot.com steve

      A

      • 27 this year

        Your proof? Because I doubt he is one of the top 20% in 1B which is where he played the most these past two years. I don’t think he had more games as DH.

  • Mike Pop

    WE gotta get Tex no question bout it.. If he hits FA which he will we have to get him we just have to. we have no close replacement in the minors we just have to get Tex its not even an option. I agree with Manny if the dude really wants to play for us get his ass. he put boston through shit but he also won 2 rings in his time there.. hes worth it.. if we got him and tex we are undoubtedly the best lineup in baseball and we could even get by with our pitching staff for next year if we dont sign CC. If cano and jeter are themselves next year we are set with a lineup of dropping giambi and abreu and signing tex and manny. If you cant get CC get Sheets or Burnett.

    • 27 this year

      Again, Tex is exactly like Giambi at that age with better defense. Look back to Giambi when he signed and see the comparison. Obviously, Giambi didn’t work out so why would Tex. Better defense?

      • A.D.

        Tex is a switch hitter, and yes gives the defense, also generally seems to be in better shape, so he’s not going to break down physically.

        On top of that Giambi was a complete terror of a hitter before coming to the yanks, spraying the ball to all fields hitting for avg and power, came to the Yanks, just pulled the ball, and hit in the 260s.

        You’re going to overpay for Tex but even if Tex goes on to be weaker offensively than historically, he can still glove it

      • http://yankeesmtom.blogspot.com steve

        Roids?

      • radnom

        1. Tex is a switch hitter.

        2. Giambi didn’t work out? Except for injuries (caused by steroids) he worked out great. He is still one of our most productive hitters in his last year, has a decent spot in the yankees career home run list and that is with a couple seasons in the middle of the deal completely washed out.

        3. Tex is built differently than Giambi, not as big of an injury concern. They started DHing Giambi more as soon as he got over here.

        3. So youre saying that he is the same as Giambi at that age and we wont want him in the last year of his deal (say 35 or 36). But we want a 37 year old Giambi next year? Your argument makes little sense.

        • Steve

          “2. Giambi didn’t work out? Except for injuries (caused by steroids) he worked out great. He is still one of our most productive hitters in his last year, has a decent spot in the yankees career home run list and that is with a couple seasons in the middle of the deal completely washed out.”

          I’ll post this again, maybe you missed it.

          Now, For anyone who wants to bring him back, I have some #s for you. His clutch stats for this year.

          On second .179

          Bases loaded .071

          Close and late .127

          Scoring position .212

          http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/…..yerId=3226

          This team has all sorts of problem with RISP and he’s one of the main culprits hitting in the #5 spot.

          • radnom

            Yeah I saw that, it doesn’t make you any more right dumbass. You could post similiar clutch stats for almost any Yankee this season. Does that mean Arod’s entire stay in NY has been a total failure as well? Besides the fact that you missed I was actually arguing in favor of Giambi. Way totally miss the point.

            • radnom

              “Besides the fact that you missed I was actually arguing in favor of Texeira.”

              Whoops, bad spot for a typo

            • Steve

              No loser, you can’t post similar stats for every other Yankee. For Giambi, in 8 of the 16 splits he is below his .252 batting average. Abreu, Damon, Cano, Jeter, Nady, all have good overall clutch splits around or above their BA with few exceptions. And even if you could post similar stats, it wouldn’t matter as much because they don’t hit in the run generating 5 hole.

              Also, A-Rod has had 2 seasons (2005+2007) where his clutch stats were top to bottom terrific, and every other season with the Yanks most of them were between good and excellent, with a few glaring exceptions here and there.

              But I wouldn’t expect you to actually have your facts straight before posting your much valued opinion.

              • radnom

                Once again, you missed the point. My point was you can not invalidate his entire career with the Yankees based on some stats from this year. You correctly backed up my point by citing good stats from Arod in previous seasons, even though he is lacking in those same categories this year. Thanks.

                But please don’t pretend clutch hitting isn’t a problem for this WHOLE TEAM (with a few notable exceptions). You can’t just place the blame on Arod and Giambi for the crap thats gone on this year.

                But anyway, my whole point was that you DONT want Giambi back next year (which you agree with), I’m not sure youre arguing what you think you are.

        • 27 this year

          I never said we should have Giambi next year. I think we need to find someone else adn I will leave that up to Cash but he could pull something out. I am kinda in favor of playing Nady there, that way, we keep Abreu and DH Posada and Matsui(injuries and stuff will sort that out) and we will see from there.

      • Mike Pop

        your dumb.. the biggest point is arod is also in his prime and u have tex to help him out.. a hitter like tex would fit great in the yanks lineup… 27 this year is making the dumbest argument i ever seen.. Tex is 28 and turns us into a real contender for the next 5 or 6 years..plus hes a fitness freak unlike giambi was back than.. giambi used needles tex uses the gym

        • steve (different one)

          your dumb

          classic

  • sabernar

    The Yanks should pull a Sheffield. Negotiate with teams for a trade, pick up his option, then pay the $5M along with trading Giambi for a handful of prospects. That way the team that wants him can get him for only one year and they don’t have to enter in a bidding war for him.

    • http://yankeesmtom.blogspot.com steve

      The no-trade clause might play a role though.

    • radnom

      Yeah he probably would not agree to waive his no trade clause so they could do that (which is what they would ask him to do before hand) because it kills his best chance at a lucrative multi-year deal.

    • Steve

      Don’t think that would work. The reason that made sense with Sheff is he was being paid a reasonable, market rate salary.

      Giambi would have to
      1-Be paid 5 mil AND be given a market rate extension
      2-Be paid 22 mil for next year and traded

      At 22 mil he’s untradeable. If they eat the 5 mil, give him an extension and then trade him, all they would get back is the value of the draft pick compensation in the form of a low level minor league player. Either way, the Yanks would get very little in return.

  • A.D.

    Let him go, because he’s owed 5M doesn’t mean you should instead pay him 22m. The 5M is a fixed cost, nothing you can do for it, just eat it and move on.

    I think obv Tex would be an awesome option, but going with Nady or a platoon situation would be just fine. I like Jason, hes a fun player, brings the quirky things to the team such as the stache, but in reality he’s been incredibly disappointing, and they should part ways.

    Maybe there is a scenario where the Yanks are unable to obtain an OF or a 1B and they bring big G back on a Frank Thomas deal, but I doubt it

    • radnom

      Thank you about the fixed cost thing.

      In economics its called a sunk cost and commonly causes people to make irrational decisions.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S.....st_fallacy

      • A.D.

        Yeah, its what made the Russ Ortiz drop buy the DBacks a few years ago a good idea, yeah it was a 40M contract, but he doesn’t give your team a chance to win, so no reason to throw him out there

  • stuart

    Pass.. If the Yanks had no DH types, maybe but having Giambi if he needs to play 1B means you need a guy to play the field for him, a guy to pinch run for him, and a backup for when he gets hurt.

    Pass.. Good OBP would be good hitting like 7th in the order but no way, adios.. He stole about $140 mill. remember the Marlins WS …

    gardner 2 walk offs in 19 games, I think he has more then giambi, arod, and cano.

  • Viasistina

    Who cares? We have to stop yearning to keep aging or washed up veterans who, unfortunately, are also over-paid. Let him walk. Let’s also stop thinking we can turn a 38 year old catcher into a first baseman. Posodo either comes back as a catcher or a DH.

    • radnom

      Older (great offensive) catchers often move out from behind the plate towards the end of their careers. Whats your point?

      That being said, I don’t see next year being the year.

      • Steve

        I see Posada becoming the world’s most expensive backup catcher by the end of his deal.

    • Steve

      Posada already showed resistance to being a 1B this year. The few times he did play first, I thought it was hilarious when he would be constantly making visits to the mound, telling pitchers what to do, as if he was still behind the plate.

      Girardi seems to like keeping the DH spot open for giving guys time off, so having a full time DH makes no sense. I also think he’s had it with Damon not being able to play the field. He was clearly upset at him last night when he said “If we get down the bunt, were not in that situation” about the double play in the 9th inning. Having a leadoff hitter who can’t lay down a bunt AND can’t play the field seems to be getting on Joe’s nerves.

      • radnom

        What the heck are you talking about? First off, since when can Damon not play in the field? He is our best left fielder and penciled in to start there all of next season. Secondly we DO have a full time DH, his name is Matsui and barring a trade he will be the full time DH next season. The only reason the spot has been so open this season is because of injuries. Lastly you can’t judge Posada’s couple games at first base this season as anything. It wasn’t a failed attempt at transitioning him there full time, it was just a few games. If and when the time comes to move him the transition will happen in the offseason and if Posada cares about his extending his career he will be all for it. He is not there yet next season.

  • Viasistina

    Whoops…thats Posada.

  • A.D.

    My guess, if the A’s are interested, big G goes back to oakland

  • Emac2

    The Yanks should run him through waivers now and see if someone takes him and his option off their hands.

    • A.D.

      chances are no one will give up anything for him, he’s worth a supplemental round pick to the yanks

      • Steve

        Not only would they not give anything up for him, the team that gets him would have to pay the 5 mil buyout.

        Not happening.

      • Emac2

        We get a pick without offering arbitration?

        Even so, is the pick with 5 mil?

        They wouldn’t have to send anything back. I might even toss in a little something extra.

        • A.D.

          they can get the pick without offering arb if he is a type B free agent, i would say it is worth 5M, they did get Joba in this same round.

          • steve (different one)

            who is going to pay $10M for 40 games of Giambi? that’s the equivalent of a player making $40M.

            it’s not going to happen.

  • Steve

    Anyone else notice how Girardi wasn’t very happy even after they won? He stayed in the dugout (he usually goes on the field) and Kim Jones even asked him during the post game “Are you happy?” He said he was, but it was one of the few times he looked just as down after a win as he does after a loss.

    I think he knows what the rest of us do, that this team is slipping out of contention and can’t get out of its own way. It really shouldn’t be THAT hard to beat the KC Royals at home. They’re still playing lousy, despite the win.

    Also, he seemed annoyed at Damon after yesterdays game. Saying “If we get down the bunt, we wouldn’t be in that situation” talking about yesterdays 9th inning. Think about it from a manager’s point of view, your leadoff hitter can’t lay down a bunt, can’t play the field, and occupies the DH spot he would like to have open to give everybody else some much needed rest at this point of the season.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Damon is traded this off season, despite the good numbers he’s had this year.

    • A.D.

      he can play the field, he plays it better than Abreu (minus the arm) he DHs Damon because he has Nady & Abreu

      • radnom

        Yeah I dont know where this guy is getting it from, but he keeps repeating it. Who else is going to DH? You give Damon some rest by putting him there, but the best defensive outfeild for the Yankees right now is Damon Gardner Nady (I put Nady over Abreu in right)

      • Steve

        Let me be more clear, I’m talking about CF.

        He was signed to play CF, and has played a grand total of 10 games there this year. They played him there for one game after sending Melky down, and called up Gardner the next day. Thats what I’m talking about, he can’t play the position they signed him to play.

        The Yanks badly need a CF, they have one who they obviously don’t want to play there.

  • stuart

    radnom I think that is there best defensive OF.

    Damon in my eyes is a hell of a player. 1 of the few gamers on the team. his salary next yr for $13 and 1 yr would be attractive to many teams, I keep him he can still paly.. he will get 25 or so SB’s hit over 300 with some power..Damon is not the problem, but Giambi is a problem.. He is kinda like Frank Thomas..

  • TU

    I’d pay the $5M breakup fee and see if he will stay for a reasonable 1 yr deal. It wouldn’t hurt to have him as a primary DH (better #s than Matsui) and backup 1b to Tiex. Shop Either Matsui or Damon, whichever looks most unlikely to play LF. Seattle or Oak would be a good home for Matsui if NY picked up a piece of his contract.

  • Bart

    the Yankess have nowhere to play Matsui and Posada – unless Posada heals well enought to be a mostly every day catcher — which is very unlikley – age is against his healing and against everyday play

    — both of them are under contract with no trade clauses
    — matsui might wave his (Japanse way – if the Yankees don’t want him he won’t stay) and
    — given that it appears Posada has lost any affection he might have had for Girardi mentoring him thus wasting a productive year and a half of his early career he might waive his also

    if you can move one of them there is reason to keep Guambi but you save $17M by letting him go — $17M that needs to be invested to fix C and an outfield spot and by 2010 fix SS and another OF spot

    Giambi has the LEAST productive 20 plus HR year of his career – he is as non clutch as ARod — but he worked his tail off to be healthy this year and he has been a help – still he wil be another year older and it is unlikley he will be worth the $22M (net $17M)

    He actually has been a great Yankee by temperment as has Damon and Matsui —

    If you can find a way to have each be productive and worth their money it would be a neat trick

    If we are lucky and Cashman does not pull another stupid Santana — Sabathia trick

    Teixeira, Cano, Jeter , ARob, Nady, Damon, (and someone Matsui can’t go every day) – a 25 plus HR corner OF, or a Qaulity CF — Damon in LF, Nady in RF

    NEED a C with Molina as a backup

    DH Posada, Matsui,

    Sabathia, Joba, Hughes, Mussina, (Rasner, Ponson, Pettit, IPK)

    Mo, Veras, Ramirez, Marte (maybe), Robertson, Melancon, Bruney
    (others)

    • Steve

      “still he wil be another year older and it is unlikley he will be worth the $22M (net $17M)”

      Its still 22 mil, the 5 mil only comes into play if they buy him out. Otherwise it doesn’t exist, its a buyout.

      A better way to look at it would be if they sign Tex at 20 per, next season would cost them 25 mil with the Giambi buyout.

    • steve (different one)

      If we are lucky and Cashman does not pull another stupid Santana — Sabathia trick

      this doesn’t even make sense. Sabathia is a what is known as a “free agent”. Santana was available by what is known as a “trade”. its when you send “players” to another “team” in exchange for a “player” or “players”.

  • Steve

    Betances is putting on an absolute pitching clinic in Charleston tonight

    6.0 3 2 2 2 12

    IP-6
    H-3
    R-2
    ER-1
    BB-2
    SO-12

    http://www.riverdogs.com/dogs/.....rtcode=afx

    He has been unreal since he spent a few weeks with Nardi around mid season.

  • bkight13@hotmail.com

    Posada is going to be our Catcher next year, not 1B. I’d re-sign Molina and give him about 40% of the games and DH Jorge in the games against tough lefties, giving Matsui a break. They need a 1B badly and should pay whatever it takes to get Teixeria. It’s only money and who cares what years 7-8 might be like.

    LF – Damon
    SS – Jeter
    1B – Teixeria
    3B – ARod
    DH – Matsui/Posada
    RF – Nady
    2B – Cano
    C – Posada/Molina
    CF – Melky/Gardner/Christian/Jackson/FA

    • Old Ranger

      The word is…Tex will stay on the west coast. True/false I don’t know! If he wants to stay, there is little chance of him becoming a Yank. Don’t you think? 27/09?

      • bkight13@hotmail.com

        Everyone has a theory…he’s from Balt…..his wife is from Atl….he grew up loving the Yanks and Mattingly….now he loves LA. I think the Yankees NEED to blow him and Boras away with a huge contract. This is one time they should overpay.

        • Old Ranger

          You could very well be right. If they do, I would front load the contract. Paying the big money up front (with NO, no trade contract) would be better for the Yankees, for his last years. 27/09?

        • Steve

          Here’s a theory.

          He’s a Boras client, so he’ll go to the highest bidder like every other Boras client.

  • Old Ranger

    Finally, some are coming around to the team getting younger and more athletic. When I broached the subject a few weeks ago (along with 1-2 others), we were dumb and to stupid to see the need for all the HR we might lose.
    Cleveland and the Reds had unbelievable hitting teams and didn’t win as many WS as they(pun-dents) said they would.
    Look at the teams that are winning Tampa, LAA they are young, athletic, and play the way one should. HRs are nice but, situational hitting is better…along with great defence and pitching.
    We have been getting very low picks in the draft (28-30)…and making many mistakes over the years. Things have changed in the last few years, let the guys that know what they doing…keep doing it. That means Cash, Oppi and their teams…go guys. 27/09?

    • Steve

      Younger and more athletic is part of it, but I’m not sure many of these guys are Girardi type players in the first place. He always spoke about guys who were “grinders” guys that would have tough at bats and play the game hard all the time. Guys who buy into the team concept and us against the world mentality. Guys who play the game the right way, all the time and don’t need to be told to do so.

      Almost all of this team are Torre holdovers with the only exceptions being the kids who’ve been brought up recently. I can see them letting most of their FA’s go this year and replacing them with players who fit Girardi’s style of play. Maybe even make a trade or two with some of the guys under contract. Cano and Damon are considerations there.

      This is NOT Girardi’s team yet, and won’t be for a few years.

      • Old Ranger

        Could not have come close to saying it better.
        I like the twist you put on it being Joe T or Joe Gs. team, I must say…I had not put much thought into that aspect of the line-up. 27/09?

  • Cathy

    Get Mark Texeira and that Giambi walk……..He is an elephant at first base