The Pettitte question, redux

Open Thread: Happy Mo Day
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On Friday, I posited that the Yanks should offer arbitration to Andy Pettitte. While they run the risk that Pettitte will take them to a hearing and get paid more than he deserves or the Yanks want, the odds of that happening are low. Meanwhile, if he signs with the Dodgers or elsewhere, the Yanks would net themselves two draft picks. They’ve got nothing to lose.

Ken Rosenthal, however, disagrees. He writes: “The Yankees, on the other hand, do not figure to extend such an offer to lefty Andy Pettitte. If they wanted to give Pettitte a one-year contract with an increase from his $16 million salary, they would have done it by now.” Now, I don’t agree that this is as clear-cut as he thinks, and it doesn’t seem to me that he is basing this guess on anything other than intuition. In other words, there is no insider information at work here. We’ll see how this plays out. The arbitration deadline is coming up tomorrow.

Open Thread: Happy Mo Day
City officials pushed for free suite
  • Kay Sturns

    Offer!; the worst that happens is you get Pettitte on a one year deal 14.4mm to 17.3mm. the best: two picks and room for Hughes to better Andy in everything except innings.

  • kenthadley

    offer it…….Andy has something in the tank, and history shows lefties age better……Pettite can evolve into a Mussina-like pitcher…….to me this is a no brainer… look at the last 2 months of last year, without understanding the realities of pitching (and Andy’s personal situation where he wasn’t able to work out as much in the past winter) is absurd……sign him…..he’d be a 4 or 5 who could conceivably win 15 games….where are you getting that for 16mil/one year…….

    • Billy Beane

      um… 16 mil is what he made last year… do you know how arbitration works?

      • kenthadley

        UM…..yeah, Billy, I know how arbitration works….so he gets 17…..what’s the point?

  • Steve

    I want Andy back, so I offer it either way.

    • jane

      I want to re-sign Andy too. He could bounce back like Moose did. What’s the harm in having a lefty at the back end of the rotation? It’s not like he’s Darrell Rasner. He can get people out.

  • Mark

    It’s time to turn Andy’s page. Thanks for the great service, but 16 million for diminishing returns doesn’t add up. Let Aceves/Hughes/Coke or whoever compete for the #4 slot.

    • Steve

      So you offer it or not?

      Don’t forget, even if you offer it you could make it clear to the player that you’d prefer to look elsewhere. In which case, he will likely turn it down.

  • Steve

    This is pretty low risk move for a team like the Yanks. While the deadline for offering arbitration is tomorrow, the actual hearing won’t take place for months. They still have time to explore the free agent market options. Worst thing that will happen is they have to pay Andy another 16 mil. They’ll live.

    However, if they DON’T offer Andy arbitration, I think they will lose even more. Andy will feel like they don’t want him back and will be more likely to sign elsewhere, and the Yanks will get nothing in terms of draft pick compensation. They will lose Andy AND the picks, which could be as high as 17th and 50th overall.

    They have to offer it.

  • JeffG

    Does a 14-14 record and a 4.54 era get him a raise on 16mm? I think Rosenthal is smoking c-rock. I’d offer and hope we could negotiate a contract, but for some reason that is beyond me, the Yanks aren’t settling this issue. Pettitte should have been signed already.

    • kenthadley

      what was Derek Lowe’s win total and ERA last year? factor in about a 1 RPG increase for AL east vs NL west, then tell me where the bargain is vs. Pettitte? I imagine Lowe will get 16 per for at least 3-4 years……much larger commitment, and the consensus recently is that Lowe is the second most valued pitcher after CC goes west coast…..

      • JeffG

        Good point. Looks like my mind hasn’t fully adjusted to the way the market has exploded for SPs over the last few years.
        Lowe is on the bottom of pitchers I’d like to see us sign. If he gets 16mm per season I’d say he’ll be overpaid for sure.
        I’ll give you that it could very well happen and if in fact it does Pettitte will be harder to pinch money from.
        Ultimately, even with my misjudgment of Rosenthal’s claim, my opinion remains that Andy should be signed, if through arbitration or otherwise.

        • Mike Pop

          Agreed with ya man.. Bring back Pettite

  • Steve

    One thing to throw into this mix. Sweeney Murti said on WFAN last night that the Yankees HAVE offered him a contract (at a lower salary) and he hasn’t responded to their offer. So Andy may be looking go to arbitration, figuring he can do better.

  • Miles Roche

    The question is though, will another team want to sign Andy at the cost of the 17th-overall pick. . .

    • Miles Roche

      Oops, meant to post this to Steve’s comment to Mark…

      • Steve

        No problem, we’ll discuss here.

        The Dodgers are going to lose their 17th pick somewhere, either by signing Manny or signing some pitching. If they do sign Manny, we don’t get their 1st rounder, we would get their 2nd round pick. Which should be around 80-something.

        • kenthadley

          agreed the Dodgers will probably lose their pick, but isn’t Manny theirs? Do they lose a pick for signing him?

          • Steve

            Duh. Can’t lose a pick to yourself.

            You’ll have to forgive me, the coffee hasn’t kicked in quite yet.

  • thisisthedavid

    This is a bunch of fuck boy bullshit!

    Offer him arbitration!

    Worse thing that happens we get Pettite on a bounce back year at a high price

    • kenthadley


    • Ben K.

      I’m pretty sure that it would be worse to pay him another $15-$16 million and have him pitch as poorly or worse as he did last year. The best thing that could happen is a bounce-back year. But at his age, that’s not as likely.

  • Eric

    Offer and take the draft picks plz.

  • Tim Q. Mills

    Someone fill me in. Why would Pettitte get so much $ in arbitration? He had a 4.54 era and a 1.41 whip. Shouldn’t below average numbers the previous year cause him to get less?

    • Steve

      Arbitration looks at the past 2 seasons, what other players at the position have done, what they earned and how much service time they have.

      Simply put, the fact that he’s a Type A Free agent makes it very unlikely he would get a pay cut of any kind.

  • yankee21

    Yankees need to offer him arbitration. The Yankees have much more to lose by not going this route. If he signs with another team, not only does NY not get any draft picks they also lose a 200+ IP guy which puts added pressure on NY to overpay for mediocrity (AJ, Lowe, man in the moon etc..) and go beyond reason with CC to compensate for not having any SPs besides Wang and Joba.

    By offering arbitration the worse that can happen is Andy maintains his salary in the 14-16M range.

    Maybe the Yankees wanted only to spend 12M on Andy.
    The Yankees can’t lose the benefits over 2-4M.

    They need to lock this piece of the rotation in.

  • Steve

    More Peavy sillyness

    “Jake Peavy to the Cubs is still being explored despite complications: The Cubs are being sold. Ryan Dempster was re-signed for 4 years, $52MM. The Padres are trying to include a third party to net the package GM Kevin Towers is seeking. If this happened then the Cubs would need to move Jason Marquis. Rosenthal suggests the Padres could take him if the Cubs ate around $3MM of his $9MM owed next season, or the Cubs could deal him and cash to another team (Rosenthal suggests the Rockies, Reds, or Giants). Rosenthal also backs the rumors of the Orioles involvement as the third team and having interest in Felix Pie.”

    OK, so the team is being sold, they already signed a pitcher, and it will take a 3rd team. Other than that, they have a deal.

    Folks, Peavy can be had for very little talent-wise.

    • Ben K.

      But if he’s not interested in pitching in NY, he won’t waive his NTC. That’s why that deal hasn’t been explored really.

      • Steve

        He’s never said that (that I’ve seen) he’s simply said he has a preference for a few teams/NL. So has CC, and that’s not stopping the Yanks from pursuing him.

        The Yanks are on his list, so he hasn’t ruled them out. His agent also made comments about how he “grew up dreaming of playing in pinstripes”. I think the stuff about him not wanting to play here are overdone.

        BTW-Did you know that Mussina didn’t want to come to NY? He didn’t want to deal with the media hordes, the traffic, the whole bit. But Torre spoke to him, convinced him to come and by the time he retired he said it was “the best decision he ever made”.

      • Steve

        BTW-I think the reason the Yanks aren’t pursuing him now is because its smart to sit back and let the market collapse for him. If you look at his contract and what Towers is looking for, I would sit back and wait for a deal to come to me if I was Cashman.

  • Steve

    All of you folks who keep insisting Peavy will cost the moon are looking at the player and not the contract. He’s owed 56 mil over the next 4 years, with an option that could bring the package to 80 mil/5 years. You’re paying for his baseball value with $$, so you don’t want to pay for a player twice, with talent on top of the money you have to pay him.

    His trade value is mostly in the 8 mil first year of the deal, and that he’s slightly under market rate (at 16 per) for the next 3 years. Figure he’d get 18 mil per season on the open market, so you’d have to come up with the difference (10+2+2+2=16 mil total) in terms of talent. One blue chip prospect will save his team about 20-30 mil before he reaches free agency if he produces like a MLB regular. Figure that advanced prospects are a 50-50 bet to make it, so add another blue chipper or two B prospects to compensate for that.

    A-Jax, IPK, Veras and Cervelli. To be honest, that’s paying Towers double what he’s giving you back. Even if all 4 only stick a few years in the bigs, he’s saved 50-60 mil off what those players would cost on the open market. If they last all the way to arbitration, double it.

    • Mike Pop

      The reason we aren’t trading those guys is because of all the FA options… It would be dumb to give the 4 of them up for Peavy when instead you can keep all 4 and get Burnett or Lowe with the amount of money being a wash. Now I am not a fan of signing Lowe but I do like AJ.. Not at 5 years for AJ. Ill go 4 and around 64 million tops while bringing back Pettite. That way IPK can be used as trade bait to another team for another need.. All of those guys could be packaged to fill another need we have.. Perhaps a young 1b or young corner outfielder… I am not a fan of giving up A-Jax though..

      Keep our prospects and sign FA starting pitchers>>>>>>Trading for Peavy

      • Steve

        Which is another reason to wait, but if/when we miss out on some of our Plan A’s, Peavy is a very attractive Plan B.

        • Mike Pop

          I would go IPK, Z-Mac, 1 or 2 of our excess relievers like Edwar and Veras then if they want an outfielder bad, I would offer Melky.. I know that is not quality but we should not give up Hughes, A-Jax, Montero, or Romine in this deal. If we did not pull the trigger for a better pitcher in Johan we should not do it for Peavy even if his contract is extremely “team friendly”. Simple fact is we do not need to have Peavy bad enough to give up our top prospects and further deplete the farm system as it is starting to take shape again. We already gave up alot of our guys for Nady, Marte, and Swisher.. We cannot keep dealing our young guys who we will need in a couple years.. I loved the Swish deal, I am just saying we have depleted the farm with both of these deals… Hated selling low on Tabata though, Hughes and him were the first guys I started to follow in the minors

          • Reggie C.

            Don’t worry on Tabata. He’ll have another season where he only slugs .400. The kid was over-hyped.

            The Peavy market is weak right now, and I still refuse to believe that the Yanks are out of the running. We’re undoubtedly on the bench, but until i read details of the potnetial 3-team deal, the peavy-yankees rumors are still viable.

            • Mike Pop

              Tabata is going to be a solid regular I think

  • Mike Pop

    Now I would offer arb. I agree with you Ben on how Rosenthal is just basing this on intuition..Offer it and if he gives you 200 innings with a 4.20 ERA or around there it is a solid deal for us

    • Reggie C.

      A 4.20 ERA would be welcomed coming out the 4/5 spot. He’d have to pitch better than he did a year ago, but many of us don’t think he can..

  • Mike R.

    If Peavy is attainable for the Yanks without having to give him a costly extension, big if, why settle for one big name pitcher? It doesn’t have to be either or with Sabathia and Peavy.

    If we could sign Sabathia why not deal for Peavy? The rotation would be legendary.

    For the record I do not consider this a realistic scenario of how things could/will go down, but more of an extension to the discussion.

  • Old Ranger

    Peavy is a very attractive pitcher to have on the team but, I still worry about NL pitchers coming to the AL 300lb beast. I have never seen him pitch, so just going by the fact of him being a NL pitcher that really didn’t dominate the NL..I don’t know how much of a difference he would make.
    I have stated before and do so again, I like CC and Tex as number one, along with the resigning of Andy. If, for some reason we can’t real them into the fold then we go after ONE good pitcher (with Andy of course) and play with what we have…CMW, Joba, Andy, FA, Phil, Aceves, Giese, Coke etc.
    One must start believing in the ability of some of these guys…that which happened last year will not color or vision of the future. After all, we are talking of one rookie not two, if he doesn’t work out replace him with the next one. Throw enough ……you know the story! What say you guys, do we really need two or three pitchers, or two pitchers and Tex? 27/09.

    • Mike Pop

      My dude, Peavy dominated the NL.

      • Old Ranger

        Ok, so now I know! If he was dominant in the little league ok, go for him…if he will come to NYY. Like I said I had not seen him (anywhere, TV or etc.), but one thing I would never give up A-Jax (future OF) Cervelli (back-up if Posada isn’t ready).
        Is Peavy the answer, could he fill in for CC? 27/09.

        • Mike Pop

          You get them both… CC is much better than Peavy and he is not the answer if we miss out on CC… Peavy would just be a “luxury” to have

  • BG

    I think people are looking at this the wrong way. There really is no scenario where we’d get picks for Pettite. If you offer Pettite arbitration, he will accept. He wants to play for NY, he only wants a 1 year contract and he would get far more $ from arbitration than anyone in their right mind would offer him coming off last season. If they offer it, it will either go to arbitration or he’ll sign for essentially what he made last year with the yankees eliminating the risk of him getting a raise and Pettite eliminating the risk of an arbitrator considering his awful second half and giving him a slight pay cut. There’s very little room for negotation though because he’s a Type A and he doesn’t want a multi year deal so you can’t cut the annual value but give him more security as is typically done.

    The Yankees have been saying all along that they want to bring him back so i assume they offer it. They are already in a pretty poor negotiating position with free agent pitchers. Everyone knows that they really want to sign 3. If they don’t lock Pettite up, CC, AJ and Lowe are going to be in that much better of a negotiating position. They’ll extract more than the $3-4 million that Pettite is getting above his real value.

    Only way this doesn’t get done is if Cashman is far more worried about Pettite’s 2nd half than he’s let on. Either way they should move to lock up a fifth starter soon to lower the leverage that the more expensive guys are going to have over them.

  • Mike A.

    No brainer, offer him arbitration. Worst thing that happens is he accepts, and you’re “stuck” with him for another year at $16-18M. HIS FIP was nearly a full run lower than his ERA, his Kper9, BBper9 and GB/FB improved from 2007, and his contact rate was unchanged. That’s strong evidence of bad luck thanks to the Yanks’ awful defense.

    And don’t forget that just because a player accepts arbitration doesn’t mean they go to arbitration – they can work out a deal for any number of years for any amount of money before the arb hearings in January.

    • Reggie C.

      BG put together a heck of a post. I’d like to think that Pettite would draw enough interest around the league to get more money or more years elsewhere, but I don’t think that’s the case. He’s already said that he’s cool with a 1 year deal. The Yanks can’t ask for much more than that kind of cooperation.

      I agree. Offer arb and when Pettite accepts make sure he signs a one-year deal, and hope that he can shave .25 off that ’08 ERA.

    • BG

      Technically you’re right but usually a guy doesn’t go to arbitration because he works out a multi year deal before it goes to arb. Pettite only wants a one year deal. What incentive does he have to work out a deal at a lower rate rather than go to arb if offered it? Pettite is pretty much holding all the cards here. I’m not saying a deal absolutely wouldn’t get done prior to arb but not at a salary cut.

  • pounder

    Let him walk.He deserted us once before.

    • Old Ranger

      No, we deserted him. 27/09.

  • Old Ranger

    Got a Question for Mike or anyone…
    Why are so many on this blog so quick to trade Cervelli, Phil, Cano, Veras, Edwar and A-Jax? These guys are to be part of our future, someone has to step up and replace the older guys as they fade into the sunset…we can’t go with FA and trades all the time, as we use to do. 27/09.

    • Ben K.

      I think you are conflated commenters and the three of us who write. We’re not too keen on trading most of those guys.

      But at the same time, having a stocked farm system means recognizes pieces that valuable to the future of the team and pieces that are valuable in trade. Cervelli is probably not going to be a good Major Leaguer so if another team values him more, you trade him. Edwar is a mediocre middle reliever. If another team is willing to give up something, you trade him.

      The three of us writing however have been unequivocal in our stance. We would not trade Hughes, Cano or A-Jax under most circumstances.

      • Old Ranger

        Thanks Ben, although I didn’t mean the three of you wanted to trade them.
        What I kept seeing was; trade this guy+ for this other guy without regard to who was being traded…just who it would take to get the trade done.
        My use of the word Blog rather then commenter’s was a bad choice as I must admit to being new (Oct. 2007) the enternet and sometimes confuse the terminology (a lot). In fact I am new to PCs, I will try to get it right.
        Conversely, I think you have under estimated Cervelli…Phil, Cano, and A-Jax I con cure.
        Thanks Ben. 27/09.

  • Mike Pop

    Id rather offer arb to Pettite than Plax

    • Nady Nation


      • kenthadley

        Plax doesnt need arbitration….he needs incarceration…..

        • Old Ranger

          As Nady Nation so eloquently wrote…”Touche”. 27/09

  • LiveFromNewYork

    SI is reporting that Torre wants Andy. He’s like Bill Parcells (Torre)

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