Following through on a CC-inspired plan

Teixeira not headed to Boston
Yanks leaving the lights on for us

During the Winter Meetings, as it became clear that the Yankees would indeed land CC Sabathia, Joe wrote a piece about the importance of patience. He talked about the Sabathia signing through the lens of the Johan Santana shenanigans that went on during the winter of 2007.

On Thursday, as the Yankees introduced CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett to New York, one team official expounded on this idea. Long after the press conference was over, Brian Cashman sat down with one of the YES Network reporters and talked about the courting of Sabathia. It obviously wasn’t just some spurt-of-the-moment idea that formed since the 2008 season ended.

It had, in fact, been a goal of the Yankee front office since last season and Sabathia’s impending free agency was one of the primary reasons why the Yankees never completed the Santana trade. As Cashman said, the Sabathia signing was the “completion of the concept.” Cashman noted that the Yanks had CC on the radar since being bounced by Cleveland in 2007. Sabathia was, after all, a “premiere player available for just a draft choice.”

It’s interesting to hear Cashman use these words so unequivocally. The Yankees understand — better, at times, than many of their fans do — that it pays to wait one season to land that top tier pitcher through free agency. There is no need to overpay in prospects, players and money for a pitcher when you can land one nearly as good six or eight months later for just money and a draft pick.

Of course, at the same time, Cashman realized that this wasn’t an easy wait. “We took a lot of hits going through that process,” he said. The Yanks GM also was well aware that there was “no guarantee” that Sabathia woud sign with the Yanks.

In the end, though, these words were telling. Behind Cashman’s rational lies the reason for the Yanks’ huge offer for Sabathia. They wanted to ensure that no one would outbid them a season after intentionally losing out on Santana. Who knows how the move will pan out? Nothing suggests Sabathia won’t excel in New York. But as Brian Cashman knows, a lot depends on CC. Right now, passing on Santana to wait for Sabathia was the right move. Now we just have to wait for the games to start to make sure it remains the right move ten months from now.

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Teixeira not headed to Boston
Yanks leaving the lights on for us
  • Cam

    I ended up watching the re-run of the press conference late las night and I was very impressed with both CC and A.J. They were both very well poised and honest, and you could tell that it was an emotional day for both. As was pointed out in the live thread, I like that A.J. honestly mentioned that money was a factor. That’s the kind of honesty that I think fans are looking for in players, and it shows his maturity. I got chills seeing them standing in uniform at the new Stadium. We’re very lucky to be fans right now. The season should be nothing short of exciting!

  • jsbrendog

    so it becomes clearer why they didnt do the washburn salary dump last yr.

    • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

      Other than the fact that Washburn isn’t good, you mean. ;-)

  • Batman

    just wanted to thank you guys for giving me something to do in the library while i pretend to study for finals

  • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

    I understand this point. And even the point of not getting Santana and then going after CC (I think most of us knew that was the plan when we did not get Santana)

    I still would have preferred the Santana deal. That is my personal opinion.

    Also I believed then that if we did not land Santana or another top flight pitcher last year we should have blown that team up. By trading away Giambi, Matsui, Abreau, Pettitte (houston), Moose (to Philly if he would have accepted), and possibly Damon and other players. I think if we would have done that the outcome last year would have been less wins but a team stocked with more young players and at the very least a team that would have saved money to spend elsewhere.

    Now I knew that would never happen with the Yankees spending their last year in the old stadium and having 4.3 million fans expected to buy seats. But that is what I would have done.

    I am glad we got CC (not glad about outbidding ourselves), and more pitching (I would have gone with Sheets over AJ, but I have not seen eithers medical reports so maybe I do not see the whole picture)

    At the end of the day, even if I or other fans nit pick the moves that got us to where we are. I am happy to have an ownership that gets it as far as trying to put the best team they can out there even if I disagree at times with their methods.

    • Yank Crank 20

      I’m fairly confident that your opinion of the deals will change over time. While Joba has to cap his innings, Burnett’s history shows us he may miss some time and the idea that pitchers can get hurt at any time, you’ll appreciate having Hughes, Kennedy and CC over just Santana as time goes on and the kids get some starts and develop.

      Like we were saying last year and at the end of this year, you just can’t judge the non-Santana move yet. Whether you wanted Santana over CC or Sheets over AJ, these guys are Yankees now and we should be very, very excited.

      • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

        “I’m fairly confident that your opinion of the deals will change over time.”

        It may. I get and understand why the deal was not made. I just do not agree with it. I think last year with Santana that we would have had a shot at a deep playoff run. Also in effect I believe that no way the Sox were in the playoffs last year if we did that move. Also IF we were not going to make that move I think we would have put out team in a better position by blowing the team up.

        So I do not just view the non deal of Hughes, Ian and Melky as the only possible outcome.

        I still think Hughes could be something, I do not believe or have ever believed that about Ian. Hope I am wrong about Ian, but I do not think I am.

        I am excited about getting some top starting pitching in CC and AJ, I am. I just think things could have been even better. But I am rooting for them and hope they both stay healthy, because if they are healthy I think they will give us what we need.

      • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

        I just wrote this comment but before posting it I read DBHOF’s response above, and I think I’m actually kind of supporting him here. In other news, my head just spontaneously combusted. Here goes:

        “Like we were saying last year and at the end of this year, you just can’t judge the non-Santana move yet.”

        I actually disagree with this point. Before anyone starts facepalming me, let me explain. I, personally, will not judge the Santana non-move (nor the subsequent transactions and personnel decisions) for years to come. But I think it’s important to realize that there are intelligent, rational people out there who wanted the Santana trade and still think it was a mistake not to make it. The difference between the perfectly rational opinion that the Yankees should have made the trade and the perfectly rational opinion that the Yankees should not have made the trade is just that some people (including me) preferred/prefer to hold onto the prospects, while other people felt the completion of that trade would have made the Yankees a much better team in 2009 and would have provided more certainty for coming years. There was a certain amount of risk assumed when the Yankees did not complete the Santana trade – risk that the players the Yankees protected will not pan out, risk that they would not be able to find another pitcher/pitchers who could perform like the top pitcher in baseball.

        So… Yeah, I think you can judge the Santana non-move (even though I prefer to wait a few years before looking back at it). If the guy goes out and wins an MVP award this season and the Mets win the World Series, the people who lament the non-move will have pretty good reason to be upset. I still agree (and will agree even if the foregoing occurs) that the Yankees made the right decision given the situation at the time, but you can’t dismiss people who disagree with that opinion off-hand.

        • Yank Crank 20

          Of course you “can” judge it now. Many fans do, and many people did last year when it wasn’t made. If Santana goes out and wins the Mets a World Series will it suck? Sure, I don’t want the Mets to win. But i’ll choose to fully judge the move in a couple years when we see exactly the kind of pitchers Ian Kennedy and Phil Hughes turn out to be.

          • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

            Maybe I wasn’t clear (in fact I’m sure I wasn’t). I didn’t mean that people have the ability to judge these transactions now, but that it’s actually reasonable to do so if one’s interests/concerns are different than yours or mine.

        • JeffG

          Very nice. It is good to respect both sides of an argument. I was always on the side of getting Santana. I still feel we should have. That said, while frustrated, I like to think I was always trying to understand others perspectives. It’s a lot cooler to think others are trying to get you as well.

    • Sweet Dick Willie

      By trading away Giambi, Matsui, Abreau, Pettitte (houston), Moose (to Philly if he would have accepted), and possibly Damon and other players.

      Unfortunately, all of those players either had no-trade clauses and/or were going to be free agents at the end of 2008, so trading them for anything of value would be problematic.

      I’ve said it previous threads, but it is worth repeating here. Before suggesting a trade, it would help to pretend you’re the GM (or a fan) of the other team and ask yourself three questions: 1) would this player help my team, 2) does this player fit in my team’s salary structure, and 3) what is a reasonable price (in terms of players) I would pay to acquire this player.

      If more people would go through this short exercise, we would see a lot less of “trade Matsui” etc.

      • ryan

        everything worked out just fine….CC in my opinion right now is better than santana and has been for the past since 2007 when he won the american league CY young. Santana enjoyed the success of the NL all year and we all saw how much CC enjoyed the NL as well. Burnett being burnett I agree 100% the farm being stacked is gonna pay off, besides Phil Hughes is gonna be solid for the yanks once he gets goin. plus with the salaries of damon and matsui coming off the books after 09 it makes for a perfect free agent pickup of Matt Holliday.

      • UWS

        I’m with you, but I think that one major part of being a fan is proposing ridiculous personnel moves with no regard for other teams’ needs. Thus, we’ll keep seeing “Trade Matsui” until he’s either actually traded (for a bag of balls) or his contract is up.

        • Ryan S.

          It always is fun to make up stupid trades to justify part of a larger scale plan. I myself have proposed quite a few Matsui trade ideas recently, but I’d like to think I’m always realistic, and I acknowledge that he is absolutely worthless in terms of trade value.

        • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

          Matsui could have been traded last year to the Giants, and even if we got nothing back we would have saved $26 million (thats a year of Manny)

          • Ryan S.

            Not only could he have been traded, but I believe Jonathan Sanchez was one of the names being kicked around that we could have made a deal for.

            • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

              I just think most people think of Matsui today, instead of how he was looked at before last year. Now its assumed he will be hurt, last year before he got hurt it was just a possibility. He had some value that is for sure even if it was only to get rid of his salary.

              • Ryan S.

                At this point, its definitely more cost effective to just keep Matsui and see how he does, since his value is so low. If he proves he’s healthy, his bat is totally acceptable as an everyday DH.

                • Mike Pop

                  But to think we could of got J Sanchez for him… Damn, shit we could have Jorge Cantu at 1b Right now !!!! Fuck you Cash…

                  Na but if we got J Sanchez that would of been great, probably could of used him in a deal for Holliday

      • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

        “Unfortunately, all of those players either had no-trade clauses and/or were going to be free agents at the end of 2008, so trading them for anything of value would be problematic.”

        Damon has value and I believe he does not have a no trade. White Sox among other teams were interested in him. He had two years left on his deal prior to last year.

        Abreu could have been a nice rental for somebody. Also they could have gotten possible draft picks as the economy had yet to tank and peoples opinions had not dropped on offering arb to guys like this.

        Matsui was wanted by the Giants at least to some degree. He had two years on his deal at the time.

        Giambi, is a guy I would have cut when when had Pena at triple A a couple of years ago but if he was still on my pretend team last year I would have tried to move him even if i just saved a couple of million and got nothing in return.

        Pettitte had extreme value for a team like Houston. Also they could have gotten possible draft picks as the economy had yet to tank and peoples opinions had not dropped on offering arb to guys like this.

        Moose had a no trade, but I think I covered that in my initial post. The Phils would have loved to have had him, and he could have had a shot at a ring with him home state team. Also they could have gotten possible draft picks as the economy had yet to tank and peoples opinions had not dropped on offering arb to guys like this.

        “I’ve said it previous threads, but it is worth repeating here. Before suggesting a trade, it would help to pretend you’re the GM (or a fan) of the other team and ask yourself three questions: 1) would this player help my team, 2) does this player fit in my team’s salary structure, and 3) what is a reasonable price (in terms of players) I would pay to acquire this player.

        If more people would go through this short exercise, we would see a lot less of “trade Matsui” etc.”

        I think you need to take your own advice on this one. I did not have any unrealistic opinions here.

        • ryan

          if we traded Damon we wouldn’t have a leadoff hitter and he’s a productive left handed bat …matsui maybe be injury ridden right now but he’s another productive left handed bat in the lineup. If we got rid of them last year for a manny signing this year cano would be the only lefty under contract aside from the 2 switch hitter in the lineup. Yanks need to keep a balanced lineup as well as a potent one. Left handed hitters are important in yankee stadium and i don’t see a boat load of replacemnets for those guys in the Lefty section. we may need to resign one of these guys as a DH believe it or not. IF posada can play out his contract as a C and not a DH it would be big for the yanks and retaining one of those guys ( old but still clutch).

        • Sweet Dick Willie

          Damon has value and I believe he does not have a no trade

          Damon has a partial no-trade, thus restricting who he can be dealt to.

          Abreu could have been a nice rental for somebody.

          “Could” being the operative word. Also, if you deal him as a rental, you don’t get the draft picks, because you can’t offer him arbitration, because he is no longer your player.

          Matsui was wanted by the Giants at least to some degree.

          And you know this how?

          Giambi, is a guy I would have cut when when had Pena at triple A a couple of years ago but if he was still on my pretend team last year I would have tried to move him even if i just saved a couple of million and got nothing in return.

          A) If you cut him, so save nothing, as his contract is guaranteed, and B) see my comment about proposed trades. Last off season, what team would have traded for Jason and his $21 mil contract w/ a $5 mil buyout?

          • TheLastClown

            I agree with the timbre of your posts, but, if they’d traded Bobby, they would;ve gotten something back, and since they didn’t offer arbitration anyway, thata more than they’re getting back now.

        • Mike Pop

          He had two years left on his deal prior to last year

          I think there is an easier way to say such a thing..haha

          • Mike Pop

            Especially being the word conservationist you are and all.

      • JeffG

        Right on Matsui runs 13mil and is going to hit 25+ HRs and bat near .300 why in the hell do we need to move him? To make room for some other similar corner outfielder?
        I’m not trying to start a Matsui is better than Manny arugment because I don’t think Manny should even be considered.

    • Old Ranger

      Many of the posters on this site bitch about haveing Brett as our CF. How do you think they would react to a team of rookies? As the team is constructed right now, I would love to have Brett in CF. Some have the idea that we could get Tex and move Swisher to CF…no chance at all. Swish is to slow and will cost us more then a few games, just think of it; Johnny in LF, Swish in CF and Nady in RF…is there anyone here that thinks this is a good “D” to have behind the pitching staff we have now?
      With very good pitching you need very good defence, or the great pitching is redundant. We need someone of Brett’s’ ability in CF. With him in CF we can have the other two guys about avg., and get by.
      As a 1st baseman, Swisher is good, as an OF…not so good, maybe avg., or so. Johnny is about avg., in LF.
      So, to sum up the situation, I think we have already improved our defence and about broke even on the hitting and RBI with last year…remember, better pitching means no need to score 10 runs to win. 27/09.

      • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

        I agree with everything you just said Old Ranger.

      • Ryan S.

        I’m all for letting Brett and Melky duke it out in ST this year for the CF job, even if we got a bat like Manny’s. I think there are times and scenarios where we can swallow hard and let Damon take over CF every now and then, but he is definitely not an everyday CF anymore.

        I also think that even if we don’t make any other moves, our offense will be measurably improved this year.

        • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

          “I’m all for letting Brett and Melky duke it out in ST this year for the CF job, even if we got a bat like Manny’s.”

          Me too.

          “I think there are times and scenarios where we can swallow hard and let Damon take over CF every now and then, but he is definitely not an everyday CF anymore.”

          I would prefer Damon to never enter the game as a CF EVER unless he somehow gets traded to the Red Sox.

          “I also think that even if we don’t make any other moves, our offense will be measurably improved this year.”

          I think that is wishful thinking. I am not a Abreau or Giambi fan but dropping those two and adding Swisher do not cut it. Even if Posada comes back healthy there is not a lot of reason to believe he will duplicate 07 numbers. Cano, Jeter and Alex need to have some monster years to make up for losing Bobbitto and Giambi and only adding Swish.

          • Ryan S.

            Posada doesn’t have to duplicate his 2007 year to be a HUGE improvement over Molina/Pudge. If Matsui is healthy, he should be a good enough replacement for Giambi. Swisher isn’t as good a bat as Abreu, but he’ll still contribute to the offense and let A-Rod see a lot of pitches if Swisher is in the 3-hole. We also get a full year of Nady, which should help. I think we have some big wildcards in our lineup – Swisher, Cano, Posada, Matsui mostly, but coming into this year I still feel like we’ll score more runs than we did last year by a good margin.

    • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      I am glad we got CC (not glad about outbidding ourselves)

      DBHOF, this is a line you keep repeating, and frankly I just don’t think it’s true.

      We gave CC a 7/161 (which equals 23 AAV). 23AAV is basically exactly what the market dictated that CC would accept. There’s no realistic way to think that he would have taken an AAV lower than what Santana established as the market ceiling last offseason, so the only way we “overpaid” was in years.

      Now, as we know, CC preferred to go to California, if a situation could have been found there that was amenable. We gave CC one year more than our original offer, and one year more than anything he would have seen from any California club that would have/could have entered the bidding. You call it “bidding against ourselves” because we raised our offer without any interim counteroffer by a competitor, but what’s really going on is that we had to raise our offer because our initial offer was not high enough/long enough to convince him to find for a better alternative. If a player is willing to leave money on the table to go to a team he prefers more, the club he doesn’t prefer (us) has to give him a financial incentive large enough to offset those concerns. It’s clear that 6/140 wasn’t large enough, but 7/161 was. We’re not bidding against ourselves, we’re altering our bid to make it acceptable, since our initial bid wasn’t.

      We have to remember that many of the players who play for our team have no natural affinity for the Yankees or New York like we do as fans, so they won’t simply leap at the chance to take 6/140 or 5/80 because they’re so grateful to be Yankees (even though it’s a lot of money). These guys aren’t fans, they’re professionals with family logistics to consider and they have to do what’s best for them, not what’s loyal to us or to our team.

      • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

        Tommie, I understand your logic. But I do not agree with it for these reasons:

        1) The economy is seriously messed up right now. Which makes every dollar (or million dollars) worth more in the amount of goods you can get for them. Even goods or services where they is a finite supply of (like elite pitching)

        2) The whole AVV thing would be great if we were talking apples to apples not apples to oranges. CC and Santana to me present two different level of pitcher. I think Santana is a better pitcher, a true top two or three guys in baseball type pitcher. I think CC is the next rung down which is still a great pitcher.

        3) Santana was basically a free agent, as he could choose his landing spot being a free agent in one seasons time and having a no trade.

        4) I believe (no proof, just how I feel) that Santana would have signed with us for less (the extension after the trade) than he did with the Mets.
        Historical evidence of this sort of thing happening is the Carlos Beltran deal. Might just be circumstantial evidence but you get my idea (while I will assume you do not agree with it)

        • Sweet Dick Willie

          Santana was basically a free agent,

          Except he wasn’t, so we would have had to surrender significant prospects, in addition to paying him a contract like he was a free agent.

          • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

            To clarify. I meant outside of the prospects we would trade. I meant as far as salary negotiations only.

            • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

              Yes, but you can’t disregard that when talking about the Santana-to-the-Yankees scenario; the prospects involved were ever bit a factor as was the money – if not moreso.

        • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          1) This statement, while true (to a degree) has virtually nothing to do with anything we’re discussing. Utterly non-germane obfuscating filler.

          2) It doesn’t matter whether you feel that Santana is a different level of pitcher than CC. They’re both priced as aces, which they are, and aces follow the market. Every time an ace hits the market, he gets a slight raise over the previous ace. Your beef is not with the Yankees’ Santana/Sabathia plan, it’s with the economic structure of free agency. And, whatever marginal increase in salary we have to face by waiting one more year before acquiring our “ace” is offset by the savings we reap by keeping multiple high quality younger players in our system; explicitly, while we’re paying an extra million a year to pay Sabathia than we would have paid Santana, the fact that Hughes, Melky, IPK, are all good enough to be ML players at the minimum salary offsets that. If we had Santana but no Hughes, Melky, IPK, we’d have to replace those three roster spots with other players, likely older ones making more money. It’s a wash.

          3) I don’t understand at all what you’re saying here. Are you saying that Santana was going to hit free agency? Because he didn’t. Are you saying that he could have blocked his impending trade to the Mets? Because he didn’t. You lost me on this, that doesn’t make sense. I don’t see how we get Johan Santana without giving up prospects.

          4) This is baseless speculation, but again, I contend that whatever dollar savings we get by trading for and extending Santana in 2007 vs. signing Sabathia in 2008 is offset by the loss of high-quality, MLB ready cost controlled young talent that would likely be replaced by veterans… Melky was coming off a good year and slated to be our CF of the future. If we deal him in the Santana trade, we’re going to go sign some free agent, you’d best believe it. Hughes and IPK were in our opening day rotation… if we move them, they’re getting replaced by a veteran free agent. Dealing for Santana could have set of a chain reaction of other spending, like, say, buying Aaron Rowand or Mike Cameron for CF and Randy Wolf or Livan Hernandez for the rotation…

          You’re looking at it in retrospect but not taking everything into consideration. Eschewing Santana for Sabathia probably saved us not only quality prospects but money as well.

          (And none of this mentions the fact that CC profiles better to retain his health and effectiveness better than Santana, who’s already slipping a bit…)

          • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

            “1) This statement, while true (to a degree) has virtually nothing to do with anything we’re discussing. Utterly non-germane obfuscating filler.”

            If you think the economy change has no effect on this situation you are mistaken.

            “2) It doesn’t matter whether you feel that Santana is a different level of pitcher than CC. They’re both priced as aces, which they are, and aces follow the market. Every time an ace hits the market, he gets a slight raise over the previous ace. Your beef is not with the Yankees’ Santana/Sabathia plan, it’s with the economic structure of free agency. And, whatever marginal increase in salary we have to face by waiting one more year before acquiring our “ace” is offset by the savings we reap by keeping multiple high quality younger players in our system; explicitly, while we’re paying an extra million a year to pay Sabathia than we would have paid Santana, the fact that Hughes, Melky, IPK, are all good enough to be ML players at the minimum salary offsets that. If we had Santana but no Hughes, Melky, IPK, we’d have to replace those three roster spots with other players, likely older ones making more money. It’s a wash.”

            If we were not bidders for CC nobody would have even approached the number that Santana made. Nobody did. I def do not have a problem or lack of understanding of the economic structure of free agency.

            Ian as of yet has not been good enough to be a ML player. One more year of backslide and neither is the Melky Man. Hughes needs to stay healthy to prove he can be a ML player, something he has yet to do.

            My problem again is not with spending money, or even too much money, it was spending it in the manner we did.

            On part three I was saying that I think if we did the trade with the Twins for Santana we could have gotten him for less dollars and or years. We would have given up a good package of players possibly but if you look at what the Mets gave up, we may have been able to get him without giving up too much. We really do not know what the real last package to get him whould have taken. But either Omar is lucky, or better than Cashman, or just the Twins did not want to trade him to the AL team, the Yankees.

            As for part 4. I am not looking at it in retrospect. I am saying how I felt at the time. Melky was never looked at as the CF of our future by anybody who can judge talent, he was at best a cheap stop gap, I think you know that.

            The whole CC health profiles argument is kind of silly. Obviously a guy that fat with that many innings on his arm in the last couple of years is a red flag at that contract length. Both pitchers have reasons health wise to stay away from them, or not. The main one is duration of contract.

            • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

              If you think the economy change has no effect on this situation you are mistaken.

              I’m not saying that the economy hasn’t changed things, I’m sure it has. I want you to explain to me HOW it’s changed things, since you brought it up. Last winter, Santana got a 6 year, 22.6M AAV extension. This year, Sabathia got a 7 year, 23M AAV contract. In spite of the recession. How is this the economy relevant to the Santana/Sabathia question, please? I’m not getting whatever point you’re trying to make.

              If we were not bidders for CC nobody would have even approached the number that Santana made. Nobody did. I def do not have a problem or lack of understanding of the economic structure of free agency.

              Baseless and naïve speculation. If we had Johan and thus, didn’t bid on CC, somebody would have given Sabathia a 23M AAV deal. The Angels, Sox, Dodgers, Giants METS… somebody would have. Maybe he only gets 6 years instead of 7, but somebody would have given him 23M AAV. Shit, ace-less Omar Minaya himself would give Sabathia 27M AAV in a heartbeat.

              Ian as of yet has not been good enough to be a ML player. One more year of backslide and neither is the Melky Man. Hughes needs to stay healthy to prove he can be a ML player, something he has yet to do.

              And yet, they all were still on our 25 Man last year. If we trade them away, we need to find other guys to take their spots.

              My problem again is not with spending money, or even too much money, it was spending it in the manner we did.

              And that’s because you still think there’s this ethereal, fundamental reason that these players should all want to come play for us, and at a discount. It’s just not realistic. We pay players big money, sometimes much bigger money than they’d get anywhere else, because it’s one of our tactical advantages. And, many players know how hard it is to come play here, so they need significant financial advantage to do so. This is the way it is. If it irks you, maybe rooting for the Yankees isn’t good for your health.

              On part three I was saying that I think if we did the trade with the Twins for Santana we could have gotten him for less dollars and or years.

              Baseless and naïve speculation.

              We would have given up a good package of players possibly but if you look at what the Mets gave up, we may have been able to get him without giving up too much. We really do not know what the real last package to get him whould have taken. But either Omar is lucky, or better than Cashman, or just the Twins did not want to trade him to the AL team, the Yankees.

              Of those three options: 1) Omar Minaya is really lucky, 2) Omar Minaya is a better, shrewder negotiator than Brian Cashman (as well as Theo Epstein, who also had a better package than the Mets), or 3) The Twins just really wanted to move Santana out of the American League, which one seems the most plausible?

              You already know what the answer is.

              As for part 4. I am not looking at it in retrospect. I am saying how I felt at the time. Melky was never looked at as the CF of our future by anybody who can judge talent, he was at best a cheap stop gap, I think you know that.

              But while that’s true, even if Melky wasn’t the CF of the future, he was still the CF of the present. And if we deal him away for Santana, we’re not going to just stick Brett Gardner in CF. We’re going to go sign a free agent. If we’re smart and lucky, it would have been Mike Cameron. If we’re stupid and unlucky, it may have been Aaron Rowand. You can’t just say “we should have traded for Santana” without really looking at the holes it creates and how we would have/could have filled them. Melky, Hughes, and IPK were all on our opening day 25. That means, you have to tell me what CF and what fifth starter we’re adding to compensate for their loss in the Santana acquisiton.

              The whole CC health profiles argument is kind of silly. Obviously a guy that fat with that many innings on his arm in the last couple of years is a red flag at that contract length. Both pitchers have reasons health wise to stay away from them, or not. The main one is duration of contract.

              But again, this is something that both scouting and statistical analysis agree on. Santana is a little guy who throws really hard. Guys like that break down at a higher rate and at an earlier age than big, stocky guys like Sabathia. You don’t have much of a leg to stand on here in this one.

        • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

          Donnie, how can you reasonably argue that the team should have been blown up during the 2007 off-season when the 2008 campaign saw the Yankees win 89 games despite all that happened – and by that I mean injuries to Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes, Ian Kennedy, Hideki Matsui, Jorge Posada, Alex Rodriguez, Chien-Ming Wang and regressions by Robinson Cano, Melky Cabrera and a second-half Andy Pettitte? I don’t get how you can make this statement while being knowledgeable of the fact that the Yankees were dealing with so many problems in regards to their 25-man roster due to injuries, regressions and simple ineffectiveness.

          • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

            Jamal, I felt this way BEFORE the season took place. I looked at our team vs the Red Sox, Angels, Rays and said UT OH WE DO NOT HAVE THE PITCHING TO WIN A WS IF ANYTHING GOES WRONG.

            I feel like the Boss does, that it is WS or bust. The only difference is I know each year we really dont have the team to do it. So build towards that team.

            • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

              So wanted to destroy the 2008 team because of a fear of what would happen if the Opening Day rotation was altered? Don’t you think that’s just the least bit illogical? Not only illogical, but completely wrong; the Yankees actually allowed fewer runs in 2008 than they did 2007. The problem was the offense, not the pitching.

              • Mike Pop

                Ya but with that rotation even if we made the playoffs we prob would not of gone deep. I am not in favor of blowing up the team though… Oh and Donnie bullshit you looked at the Rays way before this season and felt like we couldnt compete with them.

                • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                  Furthermore, DBHOF, saying that you wanted to blow up the team once we didn’t get Santana assumes that you correctly predicted:

                  1) Jorge Posada, who had been utterly healthy and coming off a career year, would contribute absolutely nothing at all in 2008;
                  2) C.M. Wang, who had also been totally healthy, would get injured in a freak accident and also contribute nothing;
                  3) Robbie Cano, who had been raking, getting into an inexplicable funk all year long;
                  4) ARod, who was otherworldly good in 2007, coming up short not just on occasion but in literally every RISP opportunity.

                  I can understand being doubtful about the Yankees chances to win it all, because there were valid reasons to question how good the kids (IPK, Hughes, and Melky) would be and how much the old fogeys (Abreu, Giambi, Matsui, Jeter, Damon, Posada) would slip.

                  But you can’t tell me you predicted all four of the above. Those four were utter surprises. And, if any one, much less all four of those things didn’t happen, we still could have easily made and won the World Series, even with the poor performances of everyone else.

                  We only missed the playoffs by a handful of games. A healthy Wang or Posada, or a slightly more productive Cano or ARod could have made that difference disappear. Saying that a poor 2008 could have been predicted smells fishy to me. We had not just a little predictable bad luck, we had a little predictable bad luck and a LOT of unpredictable bad luck.

                • Mike Pop

                  “I PREDICTED MOOSE WOULD WIN 20″

            • Mike P

              And do we now have the team to do it? If not, shouldn’t we just say screw it and keep the money, trade our last remaining bats , hope for the best? Or is this finally the year we have the team? What does Donnie Baseball’s legendary ‘gut’ tell him about this?

          • Mike P

            Was about to post exactly the same argument. It’s easy to say, ‘should have given up on 2007 and got the prospects’ with the hindsight of elimination. But really, there’s no way you could have predicted that and the fact the Yanks almost made it with serious injury issues proves that. Under the same line of thinking, Minesota wouldn’t have accepted a trade of Santana for Wang/Hughes/Kennedy/Tabata if they knew 2008 would be a lost year for all of those players.

            Revisionist history is so easy. But at the time it was the right move, at the moment it’s probably still the right move (after Sabathia signing and Hughes injury you can debate it), and in a few years it could easily be obvious that it was unquestionably the right move.

            • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

              First off regarding the Rays. If you looked at their pitching vs our pitching before the year there was an obvious advantage they had in depth. Couple that with the fact their team is young and athletic and our was not and anybody with a brain saw them as a problem.

              Did I think they would be in the WS. No way. Did I see them as a real problem in the AL east YES.

              Again, you guys are saying I am looking at this in the past, when I was telling you my feelings pre 08 season. If anything it worked out pretty well for the Yanks to NOT hav done what I am saying. We still ended up with both CC and AJ (something I did not think was a realistic possibility)

              I am happy we have strength at the top of our rotation and now a deep rotation. I just think we could have done things differently and been a better overall team. If there truly is no money for Manny or Tex, I think the way I would have done it might have allowed us that money.

              I would have traded for Santana, I would have this year gone for Sheets over AJ. A lot of small moves I would have done differently. But you guys are all the mirror of Brian Cashman? Well I guess if he goes elsewhere or dies the Yanks will be ok because everybody would do the same exact moves for the same reasons?

              Come on thats a little fishy.

              • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                If there truly is no money for Manny or Tex, I think the way I would have done it might have allowed us that money.

                How, in god’s name? We’re paying CC 23M a year. The Mets are paying Santana 22.6M a year. How does trading for Santana, and creating holes in our system likely to be filled by other, more expensive players, put us in a financial position to be more able to afford Manny or Tex?

                Not trading for Santana and paying CC instead has SAVED US MONEY, not cost us more money. Our payroll going forward will be SMALLER by eschewing Johan and picking CC instead.

                You’re wrong.

              • Sweet Dick Willie

                anybody with a brain saw them as a problem.

                Are you sure this isn’t hindsight? Because I saw no one pick them higher than 3rd. They won 71 games in 2007 and added no big free agents, so who, exactly (link please) saw them as a problem?

                • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

                  All those nerds with their stats saw them as problems. In work I’ve done for Baseball Prospectus at the beginning of last season, we ended up predicting them to win 89 games and finish near the top of the AL East. They exceeded that by a bit, but it wasn’t that much of a surprise to anyone watching the team develop.

        • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

          Just a small quibble… You have to realize point number 4 is completely wrong, right? The fact (or rumor) that Beltran would have taken less money to play for the Yankees than he took from the Mets is not circumstantial evidence in connection with a discussion of whether Johan Santana would have taken less from the Yankees than he did from the Mets. It’s completely unrelated.

          • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

            Mondesi, I think I said 4 was my opinion. I also heard people, one of which was Santana say things in the last year that made me beleive he would have rather come to the Yankees than the Mets.

            • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

              “The fact (or rumor) that Beltran would have taken less money to play for the Yankees than he took from the Mets is not circumstantial evidence in connection with a discussion of whether Johan Santana would have taken less from the Yankees than he did from the Mets. It’s completely unrelated.”

              Especially since in the winter of ’04-’05, the Yankees were still coming off 6 World Series appearances in the past 9 years (and were one inning away from 7 in 9), and the Mets were basically a non-contender. I can see why Beltran would have taken less money to come and play for the Yanks, we were still a strong team and the Mets were 71-91 and sucked the big one.

              I don’t see why Santana would have given us a discount over the Mets. He was the best pitcher to switch teams in the past 5 decades, he was going to set the market regardless. He wasn’t going to give us some sub-20 AAV, that’s fantasyland.

            • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

              “Mondesi, I think I said 4 was my opinion.”

              I understand it’s your opinion, most of what we say here is opinion. That doesn’t mean it shouldn’t have some rational uinderpinnings. If I say “Just my opinion… Theodore Roosevelt is my cousin,” does the “just my opinion” part make it ok? No.

              “I also heard people, one of which was Santana say things in the last year that made me beleive he would have rather come to the Yankees than the Mets.”

              Who did you hear say that Santana preferred the Yankees over the Mets? When did Santana huimself say that? Even if anyone DID say it, why does that mean he would have taken less money/years?

          • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            Especially since in the winter of ’04-’05, the Yankees were still coming off 6 World Series appearances in the past 9 years (and were one inning away from 7 in 9), and the Mets were basically a non-contender. I can see why Beltran would have taken less money to come and play for the Yanks, we were still a strong team and the Mets were 71-91 and sucked the big one.

            I don’t see why Santana would have given us a discount over the Mets. He was the best pitcher to switch teams in the past 5 decades, he was going to set the market regardless. He wasn’t going to give us some sub-20 AAV, that’s fantasyland.

            • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

              Whoops, sorry for the doublepost. Computer froze…

              • Mike Pop

                Why did it freeze ? You been looking at something “dirty” lately??

                • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                  I was just surfing CC’s awesome new website and I JIZZED IN MY PANTS…

                • jsbrendog

                  hahaha

                • Mike Pop

                  Next morning the alram goes off and I….

    • Chris

      One big difference between Sabathia and Santana is that Santana’s underlying stats were trending down while Sabathias are steady. There were also concerns about Santana’s stuff at the end of 2007. Most of those declines continued this year, even though he moved to the NL. There are no guarantees in long term contracts for pitchers, but I would guess that the Yankees are much happier with Sabathia’s contract than they would be with Santana’s contract (even if you don’t count the prospects involved).

      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Exactly. While Santana’s been the better pitcher than Sabathia for the past decade, I feel more confident about CC Sabathia still being an ace in 2012 than I do about Johan Santana.

        Big pitchers age better. Small power pitchers don’t age well.

        • Steve H

          And CC has been better than Santana the last 2 years, in both leagues, so the comp. is valid. He was a better AL pitcher in 07, and a better NL pitcher in 08. That is indisputable. We are paying for the next 7 years, not the previous 7. 2 years is not an insignificant sample size, and CC has been better.

          • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            And younger. And a better dresser. And, not Venezuelan so he won’t further corrupt the lazy Dominicans on the team, what with his laziness and his latin-ness.

    • JeffG

      Agree on Santana but there was never really a point where we have to dump salaries. I do regret giving up Tabata though.

  • ryan

    Out of these players who do u think will thrive in 09:
    1-Burnett
    2-Swisher
    3-Marte
    4-Matsui

    • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

      I hope all four. Marte is set up for success, as his job is easiest.

      Not sure Matsui will see the playing time to be able to thrive.

      Same goes for Swisher if we get Tex (which I do not see happening). Swisher also said he would prefer one position and might be able to play better if he could and that was first. He said something to that effect.

      AJ I think if healthy and slotted in at number #3 I would say he is the answer to your question. If he is slotted in at #2 he could still do the same thing if healthy.

      I think AJ is really just up to if he is healthy or not. Swisher is based on if he gets the opportunity, and what type of player he really is. Matsui is based on opportunity and health hand in hand. Marte is really just up to him, he has the job, he just needs to get the work done.

    • Ryan S.

      I think Burnett and Swisher will “thrive” while Marte and Matsui have representative years.

      • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt

        “I think Burnett and Swisher will “thrive” while Marte and Matsui have representative years.”

        Agreed.

    • Old Ranger

      All 4, for different reasons;
      Burnett…because he has learned what I posted a few weeks ago (and again this week) “No More Max effort.”
      Swisher…because he has better players around him.
      Marte…because he is a better pitcher then the hiccups he had this year.
      Matsui…because he is a pro, and has great self esteem.
      One you may have over looked is Posada; he may be the hardest press of the bunch, he wants to stay behind the plate, so I look for him to have a touch over his avg., season…not 2007, but good. 27/09.

      • jsbrendog

        Swisher…because he has better players around him.

        and no more batshit insane coach tleling him he shouldve nunted even tho there werent any men on base and that he shouldve stolen second even though he was on 3rd with a triple

        • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          Coñaso.. STEEEL DA BASE JU ESTUPIDO PUTA I GEEV JU DA STEEEL SEEGNAL ARREADY STOP DA WAYTING PUSSY JU GO!!!

        • Old Ranger

          Sounds good to me. 27/09.

    • Bronx Cheer

      One of Matsui and Burnett would be my guess. Burnett has matured greatly as a pitcher in recent years, and I see that process continuing (absent his arm falling completely off).

      Matsui is in a contract year, and will be a full-time DH. If my recollection is right, he rakes as a DH. It is possible we could see his best year as a Yankee (.285/.380/.510?), and he will probably be batting in the 3-5 range, meaning a lot of opportunities to do damage. I personally would slot him 4th behind A-rod, followed up by Posada.

      I see an up-and-down year with somewhere between a 3-4 FIP from Marte, and a slightly below (career) average year from Swish. Neither of those would qualify as “thriving” in my book.

  • Tony S

    This is why I am happy that cash is the GM. To be able to have the guts to stick to his plan even though you are going to take hits from the short sided radio jocks – is a very good thing.

    Tony

    • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

      I think just because you do not agree with what Cash is doing, makes you short sighted at all. People that assume one does not “get” the reason is off in a lot of cases. I get the reason, I just do not agree with some of the moves and non moves.

      • Old Ranger

        I think there’s a lot of us that have disagreements with some of Cash’s moves. I don’t really see why we shouldn’t….after all, he has information we are not privy to. He gets breakdowns the like we as fans will never see, plus medical records we would never see, i.e., Sheet’s meds. Obviously there is a problem with Sheets, or Cash would have been all over him.
        D.B.H.O.F., I guess (even with all the joking you guys do) if you have a disagreement…unlike some here, you stand up for it, I think you do good guy…keep going for it. 27/09.

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Joseph P.

          “after all, he has information we are not privy to.”

          This is often forgotten when calling Cash an idiot.

          • Ryan S.

            Personally, I love Cashman and I have a lot of trust in the guy. The man knows his shit. Do I agree with every move he makes? Of course not. But I really appreciate his overall philosophy of how to run this team, and you gotta keep in mind, he works for The Steinbrenners. Not every decision he makes is truly his decision.

            • Mike Pop

              Thing I like bout Cashman is he doesnt say shit. Other GM’s seem to tell the media all and Cash just says Im trying to make the team better.

              • Ryan S.

                Cashman is a consummate professional. He may be a bit “corporate” in that regard, but he’s always been nothing but a class act, and treats every player he speaks to with deference. There is no other guy I’d want as the face of our front office (not to be mistaken for ownership, that’s something completely different).

      • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

        I just want someone from your POV to explain to me how you can reasonably want Johan Santana over CC Sabathia, Melky Cabrera, Phil Hughes and two other prospects; or Santana over Sabathia, Cabrera, Ian Kennedy, Chien-Ming Wang and a low-level prospect.

        Please, I’d really like to know what you guys base your argument on that would lead a reasonable mind to believe that Johan Santana is so much better than CC Sabathia that he is worth the loss of both a record-breaking contract and talent.

        • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

          Ok… My buddy who I have season-tix with is in the pro-Santana deal camp and I respect his opinion, so I emailed him to ask about this. (In his defense) Keep in mind that he wrote this response quickly while at work (so, obviously, it’s off the cuff and he’s not studying payroll figures etc. while writing this response). Just figure I’ll post it because it’s an alternative point of view to the opinions held by most who comment here at RAB:

          — I wrote:
          Question: Are you still unhappy, today, that the Yankees didn’t acquire
          Johan Santana last offseason? (Now that they’ve acquired CC Sabathia
          and didn’t give up any prospects or other players in order to do so.)
          Do you prefer Johan Santana acquired a year earlier than Sabathia over CC Sabathia (acquired a year later), Melky Cabrera, Phil Hughes and other prospects?

          — He wrote:

          Yes. Greedy answer? Why couldn’t they have done both? Hughes is barely our fifth starter, they might trade Melky…

          Then we didn’t have to sign Burnett. Sign Sabathia and we are Santana, Sabathia, Wang, Joba, and Kennedy/Pettitte…

          Plus the 85 mil could be put toward Teixiera… Then Boston is screwed, we play Swisher in CF, and we have the best rotation in baseball.

          • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            That’s probably the best argument I can see for being pro-Santana-trade.

            I can’t see the team doing it, though. I doubt even the Yankees would sign off on two 20M+ AAV pitchers in the rotation. That’s a lot of risk.

            • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

              Yeah, it is… I agree with you, if you’re going to be pro-Santana trade, that argument makes the most sense (the argument that we’ve created a false parameter – that it’s one or the other – when really they could have gotten both guys). As I said above his numbers might be off a bit since that response was off-the-cuff, but he makes a good point. Whatever, as always, we don’t know what the Yankees’ financial parameters are or really anything else about their evaluation of these situations, it’s all conjecture.

        • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

          My main issue again is that if we did not trade for Santana, we should have gone down a different path for this year.

          Also another issue is the bidding against ourselves for CC, and signing AJ instead of Sheets (but if the medicals look different than I understand this one).

          For the record I LIKE CC AND AM GLAD HE IS HERE. I always liked CC. I have several friends and acquaintances in common with CC (gosh I hope one can hook me up with a tour of the field or something this year but that’s doubtful, maybe down the line)

          I just think if Santana is an A, CC is a B++ at best. I still think he should be good enough to get the job done.

          As far as Hughes, I need to see this kid stay healthy before I put much more stock into him. Ian is not a MLB pitcher from what I have seen. Melky is not a MLB CF and that is what we need him to be.

          • kimonizer

            Yeah but what will their grades be over the course of their entire contracts. It is not year 1 and 2 or Santana’s deal they were worried about but 4,5, and 6 when he is older and more likely to break down since his numbers are already down trending. Also looking at competition against similar opponents, CC was the A player in the national league last year and Santana the B++ player.

      • John NY

        Cashman quietly took his lumps this past season obviously. I agree 100% that he knew what he was doing. He saw a team that was limited, aging and overrated. He also didn’t bite on giving up the future AND money for Santana and held his position for a shot at CC.

        To date he has a team that allows him more freedom both pitching and offensively. Although, the Yanks aren’t going to put up 900+ runs on paper, they are still solid.

        You have a nice upside lineup to date. They can use a slugger behind AROD. This is our next step. Then solidify the bench. There are other options besides Tex and Manny that won’t cost us a fortune if we wait. I think we stay patient again and not let Boras dictate how much we pay for either (if the yanks are interested).

  • Mike Pop

    Hopefully it is the right move, I think it is.. Think about this though, say we made that trade for Johan. Would we have Teix as our 1b right now ? Would it of been worth it ? I doubt it cause I figure we are gonna use some of our young pitchers to trade for a young 1b in a couple of years. Maybe one of the kids from Texas or Cincy.. There wil be other 1b who dont demand as much money as Teix is getting.. Im shocked that Teix is going to get 200 million

    • TheLastClown

      I don’t think he will. Does anyone know the Nats’ offer yet?

    • Ryan S.

      I’m almost positive its the right move. I have VERY high hopes for Phil Hughes. The past is done with, and 2008 is over. From 2009 onward, the outlook is that this decision was the right one. Call me crazy and biased, but I’d rather have CC than Johan even in a vacuum.

      • Mike Pop

        Im very high on Hughes too.. Love the kid but Im just saying is Johan/Tex/AJ(and lets just put AJ in ther because they would of needed a starter) better than CC/AJ/Hughes etc ? Probably not cuz if all things turn out right Hughes should be great in a couple of years plus the other guys we get to keep can lead to more good things.

        Something worth thinking about I guess. Lets just get Manny and forget-a-bout-it

        • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          You’re muddling the argument by assuming that if we trade for Johan (and thus, don’t sign CC) that we’ll automatically sign Tex, and that if we don’t trade for Johan (and thus, do sign CC) that we’ll automatically NOT sign Tex.

          That’s a gigantic speculation and not a fair one, I’d say. We could easily have traded for Johan and still not signed Tex this offseason (as I mentioned above, the Johan trading likely would have lead to other moves, like possibly Rowand and Wolf)… we still may sign Tex this offseason, etc.

          It also ignores how a different 2008 season (one with Johan in the rotation) would have changed our outlook for right now. Did we make the playoffs? What’s our CF situation like? Maybe we don’t even sign AJ but instead gamble on Sheets since we already have Santana-Wang-Joba? Did we make the Nady/Marte deal? Etc. etc. etc.

          There’s so many movable factors in play here…

          • Mike Pop

            Im not arguing anything I am just pointing out 2 different possibilities. Im happier with what we have done now instead of getting teh Johan. CC was fly yesterday and I agree he could be the better pitcher going forward.

            • Mister Delaware

              Johan/Tex/AJ: ~$62MM
              CC/AJ/Hughes: ~$40MM

              Isn’t it really Johan/Teix/AJ vs. CC/Teix/AJ/Hughes?

              • Mike Pop

                CC/Teix would not be together though.

                • Mister Delaware

                  I guess I don’t understand why. The pick?

              • Ryan S.

                or maybe Johan/Teix/AJ vs CC/ManRam/AJ/Hughes???

          • jsbrendog

            factors like if we had santana last year would wang have ended up pitching in that game he urt himself in? you dont know, changing one variable makes every single tihng that happened last year different.

        • Ryan S.

          From a longterm outlook, in my mind, its an easy decision. If Hughes and Joba pans out, you have 2 outstanding frontline starters that are COST CONTROLLED FOR THE NEXT HALF-DECADE OR SO. That means that the money you would’ve been spending on even more high priced pitching further down the line goes to other holes you will need to fill. And I mean…its not CC/AJ/Hughes even. Its CC/Wang/AJ/Joba/Innings eater (most likely), with Hughes as an ideal #6 starter since he can hone his skills but still get some chances to test his stuff on the highest level some times this year. If everything goes right, Hughes should be a fantatic #5 starter in 2010 while Joba is already a #3/#4 (and you’ll still have CC/AJ/Wang in their prime).

          And we still have room for Manny even if Pettitte comes back this year.

          • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            Think about it this way.

            For 2008, trading for Johan is smarter than waiting for CC.

            For 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, etc., waiting for CC is smarter than trading for Johan.

            • Ryan S.

              You sir, are correct.

            • kimonizer

              exactly

        • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

          If we get Manny, I think this team will beast the rest of baseball.

          • Ryan S.

            YUP. If we get Manny, we potentially have one of the greatest baseball teams of all time. Besides having a mediocre defensive team (and you can juggle around players so that is isn’t absolutely horrendous, make late inning defensive replacements, etc), we would be incredibly well rounded. An outstanding lineup to compliment the incredible rotation and high quality bullpen. We’d be the team to beat, no doubt.

          • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            If we get Manny, I think this team will beast the rest of baseball.

            In this regard, buddy, you’re absolutely correct.

            BRO-BOT… I AM A BRO-BOT…
            and then BOOOOOOOOOOOOOM, MAKE IT EXPLODE!!!!!!!!!

            • Ryan S.

              That kid in that Michael Kay commercial is one fugly dude.

              • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                You know he’s on Saturday Night Live, now, right? He parlayed that “BRO-BOT” and the “SIZZLING BACON” remix into an SNL gig.

                That’s impressive.

                • Ryan S.

                  I never watch SNL anymore, so no, I did not. But good for him … he must provide hope to BRO-BOTS around the world now.

  • Mike Pop

    Turn on YES !! AROD Walk off

    • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

      This being home at 11-AM is strange.

    • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

      Damn, yo, that shit still gives me chills. I fucking love baseball.

      *Oh, and Michael Kay has an annoying voice whilst excited.

      • Mike Pop

        I remember watching it live and I was like wow down to the last out and we came through. I thought it was gonna be our year

  • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

    Heh, the following quote is from an interview Brian Cashman did this past October after he re-signed with the Bombers:

    “(I) read some of the stuff that some of these idiots are writing. I started seeing a couple of interesting articles show up from some lazy writers that aren’t good at what they do,” Cashman said on XM.

    “And I was like, you know what, maybe that’s where my motivation (for staying with the Yankees) is going to come from,” Cashman said. “I’m like, guys, if you’re going to do that, then I can either let that happen as I walk out the door…or I can stay and change the story. And I’m going to stay and change the story. At least that’s my intent.”

    • Mike Pop
      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        That was the least “gangsta” thing I’ve ever seen.

        Lifetime, Oxygen, and Logo are more “gangsta” than that gif.

        • Mike Pop

          The Puerto Ricans dont think so

          • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            I have to admit, that response was actually pretty funny.

            • Mike Pop

              I get a good one in once every few weeks

  • MattG

    I did not want Santana. I was in total agreement with Cashman: don’t pay twice.

    But today, I do not see the decision as Santana vs Sabathia, I see it as Santana vs AJ Burnett and Mark Teixeira. If Santana were already on this team, Burnett wouldn’t be, and the Yankees would be players for Teixeira right now.

    Maybe. Maybe paying Teixeira after paying Sabathia and Santana would be too much for the Yankees. It is obviously too much after paying Sabathia and Burnett, so I am probably wrong.

    I have a ludicrous trade offer to make, but I don’t actually think it’s ludicrous: I understand the Cubs are shopping Pie for a left-handed bat. I wonder if Matsui, $3 mil, and an expendable arm (ie Robertson, Aceves, Ramirez) would get it done? Should the Yankees want Pie? That, coupled with a Dunn signing for 1B, and moving Swisher to a corner, would be my current plan.

    • Mister Delaware

      Probably wouldn’t work just because Chicago already has LF locked up.

      • MattG

        Well, they were heavily involved in the Ibanez bidding, I think. The $3 mil is an adjustment to Matsui’s contract to reflect the salary Ibanez received. The only thing Ibanez has over Matsui is less injury risk.

        • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          The Cubs are rumored to be buying Milton Bradley and shifting Fukudome to CF. Pie’s expendable, but there’s no way they take Matsui for Pie when Bradley’s available for only money and he does everything Matsui does, only better and (shockingly) with less injuries.

          • MattG

            Well, let’s hope they lose out on Bradley, too. Piniella and Bradley would be a combustible mix. And I am not sure I agree with the idea that Bradley is more dependable than Matsui.

    • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      If Santana were already on this team, Burnett wouldn’t be, and the Yankees would be players for Teixeira right now.

      If Santana were on the team, we’d have:

      1) Santana
      2) Wang
      3) Joba
      4) ????????
      5) ????????

      … and no Hughes or IPK depth to fill those holes. And, if Wang still both get hurt during 2008 and Joba’s still on innning restrictions… we probably still go sign A.J. Burnett.

      I disagree.

      • MattG

        You misunderstand. I am saying Cashman went into this off-season thinking they Yankees need 2 new pitchers. If Santana were aboard, they would want one–Sabathia. Slot him into 4, and slot Pettitte back into 5. He might then be pursuing Tex.

        • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          Yes, but you’re first claiming that the reason we’re not bidding on a 20M AAV deal to Tex now is that we can’t afford it since we gave a 23M to CC and 16M to Burnett…

          But then you say if we’d have dealt for Santana (and given him 22.6M), this offseason we’d have STILL given CC 23M and then we’d bid on Tex? You’re contradicting yourself.

          You’re claming:
          CC (23M) + Burnett (16M) = no room for Tex
          Johan (22.6M) + CC (23M) = Yay, we can afford Tex!!!

          That’s backwards.

          • MattG

            I noticed I contradicted myself. Please re-read the original post.

            The real thing I am trying to point out is this: the Yankees should be targeting Sabathia and Teixeira this off-season. They are the two premiere FAs available, and they both fill holes. So why haven’t they? I’m not sure the reason is money, and if Santana were already a Yankee (thus giving them one less hole to fill), would Teixeira have been a bigger target?

            • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

              My one bone to pick with this critique is that we just don’t know how big a target Teixeira’s been. Just because some unsourced rumors in the media haven’t set forth a set offer or the Yanks’ Teixeira intentions doesn’t mean they aren’t there.

        • Ryan S.

          I do hope I misunderstood what you wrote. Did you just suggest that if we had Johan Santana, then if we got CC Sabathia he would somehow become our #4 SP in the rotation?

          • MattG

            No, Santana and Sabathia would be 1a and 1b. I get that.

            Either you guys are reading too fast and not paying attention, or I am explaining myself badly. This is the question–if Santana were already here, would the Yankees went out and signed the two best FAs on the market and taken the rest of the winter off? It feels like the chose pitching (Burnett) over hitting (Teixeira), and although we can assume the choice came down to money, I am not sure that’s the truth.

            • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

              Ryan S. just seems a little caught up on rotation-order, which isn’t relevant to this discussion and isn’t what you meant.

              Ryan S. – When he said “slot him into 4″ he meant the fourth available rotation slot, not the #4 spot in the order.

  • T-Dizzle

    i still think they should of got santana that way we could have both cuz aj isnt as good as johan and gets hurt too much but i still think we did ok in the end just not as good as we could have i think

    • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

      Oh no. Please not you too? You have an opinion that is not the same as Brian Cashman. Duck for cover lol.

      • T-Dizzle

        tommy will say something sarcastic to me in a few minutes im sure god forbid a yankee fan on a yankee blog says something against the consensus

        • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          It’s funny how the two of you constantly complain about having your opinions criticized when nobody else does.

          • kimonizer

            If you don’t want to participate in a dialogue and talk about your opinions with other people, why exactly are you posting online? I mean if you just want to have confirmation keep it offline and to yourself, but don’t bring it on the web where pretty much only the most combative people come to post. Hence the strong criticisms.

            • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

              Exactly. There’s nothing wrong with making statements against the consensus as long as you’re willing to back them up and not whine about being analyzed or disagreed with. Every board regular on here disagrees with one another all the time, but we back up our arguments instead of just saying “dude we shoulda got santana hes awesome” and then getting defensive when somebody brings up a counterpoint against that claim.

    • Ryan S.

      AJ is an excellent pitcher when he is healthy, and we really don’t need 2 left handed aces that cost about 23 mil a year, especially in the context of the prospects we have. Regardless of whether its Santana or CC we’re talking about (thankfully, we did indeed end up with the significantly cheaper overall option in CC), we’d be better off spending that other 23 mil / year on a dude like Manny … or even on a guy like Holliday in 2010. There are only so many $20,000,000+ annual contracts a team can offer, even the Yanks.

  • MattG

    I am happy with Cashman’s work this off-season. As I see it, this was the task list:

    Replace Mussina: DONE (Sabathia)
    Replace Abreu: DONE (Swisher)
    Replace nobody (the revolving rotation spot filled by Rasner et al): DONE (Burnett)
    Replace Giambi: not done, but could be DUNN
    Replace/retain Pettitte: not done
    Find a competent CF: not done

    My task list might’ve included dumping Cano before he looses all trade value, and getting the captain off of shortstop, but there aren’t any apparent solutions for either of those tasks.

  • leftylarry

    i liked Burnett’s comment when asked aobut staying healthy.
    he pretty much admitted he used to like to show people his “STUFF” and was always throwing 100 MPH, even when he was on the sideline.
    Smarter now, figured it out last year and thinks he finally knows how to stay healthy.
    Also liked the fact that C.C. is very bright and is in a lot better physical shape than people say he is.
    He’s a big, like an atlhetic DT, not like a fat pitcher.

    • Ryan S.

      My favorite thing that AJ was talking about was how its all about taking personal accountability for his performance. I really appreciated that.

  • T-Dizzle

    we should still try and trade to get ichiro to be our cf for the future he is still doin great every year and i think the mariners wanna rebuild

    • Ryan S.

      LOL

      • T-Dizzle

        what?

        • Mike Pop

          You just do it now don’t you ?

        • Ryan S.

          T-Dizzle I don’t mean to bust your chops but … I mean, c’mon. Its just very unrealistic and it’d be hard to imagine a fair trade for both sides. I think the best debate this topic would yield is “who hangs up faster on a trade for Ichiro: Cashman or the Seattle GM?”

          • Mike Pop

            He is not serious, I dont believe it anymore.. Ichiro–CF of the future? I love Ichiro but 18 for a singles hitter

            • Ryan S.

              Seriously. He’s still a great player, but he’s getting to that time where he could start to show signs of breaking down at any moment … not to say even when that happens he won’t be a quality player for a while longer. Also, Ichiro’s value to Seattle is much higher than he would be to most teams in terms of the revenue he generates for the team, but especially the Yankees, he’d be unnecessary for us in that regard.

              • whozat

                Is he really still great? He declined quite a bit last year…was that a blip, or the beginning of the end? Also, is he really a CFer? I know he’s fast, but I also know that they were moving him back to RF last season.

                I’m pretty sure I don’t want to replace our 35 year old leadoff hitter with a 35 year old leadoff hitter that makes even more money and doesn’t actually add that much to the team.

                • Ryan S.

                  Ichiro is still a prolific hitter, you gotta show him some respect. That said, I’d agree that its the beginning of the end of him being an amazing player, and I also agree that he’ll be switching to a corner OF spot sooner rather than later.

                • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                  Ichiro, OBP and wOBA:

                  2001 – .381, .369
                  2002 – .388, .347
                  2003 – .352, .347
                  2004 – .414, .379
                  2005 – .350, .336
                  2006 – .370, .351
                  2007 – .396, .368
                  2008 – .361, .339

                  And, just for fun…

                  Adam Dunn, OBP and wOBA
                  2001 – .371, .397
                  2002 – .400, .373
                  2003 – .354, .353
                  2004 – .388, .403
                  2005 – .387, .391
                  2006 – .365, .365
                  2007 – .386, .399
                  2008 – .386, .383

                  Ichiro’s been miles better than Dunn defensively, sure, but I think Ichiro’s value offensively has always been quite a bit overstated. Even with a bunch of steals, if all you do is slap drag-bunt base hits and you have nothing but singles, you basically need to mix in enough walks and HBP’s to get an OBP around .400 to really be a good, contributing member of an offense if you’re incapable of hitting any XBH’s.

                  Speaking only offensively, Dunn, even with all his K’s, is a much better offensive force than Ichiro. Hell, you can bat Dunn leadoff and have a better offense than you’d have with Ichiro.

                  (pssst… I’m looking at you, Brett Gardner)

    • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

      This, right here, might be the most riveting RAB conersation ever.

      • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

        This, right here, might be the most riveting RAB conersation conversation ever.

        Mondesi fail.

        • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          Mondesi fail.

          Nickel for every time I’ve heard that…

          Raul Mondesi batting from career game #1236 (Jun 30, 2002) to game #1307 (Sep 28, 2002)

          .245/.317/.434 .751 OPS

          http://www.baseball-reference......6:1307:sum

          • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

            That was a personal attack and as such was against the RAB Commenting Guidelines, you ingrate.

    • Steve H

      Are you aware it’s 2008? A 35 year old CF for the future? Do you have a Delorean that sent you back in time to 2002 when you posted this?

      • Ryan S.

        35 year old CF … at like $18 mil AAV.

  • ryan

    yeah that is a pipedream that’s about 3 yrs too late