Midday rumor round-up: Teixeira, Pettitte and Keith Law


Lots of rumors flyin’ around right now. Let’s wrap ‘em up.

  • In his Winter Meetings live-blog at 1:23 p.m., Ken Rosenthal got an unnamed rival executive saying that CC’s opt-out is a bad idea. Either he’s great and makes more money or he’s terrible and the Yanks are on the hook, this rival executive said. Of course, if the market flattens, it’s quite likely that no one would pay more than the nearly $100 million that Sabathia would be leaving on the table. We’ll deal with that when the time comes along.
  • Rosenthal also notes that the Yanks are in talks with A.J. Burnett, Derek Lowe and Andy Pettitte. He believes that the Yanks and Lowe are not as close as had been previously reported. Burnett expects the Yanks to top a deal from Atlanta believed to be five years and $80 million. I say pass.
  • Tom Verducci, largely silent at the Meetings so far, reports that the Red Sox may target John Smoltz. I guess they too need to the fulfill the overpaid, old injured guy spot on the roster that Curt Schilling will vacate.
  • Within the same piece, Verducci says that the Rangers have asked Andy Pettitte if he would be interested in pitching for them. So far, we’ve heard that the Dodgers, Red Sox and Rangers now are all interested in Pettitte, but the lefty remains interested in only the Yanks so far. He may have to wait until Derek Lowe, A.J. Burnett and Ben Sheets are signed by whichever team signs them until the Yanks are ready to welcome him back.
  • Jon Heyman says that Mark Teixeira will get $200 million from someone, and that someone, according to Mike DiGiovanna, might just be the Nationals. While this signing would put Teixeira close to home and drastically improve Washington’s club, they still have way too many holes to fill and no internal pieces really available. Teixeira would be the center piece of a bad club as he was in Texas, and I’m just not sure he wants to do that. Dollars, however, talk. I think, by the way, that Teixeira is not destined for the Yanks despite how perfect he would fit in with this team.
  • And finally, a hearty RAB congrats to site-favorites Keith Law and Rob Neyer. The two of them — along with Will Carroll and Christina Kahrl — are now officially members of the BBWAA. This is a long overdue move, and I can’t wait to see Keith’s reaction when his colleagues are the ones are awarding Jason Bartlett MVP points.
Categories : Hot Stove League


  1. Paulie says:

    I really think the Yankees should have tried to get Mark Teixiera and not CC. I like CC and I don’t think signing him was a bad idea but unless the Yankees are not out of the Teixiera race (which is possible) I think they should have had a different approach.

  2. Marc says:

    Here is what happens with Tex:

    He signs 10 years @ 20mil a year with the Nats
    3-4 Years from now the nats trade him to the Yanks for salary relief and a few decent prospects…ala Arod from Rangers

    Lets just speed up the process and just sign him ourselves! (And save the decent prospects!)

  3. Shea says:

    Is it true the Yankees are trying to create a robo-player constructed out of millions of dollars of wadded up bills who would be impervious to injury and STDs, play any position, and perform in an unstinting litany of product commercials? I think he would be called Don Money Jr.?

  4. Bryan says:

    Just FYI, Keith Law says at the end of his blog that Milwaukee does get the Gerrit Cole pick, I thought we put this to bed already!

    • Joseph P. says:

      No he didn’t. You almost gave me a heart attack there. He said:

      “The departure of Sabathia does give Milwaukee the Yankees’ first-round pick (25th or 26th, depending on whether Seattle signs relief pitcher Josh Fields) as well as a compensatory pick after the first round, but it leaves the Brewers with what might charitably be described as a non-contender’s rotation.”

      That’s the Yankees real first rounder. The only reason it could be either the 25th or 26th is that the Mariners still haven’t signed their first round pick last year. Since he wasn’t eligible to return to college, they have until the next draft to sign him. So if they do, the Brewers get the 25th pick. If they don’t, they get a pick for missing out on him (as we did for Cole), and the Brewers get the 26th pick.

  5. A.D. says:

    Don’t think Tex wants the east coast that badly to play for one of the worst teams in baseball… and a team that may not improve all that soon.

  6. jane says:

    How many teams really are interested in Pettitte? I mean, seriously. Dodgers? Red Sox? Rangers? At some point he’s not gonna wait around.

    • BigBlueAL says:

      Buster Olney said on the Michael Kay Show that Pettitte better jump on that Yankees 10mil offer because there wont be a spot in the rotation left for him pretty soon.

  7. BigBlueAL says:

    For all you Peter Gammons haters, at least he aint John Kruk. When asked during Sportscenter in the afternoon who will have a bigger impace, K-Rod or Sabathia, Kruk said easily K-Rod. Closers apparently are alot more important than starters. At least Gammons said its no contest, the extra 160 innings or so thrown by Sabathia is by far more important than the innings K-Rod will throw.

    Of course Papelbon would trump both of them!!!! j/k

  8. Joe B. says:

    So without the “it’s not going to happen” rhetoric, what would it realistically take to deal for Jake Peavy? Via MLBTR, “Tom Krasovic reminds us that Peavy’s agent Barry Axelrod said going into the Meetings that the Yankees would be more attractive to his client if they signed C.C. Sabathia.”

    Peavy would cost the same in dollars as Burnett or Lowe, and is better and more of a sure thing than either of those two. That difference would make me willing to deal anyone in our system not named Hughes, Brackman, or Montero. I haven’t been keeping up on all of the multi-team craziness for my own sanity, but what kind of packages have the Padres been getting back in the talks? Some permutation of Jackson, Kennedy, McAllister, Cervelli, Gardner, etc, would have to be competitive, no?

    Would the Padres want Nady at all? If we added him to the package with a little cash, contingent on signing Dunn to play 1B, moving Swisher to RF, and resigning Pettitte, that’s a nasty rotation and solid lineup:

    1. Damon, LF
    2. Jeter, SS
    3. Dunn, 1B
    4. Rodriguez, 3B
    5. Matsui, DH
    6. Posada, C
    7. Swisher, RF
    8. Cano, 2B
    9. Garnder, CF

    1. Sabathia
    2. Wang
    3. Peavy
    4. Pettitte
    5. Joba

    And then if we were able to swing something for DeJesus in the nine-hole to leadoff next year when Johnny leaves? Sign me up.

    • Peavy would cost the same in dollars as Burnett or Lowe, and is better and more of a sure thing than either of those two. That difference would make me willing to deal anyone in our system not named Hughes, Brackman, or Montero.

      … add Robinson Cano, Austin Jackson, and Dellin Betances to that list, and I’ll consider it.

      • Joe B. says:

        I assumed Robbie wouldn’t be going anywhere because of the money involved. Jackson is the one piece I’d like to keep most, but I think he’d have to be in the deal.

        Betances would keep you from dealing for Jake Peavy? He’s very far away, and still raw; a lot could go wrong between then and now.

        But, ok. Assuming Hughes, Cano, Jackson, Brackman, Montero, and Betances were off-limits, I still think we can assemble a reasonable package. Start with Kennedy, Nady + salary relief, Cervelli, and a couple of reasonably projectable guys (I’d be willing to put Betances here, myself), and I think we have a starting point. Keep in mind that the Padres would likely get two picks when Nady leaves next year, too.

        Like I said, I don’t know what all is being offered right now. The deal would look a lot prettier with Jackson; I think Jackson, Kennedy, Nady, and some cash would get it done, and I’d do that in a heartbeat.

        • I still think we can assemble a reasonable package. Start with Kennedy, Nady + salary relief, Cervelli, and a couple of reasonably projectable guys (I’d be willing to put Betances here, myself), and I think we have a starting point.

          Perhaps. But I imagine somebody, anybody would trump that… And no, even though Betances is far away, I don’t think I’d include him. With CC-Wang-Joba + Hughes, Peavy becomes a luxury. Perhaps if it was IPK and Betances with minor pieces, yeah, I’d bite. I just don’t see the Pads biting on that.

          But sure, I can be persuaded to remove Betances from my untouchable list. So, revised untouchables:

          Cano, Hughes, Brackman, Montero, Jackson. If the Padres will move Peavy without getting any of those 5 players, I’ll bite.

  9. christopher says:

    manny will cost them but for 3 years. so the yankees could sacrifice the budget for this season (with damon and matsui =26 million next year) by getting an impact bat for a short contract.

  10. christopher says:

    WOW…i dont go on the computer for a day and come back to CC being signed, the team may be close on Lowe and is interested in sheets with burnett looking like he is off the board. And Hank want Manny

    If they get lowe I dont see them resigning petitte. HAving CC and Lowe and their 200+ innings would allow them the luxury of taking a chance on a very talented pitcher who is an injury risk in sheets.

    Starting to look like that under 200 million budgett is going out the window. Hope they do leave some room for the offense even if that means only signing 2 pitchers.

    What happens to Kennedy? With Hughes and Aceves in AAA, do they look to deal him at some point this season?

  11. Leftylarry says:

    I’ll say it again.
    AJ Burnett will be the steal of this FA market.
    He’s gone on to the next level as a pitcher and even with his so called injuries has managed to pitch plenty of innings and with Yankees Pen shouldn’t have to pitch 9 innings.
    He’s 100% healthy has filthy stuff and was not abused this past season.
    He’s 31 as we speak, not turning 32 until January.
    No reason why he won’t have 3 more prime of his career huhe seasons and 2-3 more very good one thereafter.
    He trew harder this season than ever befroe and has ismplified his delivery and pitching style.
    This is the true No-brainer.
    A still young RH who throw 95-97 and has an unhittable curveball in the prime of his career and relatively inexpensive.
    Would I rather have him for 17-20 million or Abreu or GIambi for tohse kind of bucks?
    AJ can hold up against aBeckett and match zeros in the playoffs with him.Can C.C?
    We can only hope.

    • He’s gone on to the next level as a pitcher…

      A.J. Burnett’s career ERA+ is lower than Barry Zito’s.

      Let me say that again…


      Oh, and his 2008 ERA+ is LOWER than his career norm.

      • Jack says:

        Dude, didn’t Barry Zito used to be good? That might skew it a little.

        • Dude, didn’t Barry Zito used to be good? That might skew it a little.

          Yes. And yet, even with 2 great years of Barry Zito (2000 and 2002), four solid years of Barry Zito (2001, 2003, 2005, and 2006), one average year of Barry Zito (2004), and two horridly craptastical years of Barry Zito (2007 and 2008, in the WEAKER NL), he still has a better career ERA+ than A.J. Burnett.

          That should scare us.

          The fact that Barry Zito has been one of the worst pitchers in baseball the past two years, with 196 innings of a 4.53 ERA in ’07 and 180 innings of a 5.15 ERA in 2008, both in the NL West, and he STILL has a better career ERA+ than A.J. Burnett probably means that A.J. Burnett is just not that good of a pitcher and we should not be giving him 5 years…

          …and all that is assuming he stays healthy.

          • LeftyLarry says:

            hat does Barry Zito and his 88 MPH fastball have to do with Burnett and his 9’5-97 MPH fastball and unhittable curve?
            ZIto never had the arm Burnett has and Burnett has learned how to pitch finally.
            He’s still just 31 as we speak and is just hitting his peak.

  12. Adam says:

    I kinda wouldn’t mind of CC was phenomenal and then opted out. That means we got a good three years out of him and by that time we should know pretty well whether our young guys like Joba, Phil, Ian, Brackman and McAllister are the real deal or not. It won’t be like the A-Rod situation where our main alternative was Wilson Betemit.

    Regarding Teixeira, I’ve always been a fan of signing him, even more so than CC. However, I’m starting to reconsider. I don’t think Teixeira is the hitter we all believe him to be. This is a guy who’s never held a 1.000 OBS. He’s never walked 100 times. He’s never slugged .600. He’s a nice player, and the defense is a bonus. But is he really worth $200 million? I don’t think he’s a centerpiece hitter. I think he’s a really really great supporting player. I guess that’s okay since we have A-Rod as our centerpiece. But Teixeira’s just not feeling as right anymore. Just in case he is the real thing, let’s hope the Nationals sign him, so we don’t have to worry about him going to a rival either ;-)

    And hey, if we don’t get Teixeira, Albert Pujols is a free agent after 2011 (I’m assuming St. Louis picks up his no-brainer 2011 option at $16MM) ;-)

  13. Lloyd Johnson says:

    Please stop this Adam Dunn talk. Imagine a Line Up with Dunn and Swisher? They would break the stirke out Record by themselves. Why waste money on Front-Line Pitchers if your going to sign those two bums? Where do these rumors come from? Lets see now, we could start Dunn, Swisher, throw in Gardner, boy, wouldn’t that be a show.

  14. Rob says:

    No one probably cares, but, I’m going to throw it out there anyway. Now that we locked up sabathia for more than I thought we would have to spend, why not resign pettitte to a 10-12 million dollar deal, and sign Sheet for a 2 yr 30 mil deal with possible incentives or a 3rd year option based on innings pitched. That would then amount to approx. 50 million spent on free agents and a solid rotation with 3 innings eaters in Sabathia, Wang, and Pettitte, one great pitcher who will be inning limited, and a high risk/high reward guy in Sheets. If Sheets does go down, atleast we have insurance with Hughes, Kennedy, and Aceves waiting in the wings. Also, that will leave a significant amount of money to shore up the offense with one power move of signing Manny. I’m not the biggest fan but the guy can flat out hit and would really change the entire look of the offense. Offer many a 2-3yr deal in the range of 50-75 mil, and then you have a total free agent spending of 75 million. Final product:



    That is a ridiculous rotation and a great lineup, and the team will have saved money off the books from last year. I know Matsui wont figure to get much playing time here, but the difference in offense between Manny and Matsui is huge, and Matsui’s and Damon’s contracts are up at the end of next year.

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