Probably the most discussed topic over the past few days/week has been the Yankees payroll, specifically as it relates to the team’s ability to sign another bat this off-season. Yesterday we discussed why the Yankees might not have as much free payroll as some assume. Still, they’re the Yankees and until we hear it from the boss, there’s no reason to believe that there’s a set ceiling for how much they’ll spend.
One aspect of payroll which has generated quite a bit of back and forth has been the team’s spending this year vs. the future. Some commenters have noted that if we just don’t re-sign Pettitte and forgo the Cameron trade, we could us that money to sign a big bat like Teixeira. After all, he’s looking at somewhere around $20 million per season, which is about what Cameron and Pettitte would make combined. (Of course, there are other mitigating factors in the Cam/Pettitte situation, like the Brewers taking on Igawa and some of his salary. But I digress.) The problem is that $20 million for 2009 is worlds different than, say, $168 million over eight years. That’s a bit tougher pill to swallow.
The advantage to being the Yankees is having enough money to do what they want, when they want. When a premium talent hits the open market, they can use their financial resources to lock him up to a deal. So when a player like Teixeira becomes a free agent, you know the Yankees will be involved. There is said to be some interest in Mark Teixeira. What the Yankees have to decide is whether it’s worth the payroll hit they’d take this year in order to add him to the lineup for the next eight years.
Here’s how the payroll scheme looks now:
* AAV of contract
# Opt-out possibility
@ Team option
Now let’s see how that looks with Teixeira added in on an eight-year, $168 million deal.
Remember, in each of these cases the team will be facing arbitration years for their now-young players. Hell, Austin Jackson could hit free agency after the 2016 season if he debuts this year or opens with the team in 2010. So while the numbers might look friendly now, they could see some serious increases as our youngsters earn the right to be paid better.
Like yesterday’s payroll post, I cooked this up so we can better guide the comment discussions. We’re talking about payroll a lot, so we should have all the facts at hand.
** Again, I didn’t include Igawa’s contract, Brackman’s money, or any other deals I neglected yesterday. I guess this just relates to the Opening Day payroll.