Musings on the payroll

Once more unto the Andy Pettitte breach
A Varitekian musing from Rosenthal

Bryan Hoch took a look at the lower Yankee payroll a few days ago and notes that the Yanks are on target to pay out less in 2009 than they did in 2008. Right now, the team has committed $186 million to 16 players. While some of that lower figure is due to creative bonuses for their big free agent signings, this figure is largely dependent upon Andy Pettitte‘s not returning. If Pettitte comes back — as I hope and think he will for the right price — the Yanks’ figure will actually be lower this year than last for the first time in a long time. If Pettitte returns, the two figures should be about to the same.

Once more unto the Andy Pettitte breach
A Varitekian musing from Rosenthal
  • thisisthedavid

    If Pettitte comes back — as I hope and think he will for the right price — the Yanks’ figure will actually be lower this year than last for the first time in a long time. If Pettitte returns, the two figures should be about to the same.??

    will it be lower with pettite or with out?

    • Mike Pop

      I too am confused by this statement. Seems to me it contradicts itself or something. You say it will be lower but than you say it will be the same. Am I missing something?

      • VO

        i think he made a mistake what i think he means it will stay the same with pettite and without it will be lower

  • Pablo Zevallos

    The win differential between Pettitte and Hughes projects to be negligible. To pay $10M for a win or two, when you’re stagnating the growth of one the game’s best prospects/young players while also reducing roster flexibility (in respect to $$) doesn’t make sense. Pass.

    • A.D.

      I agree, especially with young pitching depth. Its not like last year where if one young pitcher fails there is no plan B. Hughes, Aceves, Coke, IPK… someone will stick.

      • jose

        however, pettitte does give you 200 innings while hughes, coke, ipk may not. It’s impossible to keep everyone in the pitching staff healthy, so i think we’ll see phil regardless

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Adding Pettitte, IMO, is not just about keeping Hughes in AAA. It’s about the fact that A.J. Burnett is a walking M*A*S*H unit, Joba is on an innings cap, and Wang is returning from injury.

        Think about it this way; 5 rotation “slots”.
        Slot 1) CC all year long
        Slot 2) Wang all year long (let’s assume he’s 100% good by April)
        Slot 3) Pettitte all year long
        Slot 4) A.J. Burnett
        Slot 5) Joba

        Even if slots 1, 2, and 3, stay healthy all year long, we’re at least going to need a handcuff for Joba for whenever we shut him down, and the odds of Burnett making 34 starts are slim. So, Hughes, and IPK will both probably see time in the bigs even if we bring in Andy. Andy lets us bring the kids along at the pace we like: they stay in AAA, refining and building their arsenal/confidence. A hole will open up, trust me.

        • Mike Pop

          Adding Pettitte gives us the best starting 5 pre-injury in the game in my opinion. If they all stay healthy, with those 5 and are lineup. May Mo help the rest of the AL.

          • Matt

            FWIW, RLYW had a piece up that showed 150 innings of Sheets will be more valuable than 210 innings of Pettitte.

            So, Ben Sheets, 1 year deal please.

            • Mike Pop

              That is all projections though. Does it take into account that Sheets might only give you 30 innings? Sheets’ arm is messed up man, that is the reason he is not signed. I can understand why Manny remains unsigned and other free agents but Sheets and Dunn are mysteries why people have not jumped on them. Dunn, I don’t know what GM’s are thinking. You could probably get him for so cheap. Sheets though, the dude has to be injured and pretty badly or else he would have gotten his money already. You think ATL would of taken Kenshin over Sheets if Sheets was healthy? I don’t think so.

              • Matt

                I really think the Mets should jump all over Dunn. A 3-4-5 of Beltran/Wright/Dunn would easily be the best 3-4-5 in the NL East, now that Burrell is out of Philadelphia.

                You’re probably right about Sheets. And Ben’s point below is well taken as well–I doubt Sheets would take a one year deal.

                • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                  I really think the Mets should jump all over Dunn something, for Mosakes. I mean, who do they think they are, a perfect team with no flaws?


                • Matt

                  Ha. I think to myself, adding Dunn would be a good move for the Mets. Then I remember I’m talking about the Mets and realize that they probably wouldn’t do something smart to help their team, like adding a strong hitting corner OF or a front line NL starter.

                  Go Cory Sullivan and Tim Redding, though. Huge moves. Impact moves right there.

                • Mike Pop

                  Rob Mackowiak.

            • Ben K.

              It’s all well and good to say “Ben Sheets, 1 year deal please.” But why would Sheets ever sign a one-year deal? Unless he’s very unhappy with his market, he’s going to sign a multi-year deal.

            • Kevin G.

              Does it take into account the young pitchers pitching the other 60 innings?

              • Mike A.

                Yep. It assumed 200 IP of Pettitte vs 150 IP of Sheets + 50 IP of a replacement level pitcher (ie Ponson).

    • Jake K.

      But you’re assuming we only need of the young guys to stick. We need someone for the 5th spot. Then we need depth because Joba is on an innings limit (and has yet to prove he can healthy). And for when Burnett likely misses a few starts. I don’t think a one year deal to Pettitte or Sheets really reduces the roster flexibility at all in terms of money.

      • A.D.

        True, as they say, there are no bad 1 year deals

    • Ryan S.

      Yes, Hughes would certainly be a rotting old man who is well past his prime if he ends up being a mainstay in the rotation in 2010 at age 23. Its not like he’s only pitched 11 games and a grand total of 57.2 IP in his career at the AAA level or anything … oh wait.

  • Mike Pop

    Do signing bonuses count toward the payroll?

    • Ryan S.


  • That guy

    How are the Yankees under the payroll, they spent 456 million this off season!?@#@!!!

    • That guy

      Warning: Sarcasm alert…

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Warning: Sarcasm alert…

        It’s sad that it’s come to this…

        • A.D.

          Yankees spending = what’s wrong with baseball

    • Mike Pop


      • Matt

        I’m going to assume you’re spelling of “freakin'” was an attempt at irony, Mike. ;)

        • Mike Pop

          …….yea, yea, that was it. :(

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  • Grover

    Enough sentiment, it’s time to cut the cord with Andy. Open competition in Spring training and may the best kid win. Who cares if Scranton wins it all?

    • Andy In Sunny Daytona

      Michael Scott.

    • Ryan S.

      Its not about sentiment at all – its about dependability and durability. You’re right, nobody gives a damn if Scranton wins – its about fielding the best winning team in the big leagues. The reliable, quality performance Pettitte will give us – in addition to the significant boost in pitching depth – is why you want Andy in Pinstripes one last time. Hughes being in AAA the majority of the season is merely a side-benefit.

  • pat

    I wish we could just give sheets a contract where he makes 500K a start. The guy makes all 30 starts or so he makes a cool 15 million and we would have a near ace quality pitcher out of the 4 hole.

  • Tommy

    ??? I just read that posting several times and I still don’t understand it.

  • Lanny

    why are they obsessed with coming in under payroll wise?

    aren’t they moving into a new building? isnt the yes network doing really well? why can’t they go up to 220 and really add to that horrendous bench.

    the bench is a huge worry right now and with the prices falling on all these players out there there is a great opp to really shore up that bench with real players and not the AAA scrubs of the past 8 yrs.

    • Joseph P.

      The problem, of course, is finding players who are willing to take bench jobs.

      Plus, there are four spots on the bench. One is Molina’s. One, at this point, is Nady/Swisher. Then you have one of Melky/Gardner, and then a utility infielder. That’s the place to improve, I suppose. But it’s not like Orlando Hudson is going to sign here to back up an infield of A-Rod, Jeter, Cano, and Teixeira.

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