Yanks attempt media negotiations with Pettitte

Jeter's future and Mark Teixeira
Arbitration filing begins Monday

Since wrapping up their last big free agent signings, the only word out of Yankee camp has concerned Andy Pettitte. Through anonymous sources and speculation, the Yankees have tried to temper the veteran lefty’s expectations.

The team first made it clear that they were willing to move on without Pettitte. Now, as has been obvious since the get-go, word is that they want to bring Pettitte back but on their terms. We’ve been saying this all along. The Yanks would love to have the lefty to anchor the rotation in the four spot with the kids bringing up the rear, but they don’t want to do so for $16 million a season. I don’t blame them.

John Harper, writing earlier this week, shed some light on the team’s thinking:

After signing Mark Teixeira, the Yankees began whispering that Andy Pettitte might have waited too long to accept their take-it-or-leave-it $10million offer, and that they might just decide to move on without him.

However, a person in regular contact with Yankee brass said Tuesday he believes the club still wants Pettitte back and believes a deal will get done, perhaps as early as next week.

According to this person, someone in the Yankee organization was putting out that word as something of a scare tactic, knowing that Pettitte badly wants to pitch for the Yankees next season. “They just want him at their price, that’s still the bottom line,” the person said.

I predict a one-year, $12-million deal for Pettitte, and for the impatient fans, I urge patience. There is no need to wrap this deal up now, and if Pettitte doesn’t send for a few more weeks, it won’t be the end of the world. By the time Opening Day rolls around, this negotiation saga will be just a forgotten relic of a very busy Yankee off-season.

Jeter's future and Mark Teixeira
Arbitration filing begins Monday
  • Manimal

    If he really wanted to pitch for the yankees, don’t you think he would have taken the 10 mil? He knows the talent they have in the Minors (with Hughes Aceves, ect), he could easily be replaced.The difference between 10 and 12 million to a long time player like Andy is nothing.

    • Mike Pop

      Hes pissed that Silva is making 12 million, he must feel like he is worth more than what some pitchers are making. Thats what I think the problem is.

    • http://www.styleforum.net Billy Beane

      why though? he knows the yankees need him.

      “we’re starting phil hughes #5” is not a credible threat–he knows how the yankees got burned by having too many rookies in the rotation at the start of last season.

      and the 2 mil difference is huge. it’s not about what and pettitte can buy with an extra 2 or 3 million dollars. it’s about pride–you would be ticked off too if you were asked to take a 40% pay cut.

      • steve (different one)

        “we’re starting phil hughes #5? is not a credible threat

        i think it is more of a threat than you think.

        last year was last year, and this year is this year.

        the Yankees didn’t have CC Sabathia, AJ Burnett, a healthy CMW, and Joba for a whole year last year.

        there are also a BUNCH of free agent veterans who are still looking for work and will get paid peanuts in 2009.

        Pettitte doesn’t have nearly the leverage you think he does.

        the Yankees could sign Paul Byrd for half of what Pettitte wants. he’s not as good, but he could hold down the #5 spot.

        the Yankee rotation, even without Pettitte, is in WAY better shape than it was last year.

    • http://26ncounting.blogspot.com VO

      first off hes holding off as a neogotiation plot, second he knows that our talent in the minors killed us last year, third he is not easily replaced because hughes isnt going out there to pitch 200 innings and the team will cetainly miss his veteran presence. and as billy beane and mike pop said 10 and 12 million is a big diffrence because theres guys out there that he knows hes better then that will be making more than him, pettitte doesnt want to give up his pride and say hes no longer a 16 million dollar pitcher.

      • jsbrendog

        so you dont think pettitte’s agent has said well how about 12? no, i think he has said 16 or nothing and the yanees are saying 10 or nothing. who will blink first?

        • http://26ncounting.blogspot.com VO

          pettittes agent didnt say tht cause as an agent hes not supposed to settle for less money hes going to try and make the yankees budge, but i dont think their going to i think pettite is going to come to his senses and understand hes no longer the 16 million pitcher and start talking seriously with the yankees, wether its for 10 or 12 idk but i know that hes not going to get 16 and he isnt pitching for anyone else so hes going to accept or retire

  • Jake H

    We need the innings and while I would love to see Hughes he needs to stay healthy and get a bunch of innings in AAA. Innings are what he needs along with using his cutter to make it a major weapon.

    • Manimal

      He needs major league innings. Something tells me he could put up a season similar to Pettite’s. Both Pettitte and Hughes had success in the 07 playoffs so you can’t bring that up either. I just think paying 10 million for a number 5 pitcher is dumb when you could use Hughes.

      • mustang

        ” Something tells me he could put up a season similar to Pettite’s. ”

        Where did you get this from it’s not like he had this great winter. I could live with Hughes as the 5th starter, but I agree Jake H. I rather have Andy as a 5th starter and Hughes as back up getting his innings in AAA.
        Hughes will still get some major league innings when Joba hits his limit or when someone goes down (and you someone always does).

        • Jake H

          I think he’s getting that from 1. Pettitte having a high 4 era last year and 2 Hughes having a good fall league minus 1 really bad game.

        • steve (different one)

          Where did you get this from it’s not like he had this great winter.

          sure he did. he pitched very well in the winter league. he had a bad start or two when he ripped off a fingernail. outside of that, he dominated.

          i’m not saying this is a given, it’s at best debatable if Hughes can pitch close to what Pettitte can, but let’s not forget that Pettitte was getting teed off on by any decent RHed hitter last year.

          Right handed hitters hit .325/.376/.476 in 2008.

          that’s not a good sign.

          • Ryan S.

            Don’t mean to be nitpicky here, but just FYI Hughes pitched in the Arizona Fall Leagues, not the Dominican Winter Leagues.

        • nyy2709

          bill james is projecting a 3.35 era for hughes next year…just saying

      • Jake H

        I think that Hughes can put up similar #’s as Pettitte. My only concern is that Hughes and Joba would reach their innings limit and then what? Also Pettitte would be the 4th starter to have Joba skip some starts at the beginning of the season.

        • mustang

          “Also Pettitte would be the 4th starter to have Joba skip some starts at the beginning of the season.”

          Wow. excellent point

      • JeffG

        Did you watch the major league innings Hughes pitch last year? Do you remember both he and Pavano were healthy at the same time and Hughes wasn’t able to make the club initially because he was strugling down below. I think Hughes might be a great addition to our rotation but it is a wiser move for him to have a little more time down below to work on his arsenal.
        Hate to bring up Boston, but they seem to take the right approach by giving their young arms time to develop. Bucholtz is not being rushed. Hughes shouldn’t be either.

        • Jake H

          Bucholtz struggled just like hughes did. At least Hughes had an excuse of having a rib injury.

          • JeffG

            And your point?

            I’m just saying that young pitchers should be given time to improve without the pressure of a million fans watching every toss. Laptop boy will be starting at AAA and so should Hughes he’ll get his chance.

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

              His point is that you bringing up Boston and Clay Buchholz as an example of how to properly develop a young stater is wrong. Buchholz struggled mightily during his 2008 with the Red Sox; so much so that he was demoted all the way to Double-A Portland.

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

          Excuse me, but you can make the argument that Boston rushed Clay B-U-C-H-H-O-L-Z. A guy just doesn’t lose all command of his fastball and make throws over to first base when the runner hasn’t even led off if he is ready for the big leagues.

        • Ryan S.

          Well Hughes was kicking ass in the minor leagues in the beginning of when him and Pavano were basically competing for the 5th spot towards the end of the season, but than Hughes had a couple consecutive shitty or mediocre starts and Pavano got hot at the right time. I don’t think Hughes was really “struggling” at that time though, for the most part he was doing very good.

          Still, I agree, I’d rather let Hughes have a full year of AAA and make some cameos in the majors as the #6 starter. BUT, if we’re not filling in that last rotation spot with Pettitte or Sheets, I think I’d rather give the farm a chance instead of guys like Paul Byrd or Randy Wolf.

  • http://www.bronxbaseballdaily.com Rob Abruzzese

    Whatever happens, happens at this point. Take Pettitte back or not, he still lost 14 games last year. I think Hughes could handle that. And if he does come back, great, 200 innings. There is no reason to rush or overpay.

    It would be interesting to see the young pitchers battle it out for the fifth spot though, but that will probably happen anyways thanks to AJ Burnett.

    • Manimal

      Don’t be so negative on Burnett, Doc worked on him and told him not to over throw and he has been good ever since(and injury free)

  • Robert Goulet

    I agree 100% – 1 yr at $12 million sounds about right.

    I just hope the Yankees aren’t overplaying their hand here. Pettitte is EXTREMELY important to the Yanks rotation next year. While on paper, our starting 4 looks dominant, question marks remain abound:

    1) Will CC, the quiet kid from the West Coast, be able to adjust to the incomparable pressure and attention that comes along with playing in NY, or will he need a prolonged adjustment period?

    2) Will AJ be the AJ of 2008 who couldnt be touched by AL East hitters, or will he be the AJ of 06 and 07 who spent more time in the recovery room than on the mound?

    3) Will Joba be able to pitch 190+ innings as an effective starter, or will his arm tire out again like it did last year with ominous signs of shoulder tendinits?

    4) Will Wang be the “Wang of Old” despite missing 50% of last season due to injury, or will he need 8-10 starts to get his form back?

    5) Can we really count on Hughes, IPK, or Acevedos to anchor the 5 hole, or are we looking at a real struggle every 5th day?

    While it is highly unlikely that the aforementioned list will bear fruit for the worst, adding Andy Pettite into that mix atleast gives the Yanks some breathing room. Pettite will be good for 200 innings, 30+ starts, and a 4.50 ERA or better. While those numbers dont blow anyone away, they’re not supposed too. Instead, they represent consistency – consistency in a rotation that has anything but.


    • CT Yankee

      All right rabbit…You convinced me. I thought Hughes could easily replace Andy especially in the 5 hole, but while 1 and 2 have been talked about to death, number 4 has been largely ignored. I would hope Wang comes back quicker than that (it was not an arm injury). Unlike most on this board, I’m also not convinced that Joba is not one bout of tendinitis away from a set up man. Any one catch Harold Reynolds take?

      • steve (different one)

        Any one catch Harold Reynolds take?

        i did.

        it was stupid.

        • Ryan S.

          Yeah, and that bastard insisted he get the last word on the issue too. They all totally ignored Leiter going well ok, how come every phenom young pitching prospect doesn’t pitch the 8th?

          The Joba in the pen arguments are so arbitrary, and all the pundits act like Joba is being traumatized by way we’ve handled him when every baseball guy in the biz knows we’ve developed him very well.

          A full season of Joba as a starter should quell the ignorant masses though.

          • Mike Pop

            Well bringing him up as a reliever in the first place was probabaly a bad idea but so be it.

            • jsbrendog

              johan santana and his firstyear as a reliever say hello

              • Mike Pop

                Ya but Joba is different. They want Johan as a reliever right? We always wanted Joba to start and we messed up his develoment by bringing him up because we took innings away. I really dont care so much because I think he will be that homegrown ace every team wants but it probably would of been better if he stayed in the minors and started right? Or if he was brought up and started.

                • jsbrendog

                  what are you smoking dude? i assume tis something good lol cause your points are usually good and youve avoided the dumb bug but “They want Johan as a reliever right?”

                  why would minnesota want to put him as a reliever? why would they start him off in the bullpen, do split seasons of pen and starting and then makin him a full fledged starter? it is the exact same thing we did with joba and joba was probably modeled after santana handling by minnesota

  • mike

    Put a 1yr/ 8mm (with attainable bonus $$) out for Sheets, and throw a vesting option on top.

    Since Sheets will not accept, it will put pressure on Pettite. However, if Sheets does accept, even if he can only go 120-130 innings before imploding, the Yanks have the starting depth for a change which can help make up the difference.

    I would argue 130 Sheets + 90 IPK is better than 170 Pettite + 30 IPK

    • Peter

      IPK??? He’s at least behind Hughes…he was wretched in pinstripes last season…but shined in the Caribbean…what gives Ian?

  • daneptizl

    If Sizemore has a trade value of 100, what’s Hamilton’s?

    • JeffG

      150 kilos of cocain? (just a poor taste joke before anyone rips my head off)

      I respect his recovery… I just wonder how well he would be able to make out if he was in NYC. I think it would be harder for him here.

  • http://www.mlbnotebook.com Zach Sanders

    I still think Pettitte walks, and goes to the Dodgers.

    Do the Yanks still have cap room (based on last years salary) to sign Pettitte for 10 million? If not, I suppose that their ridiculous seat prices will make up for it.

    • Balls Deep

      I see them going $12M for Andy. It will save some face; throw some incentives too to bring higher if they need to; if he hits them as the #4 starter, they will have the playoff $$ to not have to worry about it… His stats, compared to other Lefties are just behind Johann and CC in most sabermetric categories. So he’s still strong…

    • Peter

      i still pay the same $12 in the new stadium…

  • 27 this year

    Chat today?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Nah, half of our readership is still sleeping off their hangovers. I’m going to do one Monday instead.

      • Jack

        Nah, half of our readerwritership is still sleeping off their hangovers.

  • Old Ranger

    Phil has the talent, make-up, pitches, and know how to make a splash in the show this year. How long does a guy have to work on a pitch (cutter) before he can try it where it counts…the big show.
    This kid has worked his ass off all year to make it to the big leagues again. May be some of you were asleep during his last call up, because he pitched well. He could go to AAA and work on his Cutter some more but, to what end, he already dominates AAA hitters…where is the learning process?
    The best thing is for Andy to sign but, if he doesn’t…no big deal. We do have some people that can pick up the slack; Phil, Aceves and maybe even Coke, IPK, and Giese.
    To those that think this is having 2 rookies in the line-up…show me! Joba is on a pitch count but, is not a rookie anymore so, in actuality it would be one well tested rookie plus two or three guys kicking down the door.

    • Old Ranger

      OOOPS! Phil isn’t a rookie either. Sorry.

    • Balls Deep

      Just see it as wasting Joba if he starts from April… he’d run out of “innings” in August and then, what??? Shut him down? Need Andy, then go with Hughes as #5 with Joba in pen 1 more year or see if they agree to keep him there…

      • jsbrendog

        no, you skip him because he is your number five and you do not need your number five all the time due to days off/rain outs/etc (which is usually why he is your worst starter) so that when the end of the year/playoff push comes you have save dup those innings so that he can either get his work in/pitch us into the playoffs

  • Ryan S.

    $12M seems fair enough – If we’re able to get a pitcher of Pettitte’s caliber for only 1 year, that’s a pretty cool thing. The difference between another unproven kid being the #5th starter or the #6th starter is huge.

    In theory, having Pettitte this year anchors the rotation with another guy you can pencil in for 190+ league average innings and the fact that he’s a lefty doesn’t hurt either.

    Than in 2010 (after Pettitte retires in stylish fashion with a 5th ring), a fully polished Phil Hughes can take over Andy’s spot and never look back. Hughes would be 23 and Chamberlain 24, and both capable of pitching 180+ innings with 3 veterans in their prime in front of them in the rotation (I’m assuming Wang gets an extension at some point before the 2010 season).

    Of course its just as unlikely that things don’t pan out like this, as they never seem to do, but you couldn’t ask for a better long term outline of a rotation that should dominate for years to come. And its not like our homegrown pitching talent stops at Wanger, Joba, and Phranchise … we’ve got a stockpile of young studs who are going to translate into bullpen help, even more starters for us to take advantage of, or valuable trade chips.

    Even if we do end up with Hughes/Aceves/IPK as the #5 this year, we should do all right. I don’t see it being the gaping void it was last year. I’d put my money on Aceves, who can carry the same workload Pettitte could … maybe more even, as Aceves is 26 and looks like a bull while Pettitte is about 10 years older and has a cranky elbow.

    • Balls Deep

      Love Aceves!

      • Ryan S.

        He did a good job in September and I like what I’ve read about him, which describes him like this:

        -low 90s FB with some movement
        -3 secondary pitches
        -Good command, can and will throw any pitch in any count.

        At 26 years old he should be close to his prime, and I’m almost positive he’s in good enough condition to pitch 200 innings – only question is, what kind of innings are they? As a #4/5 guy, he doesn’t need to be anything more than dependably average and we’re in almost as good of shape with him as Pettitte – but that’s still asking a lot from a guy who has much to prove.

        If it works out for Aceves though, Giese would be the long man and Hughes/IPK/Wright or Igawa would be the 6th, 7th, and 8th starters – and I doubt we’d ever need to venture into Igawa land as Giese is definitely going to get the nod before Kei does. So if Aceves can pitch 200 inning and carry a 4.25ish ERA, I would be extremely pleased and not miss Andy much at all. Again, that’s a big “if” and Pettitte is definitely my first choice.

    • Old Ranger

      Very well written and thought out. Good show.

      • Balls Deep

        I would like Igawa to be in the pen behind Darryl Rasner.

        • Peter

          exactly in Japan

  • Balls Deep

    Listening to WFAN this morning, Kim Jones from YES was agreeing with the the other idiot on air that the Yanks need bullpen help… Anyone see this? I think they have a solid pen and could sell off a few parts.

    • steve (different one)

      this is one of those things where it takes a few years for perception to catch up with reality.

      the yankees have reputationally had “bullpen problems” from about 2003-2007.

      last year, their bullpen was strong, but no one has updated their thinking.

      • Old Ranger

        True and we will have Albaladejo, Sanchez, Melancon, J.B. Cox, Coke and Horne to add if anyone falters along the lines…

    • jsbrendog

      other than linda cohn i have seen very few women who are adept at talking sports and having their own concise opinions and not just saying uh huh to whatever someone else says or asks them. the problem is there are a lot of dumb dudes out there.
      but linda cohn still kicks ass. kim jones = stupid

    • Ryan S.

      I wouldn’t want to arbitrarily trade away anyone in the ‘pen just because we can, but yes, we have a pretty badass bullpen. I can’t wait to see Albie, Bruney, Coke, and a properly utilized Marte all in there for a full year. Far and away, the biggest upgrade the new Joe has been over the old Joe is that Girardi did a wonderful job managing the bullpen. One of my favorite stats from last season was how we were #3 in the AL in bullpen ERA, but not one of our relievers was in the top 10 or 15 in innings pitched – that’s just an amazing job of maximizing the ‘pen. Of course Girardi doesn’t get any credit for Mo being Mo, but he deserves ALL the credit for providing the ever illusive “bridge” to Mo. And the bullpen did just about as good with Joba as without Joba, a fact that never seems to be focused on much for some reason.

      • jsbrendog

        because then b-jobbers couldnt make wild claims like a 8th inning guy is more importnt than a lights out starter……it makes my blood boil….

      • Old Ranger

        You had a post about Aceves above…I like it.
        I have never seen him pitch in person, but, from what we have seen on TV, he looks good also. I like the way he knows what to do and when to do it. He shook off the catcher a few times (which at the time I thought, OH, Oh) but he seemed very comfortable out there.
        You could be right on him being the better option if Andy doesn’t sign…he looks like he could go all day.
        My thinking is a bit different as I would like to have Phil in the #4-5 spot, just to show that he can do a very good job…after all the shit thrown at him last year. Which ever one gets the spot, I have confidence in the teams pick…they know things we can only complain about.
        Mexican league to the Yankees in one year…not bad!

        • Ryan S.

          I’ve never seen him pitch in person either – I’m in Houston, TX. so I don’t get many opportunities to watch the Yankees play in the flesh, unfortunately. But I watch just about every game they play (god damn MLB ticket blocks out the Saturday matinees), and I read as many articles about the team and its minor league affiliates as I can get by grubby hands on.

          I wouldn’t mind Hughes being the #4/5 guy, but I still haven’t heard much about his inning limit for 2009. I think he pitched about 110 innings in 2008 including the AFL, so its hard for me to think he’s good for more than 150 in 2009 … that’s the thing that makes me hesitant about giving him a full time job. You’re CAPPING your #4/#5 starters’ combined innings at 300 … for most teams, you’d probably want to get that out of them as the bare minimum. Those extra 50 innings that Aceves can pitch would go a LONG way, and Hughes would still get his chances as the #6 guy or if Aceves does a bad job. More than that, I cannot see how giving Phranchise a full year of AAA is a bad thing – its not at all wasting a 22 year old’s potential (something I hear quite a bit on this forum) by letting him dominate in the minors for one more full year and having him sub in for anybody that goes on the DL in the majors.

          In 2010, the innings limit wouldn’t be a factor at all, since Joba and Hughes would be good for 180+ high quality innings a piece. I think it works out pretty perfectly. Plus if Aceves does a good job, he turns into a fantastic trade chip.

    • Let’s Talk About TEX Baby

      I don’t know how many mediocre middle relievers have to sign 3 and 4 year deals and fail before people around baseball realize this is not how to build a bullpen. The way to do it is to have a lot of young, cheap options who throw hard and have the potential to dominate, especially when hitters haven’t seen them a lot. These guys generally aren’t effective for all that long, but if you can get a couple of them going in the same year you have a good pen. That’s what the Angels have been doing for a long time.

      I don’t like Marte much as a setup man, but I think we have so many talented choices between Bruney, Veras, Albaladejo, Coke, Melancon, Sanchez, Edwar, etc. that the odds of 2 or 3 of them being very good are pretty high, and that’s really all we need.

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