Yanks, Pettitte agree to one-year deal

I dream of Mauer
Open Thread: Excerpting The Yankee Years

It’s been a whirlwind day for Andy Pettitte and the Yanks. After rumors emerged this morning of an impending thaw to the stalemate between the Yanks and their long-time lefty, news progressed quickly, and the Yanks just announced a one-year, $5.5-million deal with Andy Pettitte. The deal also provides up to $6.5 million in incentives.

According to PeteAbe, the incentives clauses are based on innings pitched and time spent on the roster. It seems that Pettitte will make a good chunk of changes as long as he remains uninjured and effective this season.

Meanwhile, Pettitte is taking a steep guaranteed paycut right now. He had a $16 million deal in 2008 and faced a $10-$10.5 million offer for 2009. In December, it became apparent that Pettitte was not keen on taking even that $6 million cut, and he held out for more. But as the U.S. economy has worsened, Pettitte’s options dwindled to one.

Without knowing the details of the negotiation, it seems to me as though Pettitte opted to go with the Yanks over retirement and had to accept a deal more on their terms than his. Reporting on the call, Abraham says that Pettitte felt slighted by the pay cut. He probably feels worse about turning down more guaranteed money.

By guaranteeing a low salary, the Yanks still seem to be on pace to meet but not quite exceed their 2008 payroll for now. The incentives may push them up to that limit, but the team should be just fine financially. Don’t hold your breath for any other big moves until much closer to the trading deadline.

Baseball-wise, the Yankees will now head into spring training with a starting five of CC Sabathia, Chien-Ming Wang, A.J. Burnett, Pettitte and Joba Chamberlain with Phil Hughes, Ian Kennedy, Al Aceves and Phil Coke waiting in the wings. Barring any unforeseen injuries, Hughes will get to hone his craft at AAA to start the season, and with Joba’s innings limits, he’ll have ample opportunity to pitch in the Bronx this season. That’s pitching depth we can believe in.

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I dream of Mauer
Open Thread: Excerpting The Yankee Years
  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    65.625% pay cut. Wowza.

    • Ed

      This is what happens if you publicly limit your options before negotiations have even started. The next time a player makes comments about considering all offers or valuing X over Y only to take the largest offer, remember this contract.

      You’d think Pettitte would’ve learned this lesson in ’03 when he publicly turned down the Red Sox, then couldn’t get an offer remotely close to it from the Yankees.

      • NY Yankee Fan

        No team was offering the $16 million that Andy wanted and the $10.5 million was about as good as it was going to get too. Had little to do withy Andy limiting his options, their were no options other then the Yankees for the original money sought/offered.

        • Ed

          He wouldn’t have gotten $16m but he would’ve easily topped $10m and gotten multiple years if he started the offseason by saying he’d take the offer he liked best, regardless of team.

  • JeffG

    Great – A little patience was all that was necessary and now we have a very solid rotation going into the year.
    Hughes et al will have their chance to work and get better and we should see one or more of them this year. This offseason couldn’t have shaped up better as far as I’m concerned.

  • GG

    Best rotation in the bigs

  • Frank

    Finally, now sign Juan Cruz to set up Mo and put a bow on this off-season.

    • Tom Zig

      But Joba belongs in tEh 8th inning!!!!

      • Mike Pop

        He can’t handle it as a starter.

  • frits

    Well-played, Sir Ca$h, well-played.

  • The Evil Empire

    = ( this means no Sheets

    • Mike Pop

      I want to say thats a good thing. I would of liked the signing of Sheets but there is clearly something wrong with this guy’s arm if the Rangers are cautious about it. Pettitte gives us a top 3 rotation in the game in my opinion(only reason I’m not saying best is because I don’t want to sound so biased) and now we have depth. Hughes/Kennedy/Aceves are our 6th, 7th, and 8th pitchers as opposed to being our 4th and 5th. We are in much better shape than last year. Also with Posada replacing Molina and adding Hideki’s bat back to the lineup. We should be good for 100 games. (Knocks on wood)

  • Jeremy

    “There was never another team brought up,” Pettitte said during a conference call. “I wanted to come back to the Yankees.”

    News flash!

    I’m guessing that if Pettitte’s 2009 is similar to his 2008, he makes the full $12 million.

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

      And it would be well deserved.

  • JC in NC

    I like Pettite a lot more than taking a chance on Sheets and his glass arm, great move at a great price for the Yanks. I hope he hits all the escalators in his contract and earns the $12 mil, that means nothing but good things for the Yanks.

  • Bruno

    Per Tim at MLBTR:

    The move should allow the Yanks to move Joba Chamberlain to the fifth starter role, with various other young pitchers ready to step in as needed.

    Thank Mo for some sanity for a change!

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

      Mike Francesa cries one solitary tear.

      Oh well, maybe we can still trade for Nate McLouth, eh?

      • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt

        Montero, Jackson, Hughes, and Kennedy for McLouth and we’ll pay all their salaries.

        • VOIII

          Francessa says we need to include Wang to get it done…

  • Evan

    The Ranger’s celebrate as Ben Sheets loses any remaining leverage and goodbye Dan Giese we barley knew ye.

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

      Hah. I forgot all about Giese. Add him to the depth list.

      • Mike Pop

        I did like Giese but what has to be done will be done.

      • The Scout

        What about our left-handed Japanese import???

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

          He would have to be added to the 40-man. He doesn’t count anymore.

  • mike

    so much for the 3/36mm the Hendricks Brothers had offered to them

  • VOIII

    Is Giese officially DFA

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

      No word on the corresponding roster move yet.

      • VOIII

        You have to figure it’s him or Wright…Right?

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

          Chase Wright is an (almost) 26-year-old lefty.
          Dan Giese is an (almost) 32-year-old righty.

          That’s an easy choice.

          • VOIII

            Agreed…

          • ceciguante

            ok, but who’s better?

            i haven’t seen a ton of either guy, but i saw giese throw at least one fantastic game (hard luck loss) in the bigs. and i recall hurting my neck watching wright’s garbage fly out of fenway on 4 consecutive at bats.

            • Mike Pop

              (Gulp) 4 HRs in a row (Gulp)

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

              So basically, no matter what, you’re willing to judge Dan Giese, a career journeyman, on one good game, and Chase Wright on one bad game. That doesn’t account for the fact that Wright was 24 and had never pitched more than a handful of innings above AA at the time.

              Wright, meanwhile, put up numbers that were pretty decent at AA and AAA last year.

              Look, I don’t expect either of them to amount to much, but in this situation, if you have to pick one, you go with the guy who’s five years older and isn’t a lefty 10 times out of 10.

              • Mike Pop

                I think you got mixed up there.

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

                  No, he got it right, when he said, “you go with the guy”, he meant the guy you DFA.

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

                  Yeah. Sorry. That was confusing, but I meant what Jamal said.

                  If you have to pick one, you DFA the one who’s five years older and isn’t a lefty.

                • Mike Pop

                  My mistake.

              • ceciguante

                where did i reveal some willingness — “no matter what” — to judge giese on one good game and wright on one bad game? there you go again with the reading skillz.

                i asked who is better. they’re both two-bit prospects…whoever is better should stay. it’s shouldn’t be solely a question of who’s younger, which is the way you chose to analyze it (“that’s an easy choice”).

          • Jonathan

            That may be true but those 4 consecutive home runs given up to the Sox aged him about 14 years, so Chase is actually a 40-year old minor leaguer.

          • NJYankee41

            I understand the logic behind DFA’ing Giese, but is that necessarily the best move? First of all, while watching him I thought his stuff was pretty effective. He has great control and a solid curve. He also has a lot of versatility. He can start in a pinch, long relief and pitch in MR. I think Giese has gotten an unfair shake as a “no-stuff” dime a dozen pitcher.

            His number have always been good. in 10 seasons in the minors he has put up a 2.98 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP in 387 games and 656 innings with 600 SO. In 7 of his seasons he had an ERA under 3.00. He seems to be one of those guys who has been ignored because he doesn’t throw 95. Unlike Aaron Small, Giese has a pretty good track record and good peripherals.

            I just think Dan Giese is worth a little more thought. I know Chase Wright is young but his stuff isn’t too impressive and his track record isn’t very noteworthy either.

      • Evan

        What are the chances he clears? Do we have any other DFA possibilities? Who would be next to be DFAed if we signed a Juan Cruz? or are we soley looking at minor league deals now?

        • A.D.

          There really isn’t anyone else you’d want to DFA, except for Ransom, but they would need to be signing a utility infielder to do that.

          Pretty much means, injury or trade before anything on the 40 man changes.

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

    UPDATE, 4:40 p.m.: Cashman said not to expect any more significant moves.

    … unless Hank takes us all on a wicked coke bender and we wake up in the morning groggily staring at a signed Manny Ramirez contract.

    • Evan

      I believe that is just how Cashman has learned to say goodbye. He has said it after every press conference this off season.

    • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt

      Said Hank: What happened? I blacked out.

      • Bruno

        Said Hank Hal: What happened? I blacked out.

        Fixed.

        • Mike Pop

          That’s better.

    • Mike Pop

      All hell would break loose.

    • Ryan S.

      Yeah but why is Manny not wearing any underpants?

    • Booch

      Now that’s some funny stuff…

    • Frank

      Translation: he’s got at least 1 more significant deal to make.

      • Bruno

        Adam Dunn?

  • ceciguante

    so glad andy backed down as he should’ve. all along i thought he’d settle for $12M as a face-saving compromise. i didn’t expect he’d get less than half guaranteed, but i’ll chalk that up to the economy, andy’s age, and the poor year he had including arm trouble. big win for the yanks in this one. i can now exhale and start rooting for andy again, instead of being pissed at him for his obnoxious negotiating position.

    • Conan the Barack O’Brian

      yeah, and as face-saving goes, if he truly believes he is worth the money, then he’ll earn it by being productive. he can have a merely decent season and get paid more than mussina did last year, right?

  • Ryan S.

    Well, I am tremendously happy with this off-season. When your teams’ 2 biggest issues are needing a better 3rd string catcher and a quality utility infielder who probably won’t have more than 100 ABs (god willing) … you’re in good shape.

    • Bruno

      Amen to all that is Mo-ly.

    • Mike Pop

      Cash messed up seriously. He let Cora slip through his grasp.

      • A.D.

        Alex Cora WINS BALLGAMES

  • Matthew

    Right now, with Pettitte figuring in at 5.5, the yankee payroll, with 17 guys under contract, is $192,100,000. I’m not sure how incentives factor in…

    Bruney is the only arb eligible player left, that makes 18, so you are talking about 7 spots on the 25-man left.

    Definates: Joba, Gardner
    Maybes: edwar rameriez, coke, aceves

    • Mike Pop

      So the Yankees will be under 200?

      • A.D.

        certainly looks that way

        • Matthew

          I’d like them to add Cruz, maybe 2 million….but figure 7 guys, splitting 8 million, so looks like it.

  • 27 this year

    This is great, Now the Yankees only spend the 10-12 million if Pettitte serves his purpose of eating innings. If he gets injured, it isn’t 10 million down the drain. Way to be patient Cashmoney! The only things I see left this offseason are some minor moves with a trade or two of pitching that is clogging up our 40 man. Nothing major though, maybe Juan Cruz? I don’t know and really Cashman played this offseason well getting everyone we needed to.

    • Mike Pop

      So maybe you can trade Wright for squadoosh that you put in the minors and sign Cruz? That might be an okay idea.

    • Ryan S.

      Juan Cruz is so worth a 4th round pick its not even funny. And we can probably get him for a damn cheap price … 2 years, $7MM? Something like that.

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

    Wow, Jon Heyman is a B-Jobber. He idiocy is now cemented.

    • Mike Pop

      He say it on the fan or something?

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

        Yessir.

    • JohnnyC

      But he was pretty rational on his take on the Torre book…surprisingly. Next time Francesa asks if this will put Joba back in the bullpen (I think he even asked that when they signed Teixiera), someone ought to remind him that HE’s never proven his ability to host a solo radio show. So maybe he and Mad Dog should get back together. What a fool.

  • Jake H

    glad this deal got done. They needed each other.

  • J.R.

    If Pettitte pitches 200 innings at 4.5 era, then he is well worth the money. AS has been pointed out many times, the Yankees did have a relative depth problem and Pettitte solves that.

    All I know is that the start of the season cant come soon enough.

  • Manimal

    Thats why he needed money. He brought 30 family members to Maui for 9 days.

  • http://www.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/group.php?gid=43434432275 Ace

    On FanGraphs, when it says Pettite’s “Value” for 2008 was $19…does that mean he was worth 19 million in real life or you should bid $19 on him in a fantasy draft?

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

      He was worth $19.9M in real life.

      • http://www.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/group.php?gid=43434432275 Ace

        I dont know how they arrive at these figures, but to say Brian Giles was worth $25.3 million is absolutely insane and makes me wonder about how credible this system is.

        • Manimal

          He had a OPS+ of 136 last year.

          • http://www.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/group.php?gid=43434432275 Ace

            Hypothetically, if the Yanks signed Giles for $25.3 million everyone on this board would have a shit fit and a few of us would keel over from heart attacks right on the spot. I don’t care what anyone says, Brian Giles is not worth $25.3 million in this years free agent market. You can throw all the adjusted stats at me you want. There is no way you can justify signing Brian Giles for $25.3 million.

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

              Yes and no.

              There’s no way you can justify signing Brian Giles for 25.3M because he’s old and you can’t expect him to post those 2008 numbers again.

              But, if you had signed 2008 Brian Giles for any amount of money less that 25.3M, you got a bargain, because he produced at rates commensurate with the average player being paid 25.3M.

              That’s what it means.

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

          Brian Giles is a borderline HOFer. He’s one of the truly great, yet most underrated players on the last decade.

          • Bruno

            Agreed. SO glad he didn’t got to Boston last year.

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

              .298-.450-.622, 177 OPS+, 38 homers, 80 XBH, 74 K, 135 walks in 2001 … and he finished THIRTEENTH in the MVP voting!!!

              That’s what playing in Pittsburgh gets you.

              • Mike Pop

                He is a roider.

                • Mike Pop

                  DonnieBaseball: AND I HATE ROIDERS DONNIE SMASH!!

              • http://www.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/group.php?gid=43434432275 Ace

                This is all f’ed up.

                His 2000 line is:

                .3115, 35 HR, 123 RBI, 114 BB

                and he finished 19th in MVP voting

                Sammy Sosa hit 50 HR that year and finished 9th.

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

                  Baseball awards are like the Grammys.

                  Utterly worthless and incomprehensible.

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

      That’s what his performance was worth in real life in terms of the 2007/2008 free agent market.

    • Manimal

      Based on his stats, he should have been payed 19.9 million. He was actually payed 16 Million.

  • pat

    Ah crap Steve Phillips loves the signing, any way to void the contract?

    • hateraid

      oddly enough i too use this and only this standard to judge all baseball contracts.(only 1/2 sarcastic)

  • The Evil Empire

    Sports Center just said we have the best rotation in the A.L East after Pettite, I still think we owned that Title once we signed CC and Burnett

    • Bruno

      It took Pettite for us to balance the scales due to Boston’s grit/depth.

    • Manimal

      We had too many question marks, now Andy reassures our rotation a lot more than it looked before. There was a good chance that Hughes, IPK, Coke and Aceves blow

      • Manimal

        (next year)

  • Bruno

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/.....-146269176

    Manny still wants a four or five-year deal

    LOL. Manny/Broas being smart/realistic FAIL.

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

    I am relieved. The Yankees now put the bow on an already great rotation.

  • Manimal

    Pettitte talks a little about Torre’s book and his view on Arod. It is at the end of the conference call.

    • Bruno

      What’d he say about A-Hole?

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

        That he hates his guts and he was the one to nickname him A-Fraud. He said the players, coaches and front office voted unanimously to let him walk via free agency, but Hank was the one who brought him back.

        He also called him a silly nanny.

      • Manimal

        He has never heard the term “afraud” before, he is a great teammate and they have spoken alot over the offseason.

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

          I believe mike

  • Balls Deep

    I’m sure Pious Andy would never had said such things… Just glad to have him in the rotation… Kinda resigned to having Melky/Gardiner fight for CF

    • Ryan S.

      At least they have some upside and their defensive skills are a known, beneficial commodity. Either one is also guaranteed to be the #9 hitter in this lineup, so If they can put up an average .OBP of around .330, that’ll definitely be good enough … especially if its Gardner who gets the bulk of the playing time as his speed on the bases would be a nice bonus and he probably plays better defense.

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

    Didn’t Andy reject a 10 million dollar offer? Now he accepts a 5.5 million dollar offer (worth up to 12). Doesn’t 10 beat 5.5? Am i missing something? Also is there anything on what the incentives are?

    • A.D.

      He must want the money upside vs guarentee…. after all it “not about the money”

  • kane

    Better than Sheets imo. Sheets is probably going to be better stats wise but at least Pettitte can eat innings. I am not in love with a rotation consisting 2 injury prone pitchers. Burnett says he’ll try to play healthier but there’s still some risk. If we were get Sheets and he gets injured along with AJ then we’re done. We could use Hughes but we’ll have no idea how effective he might be. And even worse Joba isn’t even gaurnteed he can handle a full year of starting. Pettitte might not be good anymore but if he allows 4-5 runs a start, our improved offense might be able to give him much needed support. And given the fact our defense was terrible last year I’ll give Andy another chance. Plus he isn’t A-rod. He is effective in the playoffs, he is clutch. Sabathia won 1 game in the postseason against the Yankees! I think Wang won 1. I don’t think AJ has ever been to the playoffs and Joba was still a reliever. Even Phil Hughes won a game but combined that’s 3. Pettitte has 14. If we want a world series I think Pettitte for this year was a good deal. Plus it’s mostly incentives that is incredibly low risk. Great job by Cashman.

    • whozat

      Pettitte might not be good anymore but if he allows 4-5 runs a start,

      4-5 runs per 6-7 inning start is an ERA north of 5, probably around 6.

      I’m pretty convinced Pettitte can do better than that. A lot better than that.

      • Mike Pop

        Pettitte’s ERA is under 4 this year. That is my “shot in the dark” of the day.

        • Reggie C.

          i’m down with your optimism but that’s a shot into the black hole. you’re never gonna see that one again.

      • mustang

        Think about Pettitte went 14-14 last year. Now he has a better rotation, bullpen and offense. If this can’t get him 3 more wins and 3 less loses then i don’t know.
        I will take 17-11 right now.

      • kane

        Oh that’s right he doesn’t pitch a whole 9 innings -___-
        Anyways the 4-5 figure was an extreme but our offense now should easily handle that. Tex will put a lot of pressure off A-rod since A-rod can’t hit under pressure. No disrespect towards him but hitting .258 lifetime in the postseason isn’t worth how much he gets paid for. At least he has a decent OBP.

  • mustang

    I think both sides did ok. I’m sure Andy thinks he can max out the incentives and make the 12 million. The Yankees get an insurance policy with the incentives.
    It’s great to see Andy back in pinstripes for the last time with the chance to prove to certain people that he is not done. Pitching in the new stadium, ending his career with the Yankees, having a chance to win one more ring and making 6.5 million are all great X factors. Then again for some people “X factors” don’t mean shit on the field. All I can say to those people is get ready for your second helping of crow this time at the hands of one Andrew Eugene Pettitte.

  • andrew

    While Chamberlain is probably more valuable for fantasy purposes as a starter, he might be more useful in “real” baseball as the eighth-inning guy.
    espn.com

    argh.

    • Balls Deep

      They won’t give up with that… he’s gonna be a stud. Freakin’ Bristol Sox fans. And yes, Hank’s gonna rule his fantasy league.

      • kSturnz

        Joke is on espn. to the yankees, this is fantasy baseball

    • Jack
    • BJ

      Really? You’re upset about “probably” and “might” and “brings up questions”. Equivocations like that are basically mediaspeak for “some people hold the opinion of B-Jobbers, maybe they’re right, who really knows, we sure as hell don’t.”

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  • Peedlum

    I didn’t know Master P was negotiating sports contracts again. Well played, Hendricks brothers. . . .

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

      Heh.

  • ortforshort

    I’m pleased that Pettitte is back. Assuming his shoulder is healthy, the Yankees are back to where they were a few years ago where you can pencil in 95 wins based on the starting pitching alone. Pettitte’s base salary with incentives was an excellent idea. It was a nice compromise and both sides walk away saving face and getting a livable deal.

  • http://www.wiredtowns.com Short Porch

    That’ll be some rotation in Scranton.

    I hope that Cash isn’t done.

    I’d still be looking to trade Nady — career year, so he has value. Only 3.3 pitches per plate appearance, not good, not on my roster. We could use a backup catcher who can hit.

    Oh yeah, that can free up money for Juan Cruz. With Ramirez, Coke, Marte, Bruney, then to Mo, that’s quite a bullpen, though not quite as good as the starting pitching. :)

  • gianthinker

    I wanted us to sign Ben Sheets instead of Pettitte all off-season but this is a great deal by Ca$hman any way you look at it. From $16MM to $10MM to $5.5MM? Great job Ca$h!

    Now we NEED to go sign Juan Cruz and we’ll have an elite bullpen as well. DO IT CA$HMAN! MAKE THE PUSH! GO FOR BROKE!

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  • essrancher

    Hey, you”re right!!! go for broke, last time I checked, we didnt make the postseason last year. Why? Cause of crummy offense along with injury riddled pitching staff, and BECAUSE THEY ARE IN THE SAME DIVISION AS THE BOSTON RED SOX AND THE TAMPA RAYS, TWO OF THE BEST TEAMS IN BASEBALL WHO BY THE WAY IMPROVED THEMSELVES THIS YEAR TOO. Lets imagine Manny against the Red SOX. Would Manny not want to rip them to shreds?Who does that benefit? GO GET JUAN CRUZ AND MANNY!!!! Don’t let this guy get away! He is an RBI MACHINE!!!! Remember Cash,and Hal you are losing 197 RBIS, Abreu and Giambi and with them, our offense sucked, scored three or less runs in 70 games! Pathetic! TOO MANY WHAT IFS IN THAT LINEUP!!!GARDNER, CANO, POSADAS SHOULDER, MATSUII’S KNEES. A NO BRAINER