DeRosa appears too rich for the Yanks blood


According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Giants appear close to signing Mark DeRosa. While the Yankees apparently didn’t make him a primary target, he could have been a serviceable option at the right price. The Giants reportedly had an offer of two years and $12 million on the table, which is probably more than the Yankees want to pay DeRosa, who will turn 35 before the 2010 season starts. If the Yankees plan to add a second-tier outfielder, they’ll now select from a narrower group of candidates.

Should DeRosa and the Giants complete this deal, it could affect another player: Johnny Damon. While Rosenthal notes that the Giants “are expected to use DeRosa at third base,” he could still see plenty of time in the outfield. Pablo Sandoval, the incumbent third baseman, figures to move across the diamond, but could still get in time at third. The Giants are also reportedly close to a one-year deal with Juan Uribe, and while he’s a part-time player, he could still see significant playing time at third, moving DeRosa to the outfield.

Position and playing time aren’t the only reasons the DeRosa signing could affect the Giants’ interest in Damon. There is also the payroll issue to consider. The Giants entered 2009 with a payroll around $82 million, and like many teams they haven’t indicated that they’ll cross that line in 2010. With only $57 million currently committed to the team, it might seem like they have wiggle room. That number, however, covers only six players. Adding DeRosa at the reported $6 million salary makes it $63 million for seven players. Tim Linecum’s arbitration case could make it over $75 million for eight players. With 17 more spots to fill, and a few probably at above the league minimum, the Giants will likely break the $85 million mark at this point. Will they be willing to go above that?

All of this is to say that DeRosa signing with the Giants increases the chances Damon will land back with New York. It doesn’t mean that he will, of course, but it does mean another team off the board for him. Fewer teams means a lower price, which could drive Damon back to New York.

Categories : Hot Stove League


  1. anon says:

    Lets trade for Josh Hamilton.

  2. All Praise Be To Mo says:

    I would love Johnny on a 1 year 5-7 million deal. I think we just wait out this market, and see which outfielder comes to us on a discounted deal. We’re dealing from a position of strength here, we don’t NEED him back, if he does come back, it’s a bonus that lenghtens our lineup, if not, then we have Gardner or another FA in left and the possibility of a mid-season trade as well if needed.

  3. Nick says:

    This is excellent news, my friends.

  4. pete says:

    There’s some talk over on lohud about trying to trade for melky. It seems pretty far-fetched, but it’s kindof a cool idea, what with gardner’s reverse platoon splits and what not. I’m not sure what it would take though – probably a McAllister/Nova type. Slightly better option than Reed Johnson I’d say, though I don’t know that he’s worth trading away a good depth option like McAllister for though. I’m still very much in the Johnson/Gardner platoon camp, but it’s at the very least an interesting thought.

    • andrew says:

      It doesn’t seem like an interesting thought to me. If the Braves preferred McAllister to Melky, why wouldn’t they have asked for that in the Javy deal? And if they did ask for McAllister instead of Melky in the Javy deal and the Yankees said no, why would the Yankees all of a sudden think Melky is more valuable?

    • Lanny says:

      Why would they trade him one week and trade back for him a week later? This isnt fantasy sports

  5. Gardner + Hughes + Edwar for Kemp + Kershaw. Get it done Cash!

  6. Salty Buggah says:

    You could also argue that one less option for LF on the board for teams will be good for Damon. But I think that one less team for Damon more than negates any advantage he gets from that.

  7. Guest says:

    Doesn’t this Damon situation seem eerily similar to the Pettite’s from last year? Granted, there are differences, most notably the fact that Damon had a much better ’09 than Pettite’s ’08. In the end though, it seems as if Pettite and Damon wanted more than the market would bare from the Yankees as compensation for what they contributed to the team in the past. They both then watched, I’m sure not happily, as their other options dwindled.

    A lot of people wondered how Pettite would respond to being “disrespected” by the Yankees. Well, he gave us a much better season than we could have hoped for and pitched very well in the playoffs. The moral of the story is that great baseball players who have played hard their whole careers are going to play hard even if they felt mistreated in the off-season negotiation process. I fully suspect that Damon would react the same way in ’10 that Pettite did in ’09 (whether he will exceed expectations to the extent that Pettite did is another story entirely).

    Consequently, concerns about Damon’s potential displeasure with the negotiation process effecting his play are, IMHO, unwarranted.

    • “Doesn’t this Damon situation seem eerily similar to the Pettite’s from last year?”

      No. Last offseason, Pettitte made it clear he wanted to play and he wanted to play for the Yankees. He didn’t negotiate with any other teams or indicate an interest in doing so. The Damon situation is very different than that situation.

      “I fully suspect that Damon would react the same way in ‘10 that Pettite did in ‘09…”

      Maybe he would, we have no way of knowing that… But over the last few years, we’ve heard rumors/whispers from different sources that Damon is a particularly sensitive ballplayer who perhaps allows his mood swings and personal issues to affect his motivation and performance. There was even talk that he was considering retirement a couple of seasons ago because his head and his heart weren’t in it. The Yankees, obviously, know much more about that stuff than we do… I just think that, if they’re worried that Damon’s performance might be affected by him coming back to the Bronx on a contract he doesn’t like, then we kind of have to defer to their judgment on that one. Again, we really can’t know the answer to something like that, but I’m not sure the most reasonable conclusion to draw is that he wouldn’t have any problem since Pettitte didn’t have any problem.

  8. NCpinstripes says:

    The most I would offer Damon if I was the Yankees is 1 year @ 5 million. That’s it. I will be very disappointed if the Yanks cave and give him a two year deal. That would screw up a potential run at Crawford next off-season.

    • Lanny says:

      Why do you care what they offer? Will you eat better if he makes 5 mill? Why does it matter if he pockets 25 mill for one yr?

      Not like prices will go down or anything.

  9. iYankees says:

    The Braves are still in a position to sign Damon. Believe it or not, but the Nationals have also been linked to him. It’s good to see the Giants off the board, though, for as Joe says, it does increase the chances of him returning to NY.

    • Mike Bk says:

      also it was said today that they might use melky as a trade chip with the cubs possibly being interested, so that would free up another spot to add damon.

  10. AJ says:

    Good. Overrated, 35 years old, hasn’t had power his entire career until last year, something is up. If the Giants want to give him 3 years, let them.

    • steve (different one) says:

      NYS is what’s up. the guy swings one handed and he dumped a few extra over the short wall in RF. not sure what you are implying since he’s hit more than 20 HRs in a season twice before, including the same number he hit this year in 2006.

  11. Mike Bk says:

    what would it take to get an angel pagan from the mets? not a great player, but played very well for a crap team last year, still young at 28, great D, some speed.

  12. Angelo says:


  13. With the Giants most likely off the books, Damon has fewer options to sign with a new team.

    And the Yankees (even with their strict budget) is the only team that has the capacity to sign Damon.

    Damon should negotiate with the Yankees and take a pay cut or else his small window of opportunity will finally close.

  14. sleepykarl says:

    Seems like Gardner might be our Alex Gonzalez. If Gardner does get a full time gig, is he better used in CF or LF? I understand that if it is a platoon you do not want to keep shifting Granderson back and forth.

  15. Lanny says:

    Damon back to the Yanks makes too much sense for both sides. Especially if they are serious about not going after Holliday. Just cannot see them giving Gardner the job and 500 ab’s. Better to get Damon now than have to trade prospects for a hitter come July.

    • NCpinstripes says:

      They are not going after Holliday or Bay. I think Cashman has been very clear about that. It would be nice for some Yankee fans to understand that they can’t sign every big name on the market.

      And to answer your early post, if Damon was to demand 10 million, I would tell him his services are no longer needed. Just because you have the money to overpay a player doesn’t mean you should.

  16. MikeD says:

    The Yankees were originally talking a two-year contract, and it appeared that Damon was open to that idea right before Nick Johnson was inked. Since the Yankees seem to have some budget limitation of their own making this year, why not back load the offer. If Damon’s open to a $16 million deal for two years, make it $5 million in ’10 and $11 million in ’12. They can even give Damon a player option to leave after ’10 if he has a very good year and he wants to try the market again.

    Seems to me there has to be a way for the two sides to come together since both seem to want it, at least judging by what I’ve read.

  17. [...] Except a funny thing happened on the way to Spring Training: Everyone is too expensive for the Yanks in left. We know that the team and Johnny Damon probably could have come to terms on a two-year deal at an annual salary of less than $10 million, but Damon wanted more. We heard the Yanks were interested in Mark DeRosa, but he has nearly officially agreed to a two-year deal believed to be worth around $12million with the Giants that is too expensive for the Yanks. [...]

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