Report: ‘No chance’ Greinke would accept trade to NY

The problem with the playoffs
What Went Right: Mr. Thames To You

Via Jon Heyman, “people close to” Royals’ ace Zack Greinke say there’s no chance the righty would accept a trade to New York. Greinke has some sort of convoluted no-trade clause, and it’s only natural that he’d be connected to the Yankees after Kansas City put him out on the market.

The anti-Greinke camp was pretty strong given the concerns about his bout with social anxiety disorder and the MSM-made pressure cooker of New York, so this should make them happy. Sure, there has to be some concern when you’re dealing with something like that, but Greinke is a special case; a supremely talented 27-year-old with three straight years of no worse than 4.9 fWAR. Usually you move mountains to acquire a player like that, and who knows, they still might.

The problem with the playoffs
What Went Right: Mr. Thames To You
  • Andy In Sunny Daytona

    Not that surprising. The way the national AND local media rip the Yankees it takes a special player to survive the pressure cooker.
    Other than playing for KC, Minnesota seems the best option for Zack.

    • MikeD

      St. Louie would be a good location for him.

  • Frank

    Translation: Royals putting this out there in order to fleece the Yanks in a potential trade. Greinke is good, but they should pass. And if in fact he doesn’t want to play for NYY, better to know now, not waste time, and just go in another direction.

    • JobaWockeeZ

      Greinke is one of the game’s best pitchers in the past 3 years. Aside from SAD why should they pass?

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

        Because he’d cost a buttload in prospects, including the one and only HeyZeus? There’s that.

        • JobaWockeeZ

          True. But Greinke’s one of the few that is worth it. Plus he’s only 27.

          • crawdaddie

            If it’s true that he doesn’t want to play for the Yankees then they need to pass on him.

            • Craig

              I agree. He’s not worth it. He doesn’t want to play for the Yankees. I don’t want someone like that on the squad. Especially if Montero and several other prospects will be lost.

            • Brian in NH

              Yes. If he doesn’t want to play here, how can we expect him to perform to his best and try to match those previous years?

      • Chris in Maine

        Aside from SAD? He does not have seasonal affect disorder. he has aserious anxiety disorder that cost him more than a season in Kansas City, of all places. He says he does not want to come to NY. He has NY on his list of teams he will refuse a trade to. 1+1 does in fact = 2

        • MikeD

          SAD refers to Social Anxiety Disorder. It also refers to Seasonal Affective Disorder. A little confusing, but use of SAD for either is correct.

          • Chris in Maine

            I guess what I am trying to say is that from a medical perspective SAD really is only talking about the seasonal disorder, not the anxiety piece. As they are very different, I’d hate for people to misunderstand the condition in question. The use of SAD as a descriptove for social anxiwety is not listed in any conventional medical abreviation book I use.

    • Kyle Litke

      I dunno, how does turning away the Yankees benefit Kansas City? And why would a guy saying he DOESN’T want to pitch for the Yankees make them pay MORE?

  • JobaWockeeZ

    So it’s Lee or bust. But regardless Montero is likely kept unless someone worth it is on the market which seems unlikely.

    • Ross in Jersey

      I wouldn’t say “bust”. Just because a player isn’t publicly available doesn’t mean they’re not available. How many of us knew Granderson was on the block for the right deal last year? If Cashman has to make a deal for a SP, I don’t doubt there’s someone out there willing to listen.

      • JobaWockeeZ

        Weeks before the trade the Tigers announced Edwin Jackson and Granderson being up for grabs to shed payroll.

        I wouldn’t be willing to do a Montero package unelss it’s for an elite pitcher. Looking down the list, very few are available. The only good option really is Lee.

        • JobaWockeeZ

          Actually make that one full month before that trade that we knew Granderson was available.

        • Ross in Jersey

          Right, so at this time last year we had no idea about Granderson’s availability. There’s no way your list of trade targets is complete, because there may be some who are not publicly available yet. I agree Lee is a good option, but he’s not the only one.

          • JobaWockeeZ

            Heh actually it was around this time but I see your point. However all the top tiered pitchers are on contending teams or would be really expensive.

            Maybe there will be one that gets to the market but it all seems unlikely when looking down the list.


            • Ross in Jersey

              I could see the Tigers listening on Verlander since they seem pretty close to going into full-on rebuilding mode. Wandy Rodriguez is probably obtainable from the Astros as well, but he’s not an elite pitcher.

              • Hughesus Christo

                WHere do you get that idea? All I’ve seen is them going balls out this winter (Crawford, VMart)

      • Kyle Litke

        I think the problem is, if you look at potential free agents not only for this offseason, but for NEXT offseason, it’s pretty much Cliff Lee this year, Roy Oswalt next year, and nothing. Phillies are unlikely to trade Oswalt (Lee was a special case). Which means, anyone who gets traded would be at least 2 years away from free agency, which makes them much less likely to be traded. Obviously there could be something out there…but my gut instinct from looking at the teams and the free agents is that you won’t see any big name pitchers dealt this offseason. Maybe the Angels deal Dan Haren again (doubt it but possible), and maybe the Rays trade Garza (but probably not to the Yankees), but beyond those possibilities…I dunno. I’m not a GM and there may absolutely be people I’m missing, but it seems like after Lee, you’re talking about maybe a Ryan Dempster type.

  • pat

    Thank Mo. Now we don’t have to pay out the ass for a guy who might not be able to handle the pressure.

  • Brien Jackson

    Until it happens, I’m not buying it. This is pretty much the obvious thing for Greinke to say, to give himself some leverage to get a fat contract if he’s traded.

    • whozat

      This. Which would make him a less appealing trade target…

    • Kyle Litke

      But what’s the benefit for him? If he secretly is using it as a negotiating tactic…well, how is that going to do anything but make Cashman say “Hmmm, we probably shouldn’t try to trade for him then”? It doesn’t really make sense that way. Smart thing would be to say nothing now, and if a deal seems likely, then you let it slip that “Well, I’m not sure if I want to waive the no trade clause…” if you want more money. You don’t announce it now when discussions haven’t even started (or at least aren’t far along with anyone).

  • Hughesus Christo

    To ignore the SAD issue is preposterous to me. The lockerroom and general media environments in NY and KC literally could not be more different.

    • Brien Jackson

      ^ Doesn’t understand SAD.

      • pat

        Can you explain it then? Because I don’t think I understand it either.

        • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

          I just kinda like that the acronym is “SAD.” He’s got the SADs. :-(


      • Hughesus Christo

        I’m pretty sure the guy who thinks he has another person’s social anxiety triggers figured out based on quotes from agents and team employees is the one who is mistaken.

        • Chris in Maine

          SAD stands for Seasonal Affect Disorder. An Anxiety disorder (Which is waht Greinke has )- so serious that he is out of the game for over a season is significantly more serious.

          • Hughesus Christo

            Greinke has Social Anxiety Disorder, which can QUITE LEGITIMATELY be seen as a bad mix for the Bronx Zoo. I suggest some people look it up.

          • Brian in NH

            SAD also stands for Social Anxiety Disorder. I guess its not a great acronym since it has multiple meanings

            • BaltimoreYankee

              Can we just say he has a social disease?

  • TopChuckie

    Apparently you guys are too young to remember Ed Whitson, Steve Trout, or even Kenny Rogers and as far as I know these guys never even had to leave the game for a while to deal with mental/emotional issues. It’s painful to justify trading your best prospect for a Roy Halladay or Cliff Lee, you certainly can’t justify trading him for the next Ed Whitson.

    • Moshe Mandel

      The problem is the assumption that Greinke’s issues will be exacerbated by New York without any real knowledge of the situation. I do think it is a risk simply because you never know how a condition might react, but you cant just assume that it will react poorly.

      • Chris in Maine

        He had difficulty handling Kansas City. I think it is a no brainer to assume he would have difficulty in New York.

        • Dax J.

          I didn’t see him have much difficulty handling KC this season or in 2009. I’m not saying he’s cured of his disorder, but I think we’re enlarging it more than we have to.

          Also, didn’t he have a lot of media coverage during his Cy Young year?

        • Moshe Mandel

          No, because that assumes that there is a strict logic to anxiety disorder, which I highly doubt.

          • TopChuckie

            There is logic to recognizing increased risk and the cost it would presumably take to assume that risk. Many pitchers in the past have shown that the ability to handle the pressure of NYC has to be a Yankee consideration. Other than Vazquez, I can’t think of any other pitcher in the game who has exhibited a greater likelihood of not being able to handle it. You simply do not trade your top prospect for that guy.

      • TopChuckie

        After guys with no pre-existing signs they can’t handle NYC, like the guys I listed, Kevin Brown, Randy Johnson, Javier Vazquez, etc., show consistent ability everywhere else before, and in some cases after, playing for the Yankees yet can’t perform with the Yankees, mental toughness has to play a role in Yankee decisions. It’s what makes Pettitte worth every penny even though he’s never been the most talented pitcher in the game. When a guy already exhibits a risky mental makeup they simply have to look elsewhere. Sure they can’t know for sure what would happen, nothing in sports is pre-ordained, but they have to play the likelihood, and when a guy is already mentally shaky AND in turn expresses an aversion to joining the team, cost/risk assessment has to rule.

        • CP

          Kevin Brown was 39 when he joined the Yankees. Randy Johnson was 40. And Javy Vazquez lost 2-3 MPH off his fastball (after losing 1-2 from 2008 to 2009). I don’t think their struggles were related to the pressure of playing in New York.

          • TopChuckie

            Johnson pitched better after he left, despite dealing with constant injuries, did he get younger? Vazquez was Atlanta’s ace and a Cy Young candidate in between not succeeding with the Yanks. Let’s see what he does next year and beyond. I highly suspect he has a better year than ’10. Mo’s 40, Pettitte’s 38, Mussina was 39 his best season as a Yankee.

            Really, are you arguing there haven’t been pitchers who have succumbed to the pressure of playing for the Yankees? Are you really arguing there aren’t players who perform better with less spotlight and scrutiny? Are you arguing it doesn’t make sense to consider a social anxiety disorder when deciding if you should trade your most valuable commodity to bring a player into the most socially anxious city in the world?

      • BklynJT

        From the flip side, you simply cannot ignore Greinke’s issues and assume it won’t be exacerbated by New York. Management has to look at it from both sides and weigh the risks. Personally, the safer bet is to stay away from Greinke.

        • TopChuckie

          Yeah, THAT’S what I was trying to say with far more verbosity.

  • Jonathan

    ignoring all of this about him not wanting to come to NY, do we really have what it takes to get Greinke? Everyone assumes the Royals would want Montero but they already have Meyers who is kind of like Montero in that he probably won’t stick at C. Then you have Moustakas and Hosmer and Billy Butler who are all likely to end up at 1B/DH. I’d think they’d be asking for top flite pitching or middle INF positions. This isn’t a knock on Montero, but there are only so many 1B/DH positions open.

    • Klemy

      Meh, I would think they could find a place for his bat. They can always trade him or other pieces they already have to acquire what they want as well. Heck, it could be as simple as a 3 way trade.

      • Jonathan

        i didn’t think about the 3way trade but if you look at it from a different angle, would you want our team to trade Hughes for Meyers? Obviously we don’t want to trade Hughes for anyone but if the team was going to trade him wouldn’t you want a different kind of player than Meyers when we already have Montero and DH logjam coming?

        The 3way trade is a great idea but i just don’t see any way we go 1 on 1 with the Royals and have Montero be the headliner. And once again that isn’t a knock on him at all. If the front office decides he’s better as a trade chip I’d hope we’d hold out for a Josh Johnson or King Felix type or as close as we could get, as impossible a that sounds. My dream is a monster deal for Hanley and Johnson but that would take our top 10 prospects probably. Imagine how sweet it would be to see Hanley take Beckett deep once a year. Ah, dreams.

  • JerseyDutch

    Could be a little gamesmanship on Greinke’s part but you never know. Bottom line is if he doesn’t want to pitch here, he doesn’t want to pitch here. I’m sure the Yanks will make an offer for him anyway.

    • MikeD

      Gamesmanship like this hasn’t been part of Greinke’s playbook to date. Now he wouldn’t be the first player who said he doesn’t want to play in NY but then changed his mind, but his social anxiety disorder coupled with his stated desire NOT to pitch in NY means there should be concern about giving up a lot of talent for him.

      • JerseyDutch

        I definitely agree. If he’s dead set against playing here, there’s no point in offering up a lot of prospects for him. (Which seems like a moot point anyway as he has a no-trade clause.)

    • JAG

      I’m not sure what the benefit is to that, unless the “source close to Greinke” means “Royals Front Office.” Greinke certainly gains nothing from this bit of gamesmanship. If he actually doesn’t want to play in NY then saying so doesn’t hurt or help him really. I suppose it could help him if the team he actually wants then goes and makes a deal for him but it certainly doesn’t help much directly. If he DOES want to play in NY, it doesn’t help him at all. Greinke doesn’t care if the Yankees have to give up more to get him after this statement (in fact, he might want them to give up LESS since those prospects are now players that can’t help his team or be traded for players who can). Anyway, point being, I can’t see how this statement could be useful gamesmanship for Greinke.

      That said, if he really doesn’t want to play in NY then it’s probably just as well that we take him at his word and don’t make a strong play for him (I mean, if the Royals will take a non-Montero package then go for it, but other than that may as well not waste the time).

  • Andrew

    If the trade was for Greinke in a vacuum, without all the questions over his desire to pitch in NY and his past mental health issues, he would be an ideal target for the Yankees. But all that other stuff does play a part, plus the cost in talent would be exorbitant. I believe the Royals have had way-high asking prices for pitchers like Brian Bannister in the past and he is mostly terrible, and if I remember correctly, wasn’t KC said to have wanted Montero on the table if they were to discuss a Joakim Soria trade this past summer?

    I love the idea of Greinke in the NYY rotation but I wouldn’t want to part with Montero, maybe Gardner since KC is said to like him a lot, plus probably one of the 3 B’s.

    • MikeD

      “Mostly terrible?” You’re being kind! He’s probably as smart as any pitcher in the game, but that’s not enough to overcome his shortcomings. Now if we could create the perfect pitcher from one family, then Brian Bannister’s head and Floyd Bannister’s arm would be quite the combination.

  • steve (different one)

    Not everything is posturing for more money/trade leverage. How many players with less than 6 years of service time have the type of no_trade protection that Grienke has? It was obviously important enough for him to negotiate into his deal, and it’s logical to think that it cost him more dollars in exchange for it. I believe he would block a trade to NY. We should mentally cross him off and move on, IMO.

    • Kevin M.

      Seriously, what’s it going to take for everyone to realize WE WILL NEVER GET GREINKE TO PITCH FOR THE YANKEES. It’s not going to happen….it couldn’t be more obvious that the kid is deathly afraid of pitching in NY…so just let it go. IT’S NOT HAPPENNING….END OF STORY.

      • whozat


        Absolutely a possibility.

        “it couldn’t be more obvious that the kid is deathly afraid of pitching in NY”

        …but this is absolute hyperbolic speculation based on nothing but your armchair psychology.

        • Mister Delaware

          Nope, Kevin is smart. Social anxiety is really just a name for being a scared person. Stay in KC, scaredy!

        • Chris in Maine

          and the fact that he has NY on his no trade list.

      • JerseyDutch

        Seriously, what’s it going to take for everyone to realize WE WILL NEVER GET GREINKE TO PITCH FOR THE YANKEES.

        Uh… when ST starts and he’s not on the team?

  • JeremyM

    Honestly, you guys that are saying the Yankees shouldn’t trade for Greinke are dead on. This is a legitimate, significant problem that he has, that he was barely able to get through in KC. Last year, after he won the Cy Young, his only concern was that he hoped more people wouldn’t recognize him and would leave him alone. He’s not “scared” or “deathly afraid,” he just has a serious social disorder that would not be conducive to pitching in New York and is barely conducive to pitching in the majors, period. He is not using it as leverage or anything of that nature.

    • Mike HC

      I don’t have social anxiety disorder (I don’t think, ha) but I wouldn’t want to be recognized and bugged all day either. Being famous sounds awful to me, so I can understand just wanting to stay out of the spotlight and do something you love. Obviously, playing for the Yankees and staying out of the spotlight do not mix, so I’m with you that Grienke is making the right move to not press his luck. Stay away from NY.

  • Bulldozer

    If he’s serious, skip it. If he’s up to the challenge, great. Doesn’t sound like he is.

  • currambayankees

    It’s not worth trading for someone who has said he doesn’t want to play in NY. If he doesn’t want our Team then we as Yankees fans really shouldn’t want him. I don’t care how good he is in KC because if he doesn’t want to be NY, he probably won’t be as good. Let him stay where he’s at. Btw, none of the killer B’s should be included in a trade for this kid. In the killer B’s you have 3 young pitchers who are probably a 1 1/2 – 2 yrs from hitting NY. The Giants have managed to build a home grown cost effective pitching Staff and the Yankees can do it as well all it takes is a little patience by management like they had with Hughes and us Yankees fans. Aside from those 3 pitchers, I also would not include any of our top 10 for this kid.

  • BklynJT

    People who are still clamoring for Greinke are just being stubborn at this point. The guy has already said he doesn’t want to play here. Why do you want to go after a guy who doesn’t want to pitch for your team??? On top of that, all the signs are pointing to his fear of pitching in NY (no trade clause, anxiety disorder, taking a year off). Couple that with the fact that it takes a certain type of player to succeed in NY, I think its a no-brainer that we avoid pursuing Greinke.

  • George

    I don’t want Greinke! He is good in KC. Let’s see him pitch with just a little bit of pressure! KC doesn’t know what pressure is! If he is such a panze, I don’t want him here. Even Randy (has no) Johnson couldn’t make it here.
    NY is the test of a real champion. Anywhere else, you’re just a paperweight champion.

    • FIPster Doofus

      Either this is satire, or you’re a moron.

  • Not Tank the Frank

    Good. Actually…great! I personally don’t want to give up the prospects it would take to get him. I’m not even sure I could think of a package that the Royals would want. They already have Wil Myers and Eric Hosmer and C and 1B respectively; great prospects in their own right. They don’t seem to have room for Montero.

    I would much rather see Cashman do what he’s been doing; acquiring top-end arms via free agency and taking on salary dumps or acquiring mid-rotation arms (Vazquez, Haren type) for much cheaper.

  • Jimmy McNulty

    I’m happy about this. Everyone was mad about trading Montero for Cliff Lee, so yeah…lets trade him and more good young talent for a worse pitcher.

  • Mike HC

    Good. This seems better off for everyone. Grienke does not have to deal with the pressure of playing for the Yanks and the Yanks don’t have to be tempted to give up Montero.

    And I’m sure Grienke wants to put an end to all the speculation and analysis of his mental state. Who would want to be analyzed like that by the rabid media and insane internet commenters? I highly doubt this was done to get value out of the Yanks or something like that. No way.

    • Mike HC

      The way I see it, is that this was put out by the Grienke camp to end all the Yankee speculation, probably against the teams will or behind their back. If the Royals are looking to trade Grienke, why would they want to eliminate the Yanks as a potential landing spot? That could only hurt trade proposals. Just look at what the Yanks did for the Lee talks. Yanks step in, and next thing you know, the Rangers upped their offer. And its not like the Yanks have to up their offer in prospects to convince Grienke to come to NY. That makes no sense.

  • Damian

    This was a non-story to begin with.

    However what I dislike is that some people are blowing up about Zach’s social disorder.

    Just because he has SAD doesn’t mean he is a total basketcase like Bubba Trammell or Dontrelle Willis.

    There are many, many successful people in the world with much worse mental disorders (bi-polar Ted Turner).

    Zach > AJ Burnett

    • Steve

      Neither Bubba Trammell or Dontrelle Willis have SAD. Khalil Greene did and it ended his career. Forget Greinke. Either get Lee or go to plan B (Kuroda, Westbrook, etc.).

  • Ace

    If a player EMPHATICALLY states he doesn’t want to play for the Yankees, and has known anxiety issues when he faces pressure, WHY continue the debate? Let that player stay on bottom feeding teams who never win.

    The Yankees are a first class operation that’s committed to winning, and want players that embrace the same mindset, DON’T BEG!!

    • JerseyDutch

      So we have to stop the debate because you say so? I must have missed that when I was reading the forum rules.

  • deadrody

    Thank God for that.

  • Kyle Litke

    Here’s the thing. 99% of the time, I hear people complain about “So and so can’t play in New York” and I shake my head and sigh. I find that stuff to be ridiculously overblown.

    HOWEVER…I think Greinke might be a special case. He’s not a guy who just kind of has a problem. He’s a guy who actually stopped playing for awhile because he was having issues. And while I know reports can be exaggerated…I have yet to hear any even implication he wants to go to a big market team, with many writers saying flat out that he doesn’t. If he had a couple bad years and you were talking about a guy to try to get and turn around, sure, give it a shot, if it works, it works. But it’s not. We’re talking about a guy who would cost Montero and more, and even if he waived his no trade, he could very well struggle. The “can’t pitch in New York” stuff may be ridiculously overblown, but it is a stressful environment. Any baseball team is to an extent, but here, it’s win win win, all the time. The Yankees got to Game 6 of the ALCS and people were PISSED. How will Greinke deal with it if the Yankees trade top prospects for him and get him as an alternative to Lee, he has a bad first month, and he gets booed off the mound? Normally I’d shrug and say the player will get over it, but I’m not sure Greinke would.

    I say none of this to knock him or imply he’s weak, it’s just a fact that he has psychological issues, and I’m not sure it’s a risk I’d want the Yankees to take, not even if Lee goes elsewhere. And I know there might not be anything else available…if that’s how it goes, I’d rather hold onto Montero and go from there.