Spending the Yankees’ dollars

Open Thread: Offseason Reminder
Finding A Caddy For Alex Rodriguez

As the Hot Stove League ambles ever onward toward the orgy of spending and free agent signings that is the Winter Meetings, one of the great pastimes of baseball fans involves spending their favorite team’s money. We spend countless hours on blogs, Twitter, sports radio, with our friends going over possible permutations. How much would we dole out for the Prince Fielders, the Albert Pujolses, the CJ Wilsons of the world? What trades would we make as GMs? What if reality were no obstacle?

Two of the more intriguing names this winter are unknown foreign commodities. We’ve heard about Yu Darvish for a few years. He is the most hyped Japanese pitcher since at least Daisuke Matsuzaka and probably since Hideki Irabu. Despite success in the Nippon Professional Baseball league, Americans haven’t seen much of him since the 2009 World Baseball Classic. With posting fees and Major League deals to hammer out, Darvish will command big bucks, and we still don’t know if he’s going to be made available for American bids.

The flavor du jour is Yoenis Cespedes, a 26-year-old Cuban star who is drawing interest from everyone. While the Marlins appear to be a frontrunner for the outfielder’s services, the Yankees have reportedly hosted a private workout for Cespedes, but much like Darvish, no one knows when Cespedes will be available for Major League bidding. Similar to Darvish, most Americans last saw Cespedes during the 2009 World Baseball Classic when he hit .458/.480/1.000. He has also excelled playing in Cuba and in international competitions.

Both of these players carry a lot of risk, and yet, both are in the eye of Yankee fans. We see Darvish’s overwhelming success in Japan and a young slugging outfielder with Gold Glove potential as ideal pieces for a team with unlimited money. These guys certainly carry a lot of risk, but for a team like the Yankees, they seem to be prime spending targets. The Yankees, who never land top first-round draft choices, should be using their dollars to soak up talent on the international free agent market, and while they’ve done so on the (relatively) lower ends of the spectrum with signings such as Jesus Montero and Gary Sanchez, they haven’t made a huge splash with a multi-million-dollar deal since landing Kei Igawa back in 2007.

So now, Yankee fans want to spend on these players. Let’s up the bidding for Darvish; let’s go hard after Cespedes. The Yankees have a very solid core of Major Leaguers for 2012 and could spend their money on some medium-to-high risk investments that could also turn out to be high reward guys. Spend those dollars, folks.

Of course, reality has to intervene, and the Yankees have been shying away from risky deals. That doesn’t mean the Yanks don’t spend. Over the past three years, they’ve doled out big contracts to Mark Teixeira, A.J. Burnett, Mark Teixeira, Rafael Soriano and CC Sabathia again. They gave Pedro Feliciano a two-year deal for $8 million and heaped a three-year deal on Damaso Marte. In some cases, the Yankees are seemingly spending for the sake of spending, but in each case, the investment is a conservative one on a proven player. It is, in the parlance of economics, safe spending.

It’s not easy to pinpoint why the Yankees, who spent so much on Orlando Hernandez, Hideki Irabu, Jose Contreras and other less successful international headliners, have been reticent to go hard after a Darvish or Cespedes. Perhaps they’re playing it close to the vest to avoid a Matsuzaka-type situation; perhaps without George Steinbrenner driving the need to buy up every shiny new international toy, the various factions aren’t in sync on spending; perhaps the new generation of Steinbrenners would rather spend safely with a ceiling on rewards than risky without. C.J. Wilson, after all is a known commodity, but Yu Darvish, with all of his risk, offers the potential of higher rewards.

So ponder that over as we plan out the Yanks’ off-season. Should the Yanks spend safely on known commodities or go hard after the sexy headline-grabbers with all of the risk involved? There is no easy or right answer in this debate, but the spending choices made this winter could impact the franchise for years to come.

A special thanks to RAB regular Andy In Sunny Daytona for inspiring this post. You should follow him on Twitter right here.

Open Thread: Offseason Reminder
Finding A Caddy For Alex Rodriguez
  • RetroRob

    “It’s not easy to pinpoint why the Yankees…have been reticent to go hard after a Darvish or Cespedes.”

    Perhaps because they’re not available yet? We don’t know at all if they will be reticent to go hard after Darvish and/or Cespedes. Some of the leaked reports (regarding Darvish) suggest they might not go heavy after him, yet we also heard they weren’t that interested in CJ Wilson, and now we hear they are.

    I wouldn’t assume too much of anything yet.

    • CP

      I agree.

      What would ‘going hard after’ them really mean? The Yankees can’t make an offer to either one, and can’t even work out Darvish. About the only thing they could do is to work out Cespedes – which they did. Any sign of greater interest would only serve to increase the price when they can actually offer.

    • http://www.youcantpredictbaseball.com bexarama

      Yeah, this. They’re not usually that risky so I guess it’s a good assumption… but I mean, I haven’t heard the Yankees are gaga over any free agent this year. Maybe they’re legit not. Maybe they’re hiding it for whatever reason. I know this is a wishy-washy thing to say, but it’s true.

      • Jose M. Vazquez..

        It is the Yankees. Should they show much interest in any player, the price goes up.

    • Yankeescribe

      Remember how they didn’t seem interested in Teixera until the deal was pretty much closed? That was brilliant

      • William

        Yeah, Great until you realize Texeira is starting to look awfully similar to Giambi with a better glove.

        • http://riveraveblues.com Benjamin Kabak

          You say that as though it’s a bad thing. If Teixeira were as productive as Giambi with a better glove, we’d be thrilled. So far, he’s been worse than Giambi.

          • JohnnyC

            Giambi’s 143 OPS+ as a Yankee never happened. It’s a counter-intuitive factoid that complicates the narrative.

  • whozat

    Interestingly, I’d categorize Burnett, Soriano, Feliciano and Marte all as high-risk signings at the time the contracts were inked. They weren’t high risk in terms of media/fan backlash, because (as Ben said) they were “proven guys”. But they ALL came with pretty obvious injury or terribleness risks. I think that says something pretty bad about the Yanks’ decision-making process, that they’re making decisions based on perception outside the organization instead of on some kind of expected-performance-based metric. Interestingly, they behave pretty much the opposite way in the draft.

  • JobaWockeeZ

    I don’t think you can call dishing out tens of millions on “known” commodities is safe. Burnett wasn’t a prospect when he was signed and most of us are sick of him. Soriano certainly didn’t earn his contract at all. John Lackey is a proven veteran ace and how did that one end up? Werth and Crawford combined for what 2 WAR?

    And I’m not even counting contracts that will end in epic decline like ARod, Jeter’s or Teix’s as overpays.

    This article makes it seem like it’s proven veterans who will get it done and will be safe signings vs overpaid “sexy headline” prospects. If Darvish busts I’d rather have his 5-10 million per year than AJ’s 17.

    • http://www.secondavenuesagas.com Benjamin Kabak

      It’s not necessarily safe in terms of future production. In fact, no contract is truly safe in that sense. Rather, it’s safe in terms of paying a player based on what they’ve accomplished so far vs. Major League hitters in their careers. Sure, you can pinpoint the busts, but do you think the long-term odds of success for guys like Teixeira or Sabathia are “safer” than for Cespedes and Darvish?

      • JobaWockeeZ

        Well yes, for Teixeira and CC it is safer to spend for them in the short term. In 5 years from now, though it’s a similar risk to Darvish considering that he’ll make significantly less money.

        You’re right there’s no answer for the debate but there are valid arguments for the sexy prospect side. Especially considering no FA pitcher is near CC’s level.

        • mbonzo

          Would you rather have Darvish and a guy like Anibal Sanchez next year, or patiently wait for Cole Hamels?

          • http://bleedingyankeeblue.com Jesse

            I’d patiently wait for Hamels. But I’m a patient person, so I wouldn’t have much trouble with that.

            • http://www.secondavenuesagas.com Benjamin Kabak

              I don’t think Hamels is going to hit the open market. The Phillies seem interested in signing him long-term, and he’s allegedly interested in staying. I could be totally wrong though.

              • CP

                They already have $80M committed in 2013 to just 4 players (Halladay, Lee, Utley and Howard) – all of whom are more likely to be in decline than improve. Are they going to be willing and/or able to commit another $20M or so to Hamels as well?

                I don’t doubt that there is mutual interest, the question is whether a deal can get done.

              • Tom

                That’s the thing that I think people are missing…. there is a nice potential pitching class coming up next offseason but I suspect at least 2-3 of those guys get extended either this offseason or sometime during the season next year.

                Sure the Phils have money concentrated but their core is getting old and I think they open up the bank for Hammels. At some point Lee (entering age 35 season when Hamels is set to be a FA) and Halladay (entering age 36 season then) will be declining.

                Halladay will only have 2 years left on his deal (and an option year) when Hammels is set to hit FA and Utley will only have 2 years at 15mil per. The long term contracts will be just Howard and Lee.

          • Plank

            Why would one preclude the other? Do you know where the Yankees will set their payroll next year? They were willing to sign Lee last offseason, so they were ready to set their payroll another notch higher last offseason. Why wouldn’t they do it next offseason?

            • mbonzo

              The issue is that the free agents next year are much more reliable than this year. If the Yankees add a top RF and SP they’ll be looking at a $215m-$220m payroll. With Darvish it would be closer to $230m. I don’t know how far Cashman/Steinbrenners are will to push the envelope on the highest salary in baseball, but $215m-$220 sounds like a much more realistic notch higher.

              • Plank

                The Yankees or any other team don’t sign a free agent class, they sign individual pitchers. The signing of Darvish doesn’t preclude the signing of Hamels (or Greinke or anyone else) next year.

                Do you want to punt 2012 before it even starts? Or do you think they are good enough to win as is?

                • mbonzo

                  I didn’t say that it would, but adding big contracts to the payroll obviously do. If you read my post below I say that a double digit payroll for Darvish likely means the Yanks will be approaching $220m next year. (after free agents signings) My position on Darvish is to bid on him at a point you’re comfortable with but keep the payroll as low as possible. I’ve watched a lot of videos on him, but I’m hardly a scout so I trust in the Yanks on this one. Even if they do land him, from what I’ve seen, I don’t think he’ll be successful enough in his first year to make or break the 2012 season. The point of Ben’s post was that an element of risk exists with these players. So signing him or not signing him wouldn’t punt the 2012 season.

                  So if you want my opinion, yes I think the Yankees are good enough to win if they picked up a short term deal on Garcia. I’d prefer them to land Darvish because I think he’ll succeed in the long term, but the 2012 Yankees won’t be adding any reliable #2 pitchers to their staff. That option is left in 2013, when I expect them to sign guys like Hamels and Kemp to make a serious win now run. Yanks always stay mindful of the future. But if the Yanks think signing Darvish will risk their play at either of Kemp or Hamels like players, I’d prefer not to take the risk.

                  • Plank

                    I seriously can’t understand this post. I know you are saying that signing a big money free agent will preclude them from signing a better big money free agent next offseason, but I knew that already.

                    Your paragraphs are way too long. I need to backtrack and search around in the comments to figure out what you are talking about in certain places.

                    I tried to read what you wrote, but I seriously couldn’t follow it.

  • mbonzo

    Overstepping their bounds would be my only fear. Surprisingly, the Yankees have a lot of money. They could very well add $100m to their payroll and still make money. The problem is when the Yankees spend so much money that they begin talks about a salary cap and international player drafts. With the current CBA talks coming to an end, I have no problem giving out big bonuses to international free agents like Cespedes. With the case of Darvish, if scouts believe in him, I have no problem dishing out a big bid, but its important to keep the payroll down. I’d like to have $40m prepared to spend on the 2013 free agent market, and if Darvish enters the double digit yearly salary territory, we could be approaching a $220m payroll after next year. Just keep the payroll low for 2013.

  • cranky

    If Cespedes is as good as advertised, the Yankees would be absolutely nuts not to make an overwhelming bid for him. They’ve got the dough and the winning team and the spotlight to offer him.
    To me, the report, and the video, show a slightly taller version of Vernon Wells at the same age. A guy who could hit .280+ with +power, run, throw, and play a solid CF. And a RH power bat in the OF, which the Yanks want. If he really has the goods to step in to the lineup in 2012, the Yanks would put him in RF, and use Swisher as trade bait.

    • Plank

      He isn’t as good as advertised. Pujols isn’t as good as Cespedes is advertised.

    • http://www.youcantpredictbaseball.com bexarama

      Even if the Yankees do love Cespedes and end up signing him, I can’t imagine there’s any way they’d put him right into the lineup for 2012, especially when they have a very productive RFer who has an expiring contract after the season.

    • CP

      What indication is there that the Yankees have any interest in trading Swisher? I know fans love to bash him, but I haven’t seen any indications from the front office that they feel the same way.

      • http://www.bronxbombersreport.com Craig Maduro

        Sometimes it’s the quietest indications that end up making the loudest splash.

        Just saying.

        • I am not the droids you’re looking for…

          I think it’s more like “logic.”. At $10mm for one year, he is underpaid for his production, no two ways about it. That is attractive, particularly for offensively starved teams. Other than our prospects, a few of the kids, and perhaps Gardner, there really isn’t anyone on our team who is tradeable in the usual sense. I guess Martin would qualify too.

    • Jose M. Vazquez..

      In physical abilities he resembles Bo Jackson more than anyone I have seen since Bo retired. I am not saying he could be as good a player as Bo but he certainly has the capabilities to do so. I think the Yankees should try to sign him.

  • mustang

    I think what also needs to be address is the difference between Cespedes and Darvish. Looking at the reports people say Cespedes (30 to 60 million) and Darvish (70 to 100 million) however, no one can really pinpoint that. What can be pinpointed is what’s available. The Yankees can, through trade or free agents, find good starting pitching. I don’t think there are too many 5 tool 26ish outfielder running around.
    The Yankees have two young up and coming arms in the high end of their minor league system. Correct me if I’m wrong, but they don’t have that as far as the outfield is concern.

  • Mike Plugh

    Okay folks. Take it from me. I’ve been down this road before.

    Most people probably don’t remember my work at this point, or my time as a Yankees blogger, but I spent a number of years on the Japan beat, and at least 2-3 on a limited Cuban research kick. I was a Matsuzaka bullhorn a couple of years before all the hoopla.

    If I’ve learned anything about the translation between NPB and MLB and how Yu Darvish (a subject of my intense scrutiny for almost 8 years), it’s that Japanese pitchers don’t belong in the AL. Here’s why in a nutshell:

    1. The top half of an NPB lineup features one or two MLB quality players, with 1-2 others who could survive either at AAA or in a utility role in the bigs. The #2 hitter is almost always a designated bunter. The bottom half of the order is AA or worse.

    2. Japanese pitchers don’t have to throw strikes to get guys to swing. It’s a contact league, and a contact sport, which is why Ichiro developed his style. He learned to play the way the rest of Japan plays, but he does it with better control that anyone (and speed).

    3. Japanese managers play for one run. Sac bunting with sluggers is still not out of the question. Game situation dictates strategy, regardless (almost) of personnel.

    4. Darvish throws the typical straight fastball and slider combo that most big time Japanese pitchers feature. He has a kind of a cutter, but he relies primarily on locating his fastball tantalizingly close to the zone either high or on the corners, and then hits players with the slider. Japanese look to swing, so you get a lot of early-career Joba Chamberlain highlights. In the Majors half his pitches will be taken for balls, and only time will tell how he adjusts. If he doesn’t you get a repeat of Matsuzaka. If he does, he has better physical tools and could be a good pitcher.

    Darvish has never faced any real adversity on the mound. He’s a wunderkind in Japan and makes it look too easy (see: Matsuzaka). He looked spooked and ineffective against WBC clubs, and really I have to wonder if the cultural change will eat him up. His parents met in the US, but he has never had any desire to come to the States. He’s a Japanese kid through and through. He could get prissy and bitter VERY quickly.

    If scouts are doing their jobs well, they’ll direct him to the NL where he faces a no-hit SS and a pitcher at the bottom of every lineup, with low contact catchers in many situations. He’s at least get a break at the bottom of the order and could end up making it through 6 regularly, instead of having 120 pitches through 4 1/2 innings the way he might in the AL.

    • mbonzo

      I don’t agree that he’ll be a repeat of Matsuzaka.

      His command will be an issue, so I agree with you there. He gets some swing and misses on pitches a foot out of the box, which he’ll have to overcome quickly. Still, his pitch types are all above average when compared with your everyday major league player. I fear for his 2012 season, but I couldn’t see him being 5.00 ERA bad, not with his movement. His “typical straight fastball” is really not all that typical if he’s throwing 97 and mixing up his cutter and 2 seam. As for the 2009 WBC, which was 3 seasons ago, he posted a 2.08 ERA with 20 strikeouts. Against the United States he went 1.0 IP, 1 H, 2 K’s.

      As for his attitude, all I’ve heard about him was how generous he’s been and how good he is with the media. I’ve never seen anything about him being prissy and bitter. I have to disagree with you on most of your points, but I think we’re realistically looking at a low 4 ERA next year, and we’ll see where his command takes him.

      • Mike Plugh

        He’s not Matsuzaka, but he will encounter many of the same troubles. Translating from one system to another means breaking from one set of norms and building a knowledge of another. It means that whatever success you’ve had in one context will be challenged by the new environment. That feedback will push you in ways you can’t expect, and only the best at adapting will survive.

        Darvish isn’t prissy and bitter by nature, but he’s been a star since he was 17 years old and has an entire nation licking his boots all the time. If he were to arrive in New York and posted a 4.50 ERA with a .500 record in his first year and a lot of unflattering things were being said and written about him 24-hours a day, 7 days a week…he wouldn’t be human to ignore it and let it roll off his back. He’s extraordinarily prideful, as are most pro athletes and pride falls hard.

        You have to deal with the fact that he’s pitching against a league about 75% populated by minor leaguers. Within that context, bunting is common. Also, within that context swinging is almost always preferable to taking close pitches.

    • RetroRob

      Mike, I do remember your work over on Baseball Prospectus, if I remember correctly. Are you no longer affiliated with them?

      As for Dice-K, he certainly does fit the profile you painted, annoyingly living on the edges, seemingly afraid to challenge hitters, content to pitch from behind, even though he had Major League-quality stuff. I had read that Darvish is more comfortable pitching in the zone and challenging hitters, but I’ve never seen him pitch, so it’s all second-hand knowledge.

      Your point regarding encountering failure in interesting. Here’s a man who has had five straight seasons with ERAs below 2.00. He’s never faced failure. It’s not uncommon for top pitching prospects in North America to experience their first failure once they’re in the minor leagues. It’s part of the learning experience, both from the pitching development side and they mental side. Darvish is going to face this for the first time after signing a multi-million-dollar contract, under the glare of the national spotlight of two countries, facing the best hitters in the world. I’m not saying he won’t ultimately succeed, but there is going to be a learning process.

      Thanks for your perspective.

      • Mike Plugh

        I’m not officially affiliated. I went back to grad school several years ago and spend most of my research/writing time now working on communication theory, media ecology, technology and sociocultural change…not to mention becoming a parent twice over.

        Now I just read RAB for my fix!

    • Yu aint Matsuzaka

      Welp .. You just pretty much gave the most honest assessment that I’ll probably read anywhere.

      It seems like yesterday when I was reading the matsuzaka watch… Time flys man.

  • kevin w.

    My opinion means nothing but I would land Darvish, attempt to build a trade around Betances and two other solid prospects for John Danks and sign Cespedas. Round out the bench by bringing back Chavez and you’re virtually set.

    • http://www.bronxbombersreport.com Craig Maduro

      If you sign Darvish you don’t have to trade any top guys for Danks.

  • Mike

    I’d sign a sure thing in Wilson….. Darvish scares me a bit. Work the A’s for Gio. ( anything but Man Ban ). and sign Cespedas.


    • Mike

      as for as Gio goes as well, NO Montero

    • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

      Wilson is not a “sure thing”. I suppose you’re saying that though in comparison with the options that don’t have MLB experience. Where is Nova? Included in the Gio deal?

    • the Other Steve S.

      Nova will be sooooo disappointed.

    • http://www.bronxbombersreport.com Craig Maduro

      Do the Yankees really need three LHP?

  • JonS

    for me i like the mystery of these guys and yea it upsets me when it doesn’t pan out but the great thing about being a Yankee fan is that our mistakes can easily be erased with our dollars. Im a huge fan of Darvish..been following him for a years now and i truly hope we can get him. He’s 25 and has great stuff. He’s young enough to go thru bumps and bruises and still end up being a top of the rotation guy. I rather give him the money rather than wilson and give up a draft pick. With his extra arm in the rotation we can take some gambles on possible trades for another arm if necessary even tho i rather keep the kids for our future rotations.

    On the topic of Yoenis he is more of a risk but again for the money involved i don’t think its that bad. He’s a “26” year old athlete…reminds me of T.O playing baseball. Our system doesn’t have much OF depth and he could surly bring that. I wouldn’t add him to the majors right away. I would put him in the minors while getting a better look at his tools. We only have one year left of Swish so after his deal is done we can bring Yoenis up. And if he does pan out it gives us more things to consider with the possibility of Kemp being available. There can be a possibility of Yoenis in LF, Curtis in CF, and Kemp in RF. Opening a possible trade of gardner for another SP.

    A lot of possibilities the use of only money being spent can do for this team, so i say why not take that gamble. Cuz we all kno season tickets are going to go up anyway, might as well have a nice young team to go with it

    • Holy Ghost

      “There can be a possibility of Yoenis in LF, Curtis in CF, and Kemp in RF.”

      I like this idea

      • http://www.bronxbombersreport.com Craig Maduro

        Can we see the kid play some baseball first? If this was football he’d have “workout warrior” written all over him.

        I’m not saying that he’ll end up being all-hype/no-production, but that’s what the dude is right now. Hype.

        Freaky athleticism though.

  • Monteroisdinero

    Why not take NO gamble? Sign Freddy and stick with CC, Nova, AJ, Hughes, Freddy and bring up our best AAA starter when/if one of them falters in May/June.

    There is a good chance ARod, Tex and Swish have better years. Also a good chance all the other starters repeat 2011. Montero will mash. Bullpen is dynamite plus Joba.

    Nothing wrong with sit tight in my opinion.

    • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

      That’s certainly a viable option, but they’re going to do their due diligence and see if there’s someone out there that can improve the club. It’s hard to rely on AJ or Hughes at this point, and even Nova and Freddy to a lesser degree. If they feel Darvish can be a legit 2-3 at a reasonable price, I’m all for it.

  • Tony

    I thougt it was raining in Daytona

  • Bpdelia

    My friend here in miami defected 4 yrs ago. He is and was a cuban baseball blogger and has been rifght in every defector sp far. He doesnt compare cepedes to vicideo or morales. He compares him to griffey jr and cargo. Cieling is a better chris young. Best position ciban in 40 years. Think cano with slightly more power, same bb rates 280 ish bavg. He gave me this lin for his peak 290/350/550 34 hrs, 30 sbs.

    Again this guy pretty much nail chapman, morales,miranda and vicidos careers thus far

    • Plank

      If he was a blogger, why don’t you tell us who it was? What blog? Or did you just make all that up?

      Let me guess, you can’t say his name for privacy reasons.

      • Bpdelia

        Dude. Lol. First u didnt get an instant reply because I posted from my phone before climbing a light tower, some of us have job that requires us to divert our attention from RAB for minutes, perhaps even hours at a time.

        Srcond ivdidnt post his name (oscar hernandez) because its immaterial., he isnt some famous insider blogger. Just a cuban nbaseball fanatic who blogs and whose opinion on cuban ballplayers I ttust based on his track record. No special insideriness claimed. But by all means continue your righteously indignant rant:)

        • Plank

          What is the blog?

          • Bpdelia

            U know what ill find out for u later. He emailed me the link awhile ago but its in spanish and my spanish is in the level if a three yr old so I dont read it. but again, a knowledgeable guy. His insights ibto cuvans have been helpful

            Ps. His mustellier opinion is “pretty good hitting util guy. Below avg fielder. Cieling/best case wilson betemit”

            • Plank

              Shockingly you never got back.

    • Plank

      Your silence is deafening.

      • Yu ain’t Matsuzaka (formerly Pants Lendelton)

        bro… it was probably only a post and coast message.

        I’ve never seen that handle before (maybe once ) so i doubt you’ll get a response.

        • Plank

          There won’t be a response because he was couching his opinion in the words of a fictitious Cuban baseball scout/blogger in order to give his opinion more gravity.

          Maybe he will come up with some excuse not to give the name of the blog that will be suspicious but ultimately unverifiable, but I doubt it.

          Baseball bloggers who have inside knowledge of the biggest baseball story of the moment and who are being talked about in a flattering light don’t want to remain anonymous. Unless they are fake.

        • Bpdelia

          And I cant resist…. Never or….maybe once ….or what? I post when I have somethig to say. I dont post when there is nothing to add

  • Bpdelia

    He goes so far as to compare him to msrtin dihigo! If u know anything about cubanbaseball u know what that means. Cubans considet dihigo to be on par with ruth, mays williams, aaron etc. dihigo is THE cuban baseball player. Look him up and you will c what cubans think of this guy. Cubans here are psyched this is the first time a cuban great will play MLB in his prime. Duque, contreras, miniso were old when they came. Morales, chapman, viciedo were all vuewed as flawed players. Cepedes is the real deal

  • Jeter Meter

    Was the showcase video removed? I can’t find it anywhere.

    • JohnC

      Yes it has been removed.

  • BJ

    Yikes! .458/.480/1.000 is one hell of a slash line.

  • MattG

    Help me rectify something, please. Cuba is considered one of the favorites in each WBC, along with Japan, the Dominican Republic, and of course, the U.S. Yet, Cuban baseball is closest in talent to low-A? These things do not compute.

    • Plank

      I think the reasoning is that their high end talent is really good, so their all-star team is impressive, but their talent pool isn’t very deep so there are a lot of unimpressive players to compete against in the regular league.

      I’m suspicious of the talent in the Cuban league probably more than most, but that’s the logic.

  • Kurt

    I would go after Mark Buehrle for three years and $30 million. He would be a safe choice to upgrade the rotation without breaking the bank. This would also leave room to chase one of the stud free agent pitchers coming available after the 2012 season

    • http://riveraveblues.com Benjamin Kabak

      Three years for Mark Buehrle is probably 2 too many, and while he is a “safe” investment as I discussed it above, I’d rather see that money be spent on Darvish than Buehrle. He’s not what he once was.

      • Holy Ghost

        True but we have no idea what we’d be getting with Darvish.

        It’s kind of weird this offseason how people are so cool on players who have a track record yet so hot on players with no ML experience.

  • TogaSean

    Can anyone comment on why the yanks don’t seem to be after mark buehrle? If you wanna talk about a sure thing, he’s as close as there is out of whos available right now. You know exactly what you’re getting there, dude pitches 200+ every year.

  • TogaSean

    Whoops, answered above…