Report: Blue Jays bid close to $50M for Darvish


Via George King, the Blue Jays have made a bid north of $40M and closer to $50M for the negotiating rights to right-hander Yu Darvish. Orders for the monster bid apparently came from Rogers Communication, the massive communications company that owns the Jays as well as the Rogers Center. The Cubs are also believed to have made a large bid.

The Jays haven’t been confirmed as the high bidder yet, but there’s a good chance they will be if King’s report is accurate. The Yankees were said to have placed a “modest” bid, a term so vague I don’t know what to think.

Categories : Asides, Hot Stove League


  1. crawdaddie says:

    I’m disappointed in our ownership and front office. They better hope that Banuelos or Betances become effective ML starting pitchers down the line and that either Hughes bounces back in 2012 as well as Nova, Noesi and etc. don’t have any major setbacks as ML starting pitchers.

  2. CANO FAN #1 says:

    Noooo please

  3. Cris Pengiucci says:

    If rumors of a high $30M to low $40M bid by the Yankees are accurate, I’d say they bid based on what they felt his true value was and weren’t interested in what others might bid. I’m fine with that. While Darvish had the potential to be a very nice piece, there are still other options. I’d be fine with the addition of Kuroda. I’m just happy they’re keeping the youngsters so far and hope it stays that way. I’d like to see them get a realistic chance to be contributors. If that doesn’t work out, the money saved can be used to get what they need in the future.

    • Dan says:

      I agree, I also think one thing people don’t factor in is that the Yankees realized that although they can afford to overbid everyone else, they have been paying so much money out to other teams through revenue sharing and luxury tax that other teams are using the Yankees money to put larger bids on a player like Darvish or Cespedes or in years past Chapman. Essentially they have allowed more middle market teams like Texas and Toronto to afford putting 50 million down on just the ability to negotiate. This is part of the Yankees move toward fiscal responsibility, why bid 50-60 million just to negotiate when you already have to pay out a substantial amount to other teams and luxury tax it would end up giving them a bill of probably around 100 million before paying out any salaries for the next season. Then you would have a little over 200 million in salaries to account for too.

      • David N says:

        Except that posting fees aren’t subject to the luxury tax. So it’s basically allowing you to spend whatever you want to get a guy without having to give anything else to anyone. Sure, you’ll pay luxury tax on the contract you give him, but that’ll be a more reasonable number vs. someone of the caliber of Hamels (who Darvish could possibly be better than), by virtue of the fact that he’s untested in MLB (and also by the fact that you don’t have any competition from the other teams around the league – if Darvish wants to come to MLB, he’s got to come to you).

        Yes, the excess of the Yankees in the past has given other teams the ability to do stuff like this, but if we assume that the Yankees are going to go after a high-caliber pitcher anyway either this year or next, this would seem to be the best way of doing that while avoiding giving other teams the ability to do it in the future.

        • Dan says:

          I am aware posting fees aren’t subject to the luxury tax. My point is more the combined effort to get Darvist would be north of 100 million dollars and add that to the 200+ million in salary they will have to pay this year and you have over 300 million in expenses in just player costs. It adds up to being a very heavy amount of money to spend in one fiscal year especially when you aren’t sure how he will adjust to the majors. Yes, he might be better than Hamels, but what if he ends up being closer to an AJ Burnett? Also, my point was more that I don’t think they are willing to throw their money around as much anymore when with the money they put into revenue sharing middle-market teams can put up just as much money.

          • David N says:

            Obviously, another AJ is a possibility. But that’s the risk you take. It’s the risk you’d be taking with any pitcher – apart from CC, when’s the last the time the Yankees signed a pitcher who really performed? Mussina’s the only name that comes to mind, and that was back in 2001. And there have been some fairly big names in the interim.

            • Dan says:

              Right, but I would feel much more confident about Hamels than I would about Darvish. I would rather pay Hamels 20 mill per year over 5 years than Darvish 15 over 5 years plus the 60 mill just to negotiate.

    • Craig Maduro says:

      That last part of your comment is the problem though. Regardless of whether someone did or didn’t want Darvish, the Yanks are being squeezed out of ways to use their money – at least superficially (FA, draft, etc.). Placing a big bid on Darvish would have allowed them to flex their financial muscle. They scouted him extensively though and, like you said, maybe they just weren’t sold to the point of going all out.

  4. kevin w. says:

    Land Darvish, land Fielder = look out for the Blue Jays.

  5. Mattchu12 says:

    I wanted him pretty bad, but signing Kuroda and deadling for Danks will make me just as happy when we go into 2012 with CC-Kuroda-Danks-Nova-Hughes/Burnett/Garcia. Still holding out hope that we come out on top though, I think Darvish will be damn good.

  6. Paul from Boston says:

    Wow that bullshit if the Yanks get outbid by the Jays. Utter bullshit. They clearly have the cash. I’m going to be pissed if true. Simply inexcusable when we consider the state of the rotation and their inability to develop frontline arms.

    P.s. Anyone know why comments won’t go through from my work computer but are fine from my phone?

  7. suzynandjohnslovechild says:

    Don’t think I am liking the new look fiscally responsible yankees. The offseason used to be my second favorite time of year next to postseason but the whole budget thing really sucks. I really hope this is just a case of them not liking yu and not a glimpse into the future.

  8. suzynandjohnslovechild says:

    Don’t think I am liking the new look fiscally responsible yankees. The offseason used to be my second favorite time of year next to postseason but the whole budget thing really sucks. I really hope this is just a case of them not liking yu and not a glimpse into the future….and correct me if I am wrong but aren’t the bluejays one of the non small market teams that has been receiving revenue sharing??? Great to see them buying a player with money they undeservedly got from ny

    • kenthadley says:

      These are not George’s Yankees….they are Hal and Hankie’s Yankees…..they will not put every penny back into the team….they wont be reviled by the other owners….they will control their spending, and as long as they are competitive, they will go home happy (with a lot of $ in their pockets)….they have become…….The Mara’s…..but it’s better than becoming….The Dolans

      • suzynandjohnslovechild says:

        Guess the days of saying so what when they give out stupid contracts is over…man that soriano contract looks really really horrible now

        • JohnC says:

          Soriano pitched very well last year when he came back. Really strengthened that pen. What happens if Rivera gets hurt? Joba is out til at least May. The Soriano contract is not bad at all.

          • suzynandjohnslovechild says:

            Don’t care if he pitched to a .5 era…you don’t pay an 8th inning pitcher that kind of money especially with a budget imposed on the team now. What if tex gets hurt? Shoiuld they sign fielder just in case?

            • JohnC says:

              comparing apples and oranges just to try and justify your whine. Pathetic. You need more than 1 setup guy in the bullpen. Bullpen is used almost every game. Unles you think Robertson and Rivera can pitch every single day

              • Mike Axisa says:

                The Yankees showed last year that you only need one setup man. Joba was gone for most of the year and Soriano was hurt/ineffective. Three years and $35M for an extreme fly ball guy with a history of elbow problems wasn’t exactly ownership’s shining moment.

                • JohnC says:

                  I agree to a point but its not a killer. Like I said, once Soriano returned from his injury he was very effective most of the time. I don’t see his contract as horrible.I also feel you do need more than 1 setup guy givent he way bullpens are taxed today.

                • I Live In My Mom's Basement says:

                  You only need one setup man for a full season– if your name is Joe Torre and you have Scott Proctor available ;(. DR’s arm would have fallen off if that situation had continued all season.

      • JobaWockeeZ says:

        No they’ll put money in the team even if it doens’t make sense.

      • Bo Knows says:

        These are Hal’s Yanks, Hank is the BINO (boss in name only) its a thing good too, because hank has his pops tendency to spend like a drunkin sailor and the mouth to match, but non of the smarts.

        Hal seems to be very pragmatic and I think he’s more worried about hamstringing our future (not only in money terms but also roster flexibility) and only signs off on deals if he’s 100% sure.

      • Peter North says:

        Unless they have the opportunity to give out horrible contracts to A-Rod and Soriano….

        • suzynandjohnslovechild says:

          Now more than ever cash need full and total control. 5 years ago they would just absorb bad contracts as a cost of doing business with a crazy owner. Not anymore. Now stupid contracts like alex and soriano will preclude them from landing a guy like darvish aor (insert big free agent here) hope I am wrong but it looks like we are gonna have to start looking similar to other team (not the same obviously) having a real budget

  9. Chris G. says:

    This makes a lot of sense for the Jays. They’ve been very aggressive in acquiring talent in the draft and the international market lately, but, given the new spending restrictions from the new CBA, this is a sort last hurrah for them in terms of talent acquisition.

    Additionally, Cananda has one of the largest Iranian populations outside Iran in the world. With Darvish being, in theory, the first Iranian baseball star, they could be tapping in to an unrealized demographic in their market to go along with the money they may make from new Japanese media interest.

    I did hope that they Yankees would go big on this bid, but I do understand that it would be a truly expensive crap-shot, and if this doesn’t work out, Toronto will have a serious albatross on their books for quite a while. The Industrial League is not the AL East.

    • Holy Ghost says:

      “Additionally, Cananda has one of the largest Iranian populations outside Iran in the world. With Darvish being, in theory, the first Iranian baseball star, they could be tapping in to an unrealized demographic in their market to go along with the money they may make from new Japanese media interest.”

      I don’t know how anyone could call him ‘Iranian’. He’s a Japanese national of Persian descent. He lived in Japan his entire life and will probably feel more at home among other Japanese people than among Persians…


  10. chas131 says:

    Can’t be too upset if this is true. It’s not like there is some great track record of players adjusting to MLB from Japan. We could have used him but I trust Cashman.

  11. Leg-End says:

    Has nobody pointed out a ‘modest’ bid by the Yankees probably means $70 million, Hal is probably drinking his afternoon tea on petty cash like that.

    • Bubba says:

      While that could be true, I unfortunately feel modest in this case means $30-35 million. Given all the changes coming down the pike, it’s a tad disappointing the Yanks didn’t reach a little on this one. I’m holding a faint glimmer of hope that this is all a ninja Cashman move. I also believe AJ can and will bounce back.

      Yeah, I’m somewhat delusional.

      • What exactly is AJ bouncing back to? He’s going to be pitching his age 35 season and has been pretty bad for his past 66 appearances.

        • MannyGeee says:

          hes bouncing back to ALDS Game 2… duh

        • Bubba says:

          Something less sucky

        • Ted Nelson says:

          Bounce-back to not being terrible? Looking at his averages his 2011 season wasn’t much different from 2009, except for the HR rate and LOB%. He actually had a much better xFIP in 2011 than 2009. Not making so many mistake pitches that get crushed should make for a world of difference. Might still only be a 2.5-3.5 fWAR starter… but that would be a nice bounce-back to me.

          He’s changed his approach a little, but still seems capable of a 2009 season.

  12. OXXbow says:

    I see a difficult season ahead for the Yankees as there are too many question marks in the starting rotation. Why more has not been done to acquire high-grade starting pitching is puzzling.

  13. Bronx Byte says:

    It’s no secret that the Jays are willing to spend BIG for the 2012 season. They’ll be serious contenders and see the Boston Socks going on the cheap with a great chance to pull ahead of them in the AL East.
    No surprise if they get the top bid for Darvish.

  14. Jason says:

    Japanese site indicating Rangers have the winning bid. We all know how the Japanese sites aren’t persay accurate but it is something to consider

  15. Rick in Boston says:

    If the Blue Jays want to drop $100+ million on a pitcher, that’s fine. But I also don’t think we should be thinking that the Blue Jays aren’t loaded with cash. As a corporation, Rogers brought in over $12 billion in revenues last year. They aren’t hurting for cash. In fact, Yankees fans need to acknowledge that some corporate entities that are ownership groups have the ability to spend more money than the Yankees, if necessary, to protect their assets (see Seattle).

    • Mike Axisa says:

      Yep. Toronto isn’t a small market either.

      • Rick in Boston says:

        Seventh largest metro area on the continent. Fourth largest market with a baseball team, and the largest with just a single franchise.

        • Peter North says:

          Yup, and it isn’t just the Toronto metro area anymore, either. The Jays have become Canada’s national team. If you go to Vancouver, you will see games on in the sports bars out there.

    • Gonzo says:

      Both Nintendo and Liberty Group have similar market caps to Rogers Communications. Nintendo (they might be in trouble with Wii losing steam though) has more cash on hand than Rogers, and no debt. The Liberty Group had a net income of almost $2b last year. They also have a ruthless business leader in John Malone.

      Each of these companies just can’t spend anything on baseball operations because it has an impact on the bottom line. Investors no likey that. If it has a positive impact on the bottom line, that’s a different story. However, every owner (successful and egotistical business people) is trying to maximize profits, so this isn’t a runaway winner right now.

    • MannyGeee says:

      I wonder if Yu willl want to pitch in toronto, as lovely a city as it may be.

  16. Peter R says:

    Not sure anyone can compete with the Rogers corporation if they flex their financial might. The Yankees might own one cable channel and a stadium but Rogers owns a whole cable network for almost an entire country + a stadium and a team…no contest. The Yankees just don’t have the same financial might as that…..crazy for us to believe now but they can indeed be out bid.

    That being said if the Yankees bid $30 mil or so, which is their estimate of his value I am cool with that. Solid bid attempt for a AAAA-ace question-mark. I will be grumpy if the Jays get him but it will sure make for a fun season and at least “the saint” Theo wont get him lol.

  17. Gonzo says:

    Congrats Yu for being the best pitcher in Japan in over 50 years. Your prize? You get to face the Red Sox and Yankees a bunch of times. Yay, good times.

  18. Damian says:

    I’d be fine with the Yankees making a good faith bid reflective of what they think Darvish’s value is. I certainly have no idea what he can do in MLB. I was kind of hoping that, if they viewed him as a worthwhile talent, they would bid $51,111,111.10–one cent less than the Red Sox Matsuzaka bid. Obviously that’s an enormous bid though and only sensible if they had great belief in Darvish’s ability.

  19. UncleArgyle says:

    Its a sad day when the BlueJays are more willing to spend money to improve their team than the Yankees. But at least we don’t have to worry about the Luxury Tax in 2014!!!

    • JohnC says:

      Its a sadder day when some fans are disappointed that our FO didn’t choose to spend over 50 mill on a complete wildcard of a pitcher who has never thrown a pitch to major league hitters. Unbeleivable!

      • Cris Pengiucci says:

        I agree with the sentiment, but he’s not a complete wildcard. He does have an excellent resume in a strong league. While it’s not the MLB, it’s probably the closest thing ou there. But I agree, we shouldn’t expect the Yankees to over-pay for someone, just because we think they should. They have a plan in mind and seem to be sticking to it. They just may not have felt Darvish was worth as much as some other teams may be willing to pay.

      • UncleArgyle says:

        Whatever Dude. I trust you won’t be bitching when the Yankees pitching staff is short a front line start the next few years. And what if Darvish does what he’s done his whole life and dominates? Will you still be pumped the Yankees Brass has a larger profit margin because they saved their pennies?

        • JohnC says:

          If he is sucha sure thing, then why didn’t more teams bid on him? By the same token I trust you won’t be moanin if the guys turns into another Irabu or Matzusaka. I trust the FO and scouts we have more than angry fans

        • gc says:

          So the answer is to just put up a posting big of what exactly? $60M? $75M? How about $100M just to be safe. The fickleness of some ‘fans’ around here when it comes to spending other peoples money is mind-boggling, but sadly not surprising. Just because they didn’t throw $50M or whatever the number is out the window *just to negotiate* with a player, or have doled out $200M-$300M in contracts to the biggest free agents this winter, or traded away all their best prospects to land the big fish, does NOT mean that the Yankees aren’t spending. In case you haven’t noticed, the Yankees will be spending more on their 2012 team than any other team in baseball.

          • UncleArgyle says:

            Ah yes. I’m not a true fan because I’m not conservative with the money of the wealthiest organization in sports. Personally I think Darvish is going to be really good in the majors and the only reason he won’t be doing that with the Yankees is because they cheaped out over $15 million or so. (They most likely bid over $30 mil, so its not like they werent intrested) You’re entitled to your opinion, but no reason to get bitchy with me because you don’t like that I disagree with the front office.

            • gc says:

              1. I never said you weren’t a true fan. I said you were fickle. I stand by that, and your subsequent comments don’t alter my take on it. They further illustrate my opinion of your fickleness, to be honest.

              2. With the anonymous nature of the posting process, how were the Yankees (or any team) supposed to know what the high bid was going to be? We still don’t know! From all indications, they made a fair bid, which leads me to…

              3. What would you have the Yankees submit as their posting bid, not knowing anything about what other teams might bid? You never really responded to that part of my comments. Would you be OK with $50M? If you’re the Yankees, you know that number worked before, but maybe some other team would bid more. How about $75? Is that OK, or do you walk away at that point? Perhaps a team like the Nats goes batshit insane and submits a crazy number like that. So how about $100M just to be safe? Tell me where YOUR limit would be. Surely, there has to be a number you personally would not have the team pay just to talk to this guy.

              • Cliff says:

                They are not paying “just to talk to this guy”. The bid is returned if a contract is not signed. Somewhere around $50M (+ the likely contract of $50-60M) is Yu’s worth and that is what they should have bid. Japan is tougher than AAA and if some guy had Yu’s stats in AAA everyone would be apeshit about him. The B’s pale in comparison- by a lot.

              • Uncle Paul says:

                Knowing what the high bid is going to be is what the team’s market research people are paid to do for a living. They are employed for the sole purpose of reading the market and understanding the competitive frame around the league. There are 29 competitors in the Yankees’s market, so those guys need to “know” (read: educated guess) what the market is going to bear for someone like Darvish, and the team is supposed to bid accordingly (if they are genuinely interested in acquiring him). As virtually every media outlet in America had the posting price for Darvish at least north of $40 million, a sub-$40 million bid by the Yankees is a gross mis-reading of the market.

                All of us who are assuming the rumors are true and are upset that the Yankees bid what they allegedly did are not upset because they didn’t GET Darvish, we are upset because they effectively didn’t even TRY to get him with the so-called “modest” bid. They couldn’t have possibly thought a modest bid was going to win them the rights to Darvish. If they did, they are truly not very good at reading the market. If they didn’t, they weren’t really interested in taking a flier on him in the first place. Either way, it seems foolish to me in that Darvish fills the team’s greatest need right now in a way that is ideal in terms of talent, money commitment, luxury tax implications, and age amd years of control.

                All of this assumes that the Yankees did 1) get outbid by Toronto (or someone else), and 2) place a truly “modest” bid that was somewhere in the $30 million range.

  20. Will says:

    Totally dissappointed in the Yanks FO. What are they, the penny pinching Rays? You can’t count on next years FA market because 90% of those guys are probably going to get extended. And the trade market isn’t exactly a goldmine. Everyone wants Montero, Banuelos, or Betances. Not happening. This was the perfect opportunity to get a frontline starter for nothing else than cash. I don’t buy into that whole “Darvish is unproven” narrative. He’s projected as a No. 1 or 2. Thats why everyone has been scouting him. Yeah theres some hype but I’ve seen video and this guy seems like the real deal. This guy has like 5 different pitches that he can control and he throws 97MPH! What more can you ask for in a young pitcher?

    It’s not going to be fun watching the Blue Jays and Rays face the Yankees for the next couple of years. They are getting better every year. As for the Yankees they keep sitting on their cash and prospects filling out the top of their rotation with the likes of scrapheap pitchers like Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon. Argh. Where’s the boss when you need him?

  21. Bo Knows says:

    Now that we are all but certain Yu is going to another team I want to say that I hope when we face him, the Yanks break him so bad that he has a panic attack every time he sees blue pinstripes.

  22. Andrew Brotherton says:

    I think it was ridiculous period thinking we would bid over 50 million for Darvish. I think Kuroda or Danks would fit very well into our rotation. I think because of the amount of the bid that Darvish will ask for a monster deal as well which could easily hamstring the Blue Jays.

    • Sweet Dick Willie says:

      I think because of the amount of the bid

      Please let us uniformed folks know the amount of the winning bid, and what team placed it.

      Darvish will ask for a monster deal

      Darvish can ask for whatever he wants, but he’s not a free agent. He will take what the team that wins his rights offers, or he will go back to Japan. He has very little leverage.

      • I am not the droids you're looking for... says:

        Disagree. He actually has tons of leverage. In one year he becomes an unrestricted FA in Japan, and in 2 years an unrestricted FA worldwide, at which point he will still be young. Not saying it’d be without risk to wait. But to say he has very little leverage is I think mistaken.

        • Uncle Paul says:

          Do you REALLY think he wants to wait two whole years before coming to the United States, running the risk of a serious arm injury that, while not necessarily ending his career, could seriously hamstring his immediate earning potential?

    • Ted Nelson says:

      How much do you think Danks is going to cost in prospects and to re-sign/extend?

  23. CJ says:

    I guesses Toronto was the mystery team in on Albert too. My theory is that Toronto has enjoyed the weak US dollar/strong Canadian $ for a few years now. Yanks cannot afford to see prince go to Texas or Toronto. Detroit is the favorite to land gio.

  24. Nathan says:

    If true, this is two straight December disappointments. The one advantage the Yankees had over other teams was financial might but that is useless if they are unwilling to spend.

    • Yank The Frank says:

      You’re lucky, most teams are disappointed every December. They have the highest payroll in baseball from overspending. It’s about time they are wising up.

  25. Brian says:

    Well, I think everyone knew that the long-term mega contracts the Yanks had been giving out would come back to haunt them at some point. Maybe that’s what this is.

    If reports are true that Darvish is seeking 5 or 6 years at about 10M – 12M per, that might be what is deterring the Yanks. If he’s a bust, that’s a lot to have sitting against the luxury tax for a AAA guy.

    I don’t think it’s a downright refusal to spend by ownership, but I think it’s a case of doing as much research as possible and choosing carefully. With the new CBA, the Yanks can’t cover up mistakes the way they used to by eating a contract and filling the roster spot with another high priced FA.

  26. ADam says:

    It really doesn’t bother me that they yanks aren’t spending money and are being very value conscious. What will bother me is if the team is struggling/dragging ass in June or July and we don’t see a serious youth movement . We saw it last year when they refused to bring up Montero so they could get Jorge At bats over putting the best team on the field. That scares me more than not going on spending spree.

    It will bother me if AJ and Freddy are out there getting licked and Joe sticks with them for respect reasons, and I swear to god if I hear Girardi say “We need AJ to pitch well, he’s pitched well before and we need him to pitch for us” when he’s getting panned I’m gonna pull my hair out

    • Steve (different one) says:

      Luckily, AJ and Jorge both came up pretty huge in October. This detail is always forgotten when people bitch about the fact they were not jettisoned in August. Does Hughes save their season in game 4 if Girardi pulls the plug on AJ in August? Maybe, maybe not. But no one ever mentions that when they bitch about Girardi’s 6 man rotation. Seems to me like you can’t have it both ways.

  27. Displaced Yankee Fan says:

    I can’t get worked up about the Yanks losing the bid on that ridiculous posting system. Just because they have cash doesn’t mean they should throw it away. Cashman has shown that he’s willing to play the smart man’s game and not overbid for players. Maybe he’ll pick up another Bartolo Colon type instead of a high-priced arm.

  28. JohnC says:

    The one contract thats an albatross around the organization’s neck is Arod’s. Guy is 36, breaking down and stuck with him for 6 more years

    • CJ says:

      That doesn’t matter to yanks they are not losing money or handcuffed because of it.

      • I am not the droids you're looking for... says:

        You seriously think the $30mm they have to pay Alex each year for the next six…SIX…years doesn’t restrain the Yanks’ spending at the margin? Seriously??

  29. CJ says:

    Darvish would cost at least $100 million. Sign prince 8/185. Trade Martin. Montero romine cervelii catch. Yanks will not be able to get Gio Gonzalez without giving up montero or banuelos that is the only way they beat other team offers.

  30. CJ says:

    I bet cashman didn’t see the angels or Toronto coming. He was busy repelling off buildings in Stamford ct in an elf costume.

  31. Nathan says:

    If the reports are true and the Yankees lose out on Darvish, I will be very disappointed. Not only because all I’ve heard over the past few years is how good Darvish is and how heavily he has been scouted by the Yankees, but because the ONE real advantage that the Yankees had over other teams was financial might. But all the financial advantage doesn’t matter if the Yankees aren’t willing to spend on needed players.

    With teams locking up their young star pitchers and our inability to develop our own pitchers/overvaluing our own pitchers, our pitching future doesn’t look good with the team unwilling to pay. It is very frustrating to see other teams actively getting better with the Yankees bargain bin shopping and sitting idle.

    • The Big City of Dreams says:

      With teams locking up their young star pitchers and our inability to develop our own pitchers/overvaluing our own pitchers,


      That right there is the issue. If guys like Joba and Hughes were further along in their careers the desperate need for starters wouldn’t be there. Hopefully this rotation can hold the fort down with the Bs continuing to develop.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      “With teams locking up their young star pitchers”

      I think that’s always been the case. Teams weren’t usually giving away arb and pre-arb studs. They usually kept them, and if you traded for them it cost you.

      The poorest/cheapest teams still won’t be able to/want to afford their players once they hit free agency or even the latter stages of arb… Rays probably aren’t keeping Shields and/or Price much longer. As will probably lose/sell all their guys in the next few years.

      The movement has generally been on the margins with very poor teams, questionable performers the team doesn’t want to commit to, veterans past their first extension, and guys who will forgo security to seek a big payday.

      If anything I feel this is a marginal change.

      • Jose M. Vazquez.. says:

        With all due respect to you Ted there are no poor teams just cheapskate owners. I’ll bet you could not purchase the Rays, Pirates, Mariners or As for less than half a billion dollars.

        • Ted Nelson says:

          How much it costs to buy a franchise only underscores that these guys are looking for a decent return on investment. They could do a whole lot of other stuff with that money rather than buy a team. There’s an argument for spending to win to make money. There are also arguments for winning on a tight budget (Moneyball As, Rays), and that winning doesn’t improve revenue in a one-to-one way (same exact two teams).

  32. Chris says:

    I would not be surprised if the Yankees’ bid was a “just in case no one else goes crazy, it’s worth a shot” amount, meaning they only put in a bid high enough to win if others were scared off by recent Japanese pitchers (Dice-K, Igawa).

    I also wonder if Cashman isn’t looking at this offseason the same way he looked at 2008. Why go big on a potential question/pitcher with an added cost (Santana/Darvish), when you can use stop gaps and go after proven FAs the following season (Greinke/Hamels/Cain/Danks/etc). It makes sense, even though I believe 2 of the 3 best arms (Hamels & Cain) will never make it to free agency.

  33. jv says:

    ah fuck it…it’s my bday and im drinking/partying all day!

    Go yankees!

  34. pat says:

    Yanks have been sending people to Japan to watch him for years. Could just be they don’t see him as an ace or #2 and don’t feel he was worth a high 40′s bid. It’s not always about them “being cheap” or only caring about profits. It’s about spending that money wiseley. If their scouts only valuated him as a potential # 3 or 4 in the Al East he should be bidded on as one.

    • Sweet Dick Willie says:

      Are you trying to ruin this thread by introducing reasonableness and logic?

      Why can’t you just admit that Cashman is clueless and ownership is cheap?

    • Yup… Also possible they do think he might be a 1 or 2 (whatever that means) but still just don’t think it’s worth a sky-high posting-bid. They bid what they felt comfortable bidding, I don’t see how they can be faulted for that. It’s not like we’re talking about some nominal amount here; we’re talking tens of millions of dollars in a lump-sum payment, before you even get to the contract. No doubt I wouldn’t have minded seeing Darvish wind up in the Bronx, but we have to keep things in perspective.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      It’s also still possible that their “modest” bid beat the crap out of the Blue Jays’ bid…

  35. FIPster Doofus says:

    Disappointing, but I understand the Yankees’ hesitance. Sign Kuroda, please.

  36. Holy Ghost says:

    He’s a huge risk and I’d rather see some other team take that risk than the Yankees…

  37. Ted Nelson says:

    Agree with Mike that “modest” is pretty freaking vague. What’s modest to Warren Buffett (famous for being a “modest” multi-billionaire), for example, is not modest to me and is certainly not modest to someone living in poverty. Yankees might have made a “modest” $55 million bid to beat the Blue Jays “aggressive” $50 million bid. They might not have, of course, but I’m not ready to call Yu a Blue Jay till it’s confirmed.

    I also don’t really get the insistence that Yu’s a total unknown who might stink in MLB. The top Japanese starters to come over have largely worked out early. The problem has more been sustaining the early success. This might be a function of increased work loads or hitters adjusting or some other MLB/Japan difference, but it also might just be the nature of pitching combined with a small sample. Say Mark Mulder, Zito, Bedard, Lackey, and Burnett were the only MLB pitchers to go over to Japan and timed it so that their declines/injuries happened within a couple of years of crossing the Pacific… white MLB pitchers would look like real flakes to Japanese fans. Point is that a lot of pitchers aren’t able to maintain a high level of success into their late-20s and 30s, even very good ones. The Roger Clemens’ and Mike Mussina’s who have 20 healthy, successful seasons are probably outliers or at least not the average.

    • “Agree with Mike that ‘modest’ is pretty freaking vague”

      I’ve kind of been waiting for the first reporter to have used the word “modest” in connection with the Yanks’ bid to come out and be like “whoah everyone… when I said it was ‘modest’ I was being facetious, this is the freaking Yankees. Sheesh, get a grip.”

    • Holy Ghost says:

      “I also don’t really get the insistence that Yu’s a total unknown who might stink in MLB.”

      He’s not a total unknown but success in Japanese pro-baseball doesn’t always equal success in US pro-baseball. There are some significant differences between how the game is played there versus here and the hitters in Japan generally are not as good as the hitters in the MLB. As someone posted here recently, Darvish gets away with stuff in Japan that major league hitters would make him pay for.

      Still, there’s a good chance that he will be successful in the major leagues but there’s a lot more uncertainty in projecting how he will perform due to the fact that he hasn’t thrown a pitch in the ML.

      As Yankee fans, I think we get a little spoiled with how the FO typically behaves as if they don’t have a budget. Fans of most other teams have to deal with their teams not going after free agents agressively due to financial constraints. It would’ve been nice to have Yu but we still have plenty of other options for strengthening our pitching depth.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        I understand he’s not a sure thing. I am wondering why people insist he’s such a biggest risk than a proven MLB pitcher. Those guys fail to meet expectations or just plain flame out quite frequently themselves. Dice-K hasn’t been a great investment for the Red Sox, for example, but my bet is that he’s no worse an investment than Lackey when all is said and done. Irabu blew up on the Yankees, but so did Carl Pavano.

        I am questioning whether it’s the difference between MLB and Japan that impacts these pitchers. Only so many with hype/performance in the range of Darvish have come over, and he might be the best of them. Nomo and Dice-K, for example, came strong out of the gate. Adjusting to MLB was not the problem. They didn’t maintain a steady level or build on early success.

        • Holy Ghost says:

          “I am wondering why people insist he’s such a biggest risk than a proven MLB pitcher. Those guys fail to meet expectations or just plain flame out quite frequently themselves.”

          I think you’ll find very few people who agree that a player with no MLB experience is easier to project than a player with several years of MLB experience. There’s far more uncertainty for Darvish’s performance than there was for Sabathia or Mike Mussina

          • Ted Nelson says:

            I didn’t say easier. I said “such a [bigger] risk.” I agree it’s a bigger risk. I’m saying that the difference might be a lot more marginal than people tend to believe. And I am also saying that I think the risk is more in maintaining his success, rather than establishing it.

            “There’s far more uncertainty for Darvish’s performance than there was for Sabathia or Mike Mussina”

            That’s a nice way to cherry-pick examples in hind-sight. I could just as easily say that there’s as much certainty with Yu as Denny Neagle, AJ Burnett, Pavano, or Lackey. That’s not the way to do it, though.

            • Holy Ghost says:

              Well that’s the point. Signing free agents is always risky. Often times, they don’t do as well as projected. Occasionally they do better than projected. You can’t predict baseball.

              But it can’t be denied, as you seem to be trying to do, that projecting the performance for someone with no MLB experience is more difficult than projecting the performance of someone with a few years of MLB experience. Darvish is a huge risk but he might pay off for the team that eventually signs him.

              • Ted Nelson says:

                You are clearly not reading what I write. I literally said that I agree it’s more difficult.

                What I am questioning is how much more difficult? I am not even saying I have the answer. I am just saying that it’s more of a variable than people often represent it to be.

                You don’t seem interested in answering the question. Just relying on conventional wisdom and telling me I’m wrong with no evidence. Think for a second about all the proven MLB pitchers who have signed huge deals. How many have busted or at least not done great? A whole lot of them. Then think about the sample size of the Japanese SP with MLB ace potential coming over… there have been, what, four? The variability in that sample size is HUGE. 3 of the four have worked out to at least some extent, though.

                I disagree with you that he’s a huge risk relative to other guys making that kind of money, and the evidence seems to as well.

        • Holy Ghost says:

          “I am questioning whether it’s the difference between MLB and Japan that impacts these pitchers. Only so many with hype/performance in the range of Darvish have come over, and he might be the best of them. Nomo and Dice-K, for example, came strong out of the gate. Adjusting to MLB was not the problem. They didn’t maintain a steady level or build on early success.”

          I’m not sure about Nomo but Dice-K, even in his first two seasons had trouble going deep into games and gave up a lot of walks. He was an adequatemid-rotation starter but he certainly didn’t live up to the hype or the $100 million investment from the Red Sox.

          Darvish may be different. He seems to have better stuff. Time will tell.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            Nomo had a 4.9 fWAR rookie season where he threw 191 IP at a 2.5 ERA and 2.9 FIP.

            His first two seasons Dice-K was 29th among MLB SP in fWAR. That’s not amazing for the investment, but it’s not bad either.

            • Holy Ghost says:

              Nomo had pretty mediocre numbers in his final two seasons pitching in Japan yet, he has been by far the most successful ML pitcher to come out of Japan. Even Irabu and Igawa had better numbers than Nomo in the NPB


              More evidence that its very difficult to evaluate how success in Japanese baseball translates to success in the ML

  38. TopChuckie says:

    Worst case scenario he couldn’t cut it as a starter in the US and after two years of trying they have to make him and his 97 MPH fastball the heir-apparent to Mo. The Yanks have no qualms about paying a closer $12M per year.

    This whole thing was the right opportunity at the right time and was right in the Yanks wheelhouse and I’m pretty disappointed if they did go conservatively. Seems pretty low risk in the grand scheme of things, very high reward.

    • KL says:

      Worst case scenario he throws 90-92 mph like he did all of 2010 and he can’t even cut it as a closer. Investing up to $75-90 million in a guy to be a closer isn’t very smart. We have a guy in Robertson who is way better.

      Does anyone really think he will throw 97 mph with a much bigger ball? Remember Dice-K?

      • TopChuckie says:

        I didn’t advocate investing $90M in a closer, I said if starting doesn’t work out, that wouldn’t be the worst investment the Yanks ever made. “Worst case scenario” means not getting what you were hoping/expecting to get.

        Why couldn’t he cut it as a closer at 92 MPH? What were his ERA and K’s in 2010 with that 92 MPH? Why should we expect 92 MPH when he was hitting 97 more recently? What size ball do they use in the WBC?

        There’s no reason to believe a guy who slots in between Strasburg and Matt Moore as a prospect couldn’t at least cut it 1 IP at a time.

      • TopChuckie says:

        Is Robertson way better? Would teams line up to spend $90M+ to give him a shot at their rotation? Or do you just know more than all those teams?

        He may turn out to be a way better value, but I doubt he is a way better pitcher.

  39. Kosmo says:

    I´d like to see Darvish in pinstripes but I´m not holding my breath. Yanks could have other deals on the table for example Danks or Gio or Garza. 2 years of Garza for 6 million per is a hell of alot better than 100 million.
    Yanks can now deal some decent prospects plus with Nakajima who could be flipped in a package with let´s say Gardner for Gio.

  40. KL says:

    The whining just proves that certain Yankee fans only root for this team because of their spending. They only care about new “toys” every year.

    A bunch of spoiled brats. Hopefully they leave and go root for the Mets. Oh wait.

    • TopChuckie says:

      Wrong. I am glad they didn’t sign Wilson, or Buehrle, but I like the idea of using the advantage they have, particularly while they still have it, instead of sacrificing prospects in a trade. It has nothing to do with shiny new toys, it has to do with keeping the toys we’ve been waiting for as well as maximizing their opportunity to take advantage of less sentimental resources to fill their greatest need. It’s because I care more about the players who are already Yankees than I do the Yankees’ money and because I think Darvish was the best/most exciting pitcher to add this off season, all factors considered.

  41. Bubba says:

    Oh who really cares about Yu

    The Nationals signed Jeff Fulchino. I mean seriously how are the Yankees going to compete against that.

  42. Rookie says:

    (1) I gather most people believe that Japanese baseball is somewhere between AAA and the Majors. Is that correct?

    (2) Assuming a pitcher had Darvish’s resume in AAA (or AAAA, if you think that’s the level of Japanese baseball) and that he was 6’5″ tall, weighed 215 pounds, had Darvish’s build, stuff, control, etc., what would it make sense to pay for his services assuming that you had to do so using the ridiculous structure that exists today for posting Japanese players? (For the sake of discussion, assume that roughly half of the value had to go to his old team and that half had to be given to the player in a six-year contract.)

    Just curious what you guys think.

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