Why make plans if they’re almost guaranteed to not work? That’s the off-season approach we’ve taken at RAB. We’ve tried it in the past, and it’s just a big waste of time. There are so many variables in the off-season that it’s impossible to nail down one scenario and hope the Yankees can do just that. Even the Yankees don’t operate in that manner. They make plans, sure, but it’s all fluid. Things change every day, and the plan can change with it.
The off-season is a time of perpetual uncertainty. Despite the constant flow of whispers on MLB Trade Rumors, we can’t be sure of their nature. Did an exec actually say that, or is it the reporter’s interpretation? Was the exec in question actually a part of the discussion, or is he himself getting the information second-hand? Who, exactly, is the anonymous source? Is it sincere, or blatant misinformation? The list of questions go on. It essentially leaves us right where we started.
I hope you guys are enjoying our almost-daily scouting the market series. It’s a way to present players who might be available and who might help the Yankees. It is, essentially, an attempt to look at the market as a whole, rather than pigeonholing a few players as the only ones who can fit the Yankees needs. What fun would it be if we created an off-season plan and then just followed, say, C.J. Wilson news all winter? That would have ended in utter disappointment when he took the Angels’ offer — more disappointing still, because the Yankees didn’t even submit a serious offer.
Part of this sentiment comes out of frustration. We spent a lot of time thinking of ideas and putting together posts. To see comments that outright dismiss the ideas presented, and then repeat some preconceived off-season doctrine, makes it all seem like a waste. Yes, those comments from from probably a quarter percent of our overall readership. Maybe less. But it still hurts a bit. There’s a big world of possibilities in any given off-season. Isn’t it more fun to consider all of those options, independent of the others, than constantly going back to the same talking point?
To be sure, playing GM is fun. You can kill a few good hours doing it with a friend. We’re guilty of that sometimes on RAB. I’m also not asking anyone to stop; it’s not my business how you want to spend your time. I just hope that you read RAB with an open enough mind to understand the logic behind some of the options we discuss. They might not be the best options; they might not be second, third, or fourth. But as the off-season changes, so do plans. It might turn out that the third best option at the outset is the best option by mid-December. That’s just the way baseball works sometimes.
Things could get a little slow from here on out. Clearly the Yankees don’t plan to make a big move. Maybe they’ll win the posting on Yu Darvish. But regardless, it doesn’t seem as though anything else big is on the horizon. Even in the general scene, the biggest signings are behind us. Prince Fielder remains, and Edwin Jackson’s destination could be of interest. Other than that, there’s a lot of mid-grade talent. It’s not exciting, but it’s what we have. I just hope we can have some fun with it.