Yankees close to acquiring Vernon Wells from Angels


8:30pm: Joel Sherman says the Yankees will pay nearly all of that $13M in 2013, meaning Wells will not count towards the $189M payroll limit in 2014. Money assumed in trades does not get spread out according to average annual value for luxury tax purposes.

7:56pm: Heyman says the Yankees are indeed paying Wells $13M over the next two years. Truly unbelievable. Reeks of desperation and panic.

7:35pm: The Yankees and Angels have reached an agreement on the money in the deal, reports Heyman. The league still has to approve everything, but it’s basically a done deal.

7:22pm: Ken Rosenthal says the Angels will eat at least $32M of the $42M left on Wells’ contract. Meanwhile, Buster Olney says New York will pay him $13M over the next two years. Either way, barf.

4:57pm: David Waldstein says the trade is not expected to be finalized tonight, but it will happen as some point. MLB has the sign off given the amount of money changing hands. Tomorrow seems like a safe bet.

4:40pm: Buster Olney says Wells will approve the trade while Mike DiGiovanna notes his locker is already being cleaned out in Anaheim’s clubhouse. Sounds like there are still some minor details to work out.

4:10pm: The deal is close enough to being done that the Yankees are reviewing Wells’ medical information according to Scott Miller. So I guess this is really happening.

3:51pm: Mark Feinsand says the Yankees would surrender a low-level prospect for Wells.

3:33pm: Via Jeff Passan: The Yankees are in talks to acquire Vernon Wells and a trade could happen as soon as today. The Angels would be eating a whole lot of the $42M owed to the outfielder over the next two years. Wells has a full no-trade clause and it’s unclear if he would waive it to come to New York. We heard the two sides talked trade back in December.

Wells, 34, has had a strong spring — 13-for-36 (.361) with a double and four homers — but he’s been terrible during his two years in Anaheim: .222/.258/.409 (82 wRC+) in 791 plate appearances. He has hit .266/.313/.481 (119 wRC+) against southpaws the last two seasons, but he’s been far below-average against lefties in three of the last four years (134 wRC in 2011 being the exception). If the Yankees give up a fringy prospect and the Halos eat enough salary to make him a ~$2M per year player, it would be not horrible but still pretty bad.

Categories : Asides, Hot Stove League


  1. Ed says:

    Oy. Why???????

  2. trr says:


    • Mikey says:

      The Yanks are in a full panic attack with moves like this. There just has to be some internal move that would be better than f—–g Vernon Wells!

      • Cuso says:

        I’m not a fan of the move either, but I gotta believe that if there were an ‘internal’ move to make that was better than this that the FO would’ve pulled the trigger by now on it.

        They’re not making this move because they’re going our of their way to antagonize fans.

        • Mikey says:

          I think they should give the job to Musty for at least a month or 2 and still be able to get Wells in June if the former shows he can’t handle the platoon?

          Even Adams would be a better panic move than Wells although Wells is still a very good outfielder.

          Wells has more than one hole in his swing and his swing is much slower than in his prime hence I believe the move is pure panic move. Throw money at the problem.

  3. Kevin W says:

    Vernon Wells really? Seriously how is he better than Ben Francisco?

  4. Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting) says:

    I suppose if the Angels eat virtually all of his contract and the Yankees don’t have to give up anything of value, he might be a better option than Francisco or Boesch.

  5. jjyank says:

    Ew. Pass, pass, pass.

  6. cody says:

    The one thing the Yankee’s sinking ship lacked was an anchor…… they’ll have one!

  7. soxhata says:

    call barry bonds.I bet he can still hit.Something wells forgot about 4 seasons ago.

  8. Cuso says:

    Vader: “Noooooooo!!!”

  9. Bavarian Yankee says:

    Vernon Wells!?!? Jez, and I thought the Betancourt news was stupid enough. What a day. I do not want any part of him if the Angels don’t eat like 99,9% of his salary. Then I don’t see how he improves the roster in any way unless another outfielder gets injured.

  10. Adam says:

    This organization truly disgusts me right now. This is the type of trades and signings this team makes now, forget about getting anybody of value. If you’re willing to play for the league minimum, the Yankees are interested. If you’re able to be traded for without giving anything of value up and the other team is willing to eat 90% of their money, the Yankees are interested. We just have no problem continuing to throw shit against the wall to see what sticks, when none of it actually does.

    • jsbrendog says:

      yes, that is every team’s approach when you’re opening day starting cf, 1b, 3b, ss are all injured, your now starting 3b is injury prone, your starting cf is coming off serious injury and missed the entire previous year, and so on and so forth. plus, you should prob pay more attention cause at least 1 or 2 options has stuck every year goinbg back at least 4 years

      oak to the tag, senior.

    • Jimbo says:

      Agreed. Like.

    • JMK says:

      Now that we have a baseline for what you consider to be rational thoughts, I’d love to hear your take on something a bit less complicated. Something like nuclear non-proliferation efforts.

  11. jsbrendog says:

    eh, depending on how much the Angels cover and what the yankees give up who cares.

    Honestly if he becomes a player on the level of an ibanez/rivera/thames contract and they give up a b/c prospect then it might work. Dude had a really good year in 2010 and wasn’t exactly worse than anyone else they have.

    honestly depends on what they pay and what they give up,

    do i want him on the yankees? nah. does he kind suck? yeah. is it really a big deal, nah.

  12. RetroRob says:

    Yuck, but if they eat most of the salary then whatever.

  13. LK says:

    So, is everyone ready to admit that this season is in serious trouble at this point?

    • Bavarian Yankee says:

      whenever you’re getting news of (possibly) acquiring Vernon Wells AND Yuniesky Betancourt … you know the sky is falling!!!

      btw: seems like the Angels will only pay $34MM of the remaining $42MM million of his contract. YIKES! Let’s hope Wells doesn’t waive his no-trade clause.

    • jjyank says:

      April is in serious trouble. I’ll wait to see what happens with Jeter, Granderson, and Teixeira before I admit the entire season is in jeopardy. If two or three of them have setbacks (or in Jeter’s case, another setback), I’ll be more worried.

  14. Dropped Third says:

    Not the worst move in the world people… back off the ledge…

    He will definitely be a cheap ~2m a year bench/platoon player if cash get’s him. He had a good spring and it’s not like the yankees have anyone who is clearly better than him in a 5th outfielder role and if he sucks, cut him. Maybe he finds a new spark for 30-40 games if we can get some karma back for all the injuries. As long as this prospect is a D- prospect and as much as I want to see Ronnie given a shot, I’m ok with this.

  15. HeavyHitter says:

    Dumb, dumb, dumb. Cashman has lost his marbles. Dumb as a 1 year deal, but super dumb with 3 years left on his contract. Anyone can hit 4 homers in Arizona. Up to this point, I thought Cashman had something up his sleeve. Now I realize we’re going back to the mid-60′s.

  16. So we are committing 2014 money to Vernon Wells…..What.The.Fuck.

  17. dkidd says:

    rock bottom

    nowhere to go but up

  18. Nuke Guy (Knoxvillain) says:

    Obviously they won’t give up anyone for him. If they only pay 2M on his contract then I’d be all for it. Worst comes to worst they can just release him. I’m not a fan of Wells but if he can put up halfway decent numbers then it’s a good deal but I don’t expect anything from him.

  19. Jim Cavanaugh says:

    Who’s next … Juan Gonzalez ? Stop, just stop !

  20. velocitee says:

    DiPoto is really thanking Cashman for allowing his predecessor the chance to draft Trout in 2009. This has nothing to do with the depth chart.

  21. Nice Guy Eddie says:

    Stupefied and mystified at this one, unless the Angels eat 100% of his contract. If they don’t then you’ve essentially handed out two 2-year deals for Wells and Ichiro(!!!!!!!!!), when they could’ve signed Melky for the same deal and solved all of their problems.

    • Nice Guy Eddie says:

      But I guess that’s sunk so it’s negligible. Who knows, maybe he hits and he can’t possibly be any worse than Francisco.

    • jjyank says:

      Thought to be fair, Melky is no lock himself. Depends on how much the PEDs he apparently took are responsible for his performance.

      • Nice Guy Eddie says:

        True, but I think it’s highly unlikely that Melky slides back down to that 77 wRC+ he put up in Atl.

        • jjyank says:

          Maybe, maybe not. He was trending downward with the Yankees for awhile as well, it’s not a one year fluke. We’ll see.

          • Nice Guy Eddie says:

            I disagree w that. He was never consistent, but he had a decent year in 09 as a 25-year old switch hitting CFer and he was trending upward overall before he got to Atl. They traded him bc they had Gardner, and probably bc of his character issues.

            • jjyank says:

              Eh. He was not trending upward. His wRC+’s go 98 in 2006, 89 in 2007, 68 in 2008, and 94 in 2009. He trended downward for 3 years, and had a decent 2009. That one year rebound in 2009 wasn’t a trend. He was not once even a league average player until he got to the Royals. So he carries a ton of risk. Did he just re-dedicate himself, or was it the PEDs?

              • Mike HC says:

                Most likely a little of both.

                • jjyank says:

                  Maybe. But that is nothing more than a guess, so like I said originally, he carries plenty of risk himself. Which is why I replied to this sentence “when they could’ve signed Melky for the same deal and solved all of their problems.” How do we know Melky solves all the problems?

                  • Mike HC says:

                    He definitely carries plenty of risk. I was just commenting on your hard work or PED line. We know he worked out with ARod crazy hard in that off season before he improved and also know he was on PED’s because he tested positive.

              • Nice Guy Eddie says:

                You’re talking about a young player at a premium position who had a couple of decent years(in an extremely pressure packed environment) who simply entered his prime years. Do I think he is what he was in KC or SF? no. But I do believe he is at least a league avg player as of right now.

                • jjyank says:

                  Again, we don’t know what post-PED Melky looks like. He could be league average, or he could not. He doesn’t “solve all the problems”.

                  • Nice Guy Eddie says:

                    Hahahaha, I should have known that rhetoric like that would come back to bite me. My point is that a lot moves made in the offseason didn’t make any sense, and acquiring Wells seems to be the culmination of a lot of the mistakes made.

                    • jjyank says:

                      Fair enough. Although I don’t think you can relate the two, since they passed on Melky when Granderson and Tex were still healthy.

              • Cool Lester Smooth says:

                To be fair to Melky, the PEDs wouldn’t have helped if he hadn’t rededicated himself.

                Steroids and their ilk aren’t just miracle grow for muscles. They’re super-super training supplements.

    • Nuke Guy (Knoxvillain) says:

      I would much rather have Melky over both of them but he may bat .240 for the rest of his career.

    • Mike HC says:

      In hindsight, sure Melky was the obvious move. But at the time, Grandy and Tex were still healthy. If the Yanks knew Grandy and Tex would end up getting injured, I’m sure their entire off season plan would have been different.

      • Nice Guy Eddie says:

        Like I said, it’s already done with and there’s no reason to factor it into this trade(other than to gripe about the org).

        • Mike HC says:

          Fair enough. With the way this frugal off season, into this unlucky injury plagued spring, I have no problem with fans airing out their frustrations and grievances on a message board.

  22. Barry says:

    Really should of kept Swish. Hope for an Indians fire sale..

  23. Cuso says:

    And the 8 people left on the bench meet The Haiti Kid at home plate for a walk off!

    To make this a Wells-appropriate posting….we can always look at it as a balancing act against Burnett. We’re paying the Pirates, the Angels are paying us. Whoever wins 2013 between Wells and Burnett is the big weener.

    …grasping at straws.

  24. Vern Sneaker says:

    Well, Musty just hit a game-winning dinger. Wind-blown for sure, but man he’s got a quick bat. Wells or whatever, we’ve got to find a way to keep Musty in the lineup. He’s wasted at AAA.

  25. Nice Guy Eddie says:

    WellS waived the no-trade, there goes any hope out the door.

  26. Tyler says:

    I wonder where the money was that we are going to give Wells was in December?

  27. Mike HC says:

    Andrew Jones replacement. We love our high character, over the hill former all stars. Our clubhouse is overloaded with veteran presents. I like the move assuming the prospect truly is a very low value piece.

  28. Tom says:

    “Angels clubhouse personnel are removing Wells’ equipment from the lockeroom, tweets Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times.”


  29. paulc says:

    still all on hal and his stupid arod contract…all on him…no one else. cash is handcuffed. wells gardner suzuki boesch francisco j rivera…theres your of…thanks Hal. mesa has to stay at aaa for playing time. mustelier needs ab’s at aaa too.

    • Greg Eckes says:

      Actually I think that was Hank. It was before Hal assumed control. I don’t think Hal would do that contract.

      • Mike HC says:

        The ARod contract was basically the reason Hank got demoted within the Steinbrenner clan to running their horse racing operation.

  30. paulc says:

    yanks will pay 2 million of his contract…still in low money plan…thanks Hal.

  31. Bob Buttons says:


    Need.. heart attack…. pills…

  32. Dropped Third says:

    Good news keeps rolling… Phillies just released Betancourt…

  33. fred robert says:

    Looks like Slade is going to Anaheim, so they are saying here in LA.

  34. ichabod says:

    Yes ESPN Radio in Anaheim is reporting Heathcott and Nuno. Yankees are receiving 24 million back.

  35. Dalek Jeter says:

    So now on top of CC, A-Rod, and Tex’s contract we now have anywhere from 8.5-12 million wrapped up in Ichiro and Wells in 2014. Plus Jeter’s probably going to pick up his option…plus Cano’s contract if he signs. I get a deal that might have made the team better that puts money on to 2014…but I don’t see how Wells does that.

  36. fabricio says:

    they just quoted vernon wells saying to reporters “always tough to say goodbye, but I’m excited” so i guess he’s a yankee

  37. Beauee says:

    This is my first time posting, but I have followed this site for years. The reason I am posting is because I will be outraged if they trade Slade and Nuno for Wells. Absolutely insane.

  38. EndlessJose says:

    Wow.Call me a troll or whatever but this is total crap.I’m really gonna find it hard to watch the yankees open the season with Wells in the 4 spot.Don’t understand why we would give up decent prospects for a guy like Wells.

    How much could the Cubs and Twins ask for Soriano and Morneau.

  39. Big Member says:

    Im castrating myself if Slade is involved

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

      Good to see you BM. I’m down to live cast the castration. I may then turn the camera on myself for the same procedure. Impossible though it may be for me to believe that I feel this way, I may sit 2013 and 2014 out as a fan. For a guy in his 40s who is a BIG fan this is a shocking state of affairs.

    • pipeman says:

      get a life, you sound ridiculous

  40. LarryM., Fl. says:

    I guess. I’m in the minority but I would take Vernon Wells for 4 million a year for the next two. He can still cover some ground as a former CF and his bat may surprise us. I watched Francisco in LF today. He does not make me feel comfortable except his price is better than Vernon Wells. Wells, Gardner and Ichiro is doable until Granderson comes back with Boesch and Vernon sharing some time.

    With all the injuries we must remember that Hafner and Youklis are products of the local Mash unit recovery team.

    It will be interesting this year, very interesting. We must have an open mind to the plans that the Yankee front office is working.

  41. pop says:

    FTLOG not this guy…

  42. I'm not the droids you're looking for... says:

    Shit like this (taking on $4mm for 2014, if that’s what it turns out to be) makes letting a guy Ike Martin walk look that much more awful.

  43. ClusterDuck says:

    Musty continues to hit. Doesn’t matter. He won’t get a spot. So instead Cashman continues to acquire garbage.

    It’s as if Cashman thinks that the grass is greener on somebody else’s trash pile.

  44. Dropped Third says:

    If Slade OR Nuno is involved I will forever turn against Cashman.

  45. Duncanfella says:

    If slade is included I’ll be extremely disappointed with this org.

  46. King George says:

    This seems like a pretty bad dream.

  47. Beauee says:

    I just don’t understand why you waste a few million on guys like Wells when you are trying to get under the 189 million next year ESPECIALLY since they were not willing to spend anything this winter. You can probably get production like that for much cheaper.

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

      The only potential silver lining is that this is a signal that the Bros. Steinbrenner have decided to scrap the $189mm plan outright. Re-sign Cano at “whatever” and get back in the business of keeping up with the Jones’ in terms of payroll and FA signings going forward.

  48. jjyank says:

    Alright, let’s all chill out for a quick second on the Slade stuff. Is there any actual source for this other than some jackass on a message board? MLBTR has yet to name a single player being discussed. Let’s all take a deep breath and wait for a credible source before we scream about how much of an idiot Cashman is.

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

      Wasn’t it an espn report? Not that that makes it fact of course. But I thought it was more than another Internet loser.

      • jjyank says:

        I don’t see anything on their website about specific players. I don’t do twitter, so maybe I missed something there. But I think that Mike or the MLBTR guys would have caught a tweet from an ESPN guy on the subject by now.

      • Mike HC says:

        A commenter above claimed he heard it on ESPN radio, but the report on ESPN, updated at 5:15, didn’t mention any players going to LA.

        • Mike HC says:


        • jjyank says:

          Soooo, all we have is a jackass on a message board saying he heard something that nobody else heard, and nothing that backs that up on the radio show’s website?

          Yeah. Let’s chill the fuck out for a bit.

          • Beauee says:

            Yeah I did some research. Can’t find anything. Feeling much better about it. That said, I still think the few million they are paying is too much.

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

              This all makes me feel marginally better but until the official announcement is made with full details I have a knot in my gut.

    • dkidd says:


      there is no universe where vernon wells is worth slade heathcott, even if the angels pay every penny

      not happening

  49. King George says:

    Here’s the question or possible scenario that nobody has brought up (which is scary)…

    What if this is a precursor to a Granderson trade? They have five outfielders, 6 with Wells. Is there a chance that this sets up Cashman for another big trade? Granderson, Gardner, Ichiro, Wells…that’s four outfielders. Hafner is already the DH. No way they traded for Wells just to have him sit on the bench.

  50. Robinson Tilapia says:

    Wait…..some of you actually think the Yankees are trading Slade for Wells? I mean, I hope I don’t jinx this, but that’s the funniest shit I’ve ever heard.

    Well, for all you grave rollers, that’s totally the kind of trade Papa Bear would have made.

    No matter who it is, and I’d say its more someone of the Shaffer Hall variety, this does someone border on self-parody. I wouldn’t bother. I’ve also yelled enough stuff at Wells from the bleachers that I don’t think he’s be pleased with me.

    • Manny's BanWagon says:

      Shaffer Hall is too much to give up for this guy. There’s a non zero chance he could end up in someone’s bullpen some day. I’d give them Carmine Angelini and a 3 legged dog at the most.

    • Manny's BanWagon says:

      Well, for all you grave rollers, that’s totally the kind of trade Papa Bear would have made.

      George made some doozy’s in his day but I’d say that statement is pretty exaggerated.

  51. matt montero says:

    Just curious, can someone find Vernon’s numbers at Yankees stadium?

  52. Manny's BanWagon says:

    Well this really is the clincher. To steal a line from Mike, Wells is Yuniesky Betancourt who can’t play short.

    He’s hardly a lefty masher either looking at his .285 wOBA vs lefties in 2012, .277 wOBA vs lefties in 2010 and .268 wOBA in 2009. His .366 wOBA against lefties in 2011 looks like an aberration to me.

    Pretty much a guy off the Newark Bears could probably give you what Wells will produce. If the Yankees are actually paying him 2/$8 million, Cashman must have sustained a traumatic brain injury jumping put of that plane.

  53. Scott says:

    Let’s all chill out. Yes, Wells sucks, but this is just an additional option for the backup OF/DH spots the Yanks need thanks to injuries to their CF/1B/3B. Would we rather NOT add Wells to a menu of mediocre choices like Rivera/Francisco/etc.? If they give up nothing but a standard backup OF salary (eg $3M/yr), the only way this makes the Yanks a WORSE team is if it stifles some good young player, which isn’t happening (don’t tell me Mesa, who blows; and Musty probably makes the team anyway).

    • Manny's BanWagon says:

      You really think they should piss away $3 million more of the $189 million (really much less) they have to work with in 2014 on Vernon Wells?

      If this was a one year deal and you bring him in with the idea that he rides the bench or better yet is cut when Granderson comes back, fine but to allocate any of the precious 2014 money to this guy is ludicrous.

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

        I’m of this view too wrt 2014.

        Hey. Didn’t someone once point out that you CAN, if a player is traded, allocate celery on a year by year basis if money comes in the trade? So maybe the Angels are sending $34mm but only $13mm this year and $21mm in 2014 so that he’d cost us $8mm in 2013 and zero in 2014. Possible?

  54. The Doctor says:

    I mean some combination of Boesch and Wells could certainly help cover the lack of power but it’ll probably be at the expense of… Well everything else. If the Angels eat every last bit and take a guy with no real future here I’ll deal but if the Yankees end up paying for much of this or giving up anything substantial, I won’t be happy.

  55. Gonzo says:

    I wonder about the money owed to Vernon in 2014 from the Yankees. There’s hope if it’s actually a decent amount.

    This might mean that they decided to just scrap the $189mm plan. This could be a good thing in that the FO decided to damn the $189mm if the team needs help. Something they said they would do, but no one was 100% positive they would.

  56. rogue says:

    This move wipes out what little confidence of the front office that remained in my heart.


  57. eyerishyank says:

    I’m not overly familiar with the rules, but any chance that the yankees pay some $ in 2013 and nothing in 2014? Is that legal or is it like with anything else and the annual average is used when calculating $ over the course of a contract?

  58. SMK says:

    Time to add negative numbers to the Confidence Poll, Mike.

  59. mt says:

    Mike, can yanks structure payment from Angels so that most of hit is in 2013 rather than 2014 for AAV luxury tax purposes – for example if Angels give a total $34 million for an $8 mm net cost to Yanks, could Yanks have Angels give $14 million this year and $20 million next year so his cost is $7 million this year and $1 million next year for AAV purposes. They already are paying big luxury tax this year and if it is structured this way it may be a sign that 2013 is not quite as restricted from a financial point of view as 2014.

    The eventual financial details of this deal and the quality of the prospects they give up will be fascinating. Isn’t the biggest comparable (in terms of prospects) the Ichiro deal where for half a season of a declining Ichiro making $16-20 million a year (8-10 million or so for Yank sfor half a year) we gave up DJ Mitchell and Farquahar (spelling?) – this Wells deal is for 2 full seasons but Wells contract is much bigger so shouldn’t prospect cost be lower than Ichiro deal? Am I missing something?

    • Gonzo says:

      According to the CBA, I believe they can. This was covered in the Alfonso Soriano trade talk.

    • Jerkface says:

      The AAV of Wells deal is 18 million. The Yankees will take on that 18 million for 2013 and 2014. Then the Angels will kick in a cash amount in both seasons, which is subtracted from the Yankees luxury tax payroll.

      So if they eat 34 million symmetrically Vernon Wells will count as 1 million for the luxury tax in both seasons. If they eat it asymmetrically, the Yankees could, in theory, have a ‘free’ vernon wells in 2014. They’d still be on the hook for whatever is unpaid over the 18 amount (he actually makes 21 million), but for luxury tax purposes he’d be free.

      And if by some miracle the angels paid say… 40 of the 42 million, the Yankees would receive a FREE 2 million dollar credit on the luxury tax payroll each season, in addition to their free vernon wells. Hooray!

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

        Yeah I posted about this above before getting down here. I would be SHOCKED if the final details didnt include something along these lines, with the lux tax/payroll impacted minimally in 2014. Either that or FIRE CASHMAN!!!!1

  60. FIPster Doofus says:

    This is depressing.

  61. Matt DiBari says:

    I’m assuming Juan Gonzalez was unavailable.

  62. AMANDA says:

    hes washed up eh barf

  63. MB923 says:

    .300, 30, 140 for Vernon this year

    That would be Slugging percentage, Double plays, and K’s

  64. Tom from England says:

    ‘play musty for me’ John Sterling today.

    ferchrissake – Vernon Wells?

  65. Cool Lester Smooth says:


    Gross. Gross. Gross.

  66. MB923 says:

    5:42pm: The Yankees will pay less than $10MM of the remaining $42MM on Wells’ contract, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports writes (on Twitter).

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

      It better be a fuckload less than $10mm.

    • Scott says:

      $13m over 2 yrs, Buster Olney has tweeted. I’d been less critical than most here, on the hope/assumption that Wells would be cheaper than that. I won’t defend $6.5/yr.

      Fun exercise: think whether there’s a better use in 2014 for the $13m they’ll pay just that year for Ichiro and Vernon.

  67. Matt DiBari says:


  68. There's the Door says:

    Apparently Raul Mondesi was unavailable.
    This is bad from every angle. If the prospect is Heathcott and, it’s time to start wondering if Cashman landed on his head.

  69. RetroRob says:

    Let’s hope when they say the Angels will eat “at least” $32M of the remaining $42M, means they will eat $39M!

  70. Okulafan67 says:

    I am going to vomit. I am SO glad we will be getting under the luxury tax limit in order to be able to watch the worst Yankee teams of my lifetime. I grew up watching Horace Clarke for Christ sakes!

  71. Jerkface says:

    They dont have enough roster spots for all these horseshit guys that they want on the team.

  72. @NotJackCurry says:

    Hey Axisa, looks like Wells will outhit Slade Heathcott this year, right?

  73. I'm not the droids you're looking for... says:

    Maybe the $10mm is cash, but for lux tax it’ll be (much) less. Remember as was pointed out above the AAV of the contract is $18mm – the baseline for lux tax calculation – even though he is owed $21mm per.

    So if they send $32mm and it’s applied evenly at $16mm/season then our lux tax hit is only $2mm per year even though we are paying him $5mm per. And, the cash CAN be applied unevenly as Jerkface pointed out (thanks Jerkface) making it even better. Maybe they pay $15mm in 2013 and $17mm in 2014 making him a $1mm lux tax hit in 2014.

    The devil will,definitely be in the details on this…duh.

  74. Robinson Tilapia says:

    Yeah, he’s not worth 5 mil. He’s not worth 1 mil.

    I hope this hits a snag and doesn’t happen, even if we’re giving back the fringiest of fringy guys.

    We’d be able to go back in time and totally take the 2007 Sox, though. What would happen to Youk in such a scenario, though?

  75. mac says:

    Wells is just another option. I don’t like the idea either, but thanks to the injuries and the decisions not to sign/re-sign a bunch of better guys, this is the state of the team a week before opening day.

    We’ve seen shells of once great players get hot for a few weeks or more, maybe we get lucky.

    I also bet Boesch is hurting more than reported.

    I don’t think highly of Gashman (new spelling), but I’d bet this is the best he can do right now.

    Hal made a mess with letting the entire bench go and downgrading at C and RF. Hope he wakes up.

  76. hogsmog says:

    I don’t even…

  77. CashmanNinja says:

    I don’t think this deal is nearly as bad as some are implying. I do think it sucks that we couldn’t just have gone after someone like Mark Reynolds early on in the off-season, but obviously hindsight is 20/20 and nobody could have thought the injury bug would bite this team so hard and so fast. With that being said I still don’t think Vernon Wells is a bad get for us. I’m not expecting him to suddenly turn into a .300/30/110 guy who also plays a gold glove CF…I’m expecting a guy who could hit maybe .275/20/70 and play a solid LF. I know the numbers aren’t the best, but right now we’re screwed either way and I think he’s better than any internal option available at the moment. My only problem is that if we were willing to get him with 2 years left on his contract why didn’t we just go after Soriano? I’d be okay with adding a slightly better prospect if it meant a Soriano reunion, but oh well. I still think this is better than Ben Francisco.

    • mac says:

      I agree, except, I don’t think Cash is looking to give Wells 500 ab’s, he’s looking at the 150 ab’s he needs to fill until Grandy comes back.

      Those ab’s cost alot more now then they would have in December.

      Like you said, if the Yanks adressed the need for a veteran bench player earlier, they probably would have got a better guy for half as much. Hope Hal is taking notes.

      • DC says:

        You’re crazy if you think this is about 150 ab’s.

        • mac says:

          If Wells continues to be a sub .700 ops guy, he’s not going to play full time in pinstripes. The Yanks will eat the mistake, unless they really want to see what an empty stadium looks like.

          It’s most likely a tremendous waste of money, like I said, hope Hal realizes all the better (much cheaper) players he passed on b/c he was looking to save $ in 2014. These dollars wasted count too.

    • RobA says:

      Not sure why you would expect even that line from him. Hes been below replacement level the last two seasons. Hes been one of the worst regulars in baseball over that stretch.

  78. Scott says:

    $13m over 2 yrs(!), Buster Olney has tweeted. I’d been less critical than most here, on the hope/assumption that Wells would be cheaper than that. I won’t defend $6.5/yr.

    Fun exercise: think whether there’s a better use in 2014 for the $13m they’ll pay just that year for Ichiro and Vernon.

  79. MB923 says:

    Cashman is not the smartest, but he certainly is not the dumbest. There HAS to be more players involved in this.

  80. FIPster Doofus says:

    But Russell Martin was too expensive. Idiotic.

  81. BigBlueAL says:

    Safe to say this is an odd move.

  82. bonestock94 says:

    I can live with $5M per, but that begs that question with Russell Martin as fipster doofus said…

  83. emac2 says:


    Unless Gardner is about to be traded for a 3rd basemen Hal is channeling his Dad. and I don’t mean the good version.

    13 mil for 2 years of Wells?

    Who did we trade? Slade and Campos?

  84. MB923 says:

    It’s confirmed, Yankees will pay him $13 million

  85. I LIKE BACON says:

    Yanks need a first baseman and a catcher. vernon wells? really, REALLY?

  86. Eddard says:

    Paying him $1 million is a mistake let alone 13. What a disaster. And here I thought the F.O. had patience and was going to let the kids have a shot until Teix, Granderson and Jeter return. New boss same as the old boss.

  87. Brian says:

    I hate Hal Steinbrenner.

  88. Algernon blackwood says:

    Now George isn’t around who is cashman going to blame?

  89. Get Phelps Up says:

    May or may not be related but…

    Buster Olney ?@Buster_ESPN

    About NYY payroll: WBC is responsible for paying Teixeira — not the NYY — while he’s on the DL, given timing of injury, or about $7m-$8m.

  90. TomH says:

    They must be laughing like hell in the offices of the Rogers Centre, in Toronto, where their GM not only managed) to off-load Wells in the scam of the decade while, later, “raping” Florida to become the creme de la creme of the AL East.

  91. Bobby says:

    So for the Yankees Vernon Wells, Ichiro, and Frasisco Cervelli are better than Russell Martin, Chris Dickerson, and the 8 or so million dollars they’d have left over to sign the other half of an OF platoon.

  92. Big Chuck says:

    How is this going to fit into hal’s beloved $189 million plan?

  93. Pete says:

    How can anyone not laugh at this years team? I cant remember the last time I’ve seen such a patchwork, no rhyme or reason, team. And really? North of 5 million for Wells but they didnt want to bring Martin back?

    Cashman, you truly are a clown.

  94. aRX says:

    2/13M for Vernon Wells!?

    So…that whole $189M plan is out the window, right? There’s no way they’re sticking to a self-imposed cap, when they’re pissing away ~6M of it on Wells next year, right!? Right??

    If we gave up any prospects of value, I think my vote tomorrow might be a 4 or 5, knee-jerk or not :(

    • Jerkface says:

      For 189 he will only count as 3.5 per year (luxury tax hit), even though physical payroll would be 6.5. Thats because his AAV is only 18.

    • TomH says:

      Actually, a 4 vote tomorrow is not so much a “knee jerk” reaction as a rational reading of the situation.

      • Robinson Tilapia says:

        Due to the potential acquisition of one player who probably replaces Ben Francisco on the roster?

        You’re smarter than that.

        • TomH says:

          No, no no! You misread me. Or,more likely,: I didn’t make myself clear enough).

          It’s the total situation (as per my, at least, reading of the instructions for the poll) that leads me to say that a #4 vote is “rational.”* Wells is just another, albeit striking, bit of evidence for a below-5 ranking of this time.

          * Of course, to vote a 4 is not necessarily to make a correct vote–just a rational one.

    • Deathstroke Heathcott says:

      The 189 plan has to have sailed if they’re okay with paying Ichiro and Wells 13 Mill of the 189.

  95. trr says:

    This is a panic-type move…it’s a little sad, isn’t it?

    • TomH says:

      It’s less sad than eerily fascinating (watching a trainwreck) to observe how quickly this franchise permits itself to erode, while making public protestations–from Girardi, Cash, and Steinbrenner–of confidence in its ability to field a “contender” this season.

  96. Don't know what to say anymore says:

    Nate Schierholtz 1 year 2.250 ( Arb control)
    Reed Johnson 1.8 million

    That is all..

    • Robinson Tilapia says:


      Or just do nothing. Nothing would be preferable than taking this guy on.

      Like I said, I hope this hits a snag, as in whatever Cashman’s drink got spiked with wears off.

  97. trr says:

    I’d rather see the kids. Period.

  98. Vern Sneaker says:

    Well, obvious that Grandy’s going to be gone sooner or later, his $$ go to Cano, Wells the stopgap until one of the prospects is ready for 2015. Cashman gambling that Wells’ ST means something. Quite a crap shoot, and I’m holding my breath re the minor leaguer (or two?) who’s going.

  99. Barry says:

    I just threw up in my mouth. Not even just a little bit.

  100. MB923 says:

    Wonder if this is a Cashman move or Steinbrenner move?

    • Get Phelps Up says:


    • Algernon blackwood says:

      It’s terrible so everyone will find someone other than cashman to blame

    • Robinson Tilapia says:

      I doubt someone other than Cashman would get involved with someone who just isn’t going to play a major role on the team.

      This is Cashman thinking he can upgrade from Ben Francisco and Melky Mesa by throwing too much money at the situation now when they could have done better for themselves several months ago by throwing a lot less money at players no longer available.

      Hopefully the $13 mil brings back a time machine so this team can finally take those 2007 Red Sox. I wonder what happens to Youk in a situation like that.

  101. pc says:

    hal has become as incompetent as hank, dumb and dumber.

  102. Vern Sneaker says:

    I’m really curious: Does anybody here think Wells will be productive again? (Let’s assume — ! — that the minor leaguer who goes is a marginal or non-prospect.)

    • Robinson Tilapia says:

      Anything is possible, I guess.

      It’s not a possibility worth paying $13 million to see if it pans out, though.

  103. high heat says:

    They see me tradin’, they hatin’.

  104. Pasta says:

    Conger could be part of this deal
    They just picked up snyder from wash. Conger having throwing issues
    Who better to fix him then tony pena.

  105. Pat D says:

    All I can say about them picking up $13 million over 2 years is that I hope this is a tangible sign that the report about them scrapping the $189 million plan is real.

    But I’m not that optimistic about that.

  106. Big Member says:

    I was going to make a typical Big Member post on how wonderful this move is, bringing in leadership presence and a guy who is knowledgeable of the Blue Jays organization, suggest Cashman to target Zitto and Howard but then I realized just how terrible the team is run now. Oh well, there is still some Absolut left.

  107. Eddard says:

    The Yankees have just posted their starting outfield for opening day straight from the desk of Hal Steinbrenner-

    CF Vernon Wells
    RF Jason Bay – The Yankees have plans to acquire him in a trade for Gardner and will pay him $15 million over 2 years
    LF Johnny Damon – Will be signed next week for $17/3.

    Hal also said he wanted Carl Crawford last season but the Dodgers beat him to the punch.

  108. emac2 says:

    I just hope whoever made the decision on this deal has the balls to claim it.

  109. EndlessJose says:

    I still don’t understand why we gave Ichiro two years.Now we have Wells and Ichiro for two years.They are platton guys at best.It’s funny how Cashman will talk sbout how Damon isn’t agood fit but Wells is the answer.

    Dumpster diving.Sad Wells is goanna get allot of at bats than he should.

  110. Chris says:

    Are they trying to lose on purpose so they can move the team to Miami? I haven’t seen any spring training games yet. Can someone tell me if Tom Berenger has caught any games?

  111. Robinson Tilapia says:

    Still don’t get it. It’s just one fucking player, so the hyperbole, as always, is ridiculous, but I fail to see how he makes the team any better this year, or ever.

    Hopefully a middle reliever in low-A gets sent over.

  112. Jerkface says:


    The contract money in trades is still applied to the teams as AAV of the entire contract. Its the cash considerations which are year to year debits/credits. So the Yankees will take on the 18 AAV of vernon wells which is then adjusted down by the cash considerations.

  113. James says:

    After giving Ichiro 13 million over two years, Wells 13 million over two years and Boesch 1.5 million this year, why did we let Swisher walk away again? And Ichiro and Wells will be here in 2014, so it’s not like this is a way to get under the $189 million budget.

  114. Eddard says:

    I just feel so sorry for the kids. I don’t care what kid you put out there, he’s better than Wells. This franchise is like the Republican Party, it just caters to the old and doesn’t want to change with the times. What built the 90s dynasty? Youth! Brought up through the farm system. And you would think that would fall in line with trimming the budget because younger players are cheaper.

  115. Mike says:

    Could be a ichiro/wells platoon when granderson comes back. That might not be the worst move, or even Bosche/wells if ichiro gets hot.
    Honestly, not the worst platoon- especially for the bottom of the lineup

  116. Dalek Jeter says:

    So I guess if I got to write the opening day line up it would be:

    CF Gardner
    3B Youkilis
    2B Cano
    DH Hafner
    LF Wells
    1B Rivera
    C Cervelli
    RF Suzuki
    SS Nunez

    • mustang says:


      Who saw this coming?


    • Chris says:

      I would think to start the year Ichiro will be hitting 2nd, at least against right handed pitching, especially the first 5 games Jester misses.

      So maybe something like


      • Nice Guy Eddie says:

        Opening day v Lester…

        CF Gardner
        SS Nunez
        2B Cano
        3b Youkilis
        1b Rivera
        LF Wells
        DH Musty
        RF Ichiro
        C Cervelli/Stewart(whoever C wants)

    • Nice Guy Eddie says:

      what do you think the bench looks like? this move and Jeter being on the DL to start the season has really screwed up my understanding of the roster

      • Robinson Tilapia says:

        I assume the bench will be Nix, Wells (if this happens), BUC, and either they go short until Derek returns or carry either Mustelier or Mesa.

        The Jeter issue does screw things up a bit. I assume they wind up carrying both Nunez and Nix for the season if they think Derek will play a lot less short.

        A $13 mil fourth outfielder who probably becomes the fifth outfielder once Curtis comes back. Just wow.

        • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting) says:

          I’m guessing they intend for him to be the starting OF until Curtis comes back, and then 4th OF.

          Not that it makes things much/any better.

          • Robinson Tilapia says:

            My assumption is that they’ll still play Boesch, unless his ribs developed some rare disease.

            • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting) says:

              As dumb as this trade seems anyways, I can’t imagine they’d spend $13M with the intention of him starting out as just a 4th OF. It really seems that they think he can be more than that (not that I agree with that assessment).
              I’m guessing the acquisition of Wells, combined with Boesch’s poor spring and slight injury, might have punched Boesch’s ticket to Scranton.

        • Nice Guy Eddie says:

          That’s what I was thinking – that musty may get a shot now. Very possible he ends up as the opening day DH against Lester. Good for him.

  117. Jerkface says:

    @Joelsherman1 12s

    Hearing #Yankees will pay almost all of $13M they r responsible to Wells in ’13 so as not to put toward $189M payroll goal in ’14

    Hi explaining this. Wells is owed 21 per year for 2013 and 2014. His AAV for luxury tax purposes is 18 per season. If the Yankees decided to pay 12 million of that 21 in 2013 and 1 million in 2014, then for LUXURY TAX PURPOSES they would owe 9 million in 2013 and -2 million in 2014. You read that right, they would basically be receiving a credit to their payroll in 2014. That makes 189 into 191.

    Its still stupid because Vernon Wells sucks and they should be able to get more than 29 million from the Angels, but this is the smartest implementation of their stupid deal.

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

      Hey Axisa can we make this post a sticky, or better yet an update to your post? The deal still reeks but as Jerkface is saying this makes it a lot closer to palatable. I think the comments here would greatly benefit if everyone knew this. Your latest update helps but the way it’s spelled out here is nice.

    • MB923 says:

      Joel Sherman ?@Joelsherman1 1m
      they tax on the $13M, not the AAV. And if they pay him $1M in ’14, they pay tax on the $1M, not the AAV. #Yankees

      • Jerkface says:

        Definitely not true.

      • Jerkface says:

        This is the section of the CBA / luxury tax area about cash considerations.

        (iii) Cash Consideration: An assignor Club that pays cash
        consideration in lieu of assigning an unnamed player or to defray
        all or part of the salary obligation of the assignee Club for an
        assigned Player shall include such cash consideration in its Actual
        Club Payroll in the Contract Year in which the cash consideration
        is paid; provided, however, that any such cash consideration
        included as part of a Player assignment made during the 2016
        Contract Year but not payable until the 2017 Contract Year shall
        be included in the assignor Club’s 2016 Actual Club Payroll to the
        extent that the assignee Club does not have equivalent salary obli-gations under Player contracts obtained in the assignment in the
        2017 championship season or beyond. Any cash consideration
        that is, pursuant to the preceding sentence, included in the Actual
        Club Payroll of the payor Club shall be subtracted from the Actual
        Club Payroll of the payee Club in the same Contract Year in which
        it is added to the payor Club’s Actual Club Payroll.

      • Jerkface says:

        And salaries and trades:

        (2) Average Annual Value of Guaranteed Multi-Year Contracts
        A Uniform Player’s Contract with a term of more than one (1)
        championship season (“Multi-Year Contract”) shall be deemed to
        have a Salary in each Guaranteed Year equal to the “Average Annual
        Value” of the Contract (plus any bonuses subsequently included by
        operation of Section E(4) below). “Average Annual Value” shall be
        calculated as follows: the sum of (a) the Base Salary in each Guar-anteed Year plus (b) any portion of a Signing Bonus (or any other
        payment that this Article deems to be a Signing Bonus) attributed to
        a Guaranteed Year in accordance with Section E(3) below plus (c)
        any deferred compensation or annuity compensation costs attributed
        to a Guaranteed Year in accordance with Section E(6) below shall
        be divided by the number of Guaranteed Years.

        (i) General Rule: If a Uniform Player’s Contract is assigned
        by any means to another Major League Club, the assignor Club
        shall be allocated Salary through the date of the assignment and
        Salary shall begin being allocated to the assignee Club on the fol-lowing day, regardless of the Player’s reporting date.

        So Well’s salary for luxury tax purposes is AAV. The Yankees assume his salary from report date to now, which means the 18 AAV for 2013 and 2014. This is then offset by cash considerations.

        Hope this helps!

  118. tom says:

    So basically you have:
    - A ~19mil Ichiro/Wells platoon this year
    - An ~7mil Ichiro/Wells platoon next year (they both won’t be starting right? Right?!?!?)

    Even the “good” year out of those two makes is a bit depressing. The Yankees are so lost in the 2014 plan that they don’t seem to realize how bad Wells is. I assume they will have to count at least the league min toward the luxury tax, and quite frankly I would be fine with the Yankees using a rookie as a platoon/4th OF next year. I’m hoping for another dead cat bounce like 2010, but to make a trade on that hope seems a bit foolish.

    Granderson is out one month… after that Wells is a 13mil guy filling what was Juan Rivera’s planned role – a role which the Yankees were handing out cheap MiLb deals to fill in the offseason. He is not a 13mil upgrade over either Rivera, Franciso, Mesa as a 4th OF. Even if you assume Rivera ends up at first all year, I’d still rather have Francisco or Mesa +13mil to spend at the deadline (or to upgrade the corner IF down after the season starts)

  119. MartinRanger says:

    There is no way that Wells and his salary outproduces Ben Francisco. Juan Rivera maybe. MAYBE.

    I think Melky Mesa could outhit Wells at this point. actually they are very similar players right now. some pop, no patience, and no contact skills at all.

    and one costs the major league minimum.

    this is so unlike Cashman. he’ll make mistakes but rarely of this kind.

  120. Joe D. says:

    I’ll get flamed for this, but it’s the truth.

    Done with the Yankees. Not following them this year, period.

    One the hands-down worst moves any team has made in the last decade.

    Not supporting that kind of idiocy.

    Can’t do it.

    Cheers to those of you hearty souls who stick around.

    We’re rooting for laundry anyway, might as well root for laundry that doesn’t go out of its way to make me look like an asshole for handing over my dollars.


    • djyank says:

      done following the yankees as well. RAB thanks for everything, i may be back in a year or two. on the bright side, much free time was just opened up to me. so thanks, hal. peace all

      • Robinson Tilapia says:

        If this is the kind of fan you are, why be here in the first place?

        • Big Jim Walewander says:

          I rarely post here, but I know, Robinson, that you and I are in the same age bracket, and these reactions just boggle my mind. People are free to do what they want over this move, but they have NO idea the levels of idiocy, embarrassment, and ineptitude we had to deal with in the 80s and early 90s. Yet, it made 1996 and thereafter incredibly amazing.

          These people wouldn’t have lasted a day in 1990.

          • Robinson Tilapia says:


            I bring up Phelps/Buhner again since that actually felt like a punch straight to the gut when it happened. This? I guess anything can happen, but I’ll be rooting for an overpaid bum I don’t like playing part time……like I haven’t done that before!

            I laughingly say that Donald Trump buying the team would be the only thing that would drive me to Citifield, but that’s not far from the truth. My being a fan is more than about won/loss record, or what good/bad decisions are made at any given moment. I waited until I was 22 years old for a championship I could actually remember. I’ve got the stomach for far worse than this.

            • Big Jim Walewander says:

              Yup. In it for the long haul, unless like you said, something mind-numbingly terrible happened.

              I don’t know if you’ll relate to this, but I had a heavy Catholic guilt thing going about the Yankees in those years, like it was somehow my fault or our generation’s fault that they were bad. We always heard, they won in the 20′s, 30′s, 40′s, 50′s, 60′s, and 70′s… and then came OUR time. When Charlie Hayes caught that ball in 1996, it was like a heavy weight off my shoulders.

          • Joe D. says:

            Lasted well more than a day in 1990. And ’91. And ’92.

      • CashmanNinja says:

        If that’s the kind of fan you are then goodbye. I don’t want someone like you following MY team. You’re a fair weather fan who only cheers when they do well. A real fan has to deal with the good and the bad. Good thing you’re not a Cubs fan because you’d probably be a full blown alcoholic during the season.

        • Joe D. says:

          “You’re a fair weather fan who only cheers when they do well.”

          Incorrect. I’ve cheered them when they’ve done well, and cheered them when they’ve done poorly.

    • Robinson Tilapia says:


    • Get Phelps Up says:

      I hope you feel better now.

    • GreenArm says:

      OK, well good for you then.

      I am completely confounded by this year’s offseason, but I’m not going to NOT be a fan. I am 100% on board with all of the criticism of this offseason, but comments like this are just ridiculous.

      “Cheers to those of you hearty souls who stick around.” Ohhhh, you mean fans of the team, no matter what!? Maybe you’re young (and that’s aok, obviously) and never lived through bad Yankee years (or bad years of any team you should support). A true fan (again of any team, any sport) is around through the thick and thin.

      So basically, peace out Joe D. I’m sure we’ll see your words when everything appears golden with the Yanks again. Enjoy the Blue Jays! (oh snap, until they are all hurt)

      • GreenArm says:

        Oof, sorry. I’m a new poster here (read for ages) so I didn’t see or realize all the other folks expressing my sentiments.

        (On a side note: How do you folks keep up with the actual commenting aspect. Is there a box I’m not checking, or something. I try to check the site a bunch, but I guess am still a bit slow. Hahaha. -i’m being serious-)

    • Jim Is Bored says:

      Peace out, let the door hit you on the way out.

  121. Simon says:

    These are my thoughts exactly, upon hearing this news.

  122. Mark says:

    Maybe this deal will smell better is they liberally apply NY Yankees Fragrance to Vernon.

  123. Mark says:

    Incidentally, is that the real Jim Walewander? We worked together! Alas, not for the Yankees or the Tigers!

  124. Jeffrey M says:

    I posted this over at IATMS/TYA, and judging from the commentary here, I am about to get flamed for taking the other side of this, but here goes…

    Eh, I don’t think this is as bad a deal as it seems like on the surface… time will tell, but the financial benefits of having an above Replacement level player (which I suppose we will have to see how Well’s plays for us) at a $0 or negative AAV payroll tax hit for 2014 wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world. Again, we don’t really know how he will perform, but if he plays even 10% better, or improves his OBP, AND provides financial relief in 2014 because of the structure of the deal… heck, I don’t see this as being THAT bad of a deal. Obviously it is a gamble, but it seems calculated. 34 Y.O. is not exactly over the hill territory, he might be rejuvenated by a change in scenery and playing with a bunch of professional veteran teammates. It is a calculated gamble, in my opinion, and worst that happens is they cut him next year, right, if the Angels agree to pay 100% of his salary next year, say, if he is toast, why can’t the yanks just cut bait and no harm done except that they would have paid a pretty penny for whatever this year’s production will be… Again, if the ownership is willing to commit the dollars this year, why wouldn’t this be worth a gamble? It might take a few ABs away from other options, but Girardi can play the hot bat or matchups or whatever, and I doubt this will really take away any youngsters playing time, as they could still get some seasoning in AAA and if they are productive you can bet they will be called up or given a shot next Spring…. Maybe I am off base, but that’s my two cents. He was a 4 WAR player less than 3 years ago. It seems more likely that he is worth 4 WAR (and I am shooting for the stars here) this year than 0 or negative WAR. This seems like a true definition of a low risk (money only? assuming we didn’t give up any real prospects) and medium to high potential reward move. As an owner, Isn’t this the type of potential “high alpha” type investment that you want to see your GM (portfolio manager) make? Worst case, Wells turns the roster spot into a black hole and gets cut. Best case he becomes a 4 WAR or better player again. Best thing is the Angels are paying for a lot of the risk, so again, I think it is a calculated one. I admit that hoping for anything over 2 WAR from Wells is asking a lot, but “Hey, You Never Know”. And other than maybe Casper Wells or some other options that would probably get snapped up before the Yank’s get to put a claim in on waiver wire, what else is out there that is a 1-2 WAR player? Slim pickings for true impact bats, and even the most ardent Vernon Wells haters have to admit that he has at one time performed better than just about every other possible option out there. I say Roll The Dice, maybe this time next year everyone is talking about Cashman’s saavy pick-up. For me, my expectations for Wells are actually so low that he can really not miss them, he can only beat them. I am expecting 0 WAR, figuring on 1-2 WAR and hoping for 4 WAR. Even if WAR is not the best metric to use, it seems to me on a simplistic basis this has way more of a chance of turning into a steal than it does of being utterly catastrophic. I mean nearly everyone in this blog is saying this deal is catastrophic… but really, is it? It could turn out to be wasted money, sure…. but catastrophic? Unlikely. Much more likely (in my mind) is some type of achievement by Wells that beats these lowly expectations (was he traded for a bag of balls?)… and are those not the incremental gains (a deal beating expectations in your favor) upon which trades by GMs should be measured? Cashman has the money to spend, obviously. We shouldn’t hate on him for trying to improve the team given the limited options ownership has constrained him with otherwise (such as the 2014 austerity budget, which I am in favor of, by the way, from a business perspective, but I am not in favor of from a Fan’s perspective which is how most people seem to be viewing that budget).

    • Jerkface says:

      I don’t see why its more likely that he is a 4 WAR player than a close to 0 WAR player. He has been the latter more recently and more often more recently than the former.

      • Jeffrey M says:

        I didn’t say “close to a 0 WAR player”. I said 0 or negative WAR. If I had to bet on one or the other, even money, I’d bet on him getting at least 3 WAR before I would bet on it being negative.

    • Robinson Tilapia says:

      Certainly more positive than I am on this, but a breath of fresh air after hearing two guys renounce their fandom over a fourth outfielder.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting) says:

      “Cashman has the money to spend, obviously”
      Then why didn’t he spend it on better players when they were available in the offseason.

      The most likely scenario, based on Wells performance the past 2 years, is a 0-1 WAR performance, making the $13M they are eating a grossly inefficient allocation of resources.
      If they are willing to spend an unlimited amount on payroll this season and cut bait with Wells (and others) as soon a better option becomes available, then it will just be a horrible waste of money and not a detriment to the team.
      There is really no evidence that the Yankees are willing to spend whatever it takes to win this year, though, making this a move that could prevent them from making a move that has a more realistic chance of substantially improving their chances later.
      My biggest gripe with the move is that the $13M could have been spent much more usefully over the offseason, or later on when better players become available in trade.
      Also, the sheer stupidity of paying $13M for a player that probably wouldn’t command much more than maybe $2-3M guaranteed (if that) as a free agent, should make anyone question the judgement/intelligence of the organization.

      • Jeffrey M says:

        I just want to point out that in regards to your first comment above, I don’t think Cashman didn’t have money to spend then. Apparently the Yanks are getting insurance money from Tex’s injury from WBC.

        • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting) says:

          Around $7M, barring any significant setbacks.
          They spent $13M for a guy who’s been a weak 4th OF the past 2 seasons.
          I agree Cashman probably didn’t have the money then, because Hal wouldn’t let him spend it. My beef isn’t just with Cashman on this, it’s on the full decision making tree in the organization.
          Though suddenly having additional money to spend now really isn’t an excuse for Cashman to needlessly squander on what probably only amounts to a marginal upgrade (if that).

      • Jeffrey M says:

        I also think that the ability to “structure” the payments so that there is a minimal or negative dollar hit to the artificial $189M “cap” in 2014 plays into this more than most people realize. Essentially I hypothesize that we could be getting a “free” Win Above Replacement or two in 2014 if Wells performs. Or possibly he gets cut or traded or who knows what. But when I add it all up, it seems at least fair, if not skewed towards our favor. I could be WAY off base, since all the details are not in, but I can’t for the life of me see anything that I have heard in this deal that is factual that makes me think this is grossly BAD risk to take (even if Wells is way OVERPAID from a purely contractual perspective, the Yanks have to look at the advantages in both production and financial structure that this trade could have implications on).

        • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting) says:

          Possible positive implications next year, but probably negligible, as he’s unlikely to be more than a bench player, and unlikely to produce much, if at all, more than a player making about league minimum, if he’s even still on the team.

          Possible huge negative implications for this year, if they aren’t willing to add substantially more payroll later if needed, and if the contract makes them unwilling to cut bait and pursue other options if he fails to perform.

          To sum up, likely no more than minimal help for next year, with potentially bigger negative implications this year.
          To say nothing of the fact that they got robbed in the deal.
          Paying $13M for a guy who combined for -0.3 bWAR over the past 2 years is inexcusable.

          • Nice Guy Eddie says:

            You said it above, and I totally agree. The only, literally only, real positive out of this situation is if they’re willing to DFA him when the time is right and eat the money they owe him.

            Maybe this is a precursor to them looking to add talent and payroll at the deadline, effectively scrapping this 189 bs. They royally screwed up in the off season in not adding at least depth – let alone the mistakes they made w Ichiro,Swish, and Martin – and it’s come back to bite them.

  125. Robinson Tilapia says:

    Hmmmm…….will it all be worth it if, after all their big dealing and people blowing smoke up their asses, the Blue Jays go down at the hands of Vernon Wells?

    I once yelled at Vernon from Section 203 and asked if he could lend me $20. I wonder if he’ll remember. I still might do that again.

    • Jeffrey M says:

      That would be sweet indeed if the Jays choke hard and Wells hits .250+ with an OPS of .700+. I really don’t have very high expectations of him, but I imagine he could surprise people, even 2 WAR would be at least triple the WAR that most people seem to be anticipating from him this year.

  126. Pasta says:

    Your opening day line up

  127. Jeffrey M says:

    While we are dreaming, maybe Wells hits .325 with a .800+ OPS in 2014 and looks at $15 Mil or whatever the Qualifying offer is then as a slap in the face, turns it down, and the Yanks get a 1st Round pick out of it… :)
    Kidding. Just kidding. That is going way too far, but I doubt this guy OBP’s .200 like everyone seems to be expecting though.

  128. Tom says:

    It seems like they were bidding against themselves again. Was any team ready to take Wells on for 13mil? And while it helped the Yankees to frontload it (for them), it also helps the Angels as they were pushing up against the luxury tax this year and now have more space.

    I wonder if they (the Angels) go after Lohse now? They already gave up a pick for Hamilton (so the comp pick for Lohse is less impactful) and they cleared a bunch of luxury tax space this year and next year it jumps 11mil. So they also may have helped one of their potential competitors clear space to further upgrade their team.

  129. Pat D says:

    316 comments before I write this.

    Quick, someone come up with a Wells 3:16 joke.

  130. Get Phelps Up says:

    And through all of this, dalelama is absent…

  131. matt nokes says:

    over/under one homerun per million paid (13 in ’13)?

  132. Don't know what to say anymore says:

    Mark Feinsand
    Source tells me Yankees will have $6.5M count against payroll for Wells in 2013 & 2014. It’s AAV, so Yanks can’t front-load it for 2013

    So then Yankees just wasted 6.5 million for next year

  133. Nathan says:

    $6.5M per year for Vernon Wells? Gawd-awful.

    I mean, if the Yankees are going to struggle through ’13 due to injuries, I can live with that. But if this trade is a response to those injuries, and it looks like it is, it’s a very bad move.

  134. vicki says:

    tremendous, tremendous. well done, everybody.

  135. mt says:

    . Feinsand reporting an equal $6.5 million per year for 2 years in terms of Yankee salary cost while Sherman reported backlaoding of Angels’ total payments so minimal 2014 impact – major difference in reporting – which is right?

    I am still trying to get my arms around this – I keep going back to who else was willing to pay Wells $4 million, much less $13 million. But the problem may be that better possibilities like Willingham required at least a Phelps/Warren cost which Yankees unwilling to do.

    In Sherman backloading of Angels’s payments scenario, I can see in effect Yanks paying Wells more in 2013 (when they are already way over salary cap) while still avoiding much 2014 expense.

    However, I just don’t see the equal salary Feinsnad scenario. For comparavles, I sort of understood Ichiro at $6.5 million in 2013 and 2014 after Schierholtz said no and Hairston was still not committing to anyone at that point – but I see no reason to pay struggling, possibly shot Vernon Wells (who might have been released in 2014 and virtually free) $6.5 million against the $189 mm cap in 2014.

    • Jeffrey M says:

      Obviously this deal makes much more sense if it helps them with 2014 cap space. I am no MLB CBA expert, but it seems to me like the Angels should be able to say “Hey, we will pay all of his 2014 salary to help your problem, if you pay $13M this year so that our owner gets some salary relief and since we are giving Wells to you for beans.” In that case, it makes more sense for both sides, the Angels get rid of the albatross of a contract for a 5th outfielder, the Yanks get someone who can still play every day if needed at a “minimal” (for the Yanks) commitment of 2013 dollars only.
      Now I may be wrong, but I don’t see why if the Angels agree to pay his 2014 salary that ANY of it should count against the luxury tax for the Yankees. Obviously the way the deal is structured makes a difference. If teams could not agree to which portions of the contract to pick up, I could see potential problems. My guess is the CBA probably doesn’t directly address how this type of deal would be able to be structured, and my guess is MLB will allow it. Perhaps that is why the commissioner’s office is even getting involved in this trade involving a bag of balls and a non-starting outfielder. Obviously a fairly good amount of money is changing hands but that doesn’t seem unreasonable. I would wonder if maybe MLB is being asked to sign off on the terms of who is paying what and when aspect of it for purposes of the luxury or competitive balance tax.

  136. mt says:

    Basically for those hoping this Wells trade means 2014 austerity plan is over, I just can’t see Yanks breaking their long developed plans to get someone like Wells from Angels – he is a total long shot. Would think they would want more certainty – no one is watching Yes or coming to ballpark for Vernon Wells.

    A (pre-injury) Chase Headley or even someone like Josh Willingham would have made more sense if you are finally breaking your 2014 plan.

  137. yankeesfan1986 says:

    I don’t get this.

    If you wanted to take on an aging player with a bad contract. Alfonso Soriano would have been a much better choice. The Cubs are even willing to eat $26MM of $36MM left on the contract.


  138. Improbable Island's Dirty Midget Whores (Formerly RRR) says:

    Wow. This is a bad move.

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