Jon Heyman reports right now it’s more likely than not that Santana will be traded and that we’ll find out late Monday if a trade is going down. We will of course have all the latest news on Johan Santana including when he goes to the bathroom and what he had for breakfast. But not really. · (6) ·
This comes from La Velle E. Neal III of the Minnesota Star Tribune. We’ve seen a number of Santana items pass through him, though not all of them have been wholly accurate.
Today, he reports that the Twins are not happy with Hank’s comments regarding Johan Santana. Technically, he says, the team could pursue tampering charges because of what Hank said. Specifically: “Because as much as I want Santana, and you can make that clear — for his sake, to know that I do want him — but the fact is that I’m not going to play the game.”
The game, of course, is the pitting of the Yanks against the Sox. Neal also adds that Santana has not limited the Twins trading options to the Sox and the Yanks, but that could be the Twins PR team at work.
All of this is short for: Nothing’s happened.
Through people close to Pettitte, the Chronicle has learned that the veteran lefthander has told family members and teammates that he has decided to return to the Yankees in 2008.
That wait is over, and the Yankees have been informed of the decision by Pettitte’s agent, Randy Hendricks.
Now I’m really hoping the Johan deal falls through.
Johan Santana will accept a trade to only the Yanks or the Red Sox. Meanwhile, Eric Bedard should be traded now that he has told the Orioles that he won’t be staying in Baltimore after 2009. That’s not a bad fallback should Santana fall through. Carry on. · (17) ·
Will Carroll, starting up the BP Winter Meetings rumor mill, chimes in on Santana:
The Yankees are going to have to offer more than what they have on the table. The team thought putting Phil Hughes on the table was enough, but the Twins aren’t selling Johan Santana for anything less than three major-league ready prospects.
Take that for what you will, but if it’s completely accurate, I hope the Yanks just walk away from what is quickly becoming a trade farce. · (23) ·
With apologies to The Kinks for the headline…
Via My Baseball Bias comes word of a deadline. CNNSI’s Jon Heyman reports that the Yanks want an answer from the Twins before the clock runs out on Monday. Meanwhile, Johan Santana will not waive his no-trade clause during the season.
So hopefully, this trade will fall apart, and Phil Hughes will remain a Yankee. At least, now we should know how this resolves itself in 24 hours. Will the Twins’ rookie GM pull the trigger on this or not?
Meanwhile, if this deal goes through, the Yanks won’t sign off on it until they’ve locked up Santana to an extension. That’s no sure thing. I’m also hearing low-level rumblings of Santana’s deal terms, and they may very well include opt-out requests. The Yanks, recently burned in that regard, will probably not agree to that.
Hoping to avoid a repeat of the Roger Clemens 2004 fiasco, the Yankees decided to offer arbitration to Andy Pettitte. In the off chance that he signs with another team, the Yanks will now be entitled to a draft pick. They did not offer Ron Villone, Doug Mientkiewicz or Jose Molina arbitration, but Molina is expected to re-sign with the Yankees any day now. The Viz received a salary arbitration offer too. · (4) ·
In the same piece in which he notes that the Red Sox may include Jacoby Ellsbury in a deal with the Twins, Buster Olney reports that the Yanks may set a Tuesday deadline for their current trade offer. So it seems that, one way or another, this drama will play itself out over the next 48 hours. · (71) ·
Three stories of note appearing online or in Sunday’s papers:
- Kat O’Brien at Newsday writes that the Yankees are feelin’ pretty good about their chances of landing Johan Santana. The deal, she says, would include Phil Hughes, Melky Cabrera and a third, lesser prospect.
- Tyler Kepner of The Times notes that the Yanks and Twins are stuck on that third prospect. The Yanks are not willing to part with Dellin Betances, Alan Horne, Austin Jackson, Ian Kennedy or José Tabata, and it seems that the Twins are not so high on Melky Cabrera.
- Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated notes that the Twins have asked specifically for Alan Horne or Austin Jackson. The Yanks will not budget on that issue, and it may become the deal-breaker. Boston does not seem willing to include Clay Buccholz or Jacoby Ellsbury so the Twins will have to decide what they want to do.
Earlier on Saturday, when I was talking about this with my dad, he raised an interesting point. For all of the conversations we’ve been having about this trade, Melky Cabrera has always seemed like a given. But why?
If the Yankees are willing to give up all of Phil Hughes’ pre-free agency years for just one year of Johan Santana — and, really, they’re only getting one year of the lefty from the Twins — why should they then give up Cabrera and another player? We here might not be so high on Melky; the Twins aren’t that high on Melky, it seems. But for now, while Austin Jackson develops, he has a clear role on the team.
With Melky in the trade, the Yankees are simply giving up too much. They shouldn’t need Melky in this deal to complete, and if the Yanks realize that they’re getting one year of Santana and the distinct privilege of a negotiating window in order to pay the lefty too much, they would be wise to pull Melky out of the deal.
Update by Ben: Adam, in this comment, points us to a story by La Velle E. Neal III in Sunday’s Star-Tribune. The Twins, Neal writes, are prefectly willing to hang out to Santana if the price isn’t right. Fine. Keep him. We’ll keep Phil Hughes and Melky. I like that idea better than Santana in pinstripes right now.
From good ol’ Kenny Rosenthal:
The Twins reportedly informed the Yankees they were prepared to deal Santana to the Red Sox unless the 21-year-old Hughes was part of the deal. Fearing Santana would join Josh Beckett to give their rivals two aces, the Yankees decided to put Hughes on the table. … “The only way to keep (Santana) from the Red Sox is to get him,” a Yankees official told the Post. “You can’t hope some other team does it for you.”
Basing your transactions around what the Red Sox will do is foolish. It’s exactly the kind of thing that moves you to sign, say, Kei Igawa.
The worst part is that I’m pretty sure the Twins are bluffing here.
Update: This line makes me happier: “The Yankees are adamant that they do not want to include another top prospect.” That is, if they won’t cave on this one like they caved on Hughes. · (133) ·