C.C. Sabathia loves to hit. He probably would rather hit a walk-off homer than throw a no-hitter, which I think is the reason why he said on the Dan Patrick show that he would rather hit a walk-off homer than throw a no-hitter. It's strong evidence to help any NL team think, "Hey, we could throw a really large pile of money within a few million of the Yankees' recent 140M offer and have a decent chance at signing this guy; all we have to do is be prepared to let him hit in the bottom of the ninth with the game on the line."
Aside that chancy proposition, Dan Nied thinks there are better reasons for C.C. to sign with anyone but the Yankees.
…Major League Baseball's top free agent has to make the biggest decision of his life…
The easy call is for CC to go with the Yankees and ply his wares with baseball's most storied franchise. That means oodles of media attention and the chance to become the most famous pitcher in the game, a more likable, steroid-free version of Roger Clemens.
But CC seems the Yankees 6-year, $140 million offer, which illustrates why he isn't just the stereotypical money-grubbing free agent.
It's an easy not-easy call. Guessing at what was meant in the context of the omission in the second line: "CC seems wary of", "CC seems patient to wait on", "CC seems to have missed the zero after the 14 on". By "seeming", he's now known to not be the stereotype of those money-grubber free-agents. Any athlete who takes the biggest contract is a stereotypical money-grubber. Shave a bit and you are no longer a grubber. And let's punch Roger Clemens in the nose for no particular reason.
Sure, he could be holding out for the biggest offer
Yes, he most certainly could and should wait for as many offers as he wants and then decide.
But somehow it's hard to believe that's the case. CC has carved out a reputation as a man who truly enjoys playing the game of baseball, and the guess here is that he values comfort over cash.
Why is that hard to believe? Because by not taking the Yankees offer immediately, his "principles" are elevated and that "reputation" assigned by the writer is now buttressed?
That's why he hasn't rebuffed a small-market Brewers team that – unlike the Yankees – made the playoffs in 2008. Of course, that was almost solely because of a midseason trade for the towering Vallejo native.
Now it's a certainty instead of a guess. He hasn't rebuffed – whatever that means – anyone, yet. There's no doubting the addition of stud starter C.C. had a positive impact on the Brewers. Yes, they "almost solely" made the playoffs because of that mid-season trade. As long as you ignore that the team was 4 games out on the day that C.C. joined the BrewCrew yet finished 7.5 out. And ignore the collapse of the Mets. And ignore that the NL West's division leader won only 84 games. And ignore that 90 games in the beast ain't nearly enough. Maybe it was Ned Yost's fault they didn't win every game out after he joined. Good thing he got fired.
If happiness is the way he wants to go, CC should steer clear of New York, which has become something of a baseball purgatory in recent years. There, his best likely won't be good enough, unless he single-handedly wills his team to a string of World Series titles. And that hasn't been done in nearly a decade.
I'm not sure what happiness means. I think being a highly-coveted baseball player might make me happy. I'm not sure what purgatory means. I think it has to do something with being a sinner but not bad enough to get sent to Seattle. And let's punch Seattle in the nose for no particular reason.
If CC truly wants to establish his legacy, he should spurn the Yankees and sign with the Brewers, or another small-market club
His pitching will establish his legacy regardless of the franchise. Paraphrasing: "Anyone except the Yankees." If he pitches well, pitching in the Bronx will do more for his legacy than pitching in a "small-market", but if an offer from a "small-market" team musters, sure. Take it.
The Brewers have offered CC a reported 5-year, $100 million contract that stretches the conventional wisdom of small-market baseball.
As long as conventional wisdom is stretched, might as well stretch it as far as possible: just far enough to not lose that "small-market" moniker, I suppose.
Choosing the Brewers over the Yankees would send two messages: 1. CC isn't your average money-first superstar. 2. The little guy really can compete in the tilted, non-salary capped world of MLB.
So this is about the "little guy" club of millionaires, and how C.C. can carry that club out of the ominous shadow of the Yankees who pay bigger money and haven't won lately anyway, while making almost as much money as he would for the <insert big market club here>.
He would become an iconoclast who shuns the establishment in favor of the underdog. Enough money will be there regardless, but there is no rule that says a player must take the largest amount offered.
"I'm an iconoclast. I only make 20 million a season instead of 23." That's a rallying cry.
CC might get squeezed by the players union to take the highest offer. But CC could stand up for himself there, too. Though the union's job is to ensure its members' services are given fair market value, it is also to ensure that its members are happy. And it just seems that CC would be happier in Milwaukee.
Because he loves to hit.
Things change, however, if the Angels get serious in their pursuit. Or if, say, a certain National League team residing in the Bay Area wants to bring in the hometown hero to make amends for signing Barry Zito.
And let's punch Barry Zito in the nose for no particular reason.
If the chance arises to play in California, then no one could blame CC for coming home.
Nope, can't blame him, as long as he does not buy a home in New York.
But those scenarios haven't happened, not yet anyway. As it stands today CC's legacy hangs in the balance between the perceived superpower Yankees or the up-and-coming Brewers. Perhaps the irony here is that the Brewers currently give CC the best shot at a World Series title.
It's only irony if C.C. signs with the Yankees and the Brewers then win the series. And his legacy won't be decided by one season. Noodling.
Ultimately, the decision for CC is what he wants his career to represent. Sign with the Yankees and follow in line with all the other superstars who took the quickest road to fame and fortune. Sign with the Brewers and prove that he stands for something more than money.
"Ultimately, the decision is for CC." There, fixed that for you.