65 Million.

That’s the gap (this year, perhaps more next) between the Yankees and the Red Sox, payroll-wise, between the biggest and the next-biggest spenders in MLB. I guess I will pick a fight, and say that for nearly 200M, you’d think that the Yankees would just be a little bit better put together, that their owner wouldn’t have to trade off their best young player, their best prospects, spend nearly 10X what the smallest payroll club pays their players just in order to remain competitive. The A-Rod deal is an indictment of the Yankees front office, of a management strategy that is no strategy at all. The Sox, in the offseason, addressed needs. The Yankees addressed desires. There’s a big difference between the two. I welcome this coming season, and though I would have loved A-Rod in Boston and don’t really like the image of him in a Yankees hat, I sure trust Theo, John Henry, and the Sox’ front office (LL notwithstanding), and imagine that they will have answers to the Sox’ needs throughout the season. I can’t speak for Yankees fans, since they will be getting whoever is available, not trying to get those who aren’t.

4 comments… add one
  • I’m not going to sit here and defend The Boss, but SF’s comparison of the Yankees to franchises that are not in NYC seems a bit absurd. As for addressing needs: the Yankees acquired the top young pitcher on the market (IMHO), along with an ace in Kevin Brown. They had a need in right field that was filled. They filled their need at third base with the best player in the American League. The middle relief corps was massively upgraded. A leadoff hitter was acquired. Was it expensive? Yes, but so what? The Yankees don’t have the Royals budget, and there is a hell of a lot more pressure on them to win right now. What did they give up? Nick Johnson: a tough loss, but they have no shortage of hitting, and as SF was so fond of pointing out, he was injury prone (though, IMHO, that was bullshit). Soriano? Clearly he’s headed for the outfield, where all of a sudden those numbers aren’t so spectacular for a player at his position. And the strikeouts are a major problem, along with the defense. And he’s only 2 years younger than A-Rod. What else? They lost Pettitte and Rocket and Wells and Weaver. But Rocket was going no matter what, and Wells/Weaver might just be addition by subtraction. So overall, and the season has yet to begin, I think they’re in pretty good shape, though starting pitching could be a problem.
    Say what you want about The Boss, but other general managers, from Billy Beane down, have almost universal praise for Brian Cashman.
    So, for all of your hemming and hawing, the Sox primary achievements this winter were the acquisition of a 38-year-old pitcher and the alienation of their two best players. And, oh yeah, they also got Pokey Reese. (Okay. I’m being argumentative here: I’m a big fan of the Sox off season moves–just taking your glass-half-empty analytical approach).
    Let the games begin.

    SF February 15, 2004, 5:14 pm
  • So what does the payroll disparity have to hit before YF will admit that there is any odd dynamic at work here, beyond Steinbrenner choosing to spend more money? I wonder if YF still thinks that Gore won the election?

    SF February 16, 2004, 10:52 am
  • What does “odd dynamic” mean? Obviously, the Yankees have more money to spend then some other teams. That, in itself, is not wrong.
    Simply capping the Yankees payroll is not a legitimate response to baseball’s core economic problems. Other teams can’t cry poverty while they keep their accounting books closed. That’s total bullshit.

    YF February 16, 2004, 5:16 pm
  • Wherein do I ever suggest a salary cap?

    SF February 17, 2004, 11:29 am

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