General Yankees The Wire

Randy: All But Gone

There’s no formal news, but after so much talk, so many leaks, no serious denials, and everyone back to work after the holidays, it looks like a deal to send the Big Unit back to Arizona will be completed in the near to immediate future. The Yanks, it appears, will get several prospects in return, probably to include Micah Owings, who was 10-0 in AAA last season (the peripherals are good, but not spectacular), further stocking a system that has, all of a sudden, filled with high-powered talent. The issues to be resolved now are financial.

With his departure an essential fait accompli, we can begin to rate Johnson’s tenure in the Bronx. By any serious measure, it was a failure. Randy managed to alienate the media, his teammates (in particular Jorge Posada), and fans with his surly demeanor; on the field he was erratic. When the Yanks needed him most, he was not the Johnson of old. Fair? Perhaps not. But expectations aren’t always fair, especially for professional athletes who make $16 million a year. Everyone, Randy included, can walk away disappointed that New York fans never really got to see the magical, dominating Johnson who will be a first ballot Hall of Famer.

Still, Johnson’s departure leaves a major hole in the Yankee rotation. He did win 17 games last year, and was often quite effective—some Sabermetricians claim he was far more effective than his numbers (or eyewitnesses) suggest. Whatever the case, the spot will have to be filled, and doing so will not be easy. The best option is probably Roger Clemens, and the Yanks are said to be in hot pursuit. But he is no spring chicken, did not pitch a full season last year, and has been putting up his numbers in the NL. To expect more from him than what the Unit provided last year—well, 17 wins is a lot of wins. The very good news is the Yanks have a surplus of very high quality young arms, not to mention the willdcard of Carl Pavano. Things could be a whole lot worse. And they’re poised to get a whole lot better.

127 replies on “Randy: All But Gone”

…i still think that the yanks wouldn’t trade johnson if they didn’t believe they had a better answer to fill that starter slot, especially given their lack of interest with the free agent pitchers that were available…i don’t know if that means clemens, pavano, a major trade [my favorite theory] involving some of the young talent they’ve acquired recently…the only thing we can say for sure is that they have been unusually, smugly [almost] quiet during what is usually a very active time for them…the “other shoe” will drop, i just don’t know when, but it’ll make a big noise…

I hope DC is right. I’m actually kind of sad to see RJ go, as I was hoping he would fix himself up a bit..

What’s scary is the prospect of a major trade for young pitching (Santana or Zambrano or even Ervin Santana come to mind). If the Yankees want to trade Johnson on the hopes that Pavano will be both healthy and effective or that Clemens will pick New York over Boston, be my guest. But my greatest fear is definitely the big trade.

Here’s hoping, Paul. I think the Santana’s and Carlos Z are too precious to be traded for prospects. However…what about D-Willis? That could make sense and we know that Beinfest loves stockpiling minor league prospects.

Didn’t Willis just urinate on a cop in South Beach a while ago?
I have to say as a Red Sox fan, the only thing that scares me here is the prospect of a big trade. I do not fear the young arms or Pavano. If they stand pat after this, I’m glad we won’t be facing the RJ next year.

Forgot about Willis. I’d rather the Yanks have him than Zambrano or Santana though. There’s at least the possibility with Willis that he won’t be as successful as hoped (bad 2006, bizarre motion that seems to scream, “Injury alert!”, transition from a pitcher’s park in the National League to the AL East). Not to say I wouldn’t want him for the Sox, but there’s at least some hope there if he goes to the Yanks.

The Cubs are not trading Zambrano, at least not until July when they are 12 games back. How do you sign Soriano, Ramirez, Lilly, Marquis to monster contracts and then dump your ace for prospects before the season even starts?
Willis is more likely. And Clemens is the most likely, since he costs the Yankees nothing but lettuce. Which would retain for the Yankees their ability to make more moves down the road. Plus in April you can basically have a four-man rotation, so Clemens not pitching a full season isn’t as big a deal. He can join in June and all the Yankees need to do is stay close, fill in with a fifth starter for a month.
I can understand why Yankees fans like this deal (if it happens). It dumps a really surly player, someone that must be tough to root for, for a precious commodity in quality prospects. The question is how to replace the innings. But they will, somehow. I just hope it’s with someone with just as nice an ERA as the Unit.

No Willis. Florida pitchers coming to the AL east scare me. The Igawa/Pavano/Rasner/Karstens combo seems fine to go into the season with. If July comes and its not working make a move then. We need to give the players we like a chance to perform and not worry about RJ potentially being good again we its more likely he will be worse.

D-Trains number’s are not exactly lowering themselves lately. He has gotten worse since that breakout year. A great pickup, sure – but not the end of the world. He has a tendency to get rocked every now and then. I’d much rather the Yanks end up with him than Santana. Cashman has done a very nice job this offseason of picking up pieces to get deals done. Now, if he doesn’t get it done, there is a very big problem with that rotation next year.
A good stat-page for him:

Why do I continue to get the “spam” page that makes me verify myself when I post? I know it stops repeaters and what not, but I haven’t posted in awhile. What gives?

First off Happy New Year to everyone, even Sox fans.
Secondly, as a Yankees fan I have never been able to really get into being a RJ fan. So I cannot say that I am heartbroken that he is going. From a stats point of view I find it hard to imagine that he can be easily replaced. Even though he is not what he once was, he is still a formidable pitcher.
I don’t know if I agree with the whole Clemens thing, but I guess time will tell. Something tells me he is done for good this time. Either way I cannot wait for opening day!!!

I dunno, Brad. Sometimes it happens to me, too, where one day it will ask for verification on every post, no matter how far apart they are or how long it’s been since my last comment. Sucks :-P

I happen to believe a trade for pitching is the most likely scenario. The SWB Yankees could make two very solid rotations with the number of arms they will have there. The question is who are they likely to get.
I don’t think Zambrano or Santana are options. Maybe Zambrano at the trade deadline if the Cubs are 10+ out of it. Willis is gettable but I hope they don’t take him.
What about some other guys that haven’t been talked about? C.C. Sabathia perhaps? Roy Halladay? Irvin Santana would not be a bad option. Mark Buehrle is probably available but I don’t think he would be the best option. Any other ideas?

What’s not to like about this as a Yankees fan? Johnson’s failures are obvious, although I think YF has them listed in the exact reverse order of priority. The post-season numbers, for me, are what seal the deal.
I don’t think Willis is worth un-doing the buildup of prospects over the past few months. I can see Rocket as a perfect placeholder, although I’m not going to count on his NL ERA transferring to the AL East – and Sox fans shouldn’t either with respects to their ambitions towards him.
I think by the trading deadline there will be many more opportunities that we’ve yet to consider. Things tend to rest on Pavano’s arm to absorb innings until then.
Can’t say I’m that confindent in someone who has yet to get the job done. But, hey, I’m a cynic, right. Or is it “premature realist”?

I don’t think Willis is worth un-doing the buildup of prospects over the past few months.
It may be that Willis is not the guy worth undoing the buildup for, but the buildup is done precisely for the idea of undoing the buildup, partially if not completely. Teams like the Sox and the Yankees do not stockpile prospects, period. They are better served by building up depth, and trading from that depth for proven talent, all while working in regulars selected from that depth. Willis is certainly worth some collection of talent from the Yankees (and other teams as well). Particularly if the depth of the system is as great as the propaganda machine says it is, once that machine hits full speed (in about a week or so). Who those players are is the issue. Definitely not Hughes. But who’s to say he’s not worth a player like Joba Chamberlain or two, guys who might be two or three years from even sniffing the bigs?
Willis is a 24 year old proven 200 inning guy who has had some success in the Majors National League. Certainly that’s worth something to many people, including the Yankees.

sf, you have to admit that other pitchers coming to AL east teams from florida and that huge park haven’t fared as well as anticipated.
carl pavano? granted, much of his reputation now is due to his injuries, but he has not produced consistantly.
josh beckett was last year’s ace acquisition from miami. he gave up 36 HRs. that is (one) more than manny hit all year.
will beckett improve? probably.
could carl turn things around? he needs to avoid pulling a hammy while lacing up his cleats, but i suppose it is a remote possibility.
dontrelle’s production has slipped lately. i love the urinating drunkard. watching him play is a lot of fun. that said, i hope the yankees go another way.

Brad – I find that I get those spam things when I post a link – probably to prevent real spammers who probably would spam their own site otherwise..
I like Ervin a bit more than Willis, though it doesn’t solve our (lack of) ace situation. Then again, there are very few of those out there..

sf, you have to admit that other pitchers coming to AL east teams from florida and that huge park haven’t fared as well as anticipated.
Absolutely. But Willis is still a valuable commodity. If the Yankees (or the Sox, for that matter) could get him for guys still 2-3 years away from the majors who are certainly no guaranteed success I’d think that would be a reasonable acquisition. I don’t think the “Willis shouldn’t be acquired no matter what” argument is that valid – some of the comments here seem to imply that (though I could be misreading). As I said, there are clearly players that you don’t trade – Hughes in particular seems completely untouchable (or would you deal him for Miguel Cabrera!?). And the distaste with Willis has some merit. But that doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be valued at all. Believe me, I am not overvaluing Willis. I just don’t see why he’s almost completely disregarded as not worth any of a team’s prospects, which seems to be the implication.
The point is that the Yankees (and the Sox) have made more efforts recently to build their minor league systems, and that’s in order to a) cull players for their roster and b) have strength in numbers so as to trade for major-league ready or proven talent. The systems are not inviolable; it’s hard to know when to cash in the chips, obviously.

gotcha, sf.
but i would lowball the marlins on the p-train. i don’t think he’d perform up to some people’s expectations, and wouldn’t be worth any top tier pitching prospects. (b-level? i’d mull that over i guess.)
and just to get this out there, miguel cabrera has been touted as being the next manny ramirez. while this obviously speaks volumes about his hitting potential, his attitude is rumored to be similar as well. i’d put some feelers out on the kid’s work ethic before i even entertained thoughts about hughes. (but i’d probably keep hughes at least until he gets a good amount of time in at the big league level before i’d move him, too.)

I would like if they made a move for Kazmir. I would guess that he will break Willi’s arbitration record when the time comes and a package of Melky and prospects maybe gets it done. Willis is a proven guy but he is not too cheap either and seems to have a great deal of downside with the throwing motion then potential upside.

and wouldn’t be worth any top tier pitching prospects. (b-level? i’d mull that over i guess.)
Here’s a question: how many “top tier pitching prospects” end up with the career of Dontrelle Willis? Is it one in three? One in five? One in ten? Do you hold on to guys who have a 22% chance of being Dontrelle Willis over having Dontrelle Willis himself?
There’s no rule on this, clearly, and the cost-control issue is a separate and important factor, but it’s a tough and valid debate. (No wonder GMs don’t last too long…)

and you can substitute several names for “Dontrelle Willis” in the above comment, for that matter.

Lack of drive? Every single teammate Manny has ever played with says he the first to arrive and the last to leave, his obsession with the art of hitting, and working towards being a perfect hitter, is second only to Teddy Ballgame.
Hustle? Maybe.
I think it’s more of an indifference to the fundamentals not related to hitting.

currently, dontrelle willis’ numbers are declining, in a pitcher’s park in the NL. so, if that trend continues, that 22% chance is increasing. (as his rate of pay will potentially increase.)
i am simply not sold on willis.
kazmir, however… god, that would be sweet. i doubt it would happen, but… i’d go for that. …but still not for hughes.

lockland sf, i admit my choice of words was off. i am aware of his reputation of being a guy that lives in the cage and all…
“indifference to the fundamentals not relating to hitting” actually sums up my intended point pretty closely.

The Marlins,if and when they trade him, will get a lot for Dontrelle. SF is correct to point out that there aren’t many top-tier prospects that perform at Willis’s level once in the majors. Consider what the Marlins got for Beckett, who was older than Willis and had not yet put together a season like Dontrelle’s 2005 with the Marlins. Willis is a very valuable commodity, and I’d imagine that the Marlins starting price would be Hughes. If they’re trading him, the Yanks aren’t going to be the only interested parties (Minaya anyone?), and that surely will also boost the asking price.
This is why I’m not excited about getting Willis because I think it’s going to take too much to get him. If it only were a matter of trading b-level prospects then I’d have a different opinion.

Kazmir’s tough. But he also missed almost half of last season due to a bad wing. And he’s how old?
The risk factor with SK is pretty big, as is the upside. He had no surgery on his shoulder, and he wasn’t just suffering from a dead arm. Though he claims he’s healthy again, what’s he going to say? I would assume that risk, for the right price, but he doesn’t come without major downside — the downside not being that he stinks, but that he can’t even pitch.

Put it this way: the Sox have had many “top pitching prospects” over the last ten or twelve years. I can think of one who has done anything within the Sox’ system that has made any kind of difference, and it was last year. Now, this may be because the Sox had a drought of drafts, did a poor job of picking players. But it’s also because they sold high a couple of times. Carl Pavano was nearly untouchable, and he became Pedro. Casey Fossum was touted as their best, and he brought Schilling.
Brian Rose wasn’t traded, and he busted. There are others, held on to because they held the moniker “top pitching prospect”. As long as the player(s) isn’t/aren’t someone like Hughes (and the Yankees have yet to tout any other players in their system as having the upside of Hughes), then he/they should be worth moving for the right player, even if that “depletes” the system. Because when you obtain ML-ready or proven talent, you aren’t “depleting” the system, if the system is working. You are actually buying time to replenish the system. So that you can continue this cycle.

“It may be that Willis is not the guy worth undoing the buildup for, but the buildup is done precisely for the idea of undoing the buildup, partially if not completely. “
That’s why I mentioned Rocket as a placeholder and then mentioned other emerging options at the trade deadline. A Willis move, to me, would be desperate at this point. He is attractive to some clubs, but shouldn’t be to the Yankees at the unique Yankee price. The Yankees with their cash flow can’t lowball anyone. So any assertion that they could get Willis, or any notable player, at a bargain basement clearance sale price are naïve.
And of course, when they overpay for mediocrity, SF will be one of the first to point that out.
Statistically speaking, you can find guys who will put up Johnson’s pinstripe numbers over the short term for cheaper than Willis. And the Yanks still won the division with Johnson’s stats factored into the rotation. It’s not panic time in the Bronx, even though Red Sox fans would certainly like it to be.
But assuming the Yanks did undo what’s been done over the past couple of months, how do people feel about a Sheffield / Johnson trade for Willis? I personally would need a little bit more on the Willis side of the bargain to even it out. I don’t think the Yanks are cash strapped, so it’d have to be talent.
“Here’s a question: how many “top tier pitching prospects” end up with the career of Dontrelle Willis? Is it one in three? One in five? One in ten?”
See, when I applied this caution towards Dice-K (who has exactly zero MLB innings under his belt), I was lambasted by you, SF, for being a cynic. Things are a little bit clearer when your face isn’t submerged in the $100 mil Kool-Aid vat, huh?

“The Yankees with their cash flow can’t lowball anyone. So any assertion that they could get Willis, or any notable player, at a bargain basement clearance sale price are naïve.”
perhaps you were getting a bit tongue-in-cheek, but they got a pretty sweet deal for bobby abreu, didn’t they?

The Marlins come around and say they’ll trade Miguel Cabrera for D-Mats straight up. Do you jump at the opportunity to do that as a Sox fan?

Should not make any moves just yet and wait to see what the price of Santana is. Maybe he is too expensive and you go after him in free agency like Oakland’s asking price of Zito. But I would also be asking teams what a combo of Melky and Clippard would return.

Yankee Fan, they got a sweet deal for Abreu precisely because they DIDN’T lowball the salary. The Red Sox decided to be cheap and lowballed the salary (they didn’t want to take on Abreu’s entire contract), and that’s why their price in prospects was much steeper.

i get the verification page every time i post…i just figured it was your guys’ way of discouraging me…[it’ll take more than that]…i’ve never been a big rj on the yanks fan either, but i did have hope, like i do for every acquisition…for some reason, i don’t want willis, but i can’t explain why, just a hunch…
“Particularly if the depth of the system is as great as the propaganda machine says it is, once that machine hits full speed (in about a week or so). “[quote from sf]…nice try sf, but nobody’s “spin machine” is more powerful and overt than your sox…remember, i coined that phrase about the sox propaganda movement some time ago…nobody’s farm system was as stocked as yours a few months ago, and i can tell by your protests to the contrary that the yanks have done quite well for themselves recently…it’s scary what damage they might be able to do with all that tasty raw meat, isn’t it?…hell, they could stand pat and still scare the pants of you…ha…
by the way: nicely put lp, i couldn’t have said it better myself…
i’m telling you all again, that the yanks are going to drop a bomb before the season starts, and it will be a biggee…look for a santana, not carlos, to be a yankee…

See, when I applied this caution towards Dice-K (who has exactly zero MLB innings under his belt), I was lambasted by you, SF, for being a cynic. Things are a little bit clearer when your face isn’t submerged in the $100 mil Kool-Aid vat, huh?
But the Sox didn’t have to give up a player for Dice-K. This is an apples/oranges comparison. If the Yankees could just buy Willis without any talent depletion, and they felt it within their budget and that it didn’t crimp their flexibility, then so what? That’s what Dice-K was; he was effectively a European football transfer, a unique case in MLB that privileges the wealthy.
As for “SF will be one of the first to point that out”, I am not arguing for the Yankees obtaining Willis, I am trying to intelligently discuss the circumstances under which rich and deep teams might move unproven, years-away players for proven talent. Like I said in an earlier post on another thread, this isn’t a YF/SF antagonism thing, and there’s no need to make it one.

andrew, they gave up no real talent for abreu and lidle (who the sox were supposedly trying to acquire) and got the phillies to pay bobby to accept the deal.
i don’t remember how much abreu is getting. in the current market it isn’t too ridiculous. (i realize that the trade was also made bfore the current market “adjustment”, however.)

why would the Twins trade him away before they’ve even seen how they compete, dc? I can understand if they trade him at the deadline, but not before the season. Same with the Cubbies. Why spend a zillion dollars in the offseason on players, then trade away the best pitcher on the team before the season starts? It makes absolutely no sense for either team. If either guy has a ungodly first half, the price will be so much higher, and they know it.
As far as Doc is concerned, we can forget that idea. Toronto is going to pay him whatever he wants, and we need look no further than Wells’ contract to see that they’re not pinching pennies up north.
Unless Kazmir is a FA, it makes no sense to get rid of him – he makes the minimum and is a proven guy – why trade him for another guy making the same money and isn’t proven at all?
I think the only viable option here for Cashman is Florida and Dontrelle. But, are they willing to part ways before the season even starts is anyone’s guess.

nice try sf, but nobody’s “spin machine” is more powerful and overt than your sox
I don’t think of this as an insult, dc. The Sox have done a pretty good job of touting prospects too. The Yankees have done a good job; their “propaganda machine” is to be envied: they have many ways to get stories out about their youth. On the other hand, I am not positive that other front offices read George King or John Heyman and use those opinions as the basis for whether or not to go for a player in deal with the Yankees.
As for “i can tell by your protests to the contrary that the yanks have done quite well”, where did I claim that the Yankees haven’t done well with these moves? If they cop multiple high-level prospects for Johnson, they will have done very well indeed. In fact, I think that in this very thread I state that this is exactly what teams like the Yankees and Sox should be doing; drafting for depth, trading for depth,and then trading that depth for key players. I agree with you: I expect the Yankees to make another big move at some point before July, involving players obtained in the deals of the last couple of months. There’s nothing at all about this that I find unclever at all. I appreciate it very much, in fact. Were I a Yankees fan, I’d be thrilled at the concept, even as I’d have some reservations about the January rotation. Which of course may be different from the April rotation. Which may be different from the August rotation.
and P.S. – even I have to enter that code thing more often than not. I believe it is Typepad’s way of keeping spambots from posting comments that are nothing but insidious advertisements and bandwidth hogs. We can’t do much about it. Sorry.

“…this isn’t a YF/SF antagonism thing, and there’s no need to make it one….” sf, you made it one, there’s no call for you to scold lp for doing what you just did yourself…

…i’m ok with the verification thing…i was just kidding about it being personal, i know it’s not…i actually think it’s a good thing to keep out the spammers…

Oh my goodness. Santana = pipedream without Hughes, and probably still a pipedream even then. Kazmir = pipedream without Hughes. Hughes should hope to reach the success that either of those two have had in the majors. Willis or ERVIN Santana are far more likely. YFs need to be a little more realistic.
And Brad’s right: sure, the Yankees’ recent wealth of prospects might entice the Jays…IF they were thinking about shopping Halladay around, but they aren’t. You don’t give a Vernon Wells that contract, Burnett and Ryan last year, and then trade the one guy of those who can claim to have been a consistent success for years.
“nice try sf, but nobody’s “spin machine” is more powerful and overt than your sox” [quote from dc]…you’ve gotta be kidding me, dc. To say that the Yankees’ spin can’t match what the Sox are putting out? And honestly, if you want spin, read any article where Ned Colletti tries to convince Dodger fans that Juan Pierre is a great leadoff hitter. Can’t be done. And yet.

Where, dc? I have re-read the entire thread and I don’t see it. The only thing I questioned was why there was such a reluctance on some YFs parts to consider Willis at all, and I framed it in a way that was clearly more about the idea of teams like the Sox and Yanks trading for a player like Willis by using the depth of their minor league system. There’s nothing in this thread that I wrote that warrants that type of charge and reaction. I am frankly getting sick of having even the most benign comment of mine read as the start of some type of YF/SF war. At some point it’s got to be clear that the itchy keyboard fingers are not mine.

well, well, hi quo…i don’t think i said that hughes wouldn’t be part of a santana deal, so i’m not pipedreamin’…spin machine?, no you’ve gotta be kiddin quo, after 86 years of convincing you guys to buy tickets, the sox have been trying to convince you for the past 2 years that blowing up the championship team, acquiring borderline players, spinning the injuries, lack of deadline acquisitions, and touting farm “prospects” into such high hopes that even you believed….for what, exactly?….even the jd drew “drew-saster” appears doomed, unless the sox can hoodwink boras again…i only hope the dice-k gamble pays off [like i said, for some perverted, twisted reason i’m rooting for this guy] so you guys can be competitive…i don’t want a boring yanks runaway again this year…
i don’t know quo, is pierre a better leadoff hitter than, say, coco?…oh yea, that’s right, you abandoned him as the leadoff hitter…please…

What exactly is the Yankee hype/propaganda machine, and are we seriously to believe it is responsible for touting the Yankee farm growth? This seems farfetched. The Yankees have done a good job of stockpilling promising players, a fact that you can read on just about every serious sabermetric outlet around. A guy like Hughes doesn’t need a “propaganda machine”; the numbers are attracting attention, and the assorted other prospects either already on hand )(Tabata, Clippard), drafted (Chamberlain, Betances.) or acquired (Sanchez…) are promising. The Yank prospects get a lot of attention because the Yanks get a lot of attention, and the rise of the farm is an interesting change for the team. Obviously, the Yanks benefit from that publicity, and I’m sure they help build it, but I’m not sure that the respect these players have earned around the league can be called the result of a propaganda campaign.
And for what it’s worth, the Sox have some pretty sweet prospects as well.

“But the Sox didn’t have to give up a player for Dice-K. This is an apples/oranges comparison.”
They gave up $100 million, the equivalent in cash of multiple blue-chip prospects. As with any business, we can translate cash into resources because, of course, that’s $100 million they can’t use to sign other talent. It’s not apples and oranges from the franchise perspective whatsoever. The money comes from the same pocket and factors into the same balance sheet.
All I’m saying is that the “one in three, one in etc.” thinking never entered your mind when your team plopped down a significant commitment in terms of resources (whatever form they might take) for a prospect, however prized he may be.
So when you’re thinking about the slim odds that any player who’s never pitched at the MLB level will have an elite career (and I agree), apply that probability to your new toy first and foremost.

Again, the “propaganda machine” comment, as clarified above, is NOT an insult. The Yankees do a fine job of promoting players in their system. They get attention. They are a big club. As are the Sox, who ALSO do a fine job of promoting players. Fossum was touted as a big-time prospect, and he netted them Schilling. This was probably a combination of PR and Fossum’s talent. But not one or the other. Don’t think that the Yankees don’t know how to work this system – they do. It’s a good thing.
As far as the DM signing, I didn’t think about how it impacted the Sox’ “one in three, one in etc.” chances because it very clearly doesn’t. Please explain to me how this hurts their player development system? The signing didn’t cost them draft picks. It didn’t cost them prospects. It doesn’t cost them anything but money, which they apparently have quite a bit of. It may allow Clay Buchholz to spend an extra half season or full season in the minors because the rotation has depth. It might allow them to trade Buchholz for a great young proven player. It might allow them to move a major leaguer for talent. Had Matsuzaka cost the Sox nearly $100M and also Buchholz and Michael Bowden, I would have a totally different opinion of the deal.

again, well said lp, although i have to admit dice-k is not your average “prospect”, and he has the added advantage of having me root for him…

The Santana/Kazmir comments I made were directed to all YFs, not you in particular, but good job with the hubris.
So the Sox FO does a good job convincing us (and we do a good job convincing ourselves) that there’ll be a good product on the field? I believe em this year, myself. There were certainly plenty of questions along with the promise of last year’s acquisitions. Coco Crisp, while not extremely willing himself, has proven himself more willing to take a walk than Pierre. I believe Coco’s also been better with his SB success rate over their careers. Either way, the Dodgers are paying theirs more than the Sox are paying ours, if your point is about them being extremely similar. Coco’s the only of the two with power.
Spinning the injuries? Carl Pavano. Carl Pavano. “Carl Pavano is going to be an effective pitcher this year. The injuries and everything from the last couple years won’t faze him.” “Hey Arizona, Randy Johnson, after all his back trouble at age 43 is ready for another NL Cy Young next season.” I’ve said this before, dc, the “spin” debate is absolutely frickin worthless, because every team in baseball does it. Aside from the hope of Alex Gordon (1.000 OPS in his first professional season, at AA WIchita, btw), what do Royals fans have to look forward to? And yet they still draw some fans. As long as 2007 results in at least a playoff appearance, it’ll be hard to say the current ownership has completely screwed us as fans. And the Sox don’t even need to offer extreme discounts to sell out Fenway.

Oh my goodness. Santana = pipedream without Hughes, and probably still a pipedream even then. Kazmir = pipedream without Hughes
This is terrible logic. Twins would rather lose him for nothing? Kazmir will probably wait until he is 200% recovered before he plays again for Tampa. Why should tampa pay for him to sit around and rehad when his arbitration will be very large (see Willis last year). And the yanks can offer major league ready talent in addition to prospects, you know who Melky is right. The sox got beckett (who some thought was the best young pitcher in the league) for no major league proven talent. To say anything is a pipedream is just being silly. I also remember some team signing Delgado to some huge contract only to dump him a few years later. But that will probably never happen again with any team. Do you think the Nationals were a better team last year because the kept Soriano? A few prospects would be better then the free agent compensation. The ability to have a minimum salary player on your team for 3 or more years is very valuable to small market teams. You cannot sign guys like that in Free Agent market, you need to trade for them. The cubs have the money to pay Zambrano when his price triples. Florida, the twins and some others do not.

sf, let me clarify for you what the word propaganda implies: according to webster: “… the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person… ideas, facts, or allegations spread deliberately to further one’s cause or to damage an opposing cause…”…historically the word has implied less emphasis on fact, as in “communist propaganda”, so in that sense, it is a negative, and therefore an insult to most of us…if it’s a “fact”, it’s not “propaganda”, and the “facts” are that you have some good young players and so do the yanks…i’ll let you know when theo starts “spinning”…

$100M would actually buy at least a dozen blue chip prospects, lp, considering the most talented first-round draft picks sign deals worth at most $10M total. But that makes no sense whatsoever. $51M of that $100M isn’t out of payroll so wouldn’t be used for any prospects at all — even if it wasn’t spent this offseason.
Since there’s no draft in December with which to use that $100M, I’m not sure what you’re advocating, lp. Is it somehow fiscally more sound to let the money sit there in the hopes of investing it in blue-chip prospects, when Matsuzaka is in fact MORE likely to succeed than any draftee?

When asked to comment on his newest acquisition, GM Theo Epstein said, “Joel Pineiro will be a big part of this team next season. He’s got an arm, and we’re confident that he can use it to throw a baseball. This move alone should net us a .444412152 gain in the win column. Get ready, Boston.”
The Spin Machine 3000 strikes again!

Thanks for the definition, dc. But you had to know what it meant in the context I used: teams touting their prospects in order to induce interest in them, to praise them as potentially having higher impact than even those in the know might believe. It’s gamesmanship in this way, not “hold the people down, lie about what the state is perpetrating on the common man” stuff. When and if I start believing that baseball is just like imperial, totalitarian politics then it’s time for me to stop watching baseball.

What do you expect, YFiB:
“Joel Pineiro is in the fourth year of his five year plan to return to re-dominate Triple-A”?

you used the word “propaganda”, not me, sf…i prefer “spin”…refer to yfib’s post…theo’s at it again…

It’s not a foregone conclusion that the Twins won’t be able to re-sign Santana. New stadium, newly crowned..umm…MVP, the hope of Liriano in 2008. I would think even Pohlad knows what he’s got with Santana, and won’t let him go.
I like Beckett, but does he really compare to Santana, Halladay, or Kazmir in any frame of mind? Honestly? Plus, the Marlins were having a well-publicized firesale with the intent to shed salary as their main (though not only) goal.
The Soriano comparison works best, which is why the idea of getting Santana before the Twins are out of contention at the trade deadline (if that even proves to be the case) is ridiculous. And I think most YFs will even admit that Melky is a borderline starting OF in the ML as it stands now. Which means he’d probably make a great starting CF on an NL team like the Marlins, which is why the Willis scenario is the most (only?) realistic one.

Let’s not get into a dictionary battle. It should be obvious that I wasn’t using a political definition of the word, as if Brian Cashman is a latter-day Leni Reifenstahl or something.
Or maybe he is, who knows. If he is, then HOK Sport is the Yankees’ Albert Speer. Hmmm. I may be on to something here…

I think the chance of Santana being traded to the Yankees is about the same as him resigning with the Twins, Zero. But I would welcome it with open arms if somehow Cash pulled that off.
Nice signing in Piniero, good arm for the BP.
YFIB, was that a NoMaas reference, lol?

“I like Beckett, but does he really compare to Santana, Halladay, or Kazmir in any frame of mind? Honestly? Plus, the Marlins were having a well-publicized firesale with the intent to shed salary as their main (though not only) goal.”
and by the way, lok what the Marlins got for him. A pretty good deal for them considering. I hate to repeat myself but Willis is going to get more for the Marlins in a likelihood because he’s younger, has had more success than Beckett has had, and more teams will be involved in the bidding. FWIW, I think it’s way too early to talk about getting Johan, Doc or Kazmir. Willis and Ervin Santana are the pitchers that would seem most likely to be on the market soon.

come on sf, i didn’t say you were being political…all i was disputing was that you claimed it wasn’t an insult…the definition and “typical” use of the word has a negative connotation…when you make a mistake admit it for once, dammit…you expect no less out of the rest of us…
by the way quo…spinning the injuries is your [sox] specialty, and by that i meant using them as the excuse for the team not doing better…nobody once said that the yanks didn’t win the ws because we didn’t have matsui, sheffield, and pavano for the full year, just like nobody said that pavano would pitch effectively this year…there a hope for him, but it’s realisitically faint…

“Please explain to me how this hurts their player development system? The signing didn’t cost them draft picks. It didn’t cost them prospects. It doesn’t cost them anything but money, which they apparently have quite a bit of.”
1. All players in the franchise are professional and, as such, are paid a salary.
2. If you spend $100 million on one player, that’s $100 million less to spend on a combination of other prospects
3. So when you do have quality draft picks, trade offers, free agent signings, that’s $100 million dollars less you’d have to work with in the way that cash compensation is utilized in all of those types of transactions
While the Sox may have deep pockets (shallower than you’d like to believe these days), you can’t tell me that they could absorb a $100 million hit. Do you mean to tell me that if DK suffered a career ending injury in spring training (a risk for any player at any point), the Sox could just continue on and not skip a beat? Of course not. Even the Yankees would have to tighten up somewhere else on the talent side.
That risk clearly has to be weighed against the probability you outlined above. In your mind DK’s dominance and elite pitcher status is a certainty. It just isn’t, and the wheels can come off at any time.
When you look at the big picture, the Sox spent $100 mil for a potential ace contributor. In Barry Zito, the Giants spent $125(?) for a proven ace starter. Slightly more cash, substantially less risk. It doesn’t matter the route the player takes to your roster, the fare is still in dollars and cents.
You are missing the forest…

You can refuse to take my words at face value, we’ve been through this many times before. That’s fine. But why bother reading or responding to what I say if you think I am lying? I explained what I meant by “propaganda”, once it became clear that it was interpreted a certain way, differently than I had hoped, and I did it honestly. If that’s insufficient, then that’s your problem. Nobody else seems to be biting onto that morsel except you. I’ve explained myself, and I believe I have done so sufficiently. It should be very clear what I meant at this point. If you still choose to not believe me, then I really never had a chance, right?

lp, you’re wasting your breath trying to discuss finances with many of the sf’s…there is a reluctance to believe that the signing bonus is “real” money, as though it were monopoly money or the sox have starting printing their own [i’m not sure which]…we’ve had this conversation until we wore it out…”…it’s not payroll, so it don’t count…”, i think is the argument…

ok…sf, i accept your explanation that you didn’t intend it to be an insult…fair enough…

Nice YFIB, great site.
I have only been posting on this site for about 2 months, can a veteran tell me what gets discussed during the season? I know it’s against policy, but if we can’t scrutinize each and every move of wach other’s teams I imagine there are some names being called? I mean once Wang and Beckett are actually pitching and proving both sets of fans wrong what will we say to each other?

While the Sox may have deep pockets (shallower than you’d like to believe these days), you can’t tell me that they could absorb a $100 million hit.
Where to start. First, neither the Giants (nor the Red Sox) have shelled out anything like $100M for these players. The Sox are committed to $6M for DM this year, and another $46M+ over the next 4 after that. The Giants, however crazy that Zito contract seems, are committing under $20M per year to Zito. They aren’t dropping a $126M check on the guy all at once. This is an important distinction. Teams have annual budgets, I believe. So you have to judge moves based on annual expenditures. The Sox have a higher commitment to DM this year, because of the transfer fee. But that also has other impact, as has been discussed ad nauseum. But we don’t know their accounting, so we don’t know where it’s coming from in their ledger. They may not internally reduce their scouting budget, or their draftee signing bonus budget because of this. We simply don’t know. It’s money, for sure. But your accounting theories are a bit of a mess, lp.

Trisk, generally last season it went:
“Wow, Wang is good…really good.”
“Beckett’s looking good…Oops! No he’s not.”

Careful Nick that could be vice versa this season…But please let’s not start the Wang/Beckett discussion all over again.

or, it was the ever-eloquent and ubiquitous “LECHE!!!”. Or YF penning love-letters to a certain shortstop.
And us SFs cursing Tito hitting Kevin Youkilis 11th in the order.

Once in a while, Nick would accuse Josh Beckett of murdering children. Mostly routine stuff…

Who wouldn’t want to pen a letter to the Yankees captain, he’s so dreamy….
You mean there was nothing on A-Rod??

SF – other than the obvious effects of the luxury tax, how does 51 mil$ on the payroll differ from 51 mil$ anywhere else? Just because you don’t know something doesn’t mean it’s an unreasonable argument. See Beckett what we do know – a 5 ERA. Yet you deduce that he’s still good anyhow.
I thought the line was that “we count the 51 mil$ when talking about acquisition costs, but not when talking about payroll (mostly in comparison with the Yanks)”. In that respect, you can at least compare the contracts more accurately.
Anyhow, the 126 mil isn’t all at once, and in fact, it’s a lot cheaper than 20 mil a year (not counting luxury tax implications) since most of these contracts are backloaded, which devalues a bit (due to inflation) the latter chunk of the contracts. Not to say it isn’t a lot of money..
And for DM, the transfer fee might bring other stuff, but keep in mind that in theory, the “other stuff” would’ve came in any case. Of course you still have to win the bid, but it doesn’t make it “cheaper” – and also you can argue the “other stuff” is a fixed value relative to the size of this expense – it doesn’t go up the more you spend.
In a “best” case scenario, the Sox “borrow” 51 mil$ at no interest, and pay back the bank over K (for some K) years. It might be arbitrary to choose K = 5, but it’s definitely reasonable, for the purpose of debate.
As for me, I would’ve rather have DM than Zito. But then that depends on how much you like Zito..

You know what SF, dc is totally right.
You obviously have twisted everything in your mind to justify dropping $100 mil total compensation to an unpreven entity when Barry Zito, a proven stud, went for $125. There’s homerism, and then there’s total insanity.
But, I’m a complete moron for not seeing the wisdom of Theo and the Red Sox. Oh yeah, and according to you from a previous thread, I have “no credibility” on this point because my cynicsm overshadows any logic in my argument.
“But we don’t know their accounting, so we don’t know where it’s coming from in their ledger. They may not internally reduce their scouting budget, or their draftee signing bonus budget because of this. We simply don’t know. It’s money, for sure. But your accounting theories are a bit of a mess, lp.”
Congrats! Your accounting professor will give you a gold star, especially for “It’s money for sure.”
I guess that money just comes from the sky then. Oh, I got it, they cut the PA announcer’s salary and they’ve got Zito’s second year covered. How about cut into the concessioneers’ percentage off the popcorn?
Get real man, you can’t fudge a $100 million screw up. It’s a hit that almost any pro sports organization on this planet would limp away from.

has had more success than Beckett has had
Nick, you’re pushing and you know it.

I think it’s equally reasonable to assume the Sox make up the X per year they’re paying on the assumed $51M loan by not spending money on Fenway improvements or new NESN graphics or a team of strategists to redesign the Globe. Why must it come out of payroll when in fact payroll is likely one of the smallest parts of the John Henry/Red Sox/NYT Co. empire?

How do we know how the contract’s going to work out? Will the Sox limp away if the kid wins two Cy-Youngs? Will they limp if he goes 7-0 in the playoffs this year? We should hold off on the projection for a ‘bit on how “big” the screw up is – at least until he has a couple seasons under his belt, no?

Paul SF – I agree with you, thus my bit about “counting it toward acquisition cost” since, well, that really ought to be an axiom..

Zito is a proven “something” but I’m not sure “stud” is quite the right word to use. And use his Cy all you want, but it’s possible both Red Sox starters deserved it more than he did, just as Colon’s Cy wasn’t exactly deserved over Mo in 2005.

FYI, they released the details of the Zito deal. He gets somewhere in the neighborhood of $10M this season (probably to offset the Bonds $)(I can’t find it online, but trust me, I read it in the paper this AM).

Brad – I think he would be worth the money if he’s a #3-4 starter this year and then maybe step it up a bit in the next few years..
At least for me, the deal is a long-term investment, though a hefty one.
I don’t like Zito, but if I did, I guess my argument is that Zito’s money might impact the team now, while DM might not come along for a few years..

Seven years for a pitcher is never a good idea. Five is about the limit, I think. I think DM is more of a sure thing than Zito, and several GMs blind quoted in multiple reports before the posting process began said they believed DM was the best starter on the market.
Take that as you will.

I think only the couple of years will really tell. But I will say that I expect Zito to get a lot better with the move to the NL West, so the numbers are going to have to be adjusted when we compare the two.

Agree completely, Brad. I think for at least two years, Zito’s continued deterioration will be masked by the NL West boon.

Even without pitching a single game in the ML’s I could honestly tell you as a baseball fan I would rather have Dice-K then Zito. Just from a pure “Stuff” point of view. Zito is a smoke a mirrors, salad shooter kind of guy, not a fan. Maybe I am spoiled by the Roger Clemens of the world, but I would rather my 100 million dollar pitcher’s best quality be something more then he’s got an 88 MPH fastball, a great curve and “He’s Durable.” Nothing wrong with salad shooters, but I would much rather face Zito in game 7 then Beckett or Dice-K. Did I just defend the Sox…hold on let me look, nope no pigs falling from the sky, we are safe.

Trisk: I love Zito’s huge curve. It’s a thing of beauty, and makes him a superfun player to watch–much more fun than a guy who just comes out and blows smoke. The appealing thing about Dice-K is that he, too, is supposed to come with a crazy arsenal, including this mysterious Gyro ball, which apparently stops for a conversation with the third baseman on the way to the plate. They’re unique players. I think only a nut job doesn’t see the tremendous upside potential in Dice-K. He will be paid dramatically less than Zito, all things considered, but still a great deal of money. I hope he’s fun to watch, the same way Pedro was fun to watch: a worthy opponent for the Yanks. And I hope the Yanks are his “Daddies” also.

Beh, the “Daddy” thing. Such an overhyped myth, YF…
I actually hear the gyro backhands the hitter across the face on its way to the plate.

Let’s not bring up overyhyped myths, the sox have some of those as well….
So should I guess that he will through A-Rod nothing but “Gyro” balls?

Trisk, you’re killing me with the Beckett comments. Killing me.
As far as the great how much is DMats getting paid debate. I have a feeling it’s a lot but at this point I can’t prove it. I’m confused by the whole accounting debate. Truly confused.

What will Varitek come up with when they hit A-Rod this time? The comment he made last time was a classic “We don’t throw at .260 hitters.” Well he has a few months to come up with something clever.

Jeter’s will be “We don’t throw at guys who smell like cocnut leaves and peppermint.”

Trisk, you’re killing me with the Beckett comments. Killing me
Wait for the firestorm I toss at you when he starts pitching up to his potential this year, Nick. You’ve got it coming on this one!
Of course, now I’m projecting on performance, which I said was a bad thing to do ten minutes ago.

Though I think the market value of players this offseason was way out of control you have to keep in mind that there are serious financial considerations at work in paying these guys super-crazy-person money. For the Sox there’s the obvious Japanese market share.
For the Giants there’s a ton of new jersey’s and memorabilia to be sold in the Bay Area (out with Schmidt), and the hopes of attracting other “name” talent to a team that hasn’t had a very strong team for a while.
I think the price is way too high for Zito; but I don’t think the 100 million dollar mistake ends up being 100 mil…maybe more like 40.

BOSTON — Joel Pineiro reached a preliminary agreement on a $4 million, one-year deal with the Boston Red Sox, who are turning to the former Seattle starter as a contender for their vacant closer’s job.
The contract includes $2 million in performance bonuses based on games finished, according to a person familiar with the negotiations, who spoke on condition of anonymity Wednesday because the agreement has not been announced.
Pineiro’s deal also contains a player option for 2008. He must pass a physical for the contract to be finalized.

I like the move. A lot of middling starters have had successful years as closers — Tom Gordon strikes me as one of the poorer starters who turned into one of the better closers. Smoltz and Papelbon to different extents have done it. Lowe did it in reverse.
Not that he should just have the job — because his ERA has increased ever since his first semi-full season in baseball. But he’s a good candidate.

Word is that the Yanks turned down Arizona’s request for a negotiating window with Johnson.
I’m curious as to why Cashman would decide to do this.

WE-the rumor is that the Padres swooped in with a better offer after the Yanks and DBacks agreed to the players involved in the deal. Cashman is hoping that the deal falls apart and he gets to work with the Padres.

What I read was that the deal has been agreed upon with the D-Backs, and it’s in the D-Backs court to decide whether or not to go ahead without the negotiation window. Though the Unit has a no-trade clause, remember. So both deals are contingent on RJ approving. If he doesn’t want to go to SD when he knows he can go home to Arizona, then the Yankees don’t have a deal with SD. On the other hand, the D-Backs could just walk away. And the Padres will have to figure out what to do with Johnson if they can’t get a similar window, if they even want one (they don’t have the deferred money issue). And it could be Johnson driving the extension train as well. In some ways, Johnson has the power, not the Yankees, Padres, or Diamondbacks. This is very interesting. Though it also could be more Yankee posturing, a la Theo with Drew, leveraging a pending deal not yet consummated to score more from the other party, in this case it would seem to be Arizona.
My bet is he ends up in Arizona, still.

Thanks Nick. That’s certainly interesting. Hope this rumor is true, and if it is, hope San Diego is close enough to home for RJ to waive the no-trade if that’s the way the Yanks decide to go. Big ifs.

I know I’m going to get knocked for this, but count me in the group that wouldn’t mind seeing Hansen traded.
I’m know he’s got talent and will end up being a good pitcher for somebody for a long time, but…
I don’t like him.
I don’t like the ego dirven, macho Long Island, entitled, poor little rich kid attitude he walks around town with, and I don’t even know if he came from any money, he just has the attitude. Spend enough time around the Lacrosse world and you run in to so many of these types, this one just happens to throw a baseball instead of a rubber ball with a bunch of other date rapists high from snorting prescription speed, playing beer pong, while talking about how sick they are at LAX DUDE!
Sorry if I crossed a line, but I know a lot of people here know just what I’m talking about.

Wow, I just realized how pissed Chris Carpenter must be; he signed a 5-year/$65Mil deal this year before the spending spree of the off-season began. With back-to-back Cy Young worthy seasons, he could have easily gotten from 5yrs/95+ to 7yrs/135+. The same for Roy Oswalt, who got a 5/75 from Houston, you could say that their “hometown discount” cost them each $30-40Mil; doesn’t anyone else think it should’ve ben smarter to hit the FA market just to raise the price a bit. They could still have signed with their teams, but they would’ve definately gotten more money from each of them, and at the bare minimum they would’ve gotten what they had signed for. Wouldn’t you agree? Also, how much would the Sox pay for Johan Santana once he hits the FA market, knowing that the Yanks WILL almost definately get him if the Sox don’t, as well as considering Barry Zito’s bar-setting 7/126 deal?

And just in case an inability to resolve some financial issues — namely, how much of Johnson’s $16 million tab for 2007 to be covered by the Yankees — dooms that deal, the Padres are on deck with an offer of coveted reliever Scott Linebrink and prospects for Johnson. That, according to the North County Times in suburban San Diego.
If we can get Linebrink, that would simply be awesome.

Yuck. I’d hate that.
xrsahai, I think elite pitchers like Carpenter and Oswalt know before they sign that they’re extensions are likely to be below what they could have gotten in free agency. It’s just whether you want a ton of money or merely a lot of money. If you’re happy where you are, have kids and want to lock up a long-term deal where you are for a lot of money, why not take it?

Leave a Reply