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  • Where Is The Outrage? Espn, Si?, Not when it’s the Red Sox spendin’ wild!
    I usually don’t do this, but please allow me to vent…
    The Red Sox outbid the Yanks for negotiating rights (note: “negotiating rights”) by almost 20 MILLION! What’s the reaction you hear? “Great Move!”
    If the Yanks bid 51M, there’d be an investigation by MLB!
    Where are all the sportswriters who claim that the small market teams can’t compete because of the Yankees….oh wait, I’m sorry….they can’t blame the Yankees BECAUSE THE RED SOX OUTBID THEM BY 20 MILLION!
    oK, this is much deeper than this.
    In 2005, after an entire year long celebration by ESPN over how great the Red Sox and that we should all get the Red Sox logo tatooed to our chests, when they were playing their elimination game against the White Sox, at the end of the game, Chris Berman says, “We really need to give a big hand to the Boston Red Sox.”
    EXCUSE ME? GIVE A BIG HAND TO WHO? I don’t remember him saying that when the White Sox were officially eliminated from the playoffs or ANY YEAR that the Yankees won.
    Bottom line? ESPN, FOX and all the other associated sports losers need to stop demonizing the Yankees. In the last 6 years there have been 6 different World Champions and none of them were the Yankees. Sure the Yankees spend, but they also pay their MLB “Welfare” (also known as Luxury Tax), so that Kansas City Royal fans can complain that they have no chance, why their top level execs keep payroll down to about $5.00 and pocket all of the Yankee money.
    Selig should stand up for ALL the teams in baseball instead of constantly trying to be Steinbrenner’s personal proctologist (I know this last sentence doesn’t correspond with my other points and may have given an unpleasant visual, but I just had to say it), every time he makes a deal.
    Let the Sox have D-Mat…but when the Yanks make their next signing, let one of them mention overspending…hipocrates.
    Oh, and Tim McCarver $ucks.
    Thanks you.
    11:06 AM, November 15, 2006
    Deep to Left said…
    I blame A-Rod
    11:09 AM, November 15, 2006
    Anonymous said…
    So is it, the team that spends the most and then everyone else? If the Yankees have a payroll of 200M and the Red Sox have a payroll of about 140M, and then they drop 51M (which does not go against the Luxury Tax) just to talk to a player, and the Yanks Payroll stays at about 200M but Bostons’ goes to like 170M, are the Sox a small market team?
    Because the Yankees payroll is highest, does everyone else get a free pass?
    Clearly you cannot deny there is a double standard here.
    When the Yanks spend money, it’s all over the news, “There they go again.”, “The Evil Empire”. When Boston spend 51M to talk to D-Mat, “Good move!”
    That’s what I’m talking about.
    So is it, the team that spends the most and then everyone else? If the Yankees have a payroll of 200M and the Red Sox have a payroll of about 140M, and then they drop 51M (which does not go against the Luxury Tax) just to talk to a player, and the Yanks Payroll stays at about 200M but Bostons’ goes to like 170M, are the Sox a small market team?
    Because the Yankees payroll is highest, does everyone else get a free pass?
    Clearly you cannot deny there is a double standard here.
    When the Yanks spend money, it’s all over the news, “There they go again.”, “The Evil Empire”. When Boston spend 51M to talk to D-Mat, “Good move!”
    That’s what I’m talking about.

    Anoynomous November 15, 2006, 11:09 am
  • Can we one of you guys just delete this moron’s posts?

    LocklandSF November 15, 2006, 11:13 am
  • ” Yenway Park”!!
    You gotta love the Post

    Andrews November 15, 2006, 11:14 am
  • anon, step up and add a name. Otherwise, vent at LoHud where you’ll be on the same page as everyone. Stop beating the horse everyone else is kicking, and come up with a few creative ideas of your own to get your panties in a bunch over.
    PS – absolutely nothing has been added to the Red Sox payroll yet. As mentioned before, this negotiating money is nothing different than renovations to Fenway or any other forms of improvement to an organization meant to make more money for them.
    On another note, you have absolutely no idea, for sure, what the other teams bid’s were, so until that time, hold judgement on how crazy the bid actually was.

    Brad November 15, 2006, 11:15 am
  • Sox can no longer whine about ‘Evil Empire
    By Michael Rosenberg
    I hate to slap any limits on free speech, but from now on, there are two words I never again want to hear out of the city of Boston.
    “Evil Empire.”
    And I really, really don’t want to hear them out of Larry Lucchino’s mouth.
    No more complaining about the Yankees’ payroll, Red Sox fans. Your team is the second-fattest cat on the block.
    The Red Sox just won the Daisuke Matsuzaka sweepstakes with an astounding $51.1 million bid. They are not paying $51.1 million for Matsuzaka’s services. They are paying the Seibu Lions $51.1 million just for the right to negotiate with Matsuzaka. Just to get in the door. If they can’t reach an agreement with Matsuzaka, the Red Sox get their money back. But they are expected to reach a deal.
    Six major league teams spent less than that on their entire 2006 payroll.
    Now, it is possible that the Red Sox aren’t really paying that much; deals with Japanese teams are rumored to feature more secret handshakes than sixth-grade recess. But they are obviously spending a ton. Once they get around to actually, you know, paying the pitcher, their total bill could reach $100 million over five years.
    The Red Sox see Matsuzaka as a 26-year-old ace and a gateway to the Japanese market, which explains why they see this as an investment.
    But Matsuzaka has never even pitched in the major leagues. For all we know, the secret to his famed “gyroball” is illegally applied yogurt sauce, and he’ll be a bust here.
    If the Yankees made an offer like this, you know what would happen.
    Lucchino, the Red Sox president, and many Boston fans would whine that the Yankees were spending recklessly, messing up baseball’s payroll structure, sending the country into a recession and complicating the situation in the Middle East.
    Four years ago, when the Yankees outbid Boston for Jose Contreras, an angry Lucchino told The New York Times “the evil empire extends its tentacles even into Latin America.”
    That deal was for four years and $32 million.
    The Red Sox will apparently pay more just for the right to negotiate.
    Hey, it’s their money. They have it and they can spend it how they please. Maybe it will turn into a brilliant move, both for the baseball team and the business.
    I just don’t want to hear any whining from Boston fans about the Yankees payroll. Last year, the Yankees spent around $199 million, which is nuts. But the No. 2 team was the Red Sox, at $120 million, for a team that finished in third place in the A.L East.
    Nobody else was above $103 million.
    Thanks to baseball’s revenue-sharing system, pretty much any team with good management and a strong business plan can compete for the playoffs. But for at least two-thirds of the teams in the major leagues, the idea of bidding anywhere near this much for a guy who has never pitched in the majors is absurd.
    And when you add the astounding news of a $51.1 million offer to the reality of the Red Sox’ payroll, you can only come to one conclusion:
    The Red Sox are aggressively exploiting every possible revenue stream, creatively growing their big-market business in any way they can, then plowing their extra millions back into their ballclub in a vigorous attempt to compete for the World Series every year.
    Nothing wrong with that.
    But that’s exactly what the Yankees do.
    It can’t be evil for one team and OK for another. It can’t be horrible and offensive and ruining baseball when the Yankees do it and just fine when the Red Sox do it.
    When it comes to baseball’s economics, the only difference between the Red Sox and Yankees is that Boston is a really big market that loves baseball, and New York is a huge market that loves baseball.
    If the Red Sox want to order a large, expensive platter of gyroballs, that is their right. But please, waiter: hold the morality play.

    Xavier November 15, 2006, 11:23 am
  • Wow, Xavier. Thanks for putting a spin on this we haven’t been over yet. It’s always great to read some new stuff that hasn’t been copied and pasted fifty other times in the past week.
    Hold the creativity and analytical thinking as well, please waiter.

    Brad November 15, 2006, 11:28 am
  • Brad – now you’re just being silly. You can reasonably assume what people are reporting are accurate within some degree of margin..
    (Then again, we’ve been wrong on Red Sox’s bid a few times too. By wide margins.)
    Renovations to Fenway park doesn’t make headlines though, and there’s a lot less volatility to that risk/rewards – putting seats on top of Green Monster might cost X million, but you can do the math for the expected attendence times revenue, bah bah bah.
    You can use all the accounting tricks, but paying 51.11 mil for “R&D” is still 51.11 mil that’s going to be on the “expense”, which payroll is part of.
    By the way, payroll to pay players also “make more money for them”.
    It’s not exactly a signing bonus, but that’s also the added cost of acquiring a specific player. (Unless Matsuzaka does some crazy advance scouting that leads to signing tons of Japanese players.. but they probably could’ve gotten that cheaper too.)
    And by the way, signing bonus is prorated as part of the contract under the luxury tax, even though it isn’t technically “part of the payroll”. That’s where the posting fee and the signing bonus differ – the posting fee doesn’t count toward the luxury tax.
    And the only time it’ll matter? If BoSox goes over the luxury tax. Since it’s at something like 150 mil this year, unless BoSox splurge some more, they’re not going over it. Though admittingly they of course still have more “cap room” than otherwise.
    But when did not knowing something for sure ever stopped people from judging? =P

    Lar November 15, 2006, 11:34 am
  • So it’s silly to assume that the Yankees have downplayed their own bid to save face, Lar? I will admit that there have to be some validity in the reports, but if the Yanks “leaked” their bid was 32mill, when in reality it was 39mill, it looks much better for them. If the Sox outbid them by ten million sure makes them look less like the same creature, which in reality, they are.

    Brad November 15, 2006, 12:05 pm
  • Brad, I don’t think this is as leak-proof as you think, but even at 39, that’s 12 million. It’s silly to “kill” an argument by claiming that you can never know for sure. I don’t know also, how comparing to the Yankees bid mean anything, since I thought you’re trying to prove that you’re _not_ the Yankees!

    Lar November 15, 2006, 12:10 pm
  • One thing that no one seems to be discussing is the margin at which the Red Sox outbid their nearest competition. I mean, yes, pretty much everyone knows it was about $20 million, but no one’s talking about how big of a screw-up that is. If the Yankees had the second highest bid at $30 million, shouldn’t the Red Sox be kicking themselves for not bidding $31 million? I mean, you Red Sox fans make fun of us for Carl Pavano wasting two years of money on his contract, but that cost us $17 million. This apparent gross over-estimate of how much it would take to safely land Matsuzaka is a bigger blunder than our signing of Carl Pavano. I have a feeling that the Yankees had a better idea of what Matsuzaka is capable of in the MLB, and thus decided that the expected $30 million posting plus $75 million over five years was too large an asking price. They probably decided it was better to simply encourage speculation that Matsuzaka would command a bid much higher than $30 million, then sat back and laughed as the Red Sox made what could go down in history as one of the biggest financial mistakes in baseball history.

    Jordan Meisner November 15, 2006, 12:11 pm
  • Lar, I’m not trying to prove anything! I could really care less the money, it’s not mine. I’m happy the Red Sox won the bid, and to be honest, it’s ugly how the majority of YF’s are not totally against the bidding process and winning it big (like they usually do), and how all of the sudden it’s too much of a risk to do.
    It’s just kettle-pot too much, and I’m going to stand firm on it.
    People saying that they’re happy the Yanks didn’t get him because of the cost is exactly opposite of what they said two weeks ago, and it’s crazy.
    Most, like yourself have said kudos, but other’s backtrack on themselves, and I’m going to counter their arguments.
    Trying to prove something though, I’m not.

    Brad November 15, 2006, 12:16 pm
  • Jordan, such is the nature of the blind-bid system. This has already been discussed, and we agreed the Sox seemed to misjudge the market. On the other hand, they also were putting in a bid they felt was sure to top anyone else’s, and in such a system, you have to assume the Yankees and Mets both will follow similar strategies. If the Sox had only bid $40M to just beat the Met bid, the risk certainly was there that the Yankees would go to $42M. It’s hard to blame them for playing it safe and making sure they got the pitcher they wanted.

    Paul SF November 15, 2006, 12:21 pm
  • Jordan,
    Since we’re commenting on the unknown, I’ll play along. The Mets were the second highest bidders at approx 38 million, and the Yankees were third, so no, the Red Sox didn’t outbid thier nearest competitor by 20 million.
    Also, comparing this to Carl Pavano is not only premature, but crazy. Carl Pavano doesn’t pitch at all. Period. It’s money going to a guy to party in Florida.
    But, you’re entitled to your opinion and I respect that. Saying that it’s the biggest financial mistake in baseball history is a bit much. Do you know all the bad transactions? Are you aware of all the numbers? Do you have a crystal ball? If so, can I borrow it for the Ohio State game this weekend?
    Get the facts straight before shooting off at the gums, otherwise you’ll just look like you’re posting out of jealousy. You’re not are you? No way, I know you’re a classy guy and would side with facts and not theory, especially your own theory.

    Brad November 15, 2006, 12:21 pm
  • What did I backtrack on?
    I like the dude, I’ve said it many times, but I’ve also established my ceiling (~mid 20s mil) for it to be rational. That said, I’ve also expected the Yanks to probably outbid my “rational” bid.
    I’m not going to pretend it doesn’t “suck”, obviously that not only we didn’t get the chance, but losing to the rivalry. I don’t know, but even with a short contract it’s a bit of a risk.
    Apparently all this money won’t impede them of signing Drew and others this offseason, but will stop them next season? I don’t know. (Though of course, this is moot if things come together and they totally own..)
    It’s something that Yankees fan don’t really worry too much, since you know, we don’t really have a budget. I think most people is still under the assumption that Sox isn’t the Yankees, but hey, that’s why they play the games..

    Lar November 15, 2006, 12:23 pm
  • I wasn’t aware that the second highest bid was $38 million, thank you for correcting me. However, this still means that because the Red Sox incorrectly judged the market, they wasted $13 million. How can you argue with that? If they had a better sense of what other people were willing to bid, they would have spent less. Thus, it is a sunk cost, just as the Yankees put $17 million into Carl Pavano and had a zero return on their investment. There is a zero return on the unnecessarily wide margin at which the Red Sox outbid the rest of the MLB. I don’t see how this is debatable.
    Also, I said “what could go down in history”. Notice the qualifying word “could”. I don’t have a crystal ball. All I’m saying is, there has not even been ONE starting pitcher that has made a successful transition from Japan to the MLB, so taking on Matsuzaka is a HUGE risk. If he doesn’t pan out (like Irabu) or even if he has some limited effectiveness (like Nomo), then the roughly $115 million over five years would indeed be one of the biggest financial mistakes in baseball history.

    Jordan Meisner November 15, 2006, 12:27 pm
  • Lar, in my post I did include the lines “most, like yourself”. I know you’ve been on the same page the whole time, and I gave credit for it. At no time did I throw you under the blanket I tossed around.

    Brad November 15, 2006, 12:28 pm
  • Thanks. I do, of course, reserve the right to be totally wrong. =) So that’s how it feels to be a non-YF and complain about other people’s huge spending.. =)

    Lar November 15, 2006, 12:30 pm
  • Jordan, you’re spin is pretty good. The comparisons to Irabu and Nomo are spot on. I’m willing to bet that all this hype is for nothing, and it’s probably going to blow up in the Red Sox faces in the end:-P But, he “could” end up going 22-3 next year with sub four ERA. He “could” end up being the best pitcher in the league. He “could” end up being 5-0 against NY. He “could” end up slipping on a wet floor and never pitching again. He “could” be the world series MVP for the next two years. Get my point? This could go on forever; it’s speculation on your part, and has no real merit. And I’m not jumping down your throat here – really none of these posts have any real merit, but the ball “could” bounce both ways here. At least acknowlede that fact.

    Brad November 15, 2006, 12:33 pm
  • I will point out that it is odd (and this isn’t yet another knock for DM, just in general) that everyone keeps coming to the US as being “best in Japan” or something.
    Ichiro, Matsui, Kaz Matsui, Nomo, Irabu, DM, Jojima, Iwamura, …
    I’m probably a few, but yaaaaa..

    Lar November 15, 2006, 12:43 pm
  • He’ll be great, and the Sox did what they could to get him. I’m happy they shelled out about $10m more than was necessary – hopefully that’ll constrain them in other ways. But man, do i wish the Yanks had bid $51.2m? Sure.

    Sam November 15, 2006, 12:45 pm
  • Has anyone considered the fact that this might be a good deal for Boston? If they could negotiate a deal to put themselves at a total of (including posting fee) 80 mil over 4 years, that’s putting up 20 mil a year for someone who could potentially be an all-star for many years to come. The guy is 26, has some sick stuff according to almost every scout who’s seen him, and can open the door for plenty of marketing in Japan for the Sox.
    Or, they could turn around and trade him to a team like the Mets in turn for a large portion of the posting fee and several prospects (Heilman, Milledge, or some combination of guys). Then, they would have successfully blocked the Yankees from getting Matsuzaka and also bought talent from the Mets for a fairly resonable price.

    Mike November 15, 2006, 12:46 pm
  • Matsuzaka could turn out to be good, yes. He’ll just have to be VERY good to warrant $20mil+/year, and coming from Japan he’s a huge question mark. I’m happy the Yankees didn’t get him. I’d rather have Barry Zito for $16mil/year, because at least you know he’s going to be an above-average AL pitcher for years to come.

    Jordan Meisner November 15, 2006, 2:49 pm
  • Mike: Boras is noted for his efforts to secure trade clauses for his players.

    attackgerbil November 15, 2006, 2:51 pm
  • “I’d rather have Barry Zito for $16mil/year”
    You’d rather have an aging pitcher with declining peripherals who has a poor track record against the good offensive teams of the AL East for MORE MONEY PER YEAR over a young pitcher with amazing peripherals and amazing stuff? I guess that’s the fundamental point on which we’d have to disagree.

    Paul SF November 15, 2006, 2:53 pm
  • If you’re talking about the Yanks it’s 16 mil / year + 40% tax, which makes it something like 22 mil.. though if you do the same math for DM for the Yanks, it would be (assuming 51 + 4/48) 24.75 + 4.8 = 29+. Not sure if either is worth it at that money.. (though you would assume DM would bring in more money)

    Lar November 15, 2006, 3:38 pm
  • Why are Red Sox fans pretending that the $51.1 million should not be counted into payroll? I would consider the bid to be a capitalized expenditure to be evenly distributed among the years of the probable 5-year, $75 million dollar contract Matsuzaka will command. Thus, Matsuzaka will cost well over $20 million a year. So Zito would cost significantly less. I’m definitely right about that.
    Zito is 28 years old. His peripherals have indeed shown some decline, but I’m not ready to believe that he’s ready to collapse or something. The KEY POINT about Barry Zito is that he has pretty much not missed a start in SIX YEARS (at least 34 starts each season), and every year he has been a significantly above-average starter (with the exception of 2004).
    Hideo Nomo was 26 when he came to the MLB as well, and had a career ERA in the low 3’s in Japan. He signed a huge contract, had two good seasons, and then was fairly average for the rest of his career, finishing with a 4.21 career ERA. I’m pretty sure the Red Sox are about to spend A-Rod money for a pitcher who will merely be a middle of the rotation type guy once MLB hitters get some at-bats against him.
    I can understand how Red Sox fans can be in denial that this was a horrible move. I would probably be in denial if the Yankees did the same thing. But I’m pretty confident I’ll be proven right in a few years.

    Jordan Meisner November 15, 2006, 3:46 pm
  • Jordan, we;ve already discussed how Matsuzaka’s stats in Japan are FAR above Nomo’s.
    “Why are Red Sox fans pretending that the $51.1 million should not be counted into payroll?”
    We’re not pretending. Those are the facts. Even if the Sox take out a loan and are paying it off per-year over the length of the contract, that only means Matsuzaka is costing the Sox $20 M per year. They’re still only PAYing him the amount of his contract, and that’s the amount that’s on the PAYroll.
    I can’t understand why you can’t understand that. In 2008, Matsuzaka’s salary, taken from payroll, will be $11M (or 8 or 10 or 12 or 15 or whatever). The Sox might be paying their bankers something else, but their bankers aren’t playing for the Red Sox, so it’s not a payroll expense.

    Paul SF November 15, 2006, 4:00 pm
  • Jordan, I don’t understand how at this stage of the Matsu saga there are still people like you that don’t know the posting fee HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH PAYROLL.

    LocklandSF November 15, 2006, 4:48 pm
  • No, sorry, I wasn’t clear with what I said. I understand that it is not a part of the official payroll that is used to calculate luxury taxes and such. But the bottom line is that it is still money that is coming out of the Red Sox pockets in order to sign a player. It is $51.1 million that they no longer have to sign other players over the next five years (or however long the contract is). Am I wrong? Or are the Red Sox paying with Monopoly money?

    Jordan Meisner November 15, 2006, 11:15 pm
  • Jordan, techincally you’re right, but only in the sense that any expenditure by the Red Sox organization, including its owners, is less money for players — but the organization is HUGE. Granted, we don’t know how huge because it’s not public, but losing this $51.111111M is no different that losing it in, say redoing the Green Monster or 406 Club. And no one talks about whether the Sox are going to be constrained by those expenses…

    Paul SF November 15, 2006, 11:28 pm

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