Results tagged ‘ new york yankees ’
I love my Yankees.
(Yes. They are mine.)
But I really hope they are talking a smart approach to extension talks with all-world second basemen Robinson Cano.
Cano is entering the final season of a deal signed in February of 2008 and will make $15 million before hitting the open market as a free agent.
While an extension seems highly unlikely because Cano is represented by Scott
Bor-ass Boras, a man known to loathe the very idea of letting a player (let alone a stud like Cano) bypass testing the market in their prime, because it’s the Bombers and their deep wallets this shouldn’t come as the least bit of a surprise.
Now the conventional thinking among Yankees fans is going to go something like this gem I pulled off a sports forum thread today:
“If they let Cano walk because of some piddling, luxury tax-inspired lowball offer the Yankees deserve to come in last place in 2014.”
I am not going to lie, I disagree. I mean I really disagree.
This, my friends, is one of those horror movie moments where the Yankees, playing the role of the recently sexed up camp counselor, has to decide if they really want to go outside and investigate that strange sound they heard.
And we all know how that scenario typically ends.
Now make no mistake. Cano is a beast.
The guy can flat out rake (all tables via Baseball-Reference.com).
He has missed a total of twelve (12) games the last six (6) seasons and gives you a 300+ average, 30ish HRs and 100+ RBIs from a position that typically doesn’t give you those kind of numbers, second base.
But you want to know the biggest reason why they should think long and hard about giving him anything more than say five or six years?
It’s because he plays second base.
Don’t believe me?
Let’s look at a Hall of Famer and one of the greatest 2B’s to ever play the game, Roberto Alomar.
After three seasons he completely cratered in terms of productivity and was not even good enough to make a big league roster at the half way point of the deal.
Let’s look at another Hall of Famer, this time Ryne Sandberg.
Different legend, same story.
If given the same ten year deal at the same age you’d see three very productive seasons followed by a cratering effect that would make Michael Bay or Roland Emmerich blush.
By the half way point of said deal he was for the most part done as a major league ball-player.
How about another Hall of Famer, this time Joe Morgan?
Amazingly it is the exact same scenario.
Very productive at age 30, gives you a few years of same general level of production….then by 34 his numbers go chasing after Ed Harris into “The Abyss”.
What’s that, you want a more contemporary comparison?
How about Chase Utley, a man thought to not only be Cano’s equal just a few years ago, but considered by many to be his superior?
One of the best second basemen the league had ever seen then right on queue in his early thirties the productivity all but disappears.
For whatever reason the position of 2B does not age well. Not the least damn bit.
So as the Yankees move forward in these discussions they would be wise to take anything longer than six years off the table or just walk away and be done with it.
They don’t have to look any further than their own ten year, in-house disaster that is Alex Rodriguez to understand this point.
But if they do baseball history is more than willing to play the role of the rowdy theater audience, screaming “oh for the love of God you fool, don’t go outside!!!”
Perhaps you caught the recent interview in which Yankees first basemen Mark Teixeira essentially admitted that he was overpaid.
In the interview Teix said (among other things):
I have no problem with anybody in New York, any fan, saying you’re overpaid. Because I am,” Teixeira said. “We all are.”
“Agents are probably going to hate me for saying it,” he continued. “You’re not very valuable when you’re making $20 million. When you’re Mike Trout, making the minimum, you are crazy valuable. My first six years, before I was a free agent, I was very valuable. But there’s nothing you can do that can justify a $20 million contract.
To me it was much ado about nothing, but of course in New York it only takes a frog farting to start up some kind of big Whoop-de-doo.
To me the most interesting part of his interview wasn’t the admission of being overpaid, but rather just how firm a grasp of baseball economics he has.
For the life of me I do NOT understand why people try to view what they make in the context of what your average person makes.
This is a multi-billion dollar industry and the players are the driving force behind that kind of economic firepower.
If anyone thinks for one minute that if they suddenly declared that they would play for minimum wage and ticket prices would suddenly plummet then they are delusional.
The only difference between now and the “golden years” is that the revenue is split more equitably.
Furthermore, because of the way the system is set up the first six years a player is in the league (3 initial years at set salary then three arbitration years) your typical player, let alone an All-Star like Mike Trout is grossly underpaid (in the context of baseball).
Once a player hits free agency everyone on Earth knows they are going to be overpaid, but this does little more than offset how the team got over by paying bottom dollar for top shelf services the first half of someone’s career.
Teix’s statements show he is well aware of that fact.
Elsewhere in the interview he went on to say:
This is my 11th year. I’m not going to play 10 more years. I want 5 or 6 good ones. So that would say I’m on the backside of my career. And instead of trying to do things differently on the backside of my career, why not focus on the things I do well, and try to be very good at that? . . . I need to concentrate on what I do well. And what I do well is hitting home runs, driving in a lot of runs and playing great defense.
Declining average aside, that kind of insight and self-awareness is what makes me glad that we have him manning first-base, as opposed to other high priced, over-valued guys like Fielder, Howard or Adrian Gonzalez.