Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Sabathia and Burnetts Impact- No Texiera? TPC Thoughts

There has been a recent school of thought on the Yankees spending spree ($240M combined on Sabathia and Burnett) and how it will affect them in a negative way in the future. Our friend, The Ducks made this comment recently.
Duck Views: There's always an opportunity cost, TPC. Always. And it says right here that Teixeira is a HUGE, HUGE opportunity cost. Had the yankees paid a SOMEWHAT reasonable premium for Sabathia, and not signed burnett, they could have had Teixeira. And what a dual signing that would be-- Sabathia and Texeira??? I'd take that over Sabathia/Burnett any day.
As usual, The Ducks are wrong and totally are missing the point. Besides the fact that Texiera will cost $200M and Burnett $85M, there are more important issues.
Let's take the Sabathia deal where the Ducks said:

Ducks:I see your house is on the market and you're asking $750K, TPC.
TPC: Yep.
Ducks: Any offers so far?
TPC: Not really, I mean, one guy did offer $450K, not sure if he's serious, though.
Ducks: We'll give you $950K, TPC
TPC: Really?
Ducks: Ha. Nah. Make it $1.25 Mil
TPC: Deal, But if the house goes up in value over the next 3 years, I'd like to be able to opt-out.
Ducks: You got it.
The fact is, the Yankees offer of $23M a year is not much more than the original Brewers offer of $20M per year. Biggest difference is length of the contract and being C.C. is only 28, he will only be 35 his final year of the contract-essentially still in his formative years. Being Sabathia is a top 5 pitcher at worst right now, let's see other starters in that salary stratosphere.

Johan Santana, age 30 (2 years older than C.C.) $22.75M a year average over 6 years.
Carlos Zambrano age 27, $18.3M 5 years
Barry Zito age 30, $18M 6 years.
Jason Schmidt age 36, 1 more year at $15.6M

Obviously, Sabathia is on par in excellence only with Santana in that group. He's also a good peer, not just in terms of talent but in terms of economics and location (both play in NY). You can make a very good economic case that $20M per year for Milwaukee is a lot more than $23M per for the Yanks. In fact, the Brewers entire payroll was $81M last year, so C.C. would in essence be 25% of that. The Yankees had a $209M payroll, so C.C. comes in around 11%, less than half of the Brewers offer.
The Burnett deal I didn't like, not because the salary was more than others were offering (from all reports the Yankees offer was best because the guaranteed the 5th year), but because of the health risk and the fact that his prior 200IP seasons were all "walk years". That scares me. That has a lot of Kevin Brown, Carl Pavano rings to it.
The Ducks main contention was opportunity cost and the fact that this will prevent the Yankees from signing Texiera. That notion is 100% false, and here's why.
The Yankees payroll as of today is still $45M less than last year due to Giambi, Abreu, Pavano, Mussina, etc contracts coming off. They have made offers for Texiera, but the reports that I have read are the Yankees don't really love him that much. There is thought that he is a numbers compiler and when it comes to clutch situations, they don't want another A-Rod on their hands. Basically, they made the offer more as window dressing than anything else. A written by's Tom Singer "There is a belief within the game that New York is feigning interest in Teixeira simply to drive up the price for Boston -- which, aside from its prior interest, now also needs the slugger to counter its rivals' hoarding of pitchers".
With that being said, the Yankees will probably sign another pitcher and a bat (possibly in the Mike Cameron deal). Buster Olney has reported the Yankees payroll will actually be 10-15% less than last year (plus the luxury tax savings) so in essence the Cashman plan of building through youth (Joba, Hughes, Cano, etc) and still being competitive is working. The staff is anchored by 4 guys who are under 30 (Sabathia, Burnett, Wang-28, and Joba-24). That is much different than the days of overspending for an aged rotation of Johnson, Brown, Mussina(who was worth the money but still in his mid 30's), Leiber, etc.


Anonymous said...

Burnett can pitch.
Injuries in Baseball are hard to predict. That dude can pitch.

I love the Yankee staff. I believe that one of, Hughes or Kennedy, will emerge this year as well.

Joba-Wang-Sabathia-Burnett is awesome. Hands down awesome, any of these guys can be unhittable.
The team is being molded by Girardi, who will go down as one of the greatest baseball managers of all time.

The Whooa's were right about LT.
The Whooas picked Sabathia the one year they were in baseball fantasy.
The whooas were laughed at when they took Rivers and Warner in this years draft.

Who is laughing now.

ThePeoplesChamp said...

I agree that Burnett can pitch and his stuff is awesome.
A positive as I just heard on the Max Kellerman show is his record vs. The AL East is something like 23-5 with a low 3 something ERA.
My issue with him is his heart and the fact that his best years (and only healthy years) were his 2 walk seasons.
I also think people are overrating him. Whereas with CC, who is clearly a top 3 pitcher in the game right now, you can make a very good case that Burnett is the Yankees #4 starter (CC, Wang and Joba in my opinion are better pitchers).

Anonymous said...

CC will be the bust