Still in the hunt for Big Tex?

IDLE MUSINGS FOR A
SLOW NEWS DAY

tex_250.jpg

The A.J. Burnett signing continues to be controversial. My
pal Rob
Neyer summed it up
as “Too many dollars, too many years.” If reports
that the Yankees are still in on Mark Teixeira prove to be something more than
the usual hot air to bid up the real buyers, I’ll be willing to chalk the whole
thing up to the team placing a bet on the roulette wheel with money which,
after all, they are free to gamble with as they wish. If, on the other hand,
this expense is used to justify the fielding of a degraded offense, it will be
much harder to swallow.

In regards to that offense, Neyer notes, “Yankee Stadium is
(or rather, was) a pitcher’s park. Considering only road games, the Yankees
finished third in the American League in OPS last year. Maybe that doesn’t
qualify as ‘excellent,’ but it’s certainly somewhere between ‘good’ and ‘excellent.’
Granted, everybody’s a year older and we might expect a slight decline next
year. So yes, the Yankees should try to improve their offense … and I’m not at
all convinced they can’t still afford to do exactly that. Has Brian Cashman
suggested that he’s finished spending money? If he has, I missed it.” Taking
the last thing first, Cashman didn’t say he was done, but almost every writer
on the beat seems to have come to the conclusion that the Yankees are out on
the major position players. Sure, they could be wrong, things could change, but
one assumes (perhaps incorrectly) that their conclusions are actually sourced.
Yeah, I know. I’m nave. As for last year’s offense, with Jason Giambi and
Bobby Abreu deleted, it’s not next year’s offense, and comparisons don’t really
apply.

One other thought about the various Yankees moves thus far
this winter, one that seems to have occurred to many others around the hot
stove: if the Yankees stop now, have they done enough to pass the Rays and the
Red Sox? It’s a difficult question to answer because those teams aren’t done
either, but we’ll try in tomorrow’s Pinstriped Bible.

I love Jamie Moyer’s new two-year contract with the
Phillies, if only because I’d like to see him follow through on his expressed
wish (threat?) to pitch through age 50. As long as Moyer is still pitching, I
am not old. I am less sanguine on the champs’ signing of Chan-Ho
Park, a pitcher who has been around
for 15 years and has never pitched well outside of Los Angeles. His Dodgers career ERA is 3.77
in 275 games. In 103 games with three other teams, it’s 5.63. Career ERA at
Dodger Stadium, 2.96. Everywhere else: 5.16. As for new general manager Ruben
Amaro, Jr.’s decision to buy Raul Ibanez for three years and $30 million, it is
daft. As well as Ibanez has hit in his second stint as a Mariner
(.291/.354/.477), that’s in good-not-great territory, he’s a defensive
liability, and they’ve just bought themselves ages 37 through 39, not usually a
player’s best years. Adam Dunn is a defensive liability too, but he’s more
productive and, at 29, will remain that way for longer. Hell, they could have
gone in on Teixeira and then traded the fun but limited Ryan Howard. You can
see where the Phils might not want to replace a high-strikeout hitter like Pat
Burrell with another high strikeout hitter, but just because the ideal
candidate isn’t available isn’t an excuse to sign a bad one.

JUST A REMINDER ABOUT
THE COMMENTS

I’m reading ’em, so keep ’em coming. I’ll be bringing some
of them up on the air later this week.

MORE FROM ME
After a slow week of being imprisoned on the BP annual (not
that I’ve been paroled), I’m back at work at Wholesome Reading, including the first two
parts of a planned multi-part series on Public Works. Baseball or government,
infrastructure strategy excites me. As always, Warning! Politics!

11 Comments

When it comes to the Yankees, I never believe anything until I see it with my own eyes. Who can forget that Cashman once said, “The Yankees’ starting third baseman will be Enrique Wilson next year,” only to have A-Rod show up. It’s never dull in Yankeeville.

http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

I’ll believe the Yankees are done when the first pitch is thrown out next season.

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

Maybe I am wrong, but I get a feeling that Cash is going to pop in on Tex and offer a 8 yr, $165 million contract (or whatever is a bit bigger than the current biggest deal) and say “You have two hours, take it or leave it.” Kind of like he did with Johnny Damon a few years ago. They still have about $40 million between this year’s payroll and last year’s so they can sign Tex and still have lowered payroll. That is my feeling about what might\could happen.
However, I think it SHOULD and BETTER happen. His OBP, power numbers, and defense make him invaluable (the AL IVP, perhaps?). He provides much needed protection for ARod and great lineup flexibility (he and Jorge will opposing managers fits). And if Boston winds up gettin him, it will improve their club so much it could have a devastating effect on the AL East. You can just see him becoming a Yankee killer for the next 7 years or so.
If Cash is willing to spend big bucks to upgrade his rotation (which is understandable) but get stingy for his lineup and defense and possibly strengthen his greatest foe (not understandable), then he deserves whatever derision rains down on him.
One part of me thinks he signed these long-term pitching deals because he is hoping to get a trophy in the next 3 years (his contract length) and then get out of Gotham before the contracts start looking bad. If that is the case then it would behoove him to sign Tex for whatever years/dollars he can. Signing that one player would be the last thing he has to do this winter.

you’ve been banging the texeira drum for a while now, and while i agree it would help the team, it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen (at least according to peter abraham).

so, let’s say the yankees don’t go after tex, or they do, and they lose out. what other moves should they make? it seems like they need to put some attention into their crowded outfield – any thoughts, other than no cameron for melky? what about damon, nady, gardner, and matsui? who plays where?

Oh, just sign Tex already. Let’s get Manny too. Yeah, I know I sound like a typical Yankees fan. But that’s only because I am.
http://themax.mlblogs.com

IF THEY YANKEES DO NOT UPGRADE THEIR OFFENSE THEIR IN FOR A BIG BIG AWAKENING SPENDING ON THESE TOP PITCHERS DOES NOT GUARENTEE THAT THEY WILL PERFORM WELL OR NOT GET INJURED. TEX WOULD DEF HELP A LOT AND EVEN THOUGH I DON’T SEE IT HAPPENING A TRADE FOR A BAT WOULD BE GOOD LIKE AN ADRIAN GONZALEZ WHO’S YOUNGER AND HAS THE GLOVE LIKE TEX. BUT I’M TELLING YA NOW IF THESE TOP PITCHERS FAIL WHAT DOES CASH DO NOW? THAT IS THE QUESTION. HE NEEDS ONE MORE PLAYER, POSITION PLAYER, TO SAY HEY THAT’S A GOOD DEAL AND THAT MIGHT SAVE HIS *** AND HIS JOB.

Yankee can sign Teixe for 10 yr, $22 Mill and close now the sign and be sure. Now why not close now? What happen ?

ah I dont like Manny is old.

I dont think signing tex is great he is overrated an will bat 250 guaranteed. go sign manny who can loose with this lineup: DamonCF JeterSS Arod3b MannyLF MatsuiDH PosadaC NadyRF Swisher1b Cano2b

To not sign Texiera would be like if the Yankees had the opportunity to sign Ted Williams in his prime. Texiera would stabilize the infield and be a great protection for A-Rod. A-Rod was signed for ten years because he has the potential to be the all-time home run leader. The Yankees need someone to make other teams pitch to Arod so that great celebration can take place someday.

Hey deanrdc, I think Mark Texiera is one of the most overrated baseball players. I mean what has he achieved and I said in my previos comment he will bat .250 in the first couple of months because he starts off slow and Manny would guarantee the yankees a championship.

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