Saturday, December 13, 2008

Spending Spree

So, do you think the Yankees were pleased about missing the playoffs last year for the first time in forever? Their master plan to build a scouting and player development machine has fallen by the wayside and the Steinbrenner wallet is back out. That didn't take too long, but it's certainly not surprising. They're opening up a new ballpark this year, and George is in failing health so he doesn't want to watch the likes of Philip Hughes and Ian Kennedy develop.

And it certainly didn't take them long to figure out that their starting rotation absolutely sucked. In the past week, the Spanks have responded by shelling out more than $240 million to CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett. Similar to when the Yanks didn't go hard after Johan Santana - and later regretted it - they needed Sabathia and they got their man, signing him to a 7-year, $161 million contract with an opt-out clause after three years. Yesterday, news broke that they had also signed Burnett, a guy with immense talent whose body is unfortunately made out of papier mache, to a ridiculous 5-year, $82 million deal. That one has Carl Pavano written all over it. Or maybe Kevin Brown. Or Randy Johnson. You get the point - they suck at judging free agent pitching talent. I am hoping and praying that they go after Manny Ramirez, just for pure entertainment reasons.

As for the Sox, most everyone thinks they're in on the Mark Texeira sweepstakes along with the Angels. I think he'd be a great sign - a young player in the prime of his career who desperately wants to be on a winner. They'd have to move Youkilis to third and figure out what to do with Mike Lowell, but like the Yanks' money grab for CC, I think this is a case of the Red Sox needing Texeira. Big Papi needs someone to ride sidecar with him.

The other big story hook has been what the Sox will do about Varitek and their lack of catching depth. Despite what you hear out of Scott Bore-ass' mouth, it doesn't appear that 'Tek got any other substantial offers from other teams. I think he'll be back, maybe for 2 years at between $15 and $18 million. I know you're supposed to keep emotion out of it, but I'd have no problem giving Varitek an extra million or so for what he's done. He's earned a little bit of legacy pay, in my book.

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