From Ian O’Connor today -
The sorcery and magic are long gone. On Cashman’s watch, the bloody Red Sox have built a dynasty. Torre and Alex Rodriguez have opted out. The Yankees are no longer the business model for wannabe teams.
Cashman’s scorecard reads like your average Phil Mickelson round: birdie, bogey, birdie, bogey, birdie, bogey. For every good move Cashman has made, a bad one has followed.
Good Cash: He traded for Scott Brosius. Signed El Duque Hernandez for peanuts. Blocked Randy Johnson from Cleveland. Did his knee-buckling deal for Roger Clemens. Dealt for David Justice. Signed Mike Mussina and Hideki Matsui. Landed A-Rod. Kept Robinson Cano and Chien-Ming Wang. Didn’t land Eric Gagne. Protected Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy.
Bad Cash: Dealt future Red Sox World Series MVP Mike Lowell for Mark Johnson, Ed Yarnall and Todd Noel. Claimed Jose Canseco on waivers. Gave $120 million to Jason Giambi. Ignored George Steinbrenner’s desire to sign future Red Sox ALCS MVP David Ortiz. Hired Jeff Weaver. Landed Kevin Brown and Javier Vazquez instead of future Red Sox two-time champ Curt Schilling. Made setup-man mistakes on the likes of Steve Karsay and Kyle Farnsworth. Brought in Johnson too late in the game. Plucked Carl Pavano from the Marlins instead of future Red Sox ALCS MVP Josh Beckett.
No, it’s not a terrible track record. And nobody will ever argue with the hours Cashman pours into his job.
But the Yankees have never handed out medals for trying. In the context of budget and payroll, Cashman might have a bigger advantage over his peers than any general manager in the history of American team sports.
He hasn’t done enough with that advantage. For all the multimillion-dollar errors he’s allowed to absorb, errors that never could be committed by rival executives, Cashman has failed to live up to his own mission statement.
O’Connor updates a list that I started a year ago. Related, just last week, I heard Mad Dog Russo (on WFAN Radio, 660 AM, in NYC) make this statement on Brian Cashman: “He’s wasted more money on pitching than any other G.M. in the history of the game.”
That one stayed with me – because, I think he may be correct. What do you think? Would you agree with Russo’s statement, or not?