Via Kat O’Brien today -
Chien-Ming Wang wanted to sign a long-term contract with the Yankees this offseason, as Robinson Cano did, but the Yankees weren’t interested, Wang said yesterday.
Wang said of signing a multiyear deal: “I want to.”
Newsday first reported in December that Wang’s camp was interested in a long-term contract, but yesterday marked Wang’s first words on the matter. The Yankees didn’t share the desire to sign Wang long-term, even though the righthander has won 38 games in the past two seasons. General manager Brian Cashman did not return a phone call, but told Newsday recently, “Not at this time,” when asked about possibly signing Wang long-term.
Someone close to Wang said the pitcher is disappointed that the Yankees would not entertain the idea of a long-term contract. The source said that the fact that the Yankees signed second baseman Cano to a contract worth at least $30 million and up to $57 million adds to Wang’s disappointment at not receiving the same type offer.
One reason the Yankees told Wang they did not want to do a long-term deal now, he said, is: “Because pitchers [can find it] hard to stay healthy.”
I know where the Yankees are going with this one. They figure they can go year-to-year with Worm Killer right through 2010. And, then, when Wang is age 30 they can see if they want to give him a long-term deal. Of course, they’re going to have to pay more, then, if Wang continues to pitch well for the next three seasons.
It’s sort of how New York approached Rivera and Posada last Spring – meaning “We’ll give you the years and the money when you have options. Until then, we want to make sure you don’t break down.”
You just hope that good business doesn’t turn into bad blood. Because, sometimes bad blood turns into bad business. If you tick Wang off with this approach, and he’s stellar between now and 2010, then he just might go somewhere else – since many would be willing to pay him in that scenario.