Via Jon Heyman:
The Yankees will make an offer to exceed Johan Santana’s $137.5 million contract to top target CC Sabathia and closely follow that bold first strike with proposals within the next day or two to A.J. Burnett and Derek Lowe, SI.com has learned.
The Yankees’ aggressive three-pronged free agent pitching approach puts them in position to dominate the free-agent market. The three offers together are expected to total in the $250 million range.
The Yankees are hoping to blow away the field for Sabathia, who prefers to play in California if all things are equal, then fashion the rest of their rotation from a very strong free-agent market for pitchers. The Yankees don’t expect immediate acceptances from all three pitchers, but one competing executive said, “I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Yankees sign all three guys.” (That’s probably a long shot, however.)
Here’s an interesting thought: Suppose the Yankees get Sabathia, Burnett and Lowe. You know the three of them will be under contract for the next four years, at the least. Add Joba Chamberlain to them. That’s four. Now add Chien-Ming Wang – that’s five.
In theory, if these five do what they’re supposed to do for the next four years, as a unit, in the Bronx, then when do Phil Hughes, Andrew Brackman, and Jeremy Bleich ever pitch for the Yankees – some time in 2012 or 2013? Hmm…