• When You Spell Yankee$, You Cannot Leave Off The Last “S” For Savings

    Posted by on November 22nd, 2009 · Comments (30)

    Via Cot’s Baseball Contracts:

    Starting pitchers
    The highest-paid active starting pitchers, by average annual value:

    CC Sabathia, $23,000,000 (2009-15)
    Johan Santana, $22,916,667 (2008-13)
    Carlos Zambrano, $18,300,000 (2008-12)
    Barry Zito, $18,000,000 (2007-13)
    Jake Peavy, $17,333,333 (2010-12)
    A.J. Burnett, $16,500,000 (2009-13)

    Relief pitchers
    The highest-paid active relief pitchers, by average annual value:

    Mariano Rivera, $15,000,000 (2008-10)
    Brad Lidge, $12,500,000 (2009-11)
    Francisco Rodriguez, $12,333,333 (2009-11)
    Joe Nathan, $11,750,000 (2008-11)

    Catchers
    The highest-paid active catchers, by average annual value:

    Jorge Posada, $13,100,000 (2008-11)
    Joe Mauer, $8,250,000 (2007-10)
    Kenji Johjima, $8,000,000 (2009-11)
    Ramon Hernandez, $6,875,000 (2006-09)

    First basemen
    The highest-paid active first basemen, by average annual value:

    Mark Teixeira, $22,500,000 (2009-16)
    Ryan Howard, $18,000,000 (2009-11)
    Todd Helton, $15,722,222 (2003-11)
    Albert Pujols, $14,285,214 (2004-10)
    Lance Berkman, $14,166,667 (2005-10)
    Justin Morneau, $13,333,333 (2008-13)

    Second basemen
    The highest-paid active second basemen, by average annual value:

    Chase Utley, $12,142,857 (2007-13)
    Brian Roberts, $10,000,000 (2010-13)
    Robinson Cano, $7,500,000 (2008-11)
    Brian Roberts, $7,150,000 (2008-09)
    Dustin Pedroia, $6,750,000 (2009-14)

    Shortstops
    The highest-paid active shortstops, by average annual value:

    Derek Jeter, $18,900,000 (2001-10)
    Michael Young, $16,000,000 (2009-13)
    Miguel Tejada, $12,000,000 (2004-09)
    Hanley Ramirez, $11,666,667 (2009-14)
    Rafael Furcal, $10,000,000 (2009-11)

    Third basemen
    The highest-paid active third basemen, by average annual value:

    Alex Rodriguez, $27,500,000 (2008-17)
    Miguel Cabrera, $19,037,500 (2008-15)
    Aramis Ramirez, $15,000,000 (2007-11)
    Chipper Jones, $14,000,000 (2010-12)

    Outfielders
    The highest-paid active outfielders, by average annual value:

    Manny Ramirez, $22,500,000 (2009-10)
    Andruw Jones, $18,100,000 (2008-09)
    Torii Hunter, $18,000,000 (2008-12)
    Ichiro Suzuki, $18,000,000 (2008-12)
    Vernon Wells, $18,00,000 (2008-13)
    Carlos Beltran, $17,000,000 (2005-11)
    Alfonso Soriano, $17,000,000 (2007-14)
    Carlos Lee, $16,666,667 (2007-12)
    Magglio Ordonez, $15,000,000 (2005-09)
    J.D. Drew, $14,000,000 (2007-11)
    Vladimir Guerrero, $14,000,000 (2004-08)
    Johnny Damon, $13,000,000 (2006-09)
    Hideki Matsui, $13,000,000 (2006-09)

    When you see these numbers – and how the Yankees have the most “expensive” player (or close to it) – at just about every position, it’s hard to defend those claims that the Yankees bought a World Series ring this year. Perhaps the 2009 Yankees were the best team that money can buy?

    When you add up those annual averages for the Yankees players highlight here, it totals $170,000,000 (a year) for ten players. That $170 million for those ten players is more than any other total team payroll in baseball last season (outside of the Yankees payroll).

    Comments on When You Spell Yankee$, You Cannot Leave Off The Last “S” For Savings

    1. redbug
      November 22nd, 2009 | 12:01 pm

      If I’m not missing anyone, it’s interesting that Boston has only 2 spots (Pedroia and Drew). Ortiz would make a longer 1st base list at $13 mill. But still….

    2. Tresh Fan
      November 22nd, 2009 | 12:09 pm

      Okay. Let’s have a slary cap. And to be fair let’s put it at $85 million. That way the Royals and Pirates can compete. Now let’s see some rosters based on the above salaries. And remember, you MUST offer contracts to all the players at their current salaries or risk paying gazillions for “collusion.” In other words, some team HAS to sign Vernon Wells for $18 million.

      Now let’s see those rosters.

    3. Evan3457
      November 22nd, 2009 | 12:13 pm

      When you see these numbers – and how the Yankees have the most “expensive” player (or close to it) – at just about every position, it’s hard to defend those claims that the Yankees bought a World Series ring this year. Perhaps the 2009 Yankees were the best team that money can buy?

      I no longer care enough about the issue to defend them on it.

      Don’t complain to me about a salary cap. Take it to the MLBPA, and agents like Scott Boras.

    4. cr1
      November 22nd, 2009 | 1:19 pm

      Thanks for the overview, I am especially interested in seeing that the area which I currently regard as our greatest weakness (the outfield) is the one in which we are outspent by the most teams.

    5. GDH
      November 22nd, 2009 | 1:35 pm

      What this says to me is that the Yankees are the only team in baseball that consistently fields the best team possible and spends the money to do so.

      When you see these figures, it’s the Yankees who set the market, but they’re paying just a little more to at each position to get the best (well except A-Rod, but that’s a different investment). The delta between the Yankee in each category and the other top players, looks about right to me. Ie. I would rather have Jeter at 2 million more than Young, 6 million more than Tejada. I thought we’d regret Jorge’s contract, but so far when healthy he’s produced to that level, same with Mo, etc. It would be tough to say we’ve overpaid on these guys.

    6. 77yankees
      November 22nd, 2009 | 1:54 pm

      Here’s my simple concise answer to all this: When players stop seeking to make the most money they can, then all the haters will have a point.

      Funny that between 1923-64, a period of 40+ years the Yankees won 20 championships – nearly 50% the time with no free agency.

      And since the full start of free agency since 1977, in 30+ years, the Yanks have won 7 championships, less than 25% of the time.

    7. MJ
      November 22nd, 2009 | 7:02 pm

      Steve, I’m buying you a Royals cap for Christmas. If you’re so ashamed that the Yankees flex their financial muscles, you may as well root for the Royals.

      FYI – If the Yanks didn’t spend, then your favorite players (Jeter, Pettitte, Posada, Rivera) wouldn’t be Yankees anymore.

    8. November 22nd, 2009 | 7:09 pm

      If my favorite players had to leave the team when they were 30 years old because they wanted (or could) make $20 million a year – I’d be happy with them leaving – AS LONG AS THE TEAM HAD SOMEONE COMING UP, IN THE PIPELINE, TO REPLACE THEM, AND DO A GOOD JOB, FOR A FRACTION OF THE COST.

      But, MJ, look at most of the Yankees $20 million men – A-Rod, Tex, CC, etc. This is not about the Yankees spending $ to keep Mo, Jeter, etc.

      This is about going out and breaking the bank to BUY players because your system is so crappy that you need to go out and buy players.

    9. JeremyM
      November 22nd, 2009 | 7:33 pm

      Well, someone has to be “the little engine that could.”

      I am not bothered in the slightest about the Yankees’ payroll. The Yankees are playing under the same set of rules as everyone else. Not going to spend another second thinking about it.

    10. Tresh Fan
      November 22nd, 2009 | 8:32 pm

      First of all, neither the Yankees or any other MLB franchise buys players because “their system is so crappy.” Buying players is PART of the system. In fact, it is the OLDEST way of acquiring talent.

      Secondly, no one believes that the Yankkes are gpoing to go broke anytime soon because their payroll is too high. Back in the 70′s there was a virulent sportswriter named Dick Young. Every year he contiibuted at least one column on how the Yankees were on the verge of bankruptcy because they overspent on free agents.. Well, what happened? Thirty plus years later the Yankees are thriving.

      And finally, the grapes don’t taste sour to me at all :)

      And finally,

    11. November 22nd, 2009 | 9:02 pm

      Quick question… I don’t follow European soccer in a major way, but I wonder if there is as much public outcry in Europe when Man U or Real Madrid spends and spends greatly as MLB GMs, fans and the like complain about the Yankees.

      Does anyone have an answer?

    12. MJ
      November 22nd, 2009 | 10:14 pm

      @ Steve Lombardi:
      Yet another argument with a moving target. At no point in this post did you mention the arbitrary threshold of acceptability at $20M. Yet, in your comments, you made sure to point out that your core-four aren’t paid $20M so they’re not really part of the problem.

      If you want to set arbitrary thresholds, why didn’t you set it at $13M? Because that would run counter to your secondary argument?

      The fact remains that if you’re going to complain that the Yanks overspend to win, you simply have to acknowledge that three of your four favorite players — Rivera, Jeter and Posada — are the highest paid at their positions. It took money to keep those three together so I just don’t see what you’re complaining about.

      Would you want the Yanks to spend $5M per position everywhere else but splurge on Posada, Rivera and Jeter simply because they’re so-called winners?

      Spell out what you want to say here, Steve. Right now your argument is a convoluted mix of complaining that the Yanks are willing to buy the best players and that spending the most money makes them somehow a sham of a baseball team.

    13. MJ
      November 22nd, 2009 | 10:20 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      AS LONG AS THE TEAM HAD SOMEONE COMING UP, IN THE PIPELINE, TO REPLACE THEM, AND DO A GOOD JOB, FOR A FRACTION OF THE COST.

      This is about going out and breaking the bank to BUY players because your system is so crappy that you need to go out and buy players.

      Now I get it…Cashman is a bad GM because he didn’t have a better in-house candidate for Derek Jeter in 2001, thus being forced into the unavoidable and regrettable situation of having to pay Jeter $189M over 10 years. Yes, that must be it. If only Cashman were a better GM, he wouldn’t have had to keep Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada and Mariano Rivera for the better part of this decade while the team wasn’t winning titles.

    14. November 22nd, 2009 | 10:49 pm

      @ MJ:

      Hey, I have no problem with breaking the bank to keep stars like Jeter, Mo, etc. If that’s what they want to do, etc. And, again, if they want to let stars walk, rather than pay them $18-23 million a year, as I said, I’m fine with that too – as long as they can replace the players with cheaper models that play well.

      But, yes, I have an issue with buying CC for $23 mill, and Tex for $22.5 mill, and bringing back A-Rod for $27.5 mill, etc.

      It’s those players where a good team/GM would have prospects in the pipeline to fill those needs, etc – rather than having to rely on out spending everyone else and probably overpaying, etc.

      But, that’s just my opinion. You’re welcome to have a different one.

    15. November 22nd, 2009 | 10:51 pm

      MJ wrote:

      Spell out what you want to say here, Steve. Right now your argument is a convoluted mix of complaining that the Yanks are willing to buy the best players and that spending the most money makes them somehow a sham of a baseball team.

      Sham? Did I say that? No, I said: “it’s hard to defend those claims that the Yankees bought a World Series ring this year. Perhaps the 2009 Yankees were the best team that money can buy?”

      And, I still stand by that opinion.

    16. November 22nd, 2009 | 10:56 pm

      Just to be clear on this whole thing – here’s where I stand on the 2009 Yankees:

      Love the team. Thrilled that they won the World Series. Just wish the M.O. in constructing the team did not center on having the highest paid SP, RP, C, 1B, SS and 3B in the game.

      I’d be OK with them having 2 or 3 of the highest paid in the game – but, six is a bit extreme for me.

    17. MJ
      November 22nd, 2009 | 11:08 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      But, yes, I have an issue with buying CC for $23 mill, and Tex for $22.5 mill, and bringing back A-Rod for $27.5 mill, etc.

      It’s completely disingenuous to have no problem keeping Rivera/Posada/Jeter for $47M but take issue with buying Sabathia/Teixeira/Rodriguez. Totally inconsistent position.

      Whatever. You’re a Royals fan at heart and that doesn’t make you a bad person. It just makes you a curious one. Ask any Royals fan if they’re happy losing with “nobility” or if they’d rather have their team spend what it takes to win.

    18. November 23rd, 2009 | 9:50 am

      @ MJ:
      Not everyone is willing to love mercenaries on Day One as equally as they do those soliders who they’ve seen since boot camp and who have been with them, in battle after battle, for years now.

      Does that make them disingenuous? Maybe to you. But, to me, it means some prefer to reward those for loyal service over throwing gifts at highly paid new hires who have done all their previous production in someone else’s house.

    19. bfriley76
      November 23rd, 2009 | 10:00 am

      @ Steve Lombardi:
      6 Years, 2 MVPs, 238 HRs and a World Series Ring aren’t enough to endear A-Rod to you?

    20. MJ
      November 23rd, 2009 | 10:29 am

      @ Steve Lombardi:
      Once again, a moving target. Who said anything about love? You were complaining that the Yanks bought their title, implicitly attacking Cashman for spending X amount on Sabathia, Teixeira, Burnett and Rodriguez but completely ignoring the fact that Cashman also paid Jeter, Rivera and Posada. You set an arbitrary threshold at $20M to argue your point and now you’ve set “love” as a new hoop to be jumped through.

      Again, you’re missing the point. If you complain that the Yanks bought their title and you’re going to damn the GM for spending to win, you have to include Jeter, Rivera and Posada in that discussion. That they weren’t “mercenaries” — a totally debatable premise in and of itself — is besides the point. The fact remains that they had the option of leaving New York but were paid more than any other player at their position to induce them to stay. You can’t rip the GM for spending on others but ignore the fact that he spent on them too.

      The Yanks had a $200M payroll. It may offend you and that’s certainly just fine. But your rationalizations are just getting you into trouble because they’re logically inconsistent.

    21. MJ
      November 23rd, 2009 | 10:30 am

      @ bfriley76:
      LOL, nope. Just like with Cashman, there’s nothing A-Rod can ever do to satisfy Steve. We’re just one 0-for-21 slump in meaningless April games away from another 2006-level rant on how much he sucks.

    22. YankCrank
      November 23rd, 2009 | 10:52 am

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      But, yes, I have an issue with buying CC for $23 mill, and Tex for $22.5 mill, and bringing back A-Rod for $27.5 mill, etc.

      It’s those players where a good team/GM would have prospects in the pipeline to fill those needs, etc – rather than having to rely on out spending everyone else and probably overpaying, etc.

      Steve, my offer still stands to buy you that Royals hat if you’d like.

      http://bit.ly/5SOvH1

      Check it out. It’s pretty, it’s blue and it comes with all of the admirable qualities of a team that only builds from within and refuses to invest heavily into free agents.

      I think it’s exactly what you’re looking for. Size and shipping address when you’re interested.

    23. clintfsu813
      November 23rd, 2009 | 11:12 am

      @ YankCrank:
      LMAO

    24. clintfsu813
      November 23rd, 2009 | 11:13 am

      Or maybe the Rays..theres plenty down here who constantly gripe about the Yankees payroll but had no problem with it last year.

    25. November 23rd, 2009 | 3:26 pm

      @ YankCrank:Make it a “1996 Yankees” hat and I would both accept and wear it with pride.

      Really, I don’t want to be a Royals fan – or even a fan of a team like the Twins (‘tho they do a lot of things right). And, again, if my choice is being a fan of 2009 Yankees or the 2009 Mets or 2009 Pirates, give me the 2009 Yankees – EVERY TIME.

      But, if you’re giving a me a choice between the way the 1996 Yankees were built and the way the 2009 Yankees were purchased, er, I mean, built, give me the 1996 Yankees – EVERY TIME.

    26. November 23rd, 2009 | 3:27 pm

      MJ wrote:

      LOL, nope. Just like with Cashman, there’s nothing A-Rod can ever do to satisfy Steve.

      Not true. If they would go away, I’d be pretty damn happy about it. ;-)

    27. MJ
      November 23rd, 2009 | 4:17 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      If [Cashman and A-Rod] would go away, I’d be pretty damn happy about it.

      That’s so effin’ sad, I don’t even know what to say. A-Rod just played a HUGE part of the team’s title run and you’d be happier if he were gone.

      Dude, you really don’t like the Yanks at all, do you? I’ll bet in a past life you were one of those Yankee fans that booed Joe DiMaggio because he wasn’t Lou Gehrig or you booed Mickey Mantle because he wasn’t Joe DiMaggio…

    28. Raf
      November 23rd, 2009 | 7:02 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      But, if you’re giving a me a choice between the way the 1996 Yankees were built and the way the 2009 Yankees were purchased, er, I mean, built, give me the 1996 Yankees – EVERY TIME.

      Doc, Straw, Boggs, Duncan, Rogers & Key were FA’s. Cone was acquired in 95 in a salary dump, and retained as a FA. Martinez and Nelson were acquired after the 95 season in a salary dump. Wetteland was acquired after the 94 season in a salary dump. Sierra was traded for Fielder when the Tigers dumped his salary (also should be noted that Sierra came to NY in a slop swap trade for Tartabull). David Weathers and Graeme Lloyd stunk more often than not when they came to NY… Am I missing anyone?

    29. YankCrank
      November 23rd, 2009 | 9:54 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      MJ wrote:
      LOL, nope. Just like with Cashman, there’s nothing A-Rod can ever do to satisfy Steve.
      Not true. If they would go away, I’d be pretty damn happy about it.

      You really don’t think this do you? This was you just joking around right?

    30. January 3rd, 2010 | 11:28 am

      [...] Derek Jeter gets his $20-something million a year contract once his current deal is up, very soon the Yankees will have four players at $20+ million a year – where Jeter will join CC Sabathia at $23,000,000, Mark [...]

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