• Kei Igawa Saving Money For Yankees?

    Posted by on July 29th, 2010 · Comments (8)

    Via Buster Olney -

    Heard this: The reason why the Yankees have never traded Kei Igawa is because it would cost them a major chunk of luxury tax.

    I’m still trying to figure out how this true. Anyone have an answer on that?

    Comments on Kei Igawa Saving Money For Yankees?

    1. Raf
      July 29th, 2010 | 10:39 am

      I’d like to know as well. I remember part of the reason he was signed was to avoid the luxury tax. Even with that in mind, I’d find it hard to believe that the balance on his contract would be subject to that much…

      Jayson Stark has this to say;
      “At least now, you see, Igawa doesn’t count against their luxury-tax payroll because they were able to dump him off the 40-man roster. But if somebody actually wanted him (not that there’s any indication of that), the Yankees would have to pay virtually his entire salary. And that would pull all those dollars back onto their luxury-tax bill, to the tune of a 40 percent tax on whatever they’re paying.”

      If this is the case, it explains why the Cameron deal fell through, but it doesn’t explain why Igawa wasn’t dumped on the Padres when they claimed him off waivers.

      Still doesn’t make sense, given that the luxury tax hit is contingent on the acquiring team making the Yankees eat the contract.

    2. Jake1
      July 29th, 2010 | 10:58 am

      i got to hand it to igawa. I think he was the organizations turning point in realizing what kinds of pitchers it took to win. Pitchers who miss bats.

    3. MJ Recanati
      July 29th, 2010 | 12:22 pm

      @ Jake1:
      FWIW, Igawa was striking out close to 9 batters per 9 IP so it’s not like he didn’t profile as a pitch-to-contact type.

      That’s not to say he’s a good MLB pitcher, merely to say that I don’t think it was Igawa that changed the organization’s way of thinking.

    4. Raf
      July 29th, 2010 | 3:17 pm

      Jake1 wrote:

      I think he was the organizations turning point in realizing what kinds of pitchers it took to win. Pitchers who miss bats.

      IIRC, Igawa earned a strikeout title his last season in Japan

    5. MJ Recanati
      July 29th, 2010 | 3:20 pm

      Raf wrote:

      IIRC, Igawa earned a strikeout title his last season in Japan

      I think you’re right about that. He was an 8.49 K/9 guy in his Japanese career so clearly he was missing plenty of bats back then. His skillset of slow-ish fastballs up in the zone just didn’t translate to the US.

    6. July 29th, 2010 | 11:22 pm

      Maybe, if Igawa is traded, and then on someone’s 40-man, then his posting fee becomes subject to the CBT and on the Yankees ledger? Could that be why they won’t trade him?

    7. July 30th, 2010 | 8:00 am

      @ Steve Lombardi: It’s not the posting fee; it’s the fact that his salary doesn’t count towards the 40-man roster (and the luxury tax), because of him being in the minors. Squawker Jon, my Met fan blogging partner, reminds me of this every so often in our arguments!

    8. July 30th, 2010 | 8:02 am

      Yeah, but, his salary is small, relatively, and would not “cost them a major chunk of luxury tax.”

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