• Cashman: No Need To Rush On Anything, Yanks Don’t Have Any Issues

    Posted by on December 14th, 2010 · Comments (36)

    Via Marc Carig – here’s what Brian Cashman is saying today, after losing Cliff Lee to the Phillies –

    “Plan B is patience…There are certain areas that are easier to address than others…It doesn’t have to happen in the winter time…I don’t think we have a lot of holes…”

    Anyone else see Chip Diller screaming “Remain calm, all is well!” when they read these comments?

    Comments on Cashman: No Need To Rush On Anything, Yanks Don’t Have Any Issues

    1. Evan3457
      December 14th, 2010 | 1:51 pm

      No, I hear a GM saying exactly, and I mean EXACTLY what he should be saying, regardless of whether he actually believes it or not.

    2. Scout
      December 14th, 2010 | 1:54 pm

      Steve: Would you prefer that he say, “I’m in full panic mode. Come and fleece me”?

    3. Raf
      December 14th, 2010 | 2:10 pm

      Evan3457 wrote:

      No, I hear a GM saying exactly, and I mean EXACTLY what he should be saying, regardless of whether he actually believes it or not.

      Yep. It’s mid December, we’re a few months away from opening day. Let’s see where we are before the Yanks decide they need to “rush.”

    4. MJ Recanati
      December 14th, 2010 | 2:14 pm

      @ Evan3457:
      @ Scout:
      @ Raf:
      To your point, a O’s fan buddy of mine just called me to tell me that on O’s message boards, they’re talking about sending Jeremy Guthrie for Jesus Montero because the Yankees are “desperate”.

      Granted, this is just partisan message board banter but the point is still valid. There’s no benefit to trading when you’re perceived as weak.

    5. December 14th, 2010 | 2:21 pm

      Scout wrote:

      Steve: Would you prefer that he say, “I’m in full panic mode. Come and fleece me”?

      I would prefer something more candid and where he’s taking ownership – rather than these puff remarks. Something like:

      “With Burnett’s struggles last season, Javy Vazquez not working out, and with Andy leaning towards retirement, it would have been an immediate gain for us to add someone like Cliff Lee to our rotation next season. That’s why we made a seven year offer to him at the salary levels that we did. But, our plan failed. We were not able to improve ourselves via free agency the way we did following the 2008 season. And, while I realize that Spring Training is only two months away, and the market in terms of available players who can help us is getting smaller by the day, we realize that the charge is on us, the front office, and me, the GM, to address the needs of this team both in the near and long term. And, if that doesn’t happen, we should be assigned the failure here.”

    6. December 14th, 2010 | 2:29 pm

      @ Steve Lombardi:
      I agree with you, Steve. They can’t spin Lee going elsewhere for less money as anything short of a disappointment.

    7. MJ Recanati
      December 14th, 2010 | 2:36 pm

      lisaswan wrote:

      I agree with you, Steve. They can’t spin Lee going elsewhere for less money as anything short of a disappointment.

      Disappointment ≠ catastrophe.

      I don’t think Cashman is intimating that he’s not disappointed, I just don’t think he feels the need to hastily throw together something else to make it seem like he’s keeping busy.

    8. bags
      December 14th, 2010 | 3:25 pm

      Disappointment also does not eq

    9. bags
      December 14th, 2010 | 3:27 pm

      Disappointment also does not equal failure. Cashman did his job. He made the highest offer. Was he also supposed to exert Jedi mind control over Lee to make him sign?

    10. Evan3457
      December 14th, 2010 | 3:31 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      I would prefer something more candid and where he’s taking ownership – rather than these puff remarks. Something like:
      “With Burnett’s struggles last season, Javy Vazquez not working out, and with Andy leaning towards retirement, it would have been an immediate gain for us to add someone like Cliff Lee to our rotation next season. That’s why we made a seven year offer to him at the salary levels that we did. But, our plan failed. We were not able to improve ourselves via free agency the way we did following the 2008 season. And, while I realize that Spring Training is only two months away, and the market in terms of available players who can help us is getting smaller by the day, we realize that the charge is on us, the front office, and me, the GM, to address the needs of this team both in the near and long term. And, if that doesn’t happen, we should be assigned the failure here.”

      Really?

      In Heaven’s name, why should he say ANY of this?

      The front office, including Cashman, saw a need. They tried to address it. They made an offer IN EXCESS of the offer you yourself would’ve made by year and by tens of millions of dollars. The player in question, being a free agent, turned them down.

      Where, exactly, is the failure in all this? They were not about to commit players/prospects and millions of dollars to another player or pitcher until they knew what Lee would do, primarly because they are, no matter what any Lupicanus says, operating under a self-imposed payroll cap, and secondarily because he was, by far, the best fit for their needs.

      There were three, and only three, premium free agents on the markets. Two of them were outfielders, not a great need for this team. The next best pitcher on the free agent market, Carl Pavano, is an absolute no-go for Cashman’s team. The next best free agent pitcher on the market was committed to staying in Southern California.

      No top rank pitchers have been traded this offseason. The best pitcher available for trade has personal problems and the Yanks’ best prospects do not match up with the current needs of that pitcher’s team. The only major trade of the postseason was for a terrific player that Cashman’s team has no use for.

      The very worst thing Cashman could do right now is to trade for a 2nd or 3rd rate starting pitcher, paying too much in talent or money or both.
      ======================================
      I assume that every major move Cashman made this offseason, from the Jeter hardline negotiation to the pursuit of Lee (and the years/$$$ parameter of the contract offer) was approved by at least Hal; certainly, Hal had to sign off on the increased offer to Lee. It will be up to Hal and Hank to judge if there is a failure here.

      =====================================
      They failed to sign Lee; that much cannot be contested. So far, their starting pitching looks significantly worse than it did this time last season, especially if Andy hangs up his glove and spikes. If they don’t acquire a competent starter or two, they might well be in trouble in terms of making the post-season in 2011.

      In any event, there is no reason for Cashman to flagellate himself here for your approval. It does not help the team in any way. And what Vazquez has to with anything at this point is beyond me. His leaving, in fact, gives the team a capital opportunity to improve the rotation. All they have to do is get an average 4th starter.

    11. December 14th, 2010 | 3:34 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:
      Did you see the ESPN article quoting two Yankee front office sources saying they were “celebrating” that Lee took less money to go to the Phillies? It’s a pretty ridiculous attempt at damage control.

    12. clintfsu813
      December 14th, 2010 | 3:35 pm

      lisaswan wrote:

      I agree with you, Steve. They can’t spin Lee going elsewhere for less money as anything short of a disappointment.

      Turns out this really isnt the case. Saw this on another site earlier:

      Contrary to the prevailing wisdom, the five-year, $120 million deal that Lee signed is not worth much less than what Jerry Crasnick reported was the Yankees final offer of six years at $132 million plus a $16 million player option. In fact, it might actually be worth more.

    13. Scout
      December 14th, 2010 | 3:39 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      I would prefer something more candid and where he’s taking ownership….

      Such a statement, however accurate, does nothing to alter the situation. He KNOWS he is responsible for putting a winning team on the field, nearly every season, and ownership will hold him accountable if he falls short. And I suspect you would agree that sending signals of urgency or panic at this point would only make acquiring the players the tema needs more costly. Playing it cool is exactly what a GM does. I suggest we judge him by his future actions and their results, not by the bland statements that are his stock-in-trade.

    14. BOHAN
      December 14th, 2010 | 4:01 pm

      The more i think about this whole situation the more I’m starting to think maybe its really not that bad that he didn’t sign. 1) They would’ve been grossly overpaying for him and they would’ve been doing that only because he was the only “star” pitcher on the market. Would he have been worth the overpaying, yea maybe, in the short term but not at the end of the contract. 2) I think this team can atleast compete for a playoff spot the way it is, as long as Andy comes back. If they wait til July and for some teams to fall out on contention they can make a trade to get a top of the line pitcher from someone, like the Phillies and Rangers did last year, and they won’t look as desperate as they do now so they might not have to give up as much as they might have to now. Or…….
      They can go the other way and call up the Mariners and tell them to take any 4 of our young players, minus Robbie and (in my opionion) Hughes, and give us Felix Hernandez.
      Interesting thing about this whole situation is that this is pretty much what every other team does every year. We’re kind of playing on the same level as everyone else.

    15. MJ Recanati
      December 14th, 2010 | 4:19 pm

      lisaswan wrote:

      Did you see the ESPN article quoting two Yankee front office sources saying they were “celebrating” that Lee took less money to go to the Phillies? It’s a pretty ridiculous attempt at damage control.

      As with other unattributed quotes, I take them with a grain of salt. And, in any case, what does perceived damage control have to do with it? Again, I don’t see how disappointment should equal catastrophe or failure.

      The Yanks wanted Lee. They didn’t get him. They’ll move on.

    16. MJ Recanati
      December 14th, 2010 | 4:23 pm

      BOHAN wrote:

      They would’ve been grossly overpaying for him and they would’ve been doing that only because he was the only “star” pitcher on the market. Would he have been worth the overpaying, yea maybe, in the short term but not at the end of the contract.

      Lee wasn’t going to be “overpaid” simply by being the only star pitcher on the market. Lee was going to command a contract similar to the ones given to other, similarly-skilled free agent pitchers on the basis of his undeniable talent.

      Further, as I’ve mentioned in other threads, if Lee performed as well as he has been performing, he would’ve justified his contract on the front end well enough to eliminate any issues on the back end.

    17. Raf
      December 14th, 2010 | 4:50 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      To your point, a O’s fan buddy of mine just called me to tell me that on O’s message boards, they’re talking about sending Jeremy Guthrie for Jesus Montero because the Yankees are “desperate”.

      Like you said, it’s partisan message board banter. Guthrie for Montero isn’t the first unrealistic trade proposal put forth by fans, nor will it be the last.

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      I would prefer something more candid and where he’s taking ownership – rather than these puff remarks.

      You know where the Stadium is, send him a sword for him to fall on. I understand you can’t stand Cashman, and that’s within your right, but complaining about “taking ownership” in the middle of December is absurd.

      They made an offer, Lee didn’t find it to his liking. BFD. The Yanks, Rangers and everyone else moves on. The Phils and M’s made out well in the Cliff Lee saga, the Rangers got a WS appearance out of the deal.

    18. MJ Recanati
      December 14th, 2010 | 5:19 pm

      Raf wrote:

      Like you said, it’s partisan message board banter. Guthrie for Montero isn’t the first unrealistic trade proposal put forth by fans, nor will it be the last.

      Agreed. I was just pointing out that Cashman panicing (or saying something other than what he said) would be counterproductive to the team’s best interests, as evidenced by the perception in other markets that the Yankees may now overreact to Lee’s decision.

    19. redbug
      December 14th, 2010 | 5:45 pm

      I always thought 7 yrs for a 32 yr old pitcher who had 2 great post seasons was too much any way.

      I can’t imagine why anyone would choose to pitch in Philly over NY, but that’s just me. The Nat’l League is easier. He’s in a great rotation, so I guess he has a great shot at winning more titles. Still…Yuck.

    20. BOHAN
      December 14th, 2010 | 6:01 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      Further, as I’ve mentioned in other threads, if Lee performed as well as he has been performing, he would’ve justified his contract on the front end well enough to eliminate any issues on the back end.

      so he performed well for the first 3 or 4 years of his 7 yr contract, if he had signed with NY, and then was on and off the disabled list for the next 3 or 4 that would have been considered a bad contract?

    21. JeremyM
      December 14th, 2010 | 7:57 pm

      I’m sure some Yankee execs were celebrating. I doubt everyone was on board with offering Lee such a huge deal. You heard stories that a chunk of the Rangers management was very leery of extending Lee the offer that they did.

      So we keep hearing that Lee was “dreaming” about being in the same rotation as Halladay. Wonder how that makes his friend CC feel?

      And stop with the “he took less money” angle. The AAV is $24 million and depending on what happens with his option, could be quite a bit higher!

    22. MJ Recanati
      December 14th, 2010 | 9:26 pm

      BOHAN wrote:

      so he performed well for the first 3 or 4 years of his 7 yr contract, if he had signed with NY, and then was on and off the disabled list for the next 3 or 4 that would have been considered a bad contract?

      It’s all relative. If he was a 6+ WAR pitcher for the first 3-4 years and the Yanks won a title or two, then, yeah, the back end would be worth it at any price.

    23. 77yankees
      December 14th, 2010 | 9:30 pm

      Wasn’t Plan B supposed to be Carl Crawford?? Just asking……

    24. Jim TreshFan
      December 14th, 2010 | 9:55 pm

      77yankees wrote:

      Wasn’t Plan B supposed to be Carl Crawford?? Just asking……

      Nope. Here’s Plan B:

      http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20101214&content_id=16320400&vkey=news_mlb&c_id=mlb

    25. MJ Recanati
      December 14th, 2010 | 10:17 pm

      77yankees wrote:

      Wasn’t Plan B supposed to be Carl Crawford?? Just asking……

      First, no, I don’t think the Yanks were ever interested in Crawford beyond trying to make Boston pay a little bit more for him.

      Second, even if Crawford were Plan B, he signed before Lee thus rendering that plan unimplementable.

    26. MJ Recanati
      December 14th, 2010 | 10:17 pm

      Jim TreshFan wrote:

      Nope. Here’s Plan B:

      http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20101214&content_id=16320400&vkey=news_mlb&c_id=mlb

      The Yanks aren’t signing Pavano so there’s no point even bringing it up or discussing it.

    27. 77yankees
      December 14th, 2010 | 10:42 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      Jim TreshFan wrote:
      Nope. Here’s Plan B:
      http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20101214&content_id=16320400&vkey=news_mlb&c_id=mlb
      The Yanks aren’t signing Pavano so there’s no point even bringing it up or discussing it.

      Right – we don’t need the second coming of Freddie Mercury returning to the mound in pinstripes.

    28. Raf
      December 14th, 2010 | 11:04 pm

      Thought he would’ve linked to the Prior signing, actually…

    29. Jim TreshFan
      December 15th, 2010 | 12:09 am

      Raf wrote:

      Thought he would’ve linked to the Prior signing, actually…

      Uh, guys. It was a joke. Sorry you missed it.

    30. Raf
      December 15th, 2010 | 11:05 am

      Jim TreshFan wrote:

      Uh, guys. It was a joke. Sorry you missed it.

      No, I got the joke. Just saying that it would’ve been funnier had you linked to the Prior signing, since it was announced after the Yanks missed out on Lee.

    31. GDH
      December 15th, 2010 | 12:09 pm

      This isn’t a bad analysis:
      http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/2010/12/15/2010-12-15_yankees_selfhelp.html?page=1

      Although obviously no guarantees, I would like to see what Brackman, Betances, etc have to offer later in the season, and particularly Nova earlier. I have a somewhat perverse desire to see CZ in pinstripes, if only because he’s intense (often a jackass) and is the type who could either flame out or totally thrive in NYC. He’s owed a ton of money, but the Cubbies might eat some of it. If they re-up Wood it will be a distinctively windy city (if old) pitching corps.

    32. MJ Recanati
      December 15th, 2010 | 12:18 pm

      Re-signing Wood is likely going to be a mistake at any price, and especially at the price he’s likely to command.

      As far as Zambrano goes, I can’t think of a worse trade target. He’s owed nearly $36M over the next two years with a vesting option for 2013 at $19.25M. The Cubs would have to pay for most of the contract if they think they deserve any prospects and, honestly, the Yanks are better off just skipping Zambrano entirely.

    33. Corey Italiano
      December 15th, 2010 | 1:38 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      the Yanks are better off just skipping Zambrano entirely.

      Agree 200%.

    34. BOHAN
      December 15th, 2010 | 5:38 pm

      Corey Italiano wrote:

      the Yanks are better off just skipping Zambrano entirely

      AMEN

    35. Raf
      December 15th, 2010 | 5:46 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      The Cubs would have to pay for most of the contract if they think they deserve any prospects and, honestly, the Yanks are better off just skipping Zambrano entirely.

      I dunno, if they can land Zambrano for little to nothing, taking on his salary, they’d be foolish not to consider it. But I don’t think the Cubs’ll make a trade like that for him.

    36. MJ Recanati
      December 15th, 2010 | 10:35 pm

      Raf wrote:

      I dunno, if they can land Zambrano for little to nothing, taking on his salary, they’d be foolish not to consider it. But I don’t think the Cubs’ll make a trade like that for him.

      I wouldn’t take Zambrano for free. Fat unathletic pitchers who are getting worse AND have bad attitudes don’t excite me. We’d be doing the Cubs a favor by taking that turd.

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