Via Joel Sherman -
Understand something about the $189 million luxury-tax threshold for next season. It isn’t really $189 million.
Each team is charged roughly $11 million for items such as insurance and pension. Thus, if the Yankees are going to get under — and I believe they are determined to do so — then they can pay their players about $178 million.
But wait. It isn’t like they could just get to $177.9 million in the offseason. They need to create spare money for promotions, potential bonuses reached and obtaining players via trade. Let’s make that a conservative $8 million.
OK, now we are talking about the Yanks having approximately $170 million for players next season. Assuming Derek Jeter picks up his option and Alex Rodriguez’s suspension is upheld, the Yanks would have six players signed for next season — Jeter, CC Sabathia, Mark Teixeira, Alfonso Soriano, Ichiro Suzuki and Vernon Wells. For luxury-tax purposes, that crew costs roughly $68.5 million.
That would leave a little more than $100 million to spend, and you can subtract about another $14million-$16 million to reach agreement with the arbitration-eligible Brett Gardner, David Robertson, Ivan Nova, Shawn Kelley and Francisco Cervelli. We can assume another $3-$4 million for five or six non-arbitration players such as David Phelps and Adam Warren.
That will leave around $80 million, and a good deal of that will be earmarked for Robinson Cano, Curtis Granderson, Hiroki Kuroda — or their replacements.
You can see how quickly the money goes and why the Yanks are pretty much desperate for A-Rod’s suspension to be upheld and his $27.5 million to go away from their ledger.
It means the Yanks are going to have to count pennies elsewhere in trying to still have a deep/contending roster with the $189 million constraints.
I really hope the Yankees do find a way to get Brendan Ryan to return in 2014. They’re going to need a shortstop. I have no faith in Jeter’s ability to man that position – either well or for a prolonged period. And, I can live with no stick when it’s a glove like Ryan.