Monday, November 19, 2012
Posted by el duque at 6:21 AM
That's because waiting for Brian Cashman's inevitable bad trade is like sitting on death row, waiting for the padre to walk down the corridor.
Despite the hype - which is always solid - we have a relatively barren minor league system. That means we will have to bundle prospects - thinking Mason Williams and Slade Heathcott - to deal for anyone of substance. Thus, every morning I expect another Austin Jackson giveaway, where we take some slugger two years beyond peak foliage, or the next arm about to fall off from 220-plus innings. (Think King Felix in 2015.)
Listen: Cash does a great job of picking usable parts off the scrap heap. But our problems cannot be solved by the next Brian Bruney. The Steinbrothers have changed their Prime Directive from "Win World Series" to "Cut Payroll to $189 M." That means trades. And pardon me, folks, if I sound pessimistic. But it's trades that brought us to this sorry precipice.
No GM trades with the hated Yankees unless he can assure his local, Yankee-hating fan base that he just robbed us. It's always payback for some free agent - Danny Tartabull or Bob Shirley - we "stole" long ago. Only a few teams answer our phone calls -- figure Pittsburgh, Seattle and/or maybe the Nats, if we want to unload another Tyler Clippard.
As long as we're more interested in banking profits than winning a championship, the future means "being creative." That boils down to trading youth for age, and that's how we ended up in the 11-Year Barf between 1983 and 1994.
The YES Network will soon be sold to News Corp. Rupert Murdoch will not accept the July-to-October ratings collapse that comes from a fourth place team. He will exert pressure for another quick fix acquisition that lets us chase the new, final wild card slot.
I can tell you the one thing that could change our future: A creative renegotiation of Arod's contract.
We need to spread payments over a longer period of time, to avoid luxury tax. The NY Giants did it with Eli Manning. Teams do it commonly in the NFL and NBA - leagues with salary caps. Considering that MLB now has a salary cap - even though it doesn't call it one -- we need creative book-cooksmanship, and Arod needs to understand that he'll be happier with Robbie Cano behind him in the order.
There was never a rule made by billionaires that didn't have a loophole large enough to fit Prince Fielder. Hello, Yankee shyster lawyers. Where are you? Our fifth starter is David Phelps. Let's get on this.