Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Could Manny ruin Hal's winter by settling for a short-term contract?

Supposedly, Manny Machado's conga line of suitors now holds as a Bermuda Triangle of the Padres, White Sox and Phillies. Each is said to have offered him an epoch-long deal with dollar signs and zeroes that, to the rest of us, is as incomprehensible as Kellyanne Conway's marriage. Each franchise offers a shitwad of cash to, in theory, compensate for the many years Manny will face finishing third. 

If The Manster has any sense of history, he must know that each of those three owners eventually will sour on him, that each of the fan bases will blame him when their team sucks - which each will - and that he could wind up at age 40 without not only a ring, but maybe not even another World Series at-bat. Manny's greatest years are at hand; could he squander them in San Diego?

Of course, Manny will surely do what all beagles do - chase the money - because that's all they know. They've been programmed since birth to run barking down the street after the mail truck. Trouble is, they never ponder what will happen if they catch the truck.  

And maybe, just maybe, that's what Manny is doing.

If he signs that massive lifetime contract, it will define him in the lizard eyes of his owner and the ticking time-bomb hearts of his fans, both of whom can turn icy if and when a dead-in-the-water front office decides to tank the team in late May. 

So what if - as rumors say might be happening - Manny ditches the greed-first mentality and decides what is important is where he plays and who he plays for, and on that note, he wants to be a Yankee? Crazy as it sounds, the scenario looks possible. How can I say this?

1. Something should have happened by now. They were telling us that Machado was going to sign over Christmas break. The spring camps are nearly open, and he's still sifting offers. If he wanted San Diego, Philadelphia or Chicago, you'd think he would have signed by now.

2. It's well known that Mrs. Manny wants New York. Again, how much of a premium does a player put on domestic tranquility? How much money negates the downside of an unhappy spouse? 

3. There remains one card to play: He could accept a one or two-year deal, make a lot of money, then hit free agency in, say, 2020 at age 27 - with the best earning years of his life still in front of him. 

If Manny pushes for New York - that is, if he makes it clear that he's waiting for the Yankees to put forth an offer, it becomes a nightmare scenario for Diamond Hal Steinbrenner.

Hal either ponies up the money, or he looks like a cheap suit weenie. Just last week, he proclaimed that the Yankees are never done improving until opening day. If he walks away from a one-year deal with Machado, he'll be revealed as a poor-mouthing, outclassed heiress in a Yankee windbreaker and a $50 haircut.  

Those of you who are harsh critics of Manny - there are many of you, and for worthy reasons - would have to at least agree that he at least wants to be a Yankee, and that he is sacrificing dough to play in New York. That ought to buy him some credibility, and a chance to show what kind of player he is.

He would likely play shortstop, the Troy Tulowitski era - a weirdly fantastical time - will come to an end. In it, delusional Yankee fans imagined Tulowitski as ten years younger with hips and knees that haven't been surgically rebuilt. In it, the story of a one-day tryout takes on mythic proportions, and the notion of a man agreeing to play for next to nothing in salary is a fairy tale come true.

Finally, Didi Gregorius does not have to rush back and - as a result - face a harrowing contract season. Didi is our shortstop. He always will be. But it's hard to imagine him returning in July, without spring training, and having much of a year. He might be able to come back in late August and September. He might be able to play in the post-season. But rushing him back because - say - Tulo just tweaked a gonad... that's a worst-case scenario for everyone involved. 

And if Manny wants to play in NYC, shouldn't we let him?


Parson Tom said...

so this is our hope? Manny takes less than full value for a shorter term to play for the Yankees because the team is too cheap to pay top dollar? I assume this is also the only scenario for acquiring Harper, who is a much better fit in the Yankee lineup.

I sure hope the players association has some good lawyers working on their collusion case.

13bit said...

I’m sick of it all.

KD said...

i'm with you, 13bit. Yet I still practice my secret and pitiful front office Juju, hoping against hope that Harper becomes a Yankee. Manny talk is simply the magician waving a shiny object in his right hand, knowing you won't see WTF he's doing with his left hand. When Harper signs, nobody will have seen it coming. Ninja Cashman, the Wizard of Gotham, will have done it.

Get yourself prepared.

TheWinWarblist said...

ICS will be a bad influence on his work ethic.


Carl J. Weitz said...

Don't hold your breath on Zieg signing either of them. Unless they agree to be his personal driver during the off season.

I wish I was able to use my beat-a-dead-horse animation ______________here.

Ken of Brooklyn said...

KD> I'm also summoning my pitiful double reverse whamma Lamma ding dong Juju for the same Harper surprise,,,,,
URRGGGGG, I'm pathetic

KD said...

It's you and me, Ken. if anybody else is trying to Juju Harper into pinstripes, they're keeping it quiet. and that's cool. secrecy and juju oftentimes go hand in hand.

I think what we really need is Win Warblist in mid season form, pants on head, ranting in a public place. Isn't the lose of personal dignity a small price to pay for Harper?

Anonymous said...

Ken and KD,

Not pathetic. I feel the same way. Harper makes too much sense. I read Joel Sherman's vain attempt to justify Hal's not getting either and it had a white flag quality to it. Let us be the last of the faithful.

Somewhere in my imagination Boras is sitting down with a bunch of crayons, wool, glue, Popsicle sticks, LEGOs, and an old Texas Instrument calculator and is working out a deal so complex an with so many opt outs, opt ins, and opt tics that it will make the US tax code seem simple by comparison.

And, at the end of the day, the Yankees will get Harper at until the first opt out kicks in. I'm thinking that would be some time around Father's Day.

Doug K.

13bit said...

Harper or nothing. Klondike or bust. Many or a ham sandwich. Fuck them all.

Hal or Linda Lovelace. Brian or Stormy Daniels. Fuck them all.

Eat shit, Randy Levine, then go to an overeating clinic. Fuck them all.

Harper or nothing.

Harper or nothing.

Fuck them all.

13bit said...



Vampifella said...

Taking less to play for the wonderful Yanks didn't work on Patrick Corbin. Then again I wouldn't undercut myself either if I was worth X and they were offering X minus 30% for the privilege to play on the Yanks. I think these players are valuing themselves at X plus 30% though. So whatever.

Even so, I would think that Manny wouldn't want to play for obviously dead and dull teams like the Padres or the White Sox even if they will overpay. With the Phillies at least every team is equally bad in the NL so almost every team has a fair shot there (other than the yearly tanking Padres of course).

If he just wishes to Cano it and play for whomever pays the most, then go ahead, but it'll be boring as heck being the biggest fish in a tiny pond with no shot to ever win anything.

Personally I still feel he'd be a bad signing as he'll be our Marching Manny to the Mets' Joggy Cano and we'd be extremely lucky to dodge that bullet.

13bit said...

Playing for Los Yanquis doesn’t mean shit anymore and is no guarantee of post season anything.