Monday, November 4, 2013

Dear Yankee Brain Trust: Please, please, PLEASE... Make Grandy and Hughes qualifying offers - and then if they take them, trade their butts

Hello, everybody, including the new strength coach:

Today, you formally decide whether to make $14 million qualifying offers to Yankee free agents, or let them walk without receiving one stitch of compensation.

If we make qualifying offers, and the players reject them, we receive a first-round draft pick next June. That has been a successful policy of teams like St. Louis, Boston, Texas - also known as "smart teams."  It's time for us to do the same.

Here are the moves to make today.

1. Robbie Cano. Make him an offer. He won't take it. If we lose him, we get a draft pick. Frankly, I don't know how to feel about Cano receiving a $200 million contract. I'd rather have a guy who runs out grounders. The Cards let Albert Pujols go, and that gave them the first-round draft pick that turned into the young pitcher, Wacha. It sure would be fun to watch Robbie, at age 36, batting .247 and jogging out grounders, with three years left on his Rangers' contract.

2. Hiroki Kuroda. Make him an offer. Trouble is, he might return to Japan, which nets us nothing. If he takes our deal, we have a decent starter. And maybe Joe won't beat him like a rented mule. Last year, we had separate policies for front line pitchers: We made sure CC, Andy and Hughes received ample rest, and then ran Kuroda until his teeth bled. If we're lucky enough to keep him, maybe treat him a little carefully?

3. Curtis Granderson. Make him an offer. If he takes it, we have an option beyond the exciting RF platoon of Vernon Wells and Ichiro. If Grandy stays, maybe he'll commit to restoring his all-star status. Maybe he'll shorten his swing, hit a few less HRs and bat .280. My guess is he'd do it through May, then start swinging raggedly for the fences the rest of the season - en route to 200 strikeouts. Frankly,  if he takes the offer, bundle him with some foreign currency and trade him for somebody, anybody. Get something in return.

4. Phil Hughes. Same exact deal.  You should have traded him last June. If we got a bag of cheese curds, we'd be ahead. Make Hughes a qualifying offer. If he takes it - I'm not sure he will; I think he wants out of NY - bundle him with some cash, and trade him. Somebody out there would like a 27-year-old starter. 

It's time to face the reality of MLB's New World Order: Rebuilding doesn't happen overnight. The Redsocks 2013 World Championship came after two ridiculously awful years. If we paint over our problems with aging free agents, we run the risk of long-term mediocrity. From now on, every move needs to consider not just 2014, but 2015-16.

Carlos Beltran? What's he going to be like at age 42? Brian McCann? He caught 100 games last year. Is he our DH in 2016? Is that a Yankee dynasty?


KD said...

New rule for our Yanks: Don't trust anyone over 30!!

JM said...

They won't do anything sensible. Watch.