Thursday, March 26, 2015

Dear Hal, here's a quick (and FREE!) template for saving the Yankees

Dear Mr. Steinbrenner,

I sense that you're feeling picked-on.

In this angry era of cyber-bullying and Twitter necktie parties, the last thing an old sport such as yourself should fear is the ding of an incoming phone text. But the fact is, some fans are grousing that you don't spend enough on the New York Yankees, (a team you own), and that we are now entering Year 3 of an epoch of Horace Clarkeian mediocrity, similar to the one your dad bestowed on us 40 years ago, when you were just a puppy. This can ruin Internet etiquette.

Now, I realize that everybody wants you to shell out your hard-inherited dollars, and dammit, it's your money, not theirs. It's sort of like going to a fancy restaurant and having them order for you - and not only that, but they skip the cool Cheese Tots appetizer and pounce on the liver plate. Dammit, that money is yours. If you want, you can spend it on broads, weed and blow. You can buy a truckload of Play-Dough and build a giant blue clubhouse with a yellow swimming pool imprinted with newspaper text. You don't have to listen to nobody.

But please, sir, listen to this.

Next December, the odds are quite good that the Yankees - (the team you own) - will have finished out of the playoffs for a third straight season. At this point, a number of fans - if they still care at all - will have turned as orange as John Boehner, and they'll be snarling your name while jabbing darning needles into pillows with your face stitched into the casings. Here's what you must do.

Sign the biggest name free agent on the market. Give him a seven-year deal. Shell out the money. (Remember: You are personally worth about $4 billion.) It doesn't matter who. We just need somebody new.

The following year, do the same. And then the year after that... and the year after that.

On the seventh year, the system will be self-restoring: You'll have one huge contract coming off the books, as a new one arrives. Yes, the price will gradually rise. That's inflation. But every year, the Yankees will be guaranteed one shining new ray of hope, along with two or three stars in their primes, two or three who are fading, and one Carlos Beltran, who everybody secretly wishes would fall into a well.

Every year, sign one - and hold ceremonies to say goodbye to one. It's equilibrium. It's serendipity. Don't go signing three guys at once. And don't trying to paint over problems with Stephen Drews, Vernon Wells, Travis Hafners, et al. Go for one free agent, build the farm system, and every seven years, replace a 39-year-old with a 32-year-old.

This year, if the Yankees had, say, signed Max Scherzer, the eyes of baseball would be upon us - along with the rampant scorn, which we secretly love - and we would now be looking at a team capable of winning the AL East. Right now, we are a rash of injuries away from being the worst team in baseball. And when you're old, you're also injury-prone. We don't have enough fingers to be crossed to imagine this team going all the way. Come July, you'll end up trading for another bunch of salary dumps, and we'll be right back to where we started.

Every year, grab the best. In seven years, you won't even feel the pinch.

There's no reason for you to fear your email inbox. And remember, sir, you are a billionaire, not a cheap-suited millionaire. You are New York, not New Brunswick. This are the Yankees, not the Padres. And you are a Steinbrenner, not a Wrigley. Wake up, sir, or one of these days, you won't be hearing the ding of rampant phone texts - because the Yankees will be the Mets. And once that happens, it's a seven-year trip back to the Bronx.


KD said...

Good grief, I am ready for the season to start. Yet I still have f'en snow in my backyard.

Pitching is our ray of hope, according to the WSJ.

Too bad about the hitting...

Unknown said...

Only problem with your plan is that the Yankees would then not ever have a first round pick. I actually like the current model of waiting for years where there are multiple targets and splurging then signing only fill Ins until the next great market. If the team has followed your advice the last seven years you'd have no: Hensley, heathvott, lindgren, judge, clarkin etc. Your plan would literally be impossible with your other stated desire to "build up the farm". So I was fine passing on scherzer.

But after the recent IFA splurge and 3 first round picks I would like to see them sign heywardOR Upton and one of the fantastic SP crop this coming winter