Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Return for Pettitte still likely

John Harper says that a Andy Pettitte return to the Yankees is still very likely, and a deal could be hammered out next week. It says the Yankees were using the threat to pull the offer off the table as a scare tactic and still want Andy back.
Also, there is a very interesting article up talking about Mark Teixeira and how his arrival may affect Derek Jeter's future.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy Holiday

Hey guys, sorry for this past week. I haven't really been around for the Holidays and haven't gotten a chance to update this. I'll get this going again. Not much has happened on the Yankee front, let alone any teams front because of the Holidays.

Hope you all had a great Holiday and have a good New Years.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Yankees re-thinking Pettitte

According to Kat O'Brien the Yankees are satisfied with their roster and may pull their offer from Andy Pettitte.

While I understand this, I believe that we should still resign Andy. Hughes and Kennedy would both benefit greatly from a full year at AAA, and entering the year with Hughes as the 6th starter would be great in my opinion. I also believe we need Pettitte to round out our rotation. Without him, the only player who is an almost lock for 200 innings is CC Sabathia. Chien-Ming Wang usually floats around there, but is coming off an injury and may not reach the mark next year. Chamberlain won't be allowed to make it to 200 innings, Burnett is obviously an injury concern, and Hughes missed a large portion of the year last year due to injury. I believe having another virtual lock for 200 innings in our rotation would do wonders.

Another route they could take is signing a cheaper option to compete with Hughes and Kennedy. Some names you could hear are Carl Pavano, Paul Byrd, Braden Looper or even Pedro Martinez.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

This is why you make your Mark in pencil

Even though they may not have realized it until today, the Yankees have got their man. The Yankees came into today having already committed $243 million dollars to 2 pitchers this offseason. They had filled the holes in the rotation that have long haunted them by landing a true ACE in CC Sabathia and a second top of the rotation starter with A.J. Burnett. The question for a while now has not been if they had enough offensive power, but rather if they had the pitching to get to the promise land. Once the Yankees filled out their rotation with their two new Christmas presents, it left the line-up in an unknown position, looking up at the pitching.

The Yankees entered this offseason fully aware that they were going to lose big part of their offensive attack in Jason Giambi and Bobby Abreu. Those two players combined drive in close to 200 runs last year. To help fill the void, the Yankees acquired OF/1B Nick Swisher from the White Sox for several spare parts. Swisher, made famous from Billy Beane's 'Moneyball' book, when on top of his game is a very solid hitter. However, last year he failed to live up to expectations, hitting only .219 in a hitters park. He still clubbed 24 homers and kept his patient eye, drawing 82 walks. While Swisher was a very solid pickup, the Yankees were already counting on Robinson Cano, Jorge Posada and Hideki Matsui all to have rebound years. There are several interesting names out there, but very few who are the complete package and that fill exactly what the Yankees need. Manny Ramirez is a fantastic hitter, but lacks defensive skills and would create a distraction and a DH/OF logjam. Adam Dunn has light-tower power, but lacks pretty much every other skill. Bobby Abreu did a great job as the hitter in front of A-Rod the last couple years, but isn't the type who can carry a club on his back. So who is the guy who will fit the void at first, provide a bat to protect Rodriguez and is marketable to the fans?

Enter Mark Teixeira.

The Yankees have lacked a first basemen since the days of Tino Martinez. Tino was the guy who carried the team with his bat in the glory days, while also providing amazing defense at first. The Yankees gave Jason Giambi a huge contract to come replace Tino and hopefully bring along his MVP numbers from Oakland. Giambi didn't do a terrible job, but he wasn't the wizard at first Martinez was. For years, the Yankees have penciled in many guys at first, trying to find the one who would be 'that guy'. They wrote and erased the name of many players, many who you never heard from again after their time with the Yankees.

Over the last several years we've seen Andy Phillips win and lose the starting first basemen's job a couple times. Phillips spent most of last season in the minors with the Reds, batting .315 and smacking .231 with the big club. In 2007, Miguel Cairo started for a long stretch at first base. Miguel spent last year with the Mariners, hitting .249 and failing to a homer for the third straight season. After Cairo was Doug Mientkiewicz. Minky spent last year with the Pirates, hitting a reasonable .277 but going yard only twice. Other guys who have manned first are Wilson Betemit, Josh Phelps, Shelley Duncan, Craig Wilson, Trevor Lee, Tony Clark, John Olerud and they even tried the ghost of Tino Martinez. I am sure I am missing a couple others. All of these guys have been penciled in at first for the Yankees at one point or another. Not to knock any of the guys I mentioned, I will never have a fraction of the talent they have, but the point is not a single one of them is a face of the franchise type guy who can start at first every day. Brian Cashman was quoted as saying that he was more than OK with opening the season with Nick Swisher at first. Remember when he said this about Bubba Crosby starting in center, and weeks later Johnny Damon was the center fielder. I wasn't buying it for a second.

Swisher was simply penciled in for the start of the '09 season. The Yankees were prepared to go to war with Swish at first, and possibly Jorge Posada splitting time there as well. Going in the offseason the plan was to upgrade the pitching, and rightfully it should have been. Once that was taken care of, all the big bats were still out there. Cashman knew darn well of Teixeira's talents, I mean who doesn't? The guys a fantastic player. Many thought the Yankees couldn't afford another big ticket guy after CC and A.J. They turned out wrong. For weeks, rumors floated of the Red Sox being in the lead for Teix's services, with the Angels in second and the small market Orioles and Nationals trying to convince Teix to be the face of their franchise. Every report warned of the Yankees lurking in the shadows, but they were never taken seriously.

Then Red Sox owner said "we won't be a factor" in the Teixeira sweepstakes and the Angles took their offer off the table. It was the Yankees time to pounce. Once the Angles took back their offer, I had a funny feeling that the Yankees were going to push hard. They knew darn well the Red Sox didn't need Teixeira and weren't likely to get into a bidding war for a luxury player. Word came out early Tuesday morning that Teixeira was going to make his decision today and the Red Sox were the odds on favorites to land the slugger. Thats when the Yankees stepped up their efforts. The Yankees had already penciled in Nick Swisher at first base, so even if they lost the bidding they still had the option of making Swisher's name written in ink. In the end the Yankees out bid the Red Sox by $12 million and shocked the world by landing Mark Teixeira. News quickly spread threw baseball, and the Red Sox were left in defeat. The Yankees had stole their rivals main target.

So what does Teixeira bring? Many are going to find ways to criticize the move. They will bring up the money issue, the Posada/Jeter possibly having to move there down the road or some other excuse. When it comes down to it, this is a fantastic move and is exactly what the Yankees need. The Yankees get easily the best first basemen they've had since Tino Martinez. Teixeira bring great defense, which will likely be able to save up to 10 errors at year from the infield that Jason Giambi couldn't last year. They also get the slugger they need to protect Alex Rodriguez, and the 3-4 of Teix and A-Rod is possibly the best in baseball. He also fits the Yankees type of player perfectly. He takes a ton of walks and posts an OBP of close to .400 every year. And more importantly, he will only be 29 in April, meaning the Yankees have a guy who can be one of the faces of the franchise for a long time, and who isn't an aging and declining player. You can find whatever problem you want, but the truth is Teixeira is exactly what the Yankees needed. They have put themselves in a great position for next year with this move as well. If Xavier Nady leaves, Swisher can take over right, Austin Jackson can play center and if Posada can't catch anymore, he can move to the wide-open DH spot.

The thing the Yankees don't have to worry about for 8 years is something that has been creeping up on them for a long long time. This is that they don't have to pencil in Teixeira's name at first, this time...they can use pen.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Teix has landed

Buster Olney is reporting that the Yankees have agreed with first basemen Mark Teixeira on an 8-year, $180 million dollar contract,

If you go back to the second page, I explain why the Yankees need Teixeira. Now they have him. This gives them the huge bat to protect A-Rod, and on paper makes us the favorites to win the World Series. Add this line-up to the newly structured rotation, and barring injury, we look unstoppable. This pushes Nick Swisher back into the outfield, but the question is to what position. In my mind, he should move to center since thats where he played with the White Sox last year, and Damon stays in left. It may end up, however, Damon goes into center and Swisher plays left or right, with Xavier Nady playing the other corner spot. Swish has equal or sightly less range than Damon would in center, a better arm, but isn't built like an outfielder. Regardless of what the outfield positioning looks like, Teixeira improves out defense drastically.

The line-up now looks something like this:

LF/CF Damon
SS Jeter
3B Rodriguez
1B Teixeira
RF Nady
DH Matsui
C Posada
2B Cano
LF/CF Swisher

The rotation:
Pettitte (?)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Angels pull out of Teixeira sweepstakes

Tim Brown is reporting that the Angels have pulled their offer for Mark Teixeira off the table. The offer was reported to be 8-years worth $160 million. The offer was supposedly pulled because Teixeira wants to play on the East Coast.

Since this report was made, an Angels official has confirmed that the offer has been pulled. If the Red Sox report of "not being a factor" has any truth behind it (which many believe it doesn't), than this is the time for the Yankees to pounce. I still believe ultimately the Red Sox are the front runners. After that, the Nationals and Orioles are the other two East Coast teams with an offer, but he would likely have to lose for several seasons before competing.

This is the perfect time for the Yankees to make an offer if they have an intention to.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Yankee notes: Manny, Pettitte, Teixeira

Mark Feinsand is reporting that Manny Ramirez has been telling his friends that he expects at least a three-year offer from the Yankees. I wonder how much of this is true, or if Manny-being-Manny for the Yankees has already begun.
Ken Rosenthal heard from a source that Andy Pettitte returning to the Yankees is 'virtual inevitable". says Mark Teixeira will likely choose where he's going to play in the next few days. I'm wondering if the Yankees will or have made an offer. If they have any intention of doing so, they better do it quick. Once Teixeira signs, expect talks for Manny and Dunn to heat up.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Some CC contract details

ESPN has some of CC's contract details. The deal apparently includes a $9 million dollar signing bonus, meaning his salary in 2009 will be $14 million. CC will also be paid over 12 month spans, not only during the season. As you all know, he can void the deal after 3 years.

If more details come out I will post them.

Angels sign Juan Rivera for 3 years

According to the Angels have signed outfielder Juan Rivera to a 3 year deal worth $12.75 million. Rivera is a former Yankee and is a potential .280 hitter with 20 homers a year if given a full season of at-bats.

This comes as a surprise to me, but he'll likely be the starter in left for the Angels. I doubt he would have came back if he wouldn't be a starter, as he could have earned a full seasons worth of at-bats elsewhere.

Does this mean that if they can't get Teixeira, the Angels won't chase Manny?

Predicted spots for top free agents.

This has been a busy and entertaining offseason so far. We've seen the largest contract to a pitcher handed out, Matt Holliday traded to a low budget team and Jake Peavy rumor's galore only to lead to him staying in the fast-falling San Diego (for now). With news likely to be kind of slow until Teixeira signs, I am going to give my best shot at predicting where the top 5 remaining free agents will land.

Mark Teixeira
News broke last night that the Red Sox will 'not be a factor' in the bidding for Teixeira. The Red Sox reportedly aren't out of the bidding, but won't raise their offer which is rumored to be between 8-years $175-184 million. The largest offer on the table is most likely the Nationals, but Teixeira and Boras may have learned from A-Rod that the top dollar isn't worth rotting away on a bad team. The Orioles have also made a large offer, and have the draw of Mark playing for his hometown team, but he'd likely have to lose there for a good 4 years before finally competing. Also reports say they have fallen behind in the bidding. The Yankees are staying involved, but have not made an offer. In the end, I don't believe the Red Sox are out of it, but I believe the Angels need him most and will do what it takes for him to stay there.
Prediction: Angels, 8-years, $179 million

Derek Lowe
Many thought that once CC and Burnett signed, all the pieces for Lowe would fall into place. So far, that hasn't been the case. Yankees GM Brian Cashman said yesterday that he doesn't like tying up too many pitchers into long term contracts because that blocks spots in the rotation. It's unlikely that the Yankees will dish out another $60 million+ contract to a pitcher, and it seems that if Andy Pettitte turns them down, they will likely look in house for the fifth starter. The Red Sox are interested, and would probably be glad to sign him if they could get him on a three-year pact. Lowe and Scott Boras are looking for a 4-year dead at least at an annual salary of $14+ million. The Phillies are no longer interested after signing Jamie Moyer and the Mets seem like the only team that could bite on Lowe's demands. They are targeting a corner outfield bat first, but after likely losing Pedro Martinez and Oliver Perez to free agency, they need at least one more starter for their rotation. If he's willing to take a 3 year deal, he'll likely go to Boston, but unless that happens I see him going to New York.
Prediction: Mets, 4-years, $58 million

Manny Ramirez
On paper, the Dodgers look like the best fit for Manny, and are notorious for giving players short term contract for more money such as Jason Schmidt and Rafael Furcal. Though Scott Boras took it as a joke when the Dodgers offered Manny 2-years and upwards of $45 million. They were reportedly willing to add a third year, but not much talking has happened between the two sides since then. Boras' dream scenario would likely be Teixeira landing in Boston and the Yankees/Dodgers/Angels getting into a bidding war for Manny. However, barring a turnaround, the Dodgers seem out of it, leaving the Yankees as the only logical landing spot for the one-man drama series that is Manny.
Prediction: Yankees, 3-years, $70 million with a vesting option

Adam Dunn
It comes as a shock that guy who has hit exactly 40 home runs over the last 4 years (46 the year before that) and has drove in over 100 guys in each of those seasons would find such little interest in this market. He doesn't a high average at all, usually floating around .250, and plays below average defense in the outfield or first base, but the bat speaks for itself. He would be a great DH for any team in the AL, or can play left/right or first in the right situations. He'd be a cheaper option for those teams who miss out on Teixeira, likely only command a 4-year deal at $14 million per. His market will likely heat up once Teixeira lands wherever he's going, and teams that will have probably interest include the Nationals, Dodgers, Angels, Yankees, Cubs, Mets, Braves, Giants, Rays, Rangers and Mariners. While the Nationals have been the most rumored landing spot, he has been quoted saying winning is his number one priority, and if the Dodgers can't bring back Manny, Dunn may be able to find a nice home in LA.
Prediction: Dodgers, 4-years, $56 million

Brian Fuentes
Once Francisco Rodriguez signed, Fuentes easily became the best closer on the market. Since then, Kerry Wood signed with the Indians, leaving Fuentes as the only elite closer left. He has had a quiet yet effective career in Colorado and has been one of the most consistent closers over that time. He's getting up there in age, but wouldn't require more than a 3 or 4 year contract. He says he loves LA and would love to play for the Angels. The Dodgers are also a possibility here but they seem content with Jonathan Broxton as their closer and seem more focused on other things. Cardinals manager Tony la Russa apparently 'loves' Fuentes as a closer and I believe it will come down to them and the Brewers, who have a ton a money left over after Sabathia turn down their offer.
Prediction: Cardinals, 3-years, $36 million

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Red Sox out of Teixeira bidding?

John Henry: "We met with Mr. Teixeira and were very much impressed with him," Henry said. "After hearing about his other offers, however, it seems clear that we are not going to be a factor."

This come as a huge shock to me, as well as probably many other people. Its entirely possible he's just calling the bluff of Scott Boras, but its also entirely possible this is true.

If this statement holds true, I believe the suitors for Teixeira look like:

1.) Angels
2.) Orioles
3.) Nationals

It is believed the Yankees have still yet to make an offer. I hope they do, but it seems unlikely.

Yankees introduce CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett

The Yankees introduced new pitchers CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett at the old Yankee stadium

All pictures are from here

For those unaware, Sabathia's contract is worth 7-years, $161 million dollars and a n opt-out after three years. Burnett's contract is 5-years, $82.5 million dollars. Contract details are not known, but will be posted once announced.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Called Safe at Second chats with MLBTR

I e-mailed Tim Dierkes asking for a few moments of his time to answer a couple questions some Yankee fans may have about the team, including myself. He agreed to answer a few. Tim is the owner of, a website that keeps fans updated with all the recent baseball rumors. If you are a baseball fan I highly recommend you check out his website.

Here are the questions and responses:

Me: Are the Yankees serious about Mark Teixeira and Manny Ramirez, or is it just a myth to drive up the prices?

Tim: I don't think they're willing to pay the full Scott Boras sticker price for either player. With so few Manny suitors I could see them landing him if he'll take a two-year deal.

Me: Wouldn't Adam Dunn make sense for the Yankees? He would require a shorter and cheaper contract than Teixeira and is younger than Manny. He's not your typical first basemen, but imagine all the homers he'd hit with that short porch.

Tim: I'm not sure that they need another DH type. Adding Dunn to the equation would kind of clog things up (Manny too). Unload Matsui and then it makes more sense.

Me: What are some reasonable expectations for Sabathia and Burnett next year?

Tim: I expect both to post ERAs under 4.00. For Burnett I would look for 180-190 innings, Sabathia maybe 220.

Me: If you had to pick now, where do you see Lowe, Teixeira, Manny, Dunn and Sheets landing?

Tim: Lowe - Mets. Tex - Nationals. Manny - Angels. Dunn - Dodgers. Sheets - Yankees.

Me: If the Yankees miss out on Andy Pettitte, would a Jarrod Washburn for Hideki Matsui trade be possible? The Mariners will miss Raul Ibanez and Washburn will only make $750,000 more than what is being offered to Pettitte and a trade would open the door for a Teix/Manny signing.

Tim: Seems unlikely...Matsui makes more money and has less trade value right now.

Me: Even though its far away, the Yankees have Johnny Damon, Hideki Matsui and Xavier Nady all coming off the books next offseason. Who do you see them pursuing to plug those holes, assuming Austin Jackson fills the hole in center. Would Crawford make sense to fill the left field/leadoff hole?

Tim: Crawford would make sense, but the Rays have an option on him they might exercise. I could see them going after Jason Bay, Matt Holliday, Rick Ankiel, Brian Giles, or Vladimir Guerrero if available.

Me: On a scale of 1-30, 1 being the best in baseball, 30 being the worst, where does the Yankees rotation rate as opposed to the other teams?

Tim: Without analyzing any numbers, I'll just say it looks to be among the top three in the game.

I want to thank Tim Dierkes one more time for taking the time to answer my questions. Enjoy.

Yankee Notes: Manny, Cameron, Sabathia

Here are some Yankees notes from today:

From the Daily News
One baseball official told the Daily News that the Yankees' interest in Ramirez is more than cursory, that they see the slugger as the perfect complement in their lineup to Alex Rodriguez, forming a 1-2 punch like he did in Boston with David Ortiz.

The official believes that the Yankees are "going hard" after Ramirez, to the point where they are willing to give him a three-year deal worth from $22 million to $25 million per year.

Two other officials are skeptical that the Bombers would commit three years to the enigmatic Ramirez, who has already seen the Dodgers make and withdraw a two-year, $45 million offer this winter. Both of them believe the Yankees will linger in the background while agent Scott Boras works to gather offers, and if the market is limited, the Yanks will try to jump in with a two-year, $50 million package.

According to a source familiar with the Yankees' thinking, Brian Cashman has been lukewarm to the idea of signing Ramirez, but the rest of the front office - most notably Hal and Hank Steinbrenner - believes he is precisely what the Yankees need to bolster a lineup that underachieved in 2008.

Two other analysts seem to disagree that the Yankees are serious about Manny. As i've said several times, I hope they are serious about Manny, Teixeira or even Adam Dunn. The Yankees would look great if they could add that other bat.

According to Kat O'Brien the Melky Cabrera for Mike Cameron trade seems to be all but off.

The Yankees will introduce A.J. Burnett and CC Sabathia both tomorrow at the old Yankee stadium. The same article mentions this interesting snip of information:
Sabathia checked into the Essex House on Monday night under an alias, believed to be the name of one of his agents. After a photo of Sabathia standing in front of the hotel appeared in Tuesday's Daily News, the hurler decided to check out and switch hotels Tuesday afternoon, according to a source.

This is not a promising way to start the CC/New York relationship. If Sabathia doesn't know this is what New York will be like, he is in for a long 3 or 7 years.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Yankees pursuing Manny?

Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman reports the Yankees are ready to go after Manny Ramirez if they fail to land Mark Teixeira:

The Yankees are in on the Mark Teixeira sweepstakes but don't appear overly optimistic to outbid the determined Angels or Red Sox. Should the Yankees lose out for Teixeira, who's drawing interest from the perennially also-ran Nationals and Orioles in addition to the three aforementioned clubs, they seem ready to pounce for Manny Ramirez.

There are those suggesting the Yankees are only in the running for Teixeira to either monitor the rival Red Sox or drive up the price for the switch-hitting slugger. But while it's true the Yankees don't appear as eager to sign Teixeira as the Angels and Red Sox, they do appear willing to sign him at the right price. After already signing CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett for $243.5 million combined, the Yankees appear disinclined to offer $200 million for Teixeira, which is what it may take to get him.

Thats where Manny may come in.

While the Yankees have a trio of accomplished corner outfielders -- Johnny Damon, Hideki Matsui and Xavier Nady -- they appear to love the idea of Manny and could still utilize Damon in centerfield on occasion.

If Teixeira goes to the Red Sox, Ramirez's market becomes that much better because the Angels become a possibility for his services as well as the Yankees and the incumbent Dodgers. If Teixeira stays in Anaheim, Ramirez loses a little leverage because the Red Sox don't want him back. Boston's resolve to win Teixeira is heightened since they don't have a viable fallback option like Ramirez.

Teixeira's agent, Scott Boras, has been telling teams he envisions Teixeira closer to Alex Rodriguez ($27.5 million, or $30.5 million annually, depending whether you count the performance bonuses) than Torii Hunter ($18 million), and baseball people believe Teixeira will surely beat the $20 million mark, and perhaps even CC Sabathia's $23 million salary.

While I still prefer Teixeira, and Manny definitely doesn't help the defense (see picture above), he may not be a terrible fall-back option. He for sure would not require the 8+ years Teix will, but may equal or exceed his annual salary. We would most likely have to trade Matsui or even Nady/Damon to make room for Manny, but he would add the bat needed behind A-Rod. Imagine A-Rod and Man-Ram hitting back-to-back.

Off the top of my head some fits for Matsui could be Seattle, Oakland, Kansas City, Texas or even Anaheim if they miss on Teix. It's safe to say no NL team would take on Matsui after his surgeries on both knees. Nady would have a bigger list of suitors. The Reds pop into mind first. Would the Reds do some variation of a Nady for Bailey swap? Matsui would likely have to be in a bad-contract swap. What about Matsui for Jarrod Washburn? Washburn is set to make $10.75 next year, only slightly above what the Yankees are offering Pettitte, and both Wash and Matsui will become free agents after this year. Seattle needs to replace Ibanez's production somewhere.

This line-up doesn't look too shabby:

LF Damon
SS Jeter
3B Rodriguez
DH Manny
C Posada
RF Nady
2B Cano
1B Swisher
CF Gardner/Melky

All this being said, I still prefer Teixeira. But keep your eyes, and minds wide open.


Monday, December 15, 2008

Melky for Cameron trade on hold

According to, the Melky Cabrera for Mike Cameron trade is at a "stalemate" and did talks did not continue today, as previously reported. Kei Igawa may not be involved in the trade anymore, and Bill Hall may come along with Cameron to the Yankees.

As you can tell, I wish they would save the money that Cameron would get paid and pursue Teixeira. Cameron and Hall are both very good friends of CC Sabathia, so acquiring either could ease Sabathia's transition to the Big Apple. I think Hall could be our version of Chone Figgins, he has spent time in his career at short, third, and in center. I think he's played some second as well.

For what its worth, Hall is due close to $25 million over the next three years, and Cameron $10 million next year.

Yankees need Mark Teixeira

We've seen the Yankees involved in a lot this offseason, from CC Sabathia to AJ Burnett to Mike Cameron.  Just a few days after bringing left-handed work horse CC Sabathia and dominate righty AJ Burnett on board, rumors have been floating around about the Yankees possibly getting involved in the Mark Teixeira bidding. 

I've though about it long and hard, and there are several reasons why the Yankees should go all out to sign Mark Teixeira.

He's the all-around package. 
The Yankees haven't had an all-around first basemen since the days of Tino Martinez. Several players have been thrown out there, but none can come close to the likes of Teix. From Miguel Cairo, to Doug Mientkiewicz and all the way back around to Jason Giambi. All of those guys lack at least one of the major 5-tools (Or in Cairo's case, all of them). Mark Teixeira is an all-around player and would fill just about all of the remaining holes the Yankees have.

The line-up lacks a Big-Bopper to protect Alex Rodriguez. The Yanks will most likely open the new stadium without Bobby Abreu and Giambi to bat in front of a behind Rodriguez respectively. While the Yankees have newly-acquired Nick Swisher penciled in at first, he provided the flexability to play more than just one position. Swish played 97 games in the outfield last year, mainly centerfield (the other hole in the Yankees offense), as opposed to 71 at first. Over the course of his career, Swisher has only played first more then the outfield in one season, his 2006 season in Oakland.  If the Yankees were to sign Teixeira, he would provide the 30 homerun, 100 RBI bat to play behind Alex Rodriguez as well as allow the Yankees to move Swisher into centerfield.  

Another added bonus is Mark is only 28-years of age. It is not often that players with this much success at the major league level hit the market at this young of an age. After this season, Xavier Nady, Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui will all be eligible for free agency, meaning only Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, Robinson Cano, Swish, and Jorge Posada are locks to be starting somewhere in 2010. The Yankees will need the fill the production lost by Matsui, Damon, Nady along with Giambi and Abreu from somewhere. Looking at the list of next years free agents, Matt Holliday is the only big name bat that may be out there, and I am sure he will have his choice of suitors. You could eliminate the headache now by getting that young, big bat this year.

There is also the defensive issue. Coming into 2009, the Yankees look like an average defensive team at best.  Teixeira is a Gold Glove caliber first basemen. While moving Swisher to the outfield would slightly knock the defense, adding this type of glove at first would greatly change the dynamic of the infield.  Teix is the type of player that can make average defenders look like wizards in the field. He could save 10-15 bad throws a year at the bare minimum as opposed to if the Yankees let Swish man first everyday.  Pitching and defense win championships, we've been hearing that for years. The Yankees have done their best to address the pitching part this winter, but the defense leaves much to be desired. 

And then there is the argument about salary. Mark Teixeira is represented by super-agent Scott Boras, add that to his pure talent and Mark's contract is likely to be in the range of at least 8-years, $165 million dollars. The Yankees dropped $88 million dollars in contracts this offseason, so while on paper it looks like they are spending like crazy, that is untrue.  Sabathia will earn a annual salary of $23 million next year, combined with the $16.5 million Burnett will make, combining for $39.5 going to the 2 new pitchers next year. Lets pencil Andy Pettitte to return for tops $12 million, thats only $51.5 million committed, leaving $37 million to come off the books (this is assuming the Melky/Cameron deal wouldn't happen because Swish would then play center). After this year, the Yankees will drop $14 million from Damon and $14 million from Matsui. Add that to $12 million from Pettitte and an additional $6 million from Nady. If the Yankees were to pay Teixeira a salary of about $22 million, thats $15 million from this offseason added to $46 million chopped off the payroll, even with the addition of Teixeira.

Without Teix, the Yankees will face the possibility of at least 2 holes to fill next offseason. With Teix, the Yankees will need to possibly fill only one hold, that being left field.

Let's face it, the Yankees haven't had an all-around first basemen since Tino Martinez, not coincidently the last time the Yankees won a World Series. If the Yankees sign Mark Teixeira, even with the massive contract, they will be a all around better team;

Projected line-up with Mark Teixeira:

LF Damon
SS Jeter
3B Rodriguez
1B Teixeira
DH Matsui
RF Nady
C Posada
2B Cano
CF Swisher

Added with the projected rotation of Sabathia/Burnett/Wang/Pettitte/Chamberlain, the Yankees would be easily the best team on paper, and have the best chance to reach the World Series they have in a long time. 

One way or another, no matter what way you look at it, Mark Teixeira would look great in pinstripes.


Hey everybody. I'm just starting up here so i'll let you know about myself. I'm a huge New York Yankees fan. I live in Chicago, Illinois currently but I was born in the Bronx, New York.  I watch every Yankees game and am very passionate about my team.

My favorite player in Phil Hughes. I've never missed one of his starts at the Major League level, and follow him in the minors as well. I know he hasn't been too great so far, especially after his tough year last year, but I know I don't stand alone when I say i'm hoping for a bounce-back year next year.

I will be posting Yankees and baseball rumors and giving my Yankee opinions. Anybody is welcome to join. I ask that you guys keep it fun and don't bring a negative attitude here.