Problem: The Yankees have too many starters.
Question: How do you get rid of A.J. Burnett?
Answer: Deal him to the Pirates.
When the Yankees signed him during their massive offseason shopping spree in 2008, it looked like a fairly good deal. Burnett was coming off of an 18-10 season with the Blue Jays, during which he posted a 4.07 E.R.A. Those were pretty appealing numbers, leading the Yankees to sign him to a 5 year, $85 million deal to fill in the vacancy left by 20 game winner, Mike Mussina. In his first year with the club, Burnett pitched decently, posting a 13-9 record with a 4.04 E.R.A., but things just went downhill from there. In his last two years with the Yankees, he has a combined 21-26 record and a 5.21 E.R.A., along with control and attitude issues. He is also being paid $17 million a year lest we forget, and has now become the New York’s biggest enigma since the Mets had Luis Castillo and Oliver Perez. Luckily, there is a shining star in the distance, it being that there is a way to deal Burnett. The Pirates, coming off one of their most successful seasons in the past 20 years, are engaged in serious trade talks with the Yankees involving Burnett, and are even looking to take on $10 million of his salary for the next two years. However, the Yankees do not believe that this is enough, and are seeking to acquire a player such as Garrett Jones in addition to having the Pirates take on the $10 million.
I say that the Yankees deal Burnett while he still has any interested trade suitors left and still holds any trade value. With the position that the Yankees are in with their solid rotation, and their willingness to get under the luxury tax in the coming years, having a $17 million long reliever does not make any sense for the club. If the Yankees truly want a player back in the deal, they should go after a Double A prospect or something along those lines, not a potential key players for the Pirates in 2012. They should deal Burnett while they still can.
What do you guys think?
Now that the Cardinals’ miraculous comeback season has come to a close, its time to move onto the Yankees and their plan of attack in pursuit of title number 28.
I’ve got the map and I’m ready to go searching….
- Resign Brian Cashman
Brian has been instrumental to the formation of the modern day Yankees. He’s drafted stars such as Robinson Cano, Ian Kennedy, and Austin Jackson and then used his chips (Kennedy, A-Jax) to spring a deal for one of the greatest outfielders in the game, Curtis Granderson. Since being named GM in 1998, Cashman’s Yanks have won 4 World Championships and have 6 AL Pennant Titles. He spent his money, for the most part (A.J. BURNett I’m talking to you) wisely, and without him the organization wouldn’t be where it is today.
2. Sign CC Sabathia to a 5 year $130 million deal
Without CC Sabathia, the Yankees rotation this year would have been anchored by A.J. Burnett. Scary, isn’t it? That’s why it is instrumental for the Yankees to resign CC for next year and beyond. Coming off consecutive 19 win seasons the price will be steep, but being as CC is entering his age 33 season, it is imperative that the Yankees lock him up for 5 years, no more, no less, so that they aren’t straddled with a pitcher on the decline in his age 38 season.
3. Pick up Swisher’s Option
The Yankees need Swisher, and Swisher needs the Yankees. His egregious personality brightens the Yankees clubhouse and in comparison to a guy like Carlos Beltran, $10.25 million is worth spending in order to keep Swisher for another year. Also a stat line of .260 · 23 · 85 is pretty good if I may say so myself.
4. Sign Mark Buehrle to a 2 year, $21 million deal
Buehrle is exactly the type of pitcher that the Yankees desperately needed this past season; a semi-quality innings eater that can give you 180-200 innings a year with an ERA under 4. His stuff isn’t deadly, but his craftiness and precision is what defines his game. A 2 year deal ensures that there is not a lengthly commitment and the $21 million shouldn’t kill the Yankees, even if he posts a 4.25 ERA and 175 innings next year.
5. Allow Dellin Betances, A.J. Burnett and Manny Banuelos to Battle for the 5th Rotation Spot in Spring Training
The Three Big “B’s”
Allowing Burnett, Betances, and Banuelos to battle for the 5th spot in Spring Training will bring out the best in the three, and show A.J. that just because he is expensive, it doesn’t mean that he is guaranteed a rotation spot. If one of the two young guns gets the spot, he will be regulated to long relief and the other prospect will return to the AAA rotation. If A.J. wins it however, Betances and Banuelos will return to the Triple A rotation until the inevitable injury occurs or Burnett is slumping.
It’s offseason time.
Hey guys! I’m back! Happy New Year!!! It seems like just yesterday that it was 2008! My vacation went well but unfortunately I didn’t have internet access so I wasn’t able to post fo a long time. The highlight of my vacation though was crashing into a net with my skis up in the air just like I did when I was younger. 2009 looks to be a great year for baseball as CC and A.J. look to be dominating in the AL East and Postseason masher Evan Longoria looks to follow up his outstanding rookie of the year campaign with another awesome season. David Price and Phil Hughes are going to be solid contributers to their teams and even the Melk-Man and Carl Crawford are going to bounce back from their not so typical seasons. Who will be next season’s Fairy Tale Team? Will the Rays once again make it to the series? How will the Yankees fare with CC, A.J. and Teix? So many questions, 162 games to be played. I also want to give a shout out to the MLB Network as now our National Pastime is going Full Time 24/7 and I don’t have to wait each morning for some tiny tidbits of baseball info to pop up on ESPN. This year is going to be great and I can’t wait for baseball to get started!
Happy New Year 2009!
Okay, I know that it’s still really early in the offseason but I feel the need to write about my super early division rankings. What that basically is, is what placements I think teams are going to receive in their divisions. Over the next 6 to 7 days I will be writting my different division rankings. First up is the AL East:
1. Yankees: They just got CC and A.J. Burnett and replaced Giambi with Swisher while also getting a great pitching prospect in the White Sox trade, Kanekoa Teixeira, in exchange for Betemit,and pitching prospects Jeffrey Marquez and Jhonny Nunez. Rivera’s one of the best closers ever. They have a stacked line up and a killer rotation.
2. Rays: Solid rotation with Shields, Kazmir, Garza, and Sonnastine. Don’t forget about David Price their pitching stud. They can use Grant Ballfour, Dan Wheeler, or Troy Percival, if he’s healthy, in the closer’s role. They have Evan Longoria, Carlos Pena, and B.J. Upton who are players who consistently deliver and have a stacked farm system and will dominate for years to come.
3. Red Sox: Good rotation with Dice-K, Beckett, and Lester leading the way. Papelbon is dominant in the bullpen. Having Lowell out hurts them but they still have a great line up and they are a nice combination of old and new.
4. Blue Jays: Roy Halladay leads a questionable rotation now without A.J. Burnett. They have Wells, Rios, and intriguing players Travis Snider and Adam Lind. Need to at least acquire a mid- level pitching player to have a slim chance of competing in this tough division.
5. Orioles: Obtaining Mark Texeira would give them an immense boost to their offense. Their best hitter right now is Nick Markakis and he is a stud. The Orioles need more pitching for sure as their rotation headlined by Jeremy Gurthie isn’t really steady. Sherril is a decent closer and Matt Wieters will be the 2009 AL Rookie of the Year if Price doesn’t beat him out.
Look for the rankings of the AL Central in the next two days.
Bye for now!