Tagged: Andy Pettitte

Yankees Sign Mark Teixeira for 8 Years, 180 Million!

In a stunning move, the Yankees have signed Mark Teixeira to an 8 year, 180 million dollar contract with a full no-trade-clause. Wow! With this move, the Yanks now look like the frontrunners to win the World Series. They have spent over 400 million this offseason on 3 players. CC Sabathia, AJ Burnett, and now Mark Teixeira will be the next faces of the New York Yankees.Yankees

I can’t believe that the Yankees are raising payroll so high. They said that they wouldn’t be going above the 215 million they had committed last season, but this might change that. 140 million dollars was committed coming into the offseason. Arbitration raises will probably add on another 10 million or so. That left them with 150 million. The Nick Swisher trade tacked on about 5 million. After signing Sabathia to a contract worth 23 million per year, it left them with 178 million dollar payroll. Burnett’s 16.5 million and Teixeira’s 22.5 million bring totals to 217 million; more than last year. I don’t have any idea how they can add payroll in this kind of economy. This whole offseason, GM Brian Cashman has been saying that the team won’t raise payroll, but they just did. They don’t have any tradable pieces aside from Hideki Matsui. There’s no doubt that he will get traded to accommodate this move. Swisher will move from first base to left field, Johnny Damon will Mark Teixeramove from left field to DH, and Matsui will be dealt somewhere. The Yanks will have to eat probably about half of his contract to move him, however. His knees are all banged up, and his bat is slipping. I don’t know of anyone who would want him unless they have an open DH spot. I guess the Mariners could make an inquiry, but I don’t think that they would want to add a player like that for only one year. I could see them buying low and then possibly selling high at the trade deadline if Hideki establishes his health. If not Seattle, then maybe the Rays could pursue him. They would have to miss out on all their other free agent options, though. Plus, the Yankees probably don’t want to trade within their division. I can’t think of any great fit for him, but there’s bound to be some team willing to take him on for only around 7 million.

If they can dump Matsui it looks like they’ll just head into the season with a 110 million dollar payroll. It was possible they would do this anyway. Mike Cameron and Andy Pettitte could have been aquired for near 10 million each. Now that Tex is a Yankee, neither option seems likely. They Yanks will have to go into the season with Phil Hughes as the fifth starter and with Brett Gardner and Melky Cabrera platooning in center field. Still, I would much rather have that to go along with Tex instead of Matsui, Pettitte, and Cameron. I have no idea where Pettitte will go now that the Yankee door is shut. Maybe he’ll retire if he cannot find a place he’s comfortable. The Dodgers, Brewers, and Cardinals could make some sense, at least for the team.

So, since Tex will wear pinstripes instead of Red Sox, who will where Sox? Boston will not look for a hitter anymore; they feel that Tex would be the only upgrade significant enough to trade Mike Lowell for. I agree. For the defense and leadership Lowell brings to the table, I would rather keep him instead of getting a small offensive upgrade with a player like Adam Dunn or Pat Burrell. The starting pitching looks like the position to address, now. You’d have to think that Derek Lowe is the happiest man not named Teixeira that the latter will be in New York. That will open up a spot for Lowe in Boston, or at least make them bid against the Mets. Still, I would say that Lowe is most likely to sign with the BoSox now that Tex won’t.

The Nationals will also look into backup plans. It seems as though the Nats will now turn their attention to Adam Dunn and Orlando Hudson. They will probably bid aggressively against the Angels for Dunn’s services, but I wouldn’t mind signing Hudson instead. There has been no interest at all shown for O-Dawg, so the Nats could get him at a rather cheap price. The Cardinals, Indians, and Giants just don’t make sense anymore. If Washington can sign him for, say, 3 years, 18 million, it will be a great deal. Much smarter than giving away 50 million+ to Dunn, or 180 million+ to Teixeira. I wouldn’t fault the Nats for waiting until next offseason to make their splash. In fact, that’d be the way I would go if Hudson doesn’t come cheap.

Now that the Yanks have added CC, Tex, and AJ, are they the best team in the MLB? Or even in the AL East for that matter? In my opinion, New York has a better rotation than the Rays, but not the Red Sox if the latter add Derek Lowe. New York probably has the best offense now with the addition of Mark Teixeira. There are some major question marks, though. Jorge Posada was hurt last year, and Nick Swisher and Robinson Cano are coming off of terrible years. The center field situation still isn’t sorted out, either. I could see Swish and Cano bouncing back, and the Yanks still could get some solid offense out of Posada. The defense will be bad, but you can live with that. The Red Sox have some question marks in their lineup, too. Mike Lowell was just hurt, and Jacoby Ellsbury and Jed Lowrie weren’t great. Plus, Ortiz is coming off an injury and doesn’t have the big protection he used to. With no Manny Ramirez or no Mark Teixeira batting behind him, you might see Ortiz’s bat fall off a cliff. The catcher situation remains unresolved, and it looks like they’ll have to go back to Jason Varitek. So both teams have question marks in their lineups. It is going to be very close this year, but I give the edge to the Yankees for the division, and the edge to the Red Sox for the Wild Card. The Rays are one of my favorite teams, but I don’t like their chance of repeating.

By the way, the Yankees should take the field to Darth Vader’s theme song.

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Andy Pettitte Possible for the Dodgers

Andy Pettitte has been in touch with his former manager, Joe Torre. The Dodgers have some interest in adding Pettitte. He would be a pretty solid addition to the back of their rotation, but I would rather have Randy Johnson. If you look at the stats, Randy was better than Andy in every category except for innings pitched. And that was because The Big Unit was hurt at the start the season. I wouldn’t mind adding both of them if the price was fair. A rotation of Chad Billingsley-Hiroki Kuroda-Randy Johnson-Andy Pettitte-Clayton Kershaw would be solid. The only only hang-up on this idea would be the money. If Unit gets 14 million, and Pettitte gets 12 million, the Dodgers would have only 24 million left to lock up Manny Ramirez with. That might take up all of the money, leaving the Dodgers with next to nothing to fill the third base and shortstop holes with. So I find both player signing in LA not very likely. Despite the possibility of Pettitte reuniting with his former manager I think he will resign with the Yankees. The Dodgers will sign Randy Johnson as their veteran arm, and will also sign a pitcher returning from injury to compete with James McDonald for the final spot.

Analizing the 2nd Tier of Free Agent Starters

CC Sabathia, Derek Lowe, AJ Burnett, Ben Sheets, and Ryan Dempster have all been generating a lot of buzz this winter, but I also want to analize the second tier of starters; the players beyond the top 5. Oliver Perez, Jon Garland, Randy Johnson, Greg Maddux, Andy Pettitte, Braden Looper, Jamie Moyer, Randy Wolf, Odalis Perez, Paul Byrd, Freddy Garcia, and Tom Glavine represent this tier. Some of these players will take one year deals with their former team, while others will look to sign 3 or 4 year deals. Of the above mentioned names, it seems that Maddux will retire. Glavine, Moyer, Pettitte, and Odalis Perez seem destined to resign with their former teams. That would leave Oliver Perez, Garland, Johnson, Looper, Wolf, Garcia and Byrd as the players who could truly be available. Johnson seems like the best bargain of the bunch; he had the best stats and will take a one year deal. He could generate the same buzz that Curt Schilling did last year. Garcia, Looper, and Byrd are solid back-of-the-rotation options that could come in on 1 year deals. The latter two have a lot of experience, and could be attractive to bad teams looking for veteran guidance. The Pirates seem like a team that could fit in well. Garcia has a lot of upside and should be a hot commodity once bigger names fall. The Giants, Brewers, Astros, Tigers, Indians, and Braves could find themselves a match in this cheaper group. The only players that will atempt to get a multi-year deal out of this group are Oliver Perez, Garland, and Wolf. Scott Boras will try to get 4 years for Perez because he is a young player with great stuff that racked up 180 strike-outs last year. All of this despite his 4.22 ERA. Garland will be a much tougher sell. He was bad last year with an ERA of 4.90 and very few Ks. However, he is about as solid as it gets when it comes to eating innings. He’s gone at least 190 innings per year for 8 straight years. If you want a young innings eater that won’t get hurt and could give you league average production, you’ll look at Garland. Wolf was very solid last year. He had an ERA of 4.30 to go along with 162 strike-outs in 190 innings, his most since 2003. He is quite a gamble because of his health issues, however. I could see him netting a 2 year deal under the right circumstances, though. So teams may find many bargains in the second tier because only 3 players will most likely look for multi year deals.

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Starting Pitching Free Agent Market

The hitters market isn’t that good, but now we get to the best part, the pitching. I labled the starters with what kind of starter I think they are. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, C5, (Which means competing for the 5th spot) and DL. (Which means they are returning from the DL, or an injury)

 

Free Agents

  • 1. CC Sabathia
  • 1. Ben Sheets
  • 1. John Lackey (9 million club option with a 0.5 million buyout)
  • 2. Ryan Dempster
  • 2. Mike Mussina
  • 2. Derek Lowe
  • 2. AJ Burnett (Can opt out)
  • 3. Oliver Perez
  • 3. Jon Garland
  • 3. Kyle Lohse
  • 3. Tim Wakefield (4 million club option)
  • 3. Greg Maddux
  • 3. Andy Pettitte
  • 3. Randy Johnson
  • 3. Brad Penny (8.75 million club option with a 2 million buy out)
  • 4. Jamie Moyer
  • 4. Braden Looper
  • 4. Odalis Perez
  • 4. Kenny Rogers
  • 4. Tom Glavine
  • 4. Randy Wolf
  • 5. Paul Byrd
  • 5. Jon Lieber
  • 5. Livan Hernandez
  • C5. Mark Hendrickson
  • C5. Brett Tomko
  • C5. Josh Fogg
  • C5. Kip Wells
  • C5. Tony Armas Jr.
  • DL. John Smoltz (12 million club option)
  • DL. Roger Clemens
  • DL. Freddy Garcia
  • DL. Curt Schilling
  • DL. Pedro Martinez
  • DL. Jason Jennings
  • DL. Mark Mulder (11 million club option with a 1.5 million buyout)
  • DL. Orlando Hernandez
  • DL. Mark Prior
  • DL. Esteban Loaiza
  • DL. Carl Pavano (13 million club option with a 1.95 million buyout)
  • DL. Mike Hampton
  • DL. Matt Clement
  • DL. Kris Benson

Teams in Need

  • Mets
  • Yankees
  • Dodgers (get 2)
  • Braves
  • Blue Jays
  • Astros (get 2)
  • Rangers
  • Brewers
  • Phillies
  • Red Sox (Only for a #1)
  • Tigers
  • Indians
  • Nationals
  • Padres
  • Rockies
  • D’Backs
  • Royals
  • Cardinals
  • Orioles
  • Pirates