Andy’s coming back. And it ain’t for $10 million, though it could reach up to $12 million. Pete Abe has the details.
 Incentive-laden deal. It should have been the way they went in the first place.
Nice. Yankees are opening on the road, would be kinda nice for Andy to get the first start in the new digs.
Very pleased about this one. Though I'm curious as to who gets the axe from the 40-man roster . . . not nearly as much fat to trim as last year. My guess would be Chase Wright, but only because they just added Hacker, Dunn, Garcia, De La Rosa, Claggett, and Jackson to the 40-man roster, and so why cut one of them?
Though I’m curious as to who gets the axe from the 40-man roster
Probably a reliever; one of Albadejo, Robertson or Giese, maybe?
Hey, Andy. Don't let the door hit in the a@@ on the... what, oh, welcome back : ) I wonder if Torre bought any stories from Kramer to put in his book. I can picture Mr. T. trudging through the subway tunnels to return a pair of pants. The very pants he was wearing!
re: 40-man: I think Shaun has it right with Chase Wright. Albaladejo, Robertson and Giese all have a shot at making the 25-man out of camp, no way any of them gets cut.
Interesting, I suggested those 3 because they're pretty much the same; RHRP's, of which the bullpen is loaded with (Veras, Edwar, Bruney, Humberto, etc).
Has Wright's stock fallen that far?
Andy had better get his head on straight, and realize he's not on Torre's team any more! If he can't do any better than the last half of '08, he won't be on the rotation out of Spring Training. I hope he's pissed off enough to get motivated to earn all the incentives! If he can, we'll be in tall cotton and he may even prove to be the leader he was destined to be!
Raf, was Wright's stock ever that high? He'll be 26 in a couple of weeks, is in an organization loaded with starting pitching talent, and spent most of 2008 in Double-A. He's a non-prospect, and with Pettitte back in the fold and Coke having passed him as a swing-lefty, he has zero relevance to the major league team.
 Not necessarily, but someone has to go . . .
With Coke, Dunn, and De La Rosa, Wright isn't needed as a token lefty starter.
With Coke and (especially) Marte, he's not needed as a lefty reliever. He doesn't strike guys out the way Marte, Coke, and all the righties do; the other exception is Giese, but he, among all the righty relievers, is likely the only real long reliever/spot starter. Wright probably has no trade value, unlike Veras (who goes to arbitration next offseason I believe) or Bruney (who's still 2 years from free agency).
That's my thinking, at least. I've been wrong before (I still can't believe they re-signed Marte to a 4-year deal).
See, I thought Kennedy or Aceves would get the long/swingman role instead of Geise.
As for Wright, I figured with the injury he had last year that while he may not make the team out of ST, he'd pitch in the majors sometime this season. I never thought he was an ace, just a back end of the rotation starter.
I was under the impression that he was @ AA due to a combination of too many arms @ AAA and injury rehab. I guess if it were the former, that would speak for itself.
Oh well, in the end, it's not that big a deal.
 Shaun, I was under the impression that they were high on Coke (LOL) and that was the underlying factor for getting Pettitte to either take a cut in pay or have a nice day! Even with the guaranteed deal, Pettitte has to stay healthy as well as productive to reap the maximum amounts in the contract, right? The last time I checked, Pettitte can't spot regularly at 94-96 the way Coke can. I don't know if he's ready for 200 innings though.
My guess on Kennedy is that he'll spend the entire year in triple-A, reemerge as a September call-up, and if all's gone well, be in the mix for next year's rotation. I think Aceves likely will be the long-man in the pen, but Geise will challenge him for the spot and could take it if all else is equal and the Yanks would rather Aceves stay stretched out as a sixth-starter in Scranton while Hughes gets a little more development time in.
PJ, Coke is not as good as he looked down the stretch last year, and is best left in the bullpen. He'll be 27 in July and was lucky to get his fastball in the 90s when last season began. Those last ticks of velocity come in short stints only. He's not a future member of this or any other rotation. The Yankees asking him to return to starting this spring made sense for a variety of reasons (pressuring Pettitte, adding rotation depth, that it's easier to prepare to start then move to the pen--as Joba did last year--than vice versa), but I don't think he'll open the regular season as a starting pitcher.
net net I feel good about this. still not 100% sure i wouldn't have felt better about sheets on a similar (or similar 2 year) deal. despite the old adage about never having enough SP, I think we could've weathered a CC/AJ/Wang/Joba/Sheets rotations. And YIKES for the 10-20 turns through the rotation when all are healthy...EGADS!!
Happy day, happy day!
You want irrational exuberance? I've got your irrational exuberance right here!
Welcome back, dear, dear Andy!!!!!!!
Thanks Cliff! At the very least he seemed like another option to Marte as the specialist. Oh well...
And there was much rejoicing! That really solidifies things, and allows Joba to be brought along as the 5th starter and saved for post season work (inshallah).
And I agree Wright should be dropped, unless they think there is someone else who's unlikely to be claimed. But Shelly made it though, and I had figured someone would've wanted a lefty masher/mascot, so maybe Wright makes it too. After all those HRs he gave up - if I'm not mistaken the last HR Jason Varitek ever hit (I kid, I kid) - he's got to have some good karma coming his way! I'd love to see Geise stick as a medium term long man, so the worse of Kennedy/Aceves can be traded less painfully.
 I thought Andy had earned the last start at the old place, but I think Wang has earned the first start at the new one.
Ah, I figured I'd see Weeping in the comments, and I'm not disappointed!
Are the incentives realistic ones that he really might meet? I guess the real question is: are they incentives which, if met, would mean that he was worth $12 million?
 His head on straight?
Are you joking?
He'll either pitch well or he won't. Either way, I don't think it's a matter of between the ears.
And besides, inconsistent though he's always been liable to be, when he's on, he's great and when he's off, he still could get you a decent five to seven.
The fun will begin if (and it's a pretty huge if) all the starters remain healthy and Hughes is lights-out in Scranton. Will the Yanks have the guts to move Hughes into the rotation and demote Pettitte to long relief (thus knocking down his innings count and saving millions)?
 No, I'm not joking and yes, head on straight! I don't want to hear or read about any more cell phone whine fests from Pettitte, Jeter, Mo, and Posada to Joe Torre about Joe Girardi, period! He was consistently bad in the last half of '08, justifying the new deal. And I still add his guaranteed deal doesn't guarantee him a slot in the rotation.
 Didn't they refuse to do that with Posada's games caught clauses in the past and let him play to earn the most money? I would imagine it depends on what type of citizen Pettitte is in Spring Training, both as a person and a productive pitcher, getting with the Girardi program, or calling Torre every five minutes to long for the days of yesteryear.
In any event, I'm very glad they have an abundance of quality arms and innings at the ready in case of any injuries that may occur. Who knows? Maybe the book will piss all of them off enough to have another '98 type campaign! I think I'd be pissed if my sanctuary and confidentiality of the clubhouse was violated in such a fashion. We'll see...
Would have been nice to have a Spring competition for the fifth slot, but this is good for the 2009 team. If anyone gets hurt, then Hughes et al get some starts. But I'm with Goldman in thinking the best preparation for pitching in the majors is...pitching in the majors.
With this move, I'd love to see the Yanks trade some of this pitching depth for a legitimate centerfielder.
Hughes, McAllister, Melky for Kemp?
Kennedy, Aceves, Gardner for McLouth?
For them to sit on all that depth while doing nothing about CF is the typical Yankee m.o., but it needn't be so.
Considering the bang for the buck approach, Andy was the best choice out there, although Sheets was kind of intriguing. But the way teams are avoiding him, he either wants too much or his medical reports are scary, or both. Andy may feel like he has something to prove, and with incentives involved, hopefully that translates into a focused, bear-down, effective season for him.
As for Chase Wright, I remember those four straight HRs he gave up at Fenway. Now that was a horror show.
 So I was soaking my bunions in a foot bath and cutting some vegetables..of those Newman stories!
 I'm with you Weeping!! This is a great staff now, and when the inevitable injuries hit, Hughes is there for the spot starts. Does this mean we FINALLY have reached the end of the Sir Sidney Story: The Yankee Years? Happy Day indeed!
Hey, a little OT but maybe kind of relevant, sort of:
it looks like Captain Facemask got smoked at the bargaining table. The Sox have offered one year at (maybe) $5M (but some are saying it's less) plus a complex option for the second year (club option at $5M, player option at $3M). So, uh, even if it's the max of the range being reported, he makes less for two years than he would have got for one in arbitration.
Will this be bad pub for Boras? And is 'Tek potentially an unhappy camper? I mean, not off the bat, but if things go a little sour for him in some way?
"Pettitte and the Yankees agreed Monday to a $5.5 million, one-year contract. While the guaranteed money is less than half New York's original $10 million offer, he can make an additional $6.5 million in bonuses: $4.5 million based on innings and $2 million based on days on the active roster."
I'll guess in order to make $12m he'll basically have to be healthy 90%+ of the season and log 200 IP. Personally, I wish ALL contracts were incentive laden... so at least you get what you pay for. If Andy makes $12m this year, that probably means he helped us to make the PS.
 Boras takes the hit on that one,surely. Am very glad the BoSox brought back Tek, as I look forward to CC, AJ and Joba striking him out 75 times this year.
I guess ARod has a few friends. Via ESPN:
"I have never one time heard of the term 'A-Fraud' until I saw that rolling on the TV, I guess this morning or whenever they started reporting it," said Pettitte, who rejoined the Yankees for the 2007 season. "If it did go on, it went on before I was there."
Cashman said that when Rodriguez became a free agent after the 2007 season, Mariano Rivera, Jorge Posada and Pettitte all urged him to re-sign A-Rod. "That was real," Cashman said. "It was offered up."
 Boras can't squeeze blood from a stone. Varitek isn't exactly a hot commodity, so I am not sure how angry Varitek could be with his agent.
The Pettitte deal makes all the sense in the world for both parties. In spite of the posturing, I was pretty sure the deal would get done, so it's nice to see both sides come to an agreement with no apparent hard feelings.
When you juxtapose the Pettitte deal with the Sox' deals for Penny and Smoltz, the contract looks even better for the Yankees. Pettitte is not only healthier than both, but a peripheral analysis indicates that Pettitte is a good bet to improve significantly. Bringing Pettitte back into the fold is a very good thing for the 2009 Yankees.
 The reason he'd be unhappy with his agent is that his agent told him to pass on the arbitration. Which was a very big error.
 I don't know if we are sure Boras advised him to pass on arbitration. Also, it is important to keep in mind that arbitration contracts are not guaranteed, so the Sox could have released Varitek in March for 1/6 the value of the deal.
 It's possible that Boras told 'Tek to accept arbitration and he didn't do it... but it's pretty unlikely.
Would the Sox have released him in March? Very doubtful. They have no decent alternatives, and the public relations would be a nightmare.
And remember, even if Varitek were released in March, he could still sign with another team, and that team wouldn't have to give up a draft pick. True, good teams would have by then settled on a starting catcher, but on balance he would be in pretty good shape: almost $2M from the Sox for nothin' and free rein to go sign with another team that wouldn't have to give up compensation.
 It's not really an issue of being released in March...the Sox could have released him immediately. Now maybe the Sox would spend $8mn ($10mn instead of the $2mn buyout) to avoid the PR nightmare, but then why not just offer him a $10mn one-year deal right now? Stringing things out can't exactly be good PR?
It wasn't good PR, but at least this way everybody knows it was Jason's fault (or Scott's, depending on whom you hold responsible).
I think really they'd spend $8M to avoid the PR plus the nightmare of "Starting Catcher: Josh Bard". (I know, he isn't really a lot worse than Varitek, but Sox mgmt is convinced that the young pitching staff cannot be entrusted to Bard.)
I know a lot of people have written about the good signings the Sox made, and financially I can see it but..even given that pitchers are always an injury risk, I see a lot of DL time for their staff..if they don't have the "ace" version of Beckett then I don't see them having a top5 staff at all..
Cashman handled this perfectly. Props.
I am WAY too excited about the rotation now...this is now a 100-win team (if they sort out the catcher situation..)
Unlike Sheets and the Sox signings, Andy is a well known quantity staying with the same team, same catchers (knock on wood), same teammates, the whole bit. I like this signing because A) it was a solid dignified negotiation with a contract that could look good with a number of outcomes B) it's always better to sign a known quantity. Grats to Cashman on a great offseason. I'm hoping we get to roll through that rotation at least a few times before someone falls apart. It could be a wicked wicked good pitching squad. I'm excited to see Wang too.
 Am hoping they Yanks win the bid for Yu Darvish next year, they need a Japanese star to replace Matsui..think of a rotation with CC, Joba, Hughes and Darvish ALL in their 20s!
Wow, Vaccaro in the NY Post just ripped into Torre today..am browsing the tabloids against my better judgement on this one, and loving it. It does make me wonder about the timing though..he's still managing and getting paid, why not wait till he's out of baseball??
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