The Yankees buy Sabathia – and a 2009 playoff spotDecember 10, 2008 at 10:35 am | Posted in Baseball | 12 Comments
It’s official. The best pitcher in baseball, C.C. Sabathia, is signing with the New York Yankees. He’s getting the largest deal ever for a pitcher – 7 years and $160 million. The Yankees are probably the only team that is willing to spend that much for a pitcher.
If you’re a fan of a team that does not play in the A.L. East, you may not have much of a reaction besides astonishment at the price tag. But as a Rays fan, the news is certainly discouraging. Oh well, at least I got to see the Rays make the playoffs and World Series one time. With Sabathia, and other likely upgrades, it’s tough not to see the Yankees making the playoffs in 2009. I’m left to hope that the almost 500 innings that Sabathia pitched the last two years will catch up to him, and maybe he’ll develop an arm injury. No, I don’t like rooting for players to get injured, especially guys that I enjoy watching, like Sabathia. But I’d rather see him get hurt, or at least pitch poorly, than see him do for the Yankees what he did for the Brewers in 2008 and the Indians in 2007.
The worst part of this is that now the idiot Red Sox are going to think that they need to acquire a mega-star in order to match the Sabathia signing. And we’ll be spending the rest of the offseason watching the two richest teams in MLB trying to outdo each other by loading their rosters with All Stars. Fans of the Rays, Blue Jays, and Orioles can only sit back and feel discouraged about having to play these teams 38 times a year.
Maybe David Price will become just as good as C.C. Sabathia. Maybe the Rays will be able to strike gold with a castoff that nobody else wants, like they did with Carlos Pena in 2007, and to some extent, Eric Hinske in 2008. But the deck is stacked against them since the Yankees and Red Sox have an inherent right to hoard the best players in MLB.
Oh, and the disparity is only going to get worse with the increased revenue that the Yankees will get from their new stadium, and the fact that they’ll be able to get away with contributing less in revenue sharing because of the stadium construction costs.
Update: The Yankees have no shame. Check this out:
“In the Yankees’ application, the team is asking for another $259 million in tax-exempt bonds and $111 million in taxable bonds, on top of $940 million in tax-exempt bonds and $25 million in taxable bonds already granted for its $1.3 billion stadium.”