Dismissing rumors involving top flight free agents and the Yankees

The reputation of being the “Evil Empire” was just not solely from the realm of Star Wars. Unfortunately, the old cliche has been placed on the New York Yankees since the 1970′s. From the 70′s until now, the Yankees have been noted as the big spender team that gets all the super-stars and wins every World Series. However that is simply not true. In the past decade, the Yankees have made some pretty big catches, namely Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira and CC Sabathia, but I think that may be it for a long time. Brian Cashman doesn’t follow the same trend that the late George Steinbrenner did.

Since then, Cashman has followed a more conservative approach to spending money on players and here’s a few guys you won’t see in pinstripes next year despite all the crazy rumors. 

Zack Greinke is a pipe-dream for any starting rotation. (Image: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)

1. Zack Greinke

Obviously Greinke is the biggest named pitcher on the market and let’s face it, what team wouldn’t want him? He’d be a huge boost to the Yankees’ rotation with the more than likely departure of Hiroki Kuroda. The rest of the bullpen may not fare well either if Andy Pettitte decides to call it quits. Unfortunately though, I don’t see Greinke coming to New York. It goes beyond the contract issues. Greinke has had personal problems before and something tells me a rather high-maintenance person would probably not fit all that well under the microscope of New York.

That said, Greinke is a former Cy Young Award winner so maybe he’s gotten used to the pressure. A 15 game-winner in 2012, Greinke clearly has some good stuff, but just how good? Ever since he won the Cy Young, he has had decent to rather average seasons (ERAs of 3.45 or more) and pitching in the AL East is by no means easy. Still, Greinke is a good pitcher and easily a number one in most rotations.

There’s also the fact that the Los Angeles Angels will want to try and keep a lock on him considering Ervin Santana is gone and Dan Haren may be following him out the door. Don’t expect the Yankees to be buyers on Greinke.

2. Josh Hamilton

For Hamilton, the exact reason why he won’t be in New York is because of his contract demands. Hamilton announced he wants a seven year/$175 million contract which unless it’s the Los Angeles Dodgers, nobody is going to shell out that kind of money. Don’t get me wrong, Hamilton is a tremendous player, but nobody is worth that kind of money. Hamilton’s demands aren’t even going to be met by the Texas Rangers who said they will only offer him a contract of three years maximum. That tells you that even his own ballclub isn’t reaching for their wallets, so why would anyone else?

Of course there are teams that need Hamilton’s kind of power, but the Yankees aren’t one of them. His name hasn’t been directly related with the Bronx Bombers, but everyone will just assume that it has been because clearly the Yankees “buy everyone” as we’re reminded as fans. When you look at it logically, not only are the Yankees going to be unwilling to pay that much money for Hamilton, but there’s also zero room for them too. The Yankees just picked up their option for Curtis Granderson, so why would they even think to go after Hamilton?

Anibal Sanchez is good, but not $90 million good. (Image: H. Darr Beiser-USA TODAY Sports)

3. Anibal Sanchez

When and if the Yankees decide to go free agent shopping this winter, don’t plan on Sanchez being a part of their plans. While Sanchez has had a decent career and even a rather promising 2012 after making the NL to AL transition, he wants too much money. Much like Hamilton, Sanchez has brought forth to the table his contract plans, six years/$90 million. Sanchez posted a 3.74 ERA in 12 starts with the Detroit Tigers this season and had a 4-6 record. That’s not awful and actually somewhat surprising considering how well Detroit can hit, but we’re talking the AL Central.

It’s not that Sanchez is unable to pitch against AL hitters, but nobody has seen enough of him to even entertain the thought of offering him a long-term contract. The Yankees may be a little desperate for pitching, but I just don’t see them making any sort of stab at Sanchez. He is only 28 and has six-years experience in the majors, but he’s not outstanding. He’s had trouble with walking batters and has seen an increasing opponent’s batting average in the past few years.

It’s not that Sanchez is a bad pitcher, but he’s a risk for this rotation.  The Yankees have already invested time and money into Michael Pineda who is expected back in June and with all the uncertainty surrounding Ivan Nova, the Yankees really don’t need anymore risks on their plate.

Topics: New York Yankees

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  • http://YanksGoYard.com/ Matt Hunter

    Agreed, Ben. However, I think people overplay Greinke’s personal problems and how he would fare in New York. He pitched in the big market of LA this season and did fine, and I think his issues (Social Anxiety Disorder and depression) are unrelated to the size of the market. There was a great article about Greinke and Hamilton over at BP the other day which talked about their respective issues. If you don’t subscribe, here’s a good quote from the article about Greinke:

    “Greinke will have a bad outing at some point (because all pitchers do). He might even have a rough couple of weeks along the way. And no matter where he plays, there will probably be a sportswriter who calls him on it or fans who boo. I want you to memorize this sentence: social anxiety disorder (SAD) is not about being overly sensitive to what other people say about you. Social anxiety is about the irrational fear that you will do or say something horribly embarrassing in front of others. We’re talking about something that is internal in its origin. It’s not about needing to have thicker skin when people are critical. In fact, people can develop SAD even if no one’s been particularly harsh with them. It’s also not about the size of the audience. For someone with social anxiety, it can just be the thought of someone else being there.”

    Basically, yes Greinke has his issues, but I don’t think he’d be any less of a fit in NY as anywhere else. That being said, he’s probably out of their price range anyway, like you said.

    • Benjamin Orr

      Thanks for the reply Matt.

      Yeah, I mean it’s been awhile since Greinke’s issues have flared up and the fact that he was able to pitch in that close race in the AL West says a lot. NY’s a different animal though and I’m not saying he’d be unable to handle it, but we really don’t know. And yeah the money definitely factors in because long-term deals are slowly becoming a thing of the past.