The Rays decided they couldn’t afford to pay Charlie Morton $15 million. Can the Yankees take advantage?
Over the past two years, we’ve repeatedly bemoaned the Yankees’ decision to let Charlie Morton walk directly from the Houston Astros to their division rival Rays, all while tying up their finances in a questionable JA Happ deal.
So you mean to tell me that, on the very same day of the declining of Happ’s team option, the Rays chose to do the very same thing and rid themselves of a $15 million commitment to Morton? Is this not kismet?
We know the circumstances are difficult here — it’s not even ensured that Morton will play next season, let alone that he’ll leave Tampa. The two sides could be plotting a return at a smaller price tag, after all.
But if Morton’s available, after all the deciding-game victories we’ve seen from him over the years (you know he’s taking Game 7 of the World Series, if it gets there), how do you not pounce on a cheap one-year deal?!
Now, with Morton, it’s not quite as simple as handing off a blank check.
There’s a chance he could retire — he’s about to turn 37, and has hinted at such before.
However, Jon Heyman claims that isn’t the case, and he’d like to continue his career with an East Coast flavor. OK, then. Sure.
Then, there’s the little thing about his upbringing. Reportedly, Morton grew up idolizing Derek Jeter and Roger Clemens in Connecticut, but is also a fan of New England and the Red Sox’ whole … deal.
According to Sox insider Alex Speier, Morton said he loves Fenway and would’ve liked to hear from the Sox during his last free agency cycle, but got expectedly blocked by Nathan Eovaldi’s extension. Now, does he really love Boston in any capacity, or did he love the idea of moving eastward and joining a 108-win juggernaut? Probably the latter.
We can assure you, though, that Morton will magically not age if the Yankees let him walk to the Sox, another rival. That’s an outright guarantee.
Since every grizzled great winner eventually ends up on the Sox, we wouldn’t be surprised if such a union occurs.
But the Yankees already let a golden opportunity to sign Morton slip on by two years ago, and (should’ve) regretted it ever since. At least pick up the phone this time, with a chunk of Happ’s money at your disposal?