Those “We’re Gonna Beat David Price in the World Series” jokes were a whole lot funnier before Price maybe got flushed out of the Dodgers rotation by Trevor Bauer, huh, Yankees fans?
On Friday afternoon, after nearly 24 hours of incessant Mets trolling, Bauer’s brand announced it was taking itself to Los Angeles. Suddenly, it seems like all bets are off in regards to who will constitute the Dodgers’ rotation this season.
Will Julio Urias be banished to the bullpen after his exemplary showing in October? Highly possible. Will Tony Gonsolin become a sixth starter/long man after his repeated short spurts of failure in the very same postseason? That also seems quite likely.
And do the Dodgers trust Dustin May as a starter yet? Without question, the addition of Bauer firms up the rotation’s top three and makes the back-end “experimentation zone” less of a priority.
But in the olden days, LA probably would’ve been fielding calls for David Price immediately, with the rest of baseball willing to absorb someone else’s financial burden in an effort to get better. And the Yankees would’ve been the likeliest team to come away the winners for Price’s services.
Alas, there is zero chance of that happening this time around — even though the all-too-hilarious memes about Price being Gary Sanchez’s son are a lot less funny when you realize that all the Yankees really need is a moderate-upside innings-eating veteran, something which Price certainly is.
Still just 35 years old, Price has two years remaining on the seven-year, $217 million panic contract the Red Sox inked him to back in the day. It’s $32 million annually for each of the next two years, with what appears to be just a $15 million luxury tax hit this season. But the Red Sox are chipping in $16 million per season, as per an agreement in the Mookie Betts trade.
Regardless, though, that bumps the Yankees into a level of depth they refuse to swim around in, despite the Dodgers proving on Friday that it’s both legal and fun for contenders to blow past the threshold. For the Yanks to make a play here, it would require LA eating nearly all of Price’s salary, a nonsensical idea that will not happen.
But the 2009-12 Yankees would’ve done this. And the 2021 Yankees should consider it.
Price wasn’t even certain to pitch this season about a month ago. Where does he stand now? At this point, it doesn’t feel crazy to say it’s plausible Price will be back in an entirely different uniform, especially with so much less-expensive depth behind him.
If Justin Turner signs over the course of the next few days, watch this space.
Price’s Dodgers “career” might end up consisting of a calendar year of silence.