Considering Gerrit Cole and Aaron Judge's initial strong-arm maneuver didn't poke the market at all, perhaps somebody tried something nefarious over the weekend to make the "Blake Snell-Yankees connection" just a little stronger?
Cole and Snell were both in New York City (the greatest city in the world) over the weekend to accept their well-earned 2023 honors, picking up their Cy Youngs, making their acceptance speeches, and taking their official photographs.
And, wouldn't you know it ... they were both seated next to one another on the dais! For the ... entire night.
Even Cole noted in his media availability session that he found the placement curious, considering Snell's ongoing free agency and potential fit in the Yankees rotation.
Yankees ace Gerrit Cole had three hours to make free agency pitch to Blake Snell
Does a Mr. "S. Boras" do event planning now? Floral arrangements by Scott B.? Something doesn't quite add up here.
(Ignoring the obvious that both Cy Young winners should probably sit next to one another) Oh yeah! It's happening, folks!
According to the rumor mill, the Yankees are still somehow the only team to submit a formal offer for Snell with under three weeks before pitchers and catchers report to spring training. That offer was presented (or, at least, reported) on the same day the Yankees agreed to terms with Marcus Stroman.
If the Yankees could secure Snell and push Clarke Schmidt into the sixth starter spot, that would give them the type of hellacious rotation their hungry fans crave. Unfortunately, New York's reported five-year, $150 million offer is still nowhere close to Snell's reported asks -- one of which was $270 million, and all of which begin with twos. If the Yankees were to pitch a short-term, high-AAV deal to Snell with opt-outs, it would cost them double every step of the way. A $33 million salary for 2024 would swiftly become $66 million, thanks to the dreaded tax level the Yankees find themselves wading into.
Maybe Cole did some sweet talking during his time at the awards dinner and got Snell to accept a Tom Brady-esque sweetheart deal with escalators to give the Yankees one good run at a title? One can only hope; it'd be nice to see both men accepting a team award next winter instead of individual honors.