While the Yanks have certainly made the most noise with their proclamations that they want to sign every possible free agent, I don’t think they are the most important team this off-season. The Yanks don’t hold the singularly most important key; though they certainly hold the most cash. So who’s the keymaster?
The Angels, unwilling to meet Mark Teixeira’s desire for a 10-year contract, are in discussions with CC Sabathia and could offer him a contract that approaches the $140-million bid extended to him by the New York Yankees.
If the Angels shift their focus and decide that their resources are better poured into Sabathia, who prefers the West Coast as strongly as Teix prefers the East Coast, they will absolutely shift the dynamics of this off-season.
If Sabathia lands in Anaheim (talk about a great rotation!), you can bet that the Yanks would not only shift their focus on Teix, but also go harder after Burnett, Lowe and Sheets. I can hear it now:
- to Burnett: “You want a fifth year? If you agree right now, we’ll go to 5 years, $75 million“
- to Lowe: “You’re 36 but if you agree right now, we’ll go to 4 years, $55 million“
- to Sheets: “You’re coming off an arm injury, but if you agree right now, we’ll go to 3 years, $40 million“
- to Teix: “How’s 7 years, $150 million grab you? Look at that short porch in right. Batting in front of ARod. Manning first base, where your idol, Donnie Baseball, earned his pinstripes.“
I honestly don’t think the Yanks are going to go 4 years on Lowe, or at least I would hope they don’t get that desperate. I would like to see Sheets, though. I would also be shocked to see any team go to 10 years on Teix. Seven or eight, maybe.