A.J. Burnett notes

Monday morning update: Ken Rosenthal reports that the Yankees will pay $19-23 million and get multiple non-40 man roster prospects in return from Pittsburgh. Marc Carig backs this up, and says that the Yankees are not giving Burnett away, instead insisting on the “right” players in return. I guess that’s what you have to say publicly, but I’m skeptical. A team like the Pirates might take a little bit of money off of the Yankees hand to get a 200 IP pitcher, but I’d be shocked if they gave up any useful young players for any 35 year old pitcher with obviously declining skills. Stranger things have happened though, I suppose.

Update 2: And here’s the tweet I meant to link. More coffee, please!

Update: It’s Sunday morning, and Buster Olney is reporting that the Yankees and Pirates are now discussing “details.” It’s definitely beginning to sound as though a Burnett trade is nearly inevitable. Until then, shop for baseball memorabilia.

As winter finally arrives in the Mid-Atlantic region on this nasty Saturday night, here’s some A.J. Burnett related news for you.

First, the Daily News’ Mark Feinsand reports that one of his sources is telling him that there’s a “good chance” A.J. Burnett is traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates. It’s certainly beggining to feel that way watching the reports trickle out anyway. On the details, Jon Heyman and Joel Sherman both reported that the Pirates offered to pay $10 million of the $33 million remaining on A.J.’s contract, but that the Yankees want them to pick up even more than that. Isn’t that cute? Although Ken Rosenthal reports that there are four teams interested in Burnett (including the Pirates), which could give the Yankees some leverage in negotiations. Or someone could just be making it up to try to create some leverage. Either way, if the Yankees can’t get a better offer I’d have to think they’re more than happy to recoup that $10 million at a minimum. If Pittsburgh is really willing to pay that much of Burnett’s remaining salary, I’d definitely assume a deal gets done before pitchers and catchers report a week from Monday.

 

Born in Southwestern Ohio and currently residing on the Chesapeake Bay, Brien is a former editor-in-chief of IIATMS who now spends most of his time sitting on his deck watching his tomatoes ripen and consuming far more MLB Network programming than is safe for one's health or sanity.

27 thoughts on “A.J. Burnett notes

  1. I've got zero basis for even considering to think this, but I (really want to) believe that Burnett is in line for a rebound. Maybe because he just can't be that bad again, maybe because I see stars when his curveball is really working.

    I've seen the data (reduced velocity) and been as frustrated as any fan around so I know the likelihood of that rebound coming is minimal, at best.

    If the team can recoup $10m, do it. If that frees up some cash for future moves, so be it.

    • skeaney

      Actually I believe he outperformed his ERA quite a bit and his SO/9 and BB/9 were satisfactory. Having watched him pitch its hard to believe that he has been fairly unlucky. What killed him is his HR/9 rate which would go down dramatically in PNC.

      Looking at it… his SO/9 in 2011 was about the same as 2009 and his BB/9 rate actually decreased. So I could see some positive regression. 2010 was abysmal and 2011 should have been expected.

      What drives me nuts is the people justifying it for Pittsburgh saying he can be a 3-4 WAR pitcher. He has only ever been that once in his entire career. At best he hits about 2.5 – 2.9 over 200 innings and there is nothing really wrong with that.

    • Anthony

      Look stop knocking aj he did his best ok you all forgot when we first got him what happen we won leave the guy alone I say no deal gets done we signed him for 5 years and we will get five years out of him that is my option.

      • skeaney

        Fun fact: Freddy Garcia 2011 was more valuable than AJ Burnett 2009 at 1/12th the cost.

    • Anthony

      What get your facts straight look no deal gets done ok we won the first year he came to ny you forgot I know I didn't you all had nothing to say but what happen. Last year please we finish with aj in 5 years two more years we will get out of him go on get off this page

      • Hugh

        Thank you, e e cummings.

    • GabeLezra

      Jason, did you all do something on AJ's peripherals? I remember reading something on his peripherals that compared him to Tim Lincecum–something along the lines of comparing their K/9 xFIP and some other things, and basically illustrating how luck, park and minor differences can make a huge impact on a pitcher's numbers. I guess it's worth mentioning because he seemed unlucky last season (but maybe not due for a huge bounce back because of his BB numbers and HR/FB stuff).

  2. John

    Regardless of what happens I'll always remember Game 2's of the Word Series and ALCS and to a lesser extent game 4 in Detroit last year. He gave us some huge starts when we needed them. If this pans out, I'll be one who will miss him.

    • Anthony

      Nice I feel the same way aj is good but he drives me crazy when he lets the ball go out of control but over all he is good

  3. smurfy

    I'm wit' Anthony, emotionally. And Jason, above, except I was frustrated than he wouldn't throw the curve for strikes. But I think the hope for Mr. Electricity has faded here, long held, but we better face facts. Haven't heard one word of hope or anything from him, so I reckon that we oughta let him find his sizzle in Pittsburgh. Can't think of a more deserving , good old team. May the God that loves you put some sizzle on your steak, young warrior.

    Delightful that the Yanks can 'play cute." Somebody does yet hope, and what a success he could yet be. He gets a splitter, I guess he'll fly. Or maybe develop the 2 seam into a consistent weapon. Myself, I love Chris H.' idea, from the comments at TYA couple days ago, to trade AJ for Chone Fggins, 3rd base, 2cd, left, right, and a little short, and, oh yeah, 1st. <end Chris> Couple, three years back, he had a neat habit of starting, extending, and finishing rallies that was noticeable to me from the newspaper boxscores and the highlight reels. $9 per for two, to set against the $10+ value we're negotiating for AJ, so that $4 out of pocket. (ie, Figgins could bargain for a $4 – 5 free agent contract today.) That is, AJ for Figgins, no money, no prospects. If he should ignite, it will be the best move we ever made, maybe.

    • smurfy

      well, maybe try for a pitching prospect, too, since AJ may be a gold mine to the Mariners.

  4. smurfy

    Wait a minute, you can't get fast me so fast, you slicker. I added it up again, and it's 2 years $5 over value per year for Figgins, so that'll be AJ, $10, and for the other ten, a very juicy pitching prospect.

    • smurfy

      So, we’ll give you AJ, $23 million, take Figgins and that Fister-like prospect, or two.

  5. I've heard the Figgins proposal and I've heard a lot worse. So long as we don't give him the 600 AB's to vest his 2014 option….

    • smurfy

      in one year, right? as in 600 in 2013, virtually a full time job,

      • Correct. PA's in 2013 which would imply a full time gig. Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

        • John

          I never understood these vesting options. Why would a player agree to something like that? What's to stop a team making sure he only gets 599 plate appearances and then say "Thanks for the memories?"

          • They could file a grievance and probably win in that circumstance…

          • skeaney

            Didn't this happen with Magglio?

          • I believe so, IIRC, but his option VESTED. They were in the playoff hunt and didn't want to seat him. Could be wrong.

          • skeaney

            Right. The fuss was that he was benched early in the year for being horrible and there were some complaints that it was to prevent the option from vesting. He then went on a tear and made the point moot.

          • John

            Thanks for the discussion guys.

  6. Michael

    Does this mean no more pies to the face??????

    • GabeLezra

      Noooooo! Somebody say it isn't so!

  7. docz0r

    In all honesty, I've always had a soft spot for the guy. He obviously never played up to his contract but I can look past that. I felt he was a good morale/clubhouse guy. That 2009 season felt fun and lively with the pies and whatnot. He was a major contributor to that environment while still maintaining the utmost professional demeanor. He never once played the blame game, rather laying the blame for his performance squarely on his shoulders. The performances that dictated his contract came too few and far between and he never lived up to that. But you know what, after seeing how under performing players that carry an air of negativity can literally sink a team (last years Red Sox specifically. The problems don't stop for that team there though.) I am glad AJ was signed. At the end of the day I think his total contributions go beyond the mound and mitt, the kind of stuff that really doesn't carry known monetary value.

  8. mcmastro

    Once he is gone, i'm sure he'll pitch well. But let's remember that it probably won't be A.J, it'll be the fact that he's at PNC, pitching in a very weak division that lost both Prince Fielder and Albert Pujols and in general, and there is no D.H. Plus it's the NL, where there are just less hard hitting teams. If A.J pitches well for the Pirates, so be it. Cause in 3 years, he's proven he can't do it here.

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