The Yankees aren’t going to sign Josh Hamilton

I don’t why I even feel like this is worthy of passing along, but in his BP post this morning John Perrotto, while otherwise noting how much of the Josh Hamilton sweepstakes is a mystery, passes along one very definitive remark:

Where it winds up going is anyone’s guess, but the continued talk that the Yankees are going to jump into the bidding is way off the mark. Few people to seem to believe it, but the Yankees are dead set against committing big dollars to any free agents beyond next season because they plan to get under the $189-million luxury tax threshold in 2014.

I’m not really sure where the chatter about the Yankees swooping in and snatching Hamilton got its start, but it’s never really struck me as anything more than an attempt by reporters to inject some excitement into an otherwise dull hot stove season in which the Yankees are pledging, basically, to do next to nothing that’s going to light up the back pages. Alas, Hamilton is sort of the ultimate square peg for this time, as he clearly doesn’t fit into Plan 189 and, with the imminent return of Ichiro Suzuki, they don’t even have an opening in the starting lineup for him.

And, with that, I think we’ve sussed out what’s going on. The local media has been implying there’s much more meaning to some pretty bland winter facts like the Yankees listening to trade offers and Robinson Cano being open about wanting to get top dollar when his contract runs out for weeks, and I suppose this is the other side of it. But while trading Granderson, signing Hamilton, and then letting Cano walk sounds like a surprisingly preferable plan of action to me, there hasn’t been any actual indication that any aspect of it is under serious consideration, or that there’s anything more than an attempt to goose reader interest in a heavily saturated market going on.

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.

11 thoughts on “The Yankees aren’t going to sign Josh Hamilton

  1. chris

    I don't see any way to get Hamilton without losing Cano and that makes no sense. Outfielders who hit are a lot easier to find than a 2b who can hit 30hrs a season and hit around 100 rbi's. Quick, name the last 2b not named Cano in the modern era to put up the following 4 years in a row: +.300/25HR/+180 hits? Answer: No one. Jeff Kent, Robbie Alomar, Soriano, none of them did that. Not even close. His numbers are silly in comparison to other 2b over a 4-5 year span. Hamilton is great, but his production is actually pretty close to Grandy over the last few years if you look at HR/RBI/OPB and Grandy is a lot cheaper. And sober.

  2. Dave

    The thing is that you can get Hamilton for a 4 yr deal at 20-25 mil a season instead of Cano at 8-10 yr deal

    • chris

      I don't think you can compare the two even if you can get him at 4 and I predict he signs for 5. Hamilton has demons, has been hurt, missed time, etc. In the last 5 years he has only played in more than 135 games twice–Cano has pretty much played in every game and a guy on the pine means you need a good backup more than just to give a guy a day off. Hamilton also strikes out A TON. Cano has averaged just over 79k's per season over the last 5 years and Hamilton has averaged over 111 (and that would be higher if he had played in more than 90 games in 09). Yes, Hamilton has power, but he has it in a position where a lot of players do. Cano has no one even close to him by comparison. And he is a year younger with no injury history. Should the Yanks give Cano 8 years? Maybe, but he would only be 39 then. More likely he gets 6 with an option or 6 with the right to opt out (like CC) if he keeps cranking. LA might want him but they won't be able to afford him (estimated to be at 230 million right now—highest Yanks were was 209). He won't go small market and Texas has Kinsler and some youngsters. Boston has Pedroia.

  3. jay_robertson

    "…trading Granderson, signing Hamilton, and then letting Cano walk sounds like a surprisingly preferable plan of action to me…"

    Me too, sir. Me too. I would LOVE that scenario. We'd be better AND cheaper.

    I don't suppose you have Brian C's number?

    • chris

      How would we be cheaper swapping Hamilton for Cano? And we wouldn't be better. Cano is a great 2b. Who do we replace him with? Hell, on power numbers alone over the last 3 years here are some splits: Grandy: 36 HR/97 RBI/.840 OPS. Hamilton: 33 HR/107 RBI/.952 OPS. The post season numbers are the same for the two of them as well (including average). Not sure how paying Hamilton over 20 million for 4-5 years is better than paying Grandy less for pretty close numbers when Grandy is better defensively, averages over 15 more games played per year–not factoring in Hamilton's 09 season–and then letting the best hitting 2b in the modern era is a good move.

  4. Tony r

    @jay_robinson you must not know baseball if you really meant what u said. how would adding Hamilton and taking away granderson and cano possible make the team better? cheaper, better move for the future? certainty. better right now no shot. although I do agree with letting cano walk at the end of the year…they've gotten burned once, and it's kills me cause nobody swags as hard as him as he's literally the man, but he's not worth 250 mil

  5. Phil

    I hope the Yankees have a plan for Cano. Making him walk for a draft choice is not a good option. So if you know you will refuse 25M/8YR then start thinking of a trade.

    • Are they still doing draft choices? I thought that changed with the latest player agreement?

      • chris

        Still doing it but less so. If Cano ends the year, the Yanks can offer him a 1 year deal for about 13 million (there is a league set number on it I just don't recall it) and if he rejects it and signs elsewhere, the team that signs him has to give the Yankees a top draft pick in the upcoming draft. Not that it matters when you talk about Cano as he can't be replaced, but if we did lose him we do get something in return.

  6. Sabrina

    Well Hamilton went to the angels for five years,125mil

    • chris

      Thank God. The madness is over.

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