The Erosion of the Yankee Payroll Advantage in One Chart

The number that the Yankees have had their eye on since the new CBA was agreed to one year ago is $189 million. That’s the threshold in which they will have tremendous economic incentives–measured in the scores of millions of dollars–to get and stay under. More realistically, once you include non-pecuniary benefits that we don’t...

Read more

Yankees named 2012 Club Retailer of the Year

The timing of this press release, which names the New York Yankees the 2012 Club Retailer of the Year, is kind of amusing to me. Just yesterday, I was going through a pile of clothes in my room that comes up to my shoulders – just to give you an idea of how big the pile is, I’m 5’9″ – and the amount of Yankees items was actually astounding. Everything from jeans, to sweatshirts, to t-shirts, to long sleeved t-shirts. Some of the stuff, I’ll admit, I didn’t remember owning and I joked to my mom that some people have a white wash when they do their laundry and I can say I have a Yankees wash.

From the Press Release:

The New York Yankees have been named the 2012 MLB “Club Retailer of the Year” by Major League Baseball Properties for the Club’s commitment to driving merchandise sales. The Yankees and Legends Hospitality, led by Legends’ GM of Retail, Michael Loparo, earned the honor based on significant improvements to the Yankee Stadium clubhouse store as well as consistent product innovation and reinvention.

Read more

Yankees Eyeing Scott Hairston

It seems that we’ll be hearing a lot about one year deals over the next couple of months with the way the Yankees planned for next year’s budget . Thus far, Ichiro Suzuki, Raul Ibanez, Hiroki Kuroda, and Torii Hunter have all been linked to the team on...

Read more

A couple of minor league notes

Kevin Russo has apparently signed a minor league contract with the Tigers. Russo was drafted by the Yankees in 2006 and made his major league debut in 2010. The utility player had a strong year for the Empire State Yankees in 2012, hitting .284/.358/.351, however it was his fourth year in Triple-A and at 28 it was clear the Yankees had no future plans for him, granting him free agency earlier this month.

The Peoria Javelinas defeated the Salt River Rafters 4-3 for the Arizona Fall League Championship. The game was notable for having the first official protest in AFL history, as the Rafters objected to some calls on a play that would have tied the game in the seventh. The officials upheld the original ruling and the Javelinas took the win. Chris McGuiness, a first baseman with the Texas Rangers organization, took the AFL MVP award. Cole Kimball, who pitched for Salt River this fall and is part of the Washington Nationals system, beat out David Adams and four others for the Stenson Award.…

Read more

The Cy Young voting wasn’t so terrible

There’s been a lot of chatter about the selection of Miguel Cabrera as MVP over Mike Trout. Make no mistake, Trout is and will be the better player. In fact, if his first season is any indication, the dude may be the next Willie Mays or pre-injury Mickey Mantle. That’s...

Read more

A possible payroll hedge?

Breaking down what exactly the Yankees’ 2014 budget plans entail once again this morning, Joel Sherman reports a detail that I was actually unaware of, and leaves open a potential rationale for scrapping the plans altogether:

The second inducement for going below $189 million is in the CBA’s revenue sharing refund program. It is a complicated concept and formula, but what is important to know is the Yankees would be rebated a percentage of what is the highest revenue-sharing payment in the sport, but — and this is key — only in years they are under the luxury tax threshold. If not, they forfeit the rebate.

There is debate about how much the rebate is worth since it is tied heavily to the revenue that, in particular, Atlanta, Houston, Toronto and Washington generate. Some initial projections had the Yankees getting between $5 million-$8 million after 2014 with a steady climb afterward. So between lower payroll, no tax and the steadily climbing rebate, the Yankees could save real money, $30 million-plus annually perhaps.

Read more

Sitting on the sidelines

The Blue Jays pull off a killer deal with the Marlins. The Blue Jays sign Melky Cabrera. The Tigers sign Torii Hunter. Hiroki Kuroda wants to play in southern California. Russell Martin is highly sought after. And the Yankees…the Yankees…have not done anything yet. And when they do, it will be for bit parts for one season. Those bit parts will have an average age of 37 years old or something. Welcome to the new reality.

And it is not really a new reality. Last off season brought some excitement as the Montero – Pineda trade occurred and the team signed Kuroda on the same day. But for the rest of the off season, big tickets like Prince Fielder and others went elsewhere. The Yankees signed Raul Ibanez and that worked out pretty well. Heck, it bought them a win in a post season series. But overall, “austerity” is the word of the day. Every Yankee fan knows all about the dreaded 2014 payroll limitation.…

Read more

Kuroda may prefer pitching in L.A.

From Mark Saxon of ESPN Los Angeles comes a rumor sure to give Yankee fans some indigestion during Thanksgiving week: Hiroki Kuroda may prefer heading back to Southern California to spending another season in New York. Kuroda’s family lives in the area, and his daughters are in elementary school, which apparently has led Kuroda to “tell friends” that his preference is to pitch in Southern California. The Dodgers have been said to be interested in Kuroda for weeks, and we recently learned the Angels are as well, so unlike last year when the Dodgers lacked the finances to make him an offer, it would appear that Kuroda will have a good opportunity to return to the area if he really desires.

Read more