The latest news out of Yankeeland is that Melky Cabrera is set to go to Milwaukee for Mike Cameron. So much for the Yanks' youth movement, eh? The Bergen Record is reporting the following:
On the condition of anonymity, the source said the Yankees would be willing to extend Cameron to a two-year contract through the 2010 season. The Brewers had picked up Cameron’s 2009 option for $10 million, and a two-year deal with the Yanks could be worth about $17 million total.How Melky Cabrera sunk from being one of the more pleasurable players to watch on the Yanks over the past few seasons to being the easiest out on the roster is a big mystery to me. But what's even more head-scratching is why the Yanks would even consider extending Mike Cameron's contract, given that he's nearly 36 now. Not to mention what will happen to Brett Gardner. What, exactly, is to be gained in giving Cameron another year?
Speaking of head-scratching moves, why the Yankees are even thinking about signing A.J. Burnett is beyond me, let alone offering him $80 million, considering they've already been burned by one injury-prone former Marlin pitcher with Carl Pavano. (Of course, the Red Sox didn't get burned by their own injury-prone former Marlin pitcher, Josh Beckett, but I digress!)
It's strange times to think that I would prefer Derek Lowe to Burnett and Sheets, but I do. At least Lowe is a healthy big-game pitcher (albeit one who makes those, well, Derek Lowe faces when things go wrong!) Don't think Derek is worth a four-year, $66 million deal, though.
And yes, the numbers the Yanks are willing to shell out this year are simply mind-boggling. Given 1) the recession we're currently in, and 2) the fact that the Yanks just went back to the city of New York to beg for more cash for their stadium, I have to say that even this Yankee fan finds these contract numbers a bit unseemly and over the top. Don't mean to get all Joe Hill here, but there it is.
Oprah Winfrey toned down her yearly Favorite Things extravaganza to reflect the economic realities this country is facing. Not the Yanks. A few days ago, I thought that $10 million for Andy Pettitte was reasonable. But given the money the Bombers are willing to throw around this week, that figure now looks awfully cheap.
Am I happy the Yanks got CC Sabathia? Of course. He's a heck of a pitcher. But I am a bit concerned that they overpaid for him, given that they were essentially bidding against themselves. And his three-year opt out clause worries me - if he's already planning an escape hatch before he's even come to New York, that's a real concern. He does seem like a very likeable guy, though - hopefully he'll fit right in with the Yanks, pitch great, and all these concerns will be moot next year.
While the Yanks are on a spending spree, the Mets are making deals, like getting J.J. Putz. Congrats, Squawker Jon - your team's bullpen looks pretty awesome. And in keeping with that era of good feeling. I'm going to resist making a joke about your new reliever's last name!
I was on three radio programs over the course of 23 hours squawking about the winter meetings, and I had a terrific time on all three shows. Thanks to Dos Amigos, Sound-Off with Sinkoff, and NYBaseball Digest for having me on.
Coming later today, my thoughts on where Manny Ramirez will end up. But in the meantime, tell us what you think about all these moves.