Duval is right -- the Yankees have plenty of money ... now. But that's what makes the current situation so strange.
I think it's addressed well in this article:
Even the people at the YES network and Fox Sports (which just paid a fortune for a large chunk of the YES Network) are baffled by the current Yankee austerity. And they do suggest that it will have long-term repercussions:
“If this so-called fiscal responsibility becomes a permanent policy, Fox has something to be concerned with,” one network executive said. “YES became what it is because it sells winning, superstars and the grand Yankee tradition. If two-thirds of the equation (winning/superstars) disappears, down go the ratings and revenue. The subscriber fees may stay flat, but if the product stinks those fees are not going up.”
The money that the Yankees will lose by having to pay the luxury tax in 2014 is just a pittance compared to the BILLIONS that the franchise is making at the moment. If Hank Steinbrenner's tight-fisted ways continue, it very well may wreck the Yankee money-making machine.
PS The $12 million one-year offer to Youkalis is perfectly in line with the new policy, since it comes off the books before 2014. Cleveland is apparently offering $18 million for two years. Which is the better deal?
Michael Young to the Phillies. Not the significant trade it might once have been, but Young was awfully good in 2011 and 2009 and decent in 2010 before a big decline this year. Could still be a nice contributor.
Since losing Gillick to an advisory position, the Phillies haven't exactly been as hit with some of their moves.
So far this off-season, they've traded away 2 solid, young SP. One who was slotted as their 4th/5th guy and another who was their #1 MLB ready starter for a CF they didn't really want. Revere is compared to Juan Pierre. Speedy, good defensive with weak arm. Another lefty so that teams can bring in a lefty to face Revere, Howard, and Utley. And is just a contact hitter. If they wanted this, could have just resigned Pierre, saved your prospects and waited a few years.
And we'll see about this Young trade. They got $10 million but lets see if they do anything with it. Gave away a MLB relief pitcher and a young prospect. We'll see but I would have much preferred Youkilis for 2 years b/c I don't think the Phillies 3B prospect will be ready in a year.
Now these trades alone have upside but aren't anything special so it will come down to what they do with the saved money from not getting Youkilis, Upton, or Bourn. I doubt they go after Hamilton for the length but it might be worth it. Don't really think Cody Ross is that special and Phillies have to find another starter who will undoubtedly be more expensive than Worley.
But it seems the Phillies season will come down to Lee/Halladay getting back to dominant form, and Howard/Utley pushing the offense with J-Roll not having to be lead off anymore.
Remember when the Dodgers were so awash in financial troubles that even meeting the bi-weekly payroll was a concern? Yeah, those days are gone, as the twitterverse reports they've agreed to a contract with Zack Greinke for $147 mil over 6 years. And I guess in an attempt to emulate the yanks as much as possible, they've included an opt out after 3 years.
But like I said in a previous thread, the Dodgers are willing to go to lengths that the Yankees aren't and maybe even weren't willing to under George. Taking on a quarter of a Billion just for effectively 1 player is absurd. It doesn't appear they have any limits and they'll be putting out a line up with Ethier, Kemp, Hanley and Gonzalez which would probably rival any line up in baseball along with their pitching staff. I also don't expect them to be completely finished or they'll at least be busy at the trade deadline.
Demented and sad, but social, right?
But that doesn't include anything for Ryu.
Even the $194 figure is significant ... right now, that's higher than the Yankees ($189 million). Of course, New York could still add a free agent -- they have a one-year, $12 million offer out there for Youkilis -- but there's at least a chance that the Dodgers could end up with the highest payroll in baseball ... when was the last time somebody topped the Yankees in that category?
Here is a list of opening day payrolls from 98-2012
This Forbes page indicates the Dodgers annual revenues were in the low-mid $240 millions in 2009, 10, and 11. They dropped to the $230 mil area in 2012. But, a new TV deal and a ton of fan excitement over the big-spending team that seems likely to be a strong World Series contender would seems likely to boost revenues, perhaps quite a bit. It is not at all unlikely to think that the Dodgers can comfortably generate $275+ million dollars a year in revenues.
So, if they carry a $230ish million dollar player payroll plus another $10 mil or so for managers, coaches, and other front-office folks, that seems to make them nicely profitable.
Of course, the folks who bought them paid $2 billion for them and there are certainly large interest payments on the debt they incurred. Plus, I am sure these guys want some kind of return on the hundreds of millions they put down on the team.
I'd love to see all the financials. I wonder, is it possible for them to actually make some payments back to the ownership with a payroll in the mid-200s?
-Jason "the competitive balance of baseball -- from a financial standpoint -- is a joke. There is a reason America loves the NFL a lot more than MLB" Evans
Don't ask me why, but my mother is making me Tweet. Says it will be good for my career. So, follow my ramblings, mostly on the film industry, @TVFilmTalk
But I do suspect the Dodgers recent events will probably bring back discussions of a salary cap if they continue to spend like this and have success. As someone mentioned, people love the NFL for the violence but as that comes back down to earth with concussions along with most other major sports, baseball seems poised to go on forever.
It is remarkable how much money is getting doled out in free agency this year, but clubs like the Rays and A's show it is still possible to contend with modest payrolls, assuming you are very disciplined in how you seek and retain value. These days, the highest value players are those that are still under team control yet able to produce at the MLB level. The successful low-budget teams rely on players like these and then trade them or let them walk (with compensatory picks) when they become too expensive. As a Rays fan, I am sad to see James Shields go, but the yield in terms of young talent was too good to pass up.
It was not just the "Core Four" -- Jeter, Pettitte, Rivera and Posada -- but also Bernie Williams, the best player on those early teams, were all guys who came up the Yankee system. So was starting LF Gerald Williams. Paul O'Neill was the product of a real trade for Roberto Kelly -- a trade many blasted the Yankees for. Tino Martinez came in a trade with the Mariners.
There were some free agents, but mostly marginal guys -- both Gooden and Strawberry had been big stars, but the Yankees picked them up cheap coming off drug problems. They were role players. They got Boggs as a FA in 1993, coming off a terrible year that saw his value drop. I guess the closest they got to a big free agent on that first team was David Cone -- they actually traded for him in midseason 1995, then had to sign him as a free agent the next fall -- he was coming off a 17-17 season that kept the cost down a bit.
Steinbrenner's suspension definitely helped Michael hold on to the young core of his team. Once the Yankees starting winning, the payroll skyrocketed -- both because the Yankees had to pay their big stars to keep them and because George started rolling the dice on free agents. But even as late as 2001, the team was still basically home grown (or assembled traditionally). There was an expensive free agent pitcher in Mike Mussina and while Roger Clemens came in trade (for a couple of real prospects, including Boomer Wells), that was the kind of deal that was driven by the fact that Toronto couldn't pay his salary demands. El Duke was also a free agent out of Cuba, but the Yankees got him cheap (less than $1 million for his first year).
Ubviously, that changed over the last decade. But I would argue that the only pennant that the Yankees successfully BOUGHT was 2009 -- Sabathia, Burnett and Teixera were all huge free agent pickups in the offseason and A-Roid -- the product of an unbalanced trade (although the Yankees did give up Soriano) all played a role.
The scary thing for Yankee fans now is that the farm system isn't exactly loaded. A lot of hype for Banuelos and Bettances, two young pitchers, but both suffered physical setbacks last year. There's not a lot there to deal and with the roster aging rapidly, where do the Yankees turn? With management unwilling to jump on the free agent merry-go-round, it looks like Cashman will try to fill the cracks in the team with a lost of minor free agents. They've gotten some good play from modest purchases in recent years (Eric Chavez, Bartolo Colon, Freddie Garcia, Andruw Jones) but how far will that go?
The AL East is a jungle these days -- and the Yankees are no longer the scariest cat out there.