Blog Entry

Yankees machine scoops up Burnett

Posted on: December 12, 2008 5:30 pm
Edited on: December 12, 2008 7:02 pm

Apparently, one of the amenities at the luxurious new $1.3 billion Yankee Stadium is a printing press.

For money.

That, or it sits on a gold mine.

In yet another one of those moments that will have the New York Yankees and their fans bursting with pride and will leave the rest of the game's blood vessels bursting in anger, the Yankees have bestowed a five-year, $82.5 million deal on free agent pitcher A.J. Burnett, has confirmed.

This only two days after the Yanks signed CC Sabathia to a seven-year, $161 million deal.

The way the Yankees are collecting initials in their alphabet soup of liquid gold, perhaps the week's biggest surprise was that they somehow allowed reliever J.J. Putz to land crosstown with the Mets.

The Burnett deal is not yet official because he must take a physical exam and final language details are being finalized, according to sources.

The Sabathia deal hasn't been formally announced, either, for the same reasons.

Soon, the Yankees are going to need their own air-traffic control. They've got gold-plated starting pitchers stacking up on their runway like airliners.

And there's more to come. The Yankees intend to sign yet one more starting pitcher, probably either Andy Pettitte or Ben Sheets.

Then, on the seventh day, perhaps general manager Brian Cashman will rest.

"There's always work to be done," Yankees captain Derek Jeter said the other day in Las Vegas, after word broke at the winter meetings that Sabathia would wear pinstripes. "Cash was pretty hopeful in wanting to improve some things."


How about the auto industry? The mortgage industry? And, maybe, the bankers while he's at it?

Sabathia can opt out of his contract after three years if he so desires, but if he stays for all seven, the Yankees will have committed $243.5 million to Sabathia and Burnett.

Add them to Chien-Ming Wang, Joba Chamberlain, Pettitte or Sheets and Phil Hughes, and the Yankees rotation today, on paper, by far is better than it was at any time in 2008.

Now, Burnett still could go all Carl Pavano on them. For most of his career, he's been the classic Nuke LaLoosh character from Bull Durham, the classic million-dollar-arm, 10-cent-brain guy. His shoulder and elbow always seem one pitch away from sending him to the trainer's room. In nearly 10 years, he's made 30 or more starts exactly twice.

And gee, coincidentally, those two times came in the seasons in which he was eligible for free agency.

Wait. On second thought, nobody can be as big a hypochondriac as Pavano.

Anyway. The Yankees are loading themselves so audaciously that they will have plenty of insurance against an injury here or an underachieving year there by a particular pitcher.

It's breathtaking and sickening, all at once.

"The commissioner just got done telling us we need to tighten our belts because of the economy," an executive with one of the smaller market clubs said during the winter meetings, referring to Bud Selig's advising clubs not to get too cocky coming off of a record revenue season at the owners' meetings in November. "And the Yankees are continuing to do things none of the rest of us can do.

"We're all supposed to be careful in this economy, while they can do whatever they want? It's a joke."

And that was when the Yankees had only signed Sabathia.

The rich-blooded opponents at their own private country club, of course, will have a chance to do something.

And the way the Yankees are raging through this winter, it should be making Mark Teixeira smile. The Yankees' moves can't help but pressure the Boston Red Sox to do something big to improve themselves, and the best thing they could do at this point is ensure that Teixeira is swinging at Fenway Park in 2009 and not for the Angels, Nationals or Orioles.

As for the Atlanta Braves, who made Burnett their No. 1 free agent target, they can go back to shopping at the thrift shops. They made a strong presentation to the right-hander, reportedly increased their offer to five years and did all they could to land him.

Their misfortune, simply, was targeting someone the Yankees wanted.

The nerve.


Since: Jun 13, 2008
Posted on: December 12, 2008 8:14 pm

Yankees machine scoops up Burnett

show me a team that's not a pitching injury away from disappointment. and get your facts straight on CC. he has an 8 year career average of 15 wins a season, 222 IP/season, 186 K/season and a career 3.66 ERA. he's in his prime and he loves the ball.

Since: Oct 30, 2007
Posted on: December 12, 2008 8:13 pm

Yankees machine scoops up Burnett

Obviously you are an idiot.

Comparing Yankees spending to Yankees spending as a justification is ridiulous.  "Well, the Yankees are spending less than when they spent more money than any time ever in the history of pro sports globally to lose so its ok."  Well, lets see if the annual losers can buy a championship in 2009.  Been 7 years and about $1.5 billion and they just get worse every year.

The real entertainment in 2009 will be watching the Yankees lose and laughing at them.  Spending $240 million and losing to the Red Sox drove George insane - lets hope for more of the same for Hank.

Since: Sep 25, 2007
Posted on: December 12, 2008 8:04 pm

Yankees machine scoops up Burnett

You should realize the reason why people laugh at the deals the yankees make is historically they regret them not long after they make them. Pavano? Giambi? Kevin Brown? And that is just to name a few.  I'm interested to see how well these two guys produce since Sabathia was nothing special vs the AL before they trade and was blown up by the Red Sox in the ALCS in '07. Burnett? Always injured, always underproducing.  I wish you guys the best of luck, but it seems like after losing Mussina you better be hopeful that Wang gets back to his great form and that you're able to grab either Sheets or Pettite otherwise you could be an injury away from a similar situation as last year.

Since: Jun 13, 2008
Posted on: December 12, 2008 8:02 pm

Yankees machine scoops up Burnett

nyteach is spot on. i don't hear any of these same organizations crying foul when the yankees come in and sell out their ballparks for a 4-game series or when they get their luxury tax payments from the yanks every year and pocket the dough instead of spending it on their teams. don't blame the yanks blame the system.

Since: Sep 2, 2006
Posted on: December 12, 2008 8:01 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Sep 28, 2008
Posted on: December 12, 2008 7:48 pm

Yankees machine scoops up Burnett

the yankees dropped 88 million dollars from their payroll this year. even w/ these contracts, they are still far below last years payroll. next year, they will drop another 30 or so million w/ damon and matsui coming off the books. at that point, some of their younger players such as hughes and austin jackson will be ready for the bigs.  when other teams sign players, its a good deal. when the yankees sign players, they are a greedy organization who is being economically irresponsible. time to stop being hypocrits and allow the yankees to run their organization how they see fit. as a fan of any other team, you should wish that your owner would spend his own money to build a new stadium and bring in the best talent possible to field a winner.

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