Hal Steinbrenner has shown his father’s willingness to do what it takes to win, but the Yankees’ managing general partner doesn’t believe a $200 million payroll is a necessity to accomplish his team’s goal.
Steinbrenner spoke with reporters Thursday morning at the ballpark that bears his father’s name, stressing his desire to get the Yankees’ payroll down from $210 million to $189 million in the next two years.
“Yes, that $189 (million) is a real number, and we’re going to be shooting for it,” Steinbrenner said. “I think with all the young talent we have coming up, particularly pitching, that’s a realistic goal.”
...Getting the payroll below $189 million in 2014 would reset the rate to 17.5 percent for the Yankees if they exceed the threshold in the future, undoubtedly a key component to Steinbrenner’s plan.
“Luxury tax is an option; it’s a personal option,” Steinbrenner said. “We go into it knowing exactly what we’re doing. Being the only team that does it, I’m just not convinced we need to be as high as we’ve been in the past to field a championship-caliber team.”
...Making money hasn’t been a problem for the Yankees, who bring in plenty of revenue from Yankee Stadium, the YES Network and various other sources, but Steinbrenner believes that putting a winning team on the field doesn’t require breaking the bank.
“I’m a finance geek; I guess I always have been,” Steinbrenner said. “That’s my background; budgets matter and balance sheets matter. I just feel that if you do well on the player development side and you have a good farm system, you don’t need a $220 million payroll. You don’t. You can field every bit as good a team with young talent.”