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Thursday, January 11, 2018

Heyman | Yankees Having Trouble Finding Taker For Ellsbury

The New York Yankees are said to be willing to pay at least half of Jacoby Ellsbury’s $22 million salary but are still having trouble stirring much trade interest at this point.

That could be because there are so many similar players still available on the free-agent market, though, and it’s possible they could find some takers later.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 11, 2018 at 09:15 AM | 131 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: jacoby ellsbury, yankees

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   1. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: January 11, 2018 at 09:26 AM (#5604493)
For a deal so disliked Ellsbury actually hasn't been awful for the Yankees. 9.7 WAR in four years isn't great or anything but it's not like he has been Pablo Sandoval or Carl Pavano or anything.
   2. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 09:31 AM (#5604499)
Ellsbury at 3/30 seems like a pretty good deal for some team. As Jose say, he's still an average player. I guess the no-trade clause may be limiting the market too much.

Ellsbury at 3/30 would have made more sense for the Mets than Bruce at 3/39. At least he can play CF.
   3. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 11, 2018 at 09:46 AM (#5604511)
He's also 34 and not particularly durable.

If he were a FA, would anyone offer him 3/30?

Well,there's your answer.
   4. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: January 11, 2018 at 09:51 AM (#5604515)
Had his defense not taken such a decline, he'd have more of a market. But he's basically a light-hitting, platoon LFer at this point. I sure wouldn't offer him $30M/3yr if he were a free agent. He's not that much more than a one win player at this point (per Steamer, if you pro-rate out to 600 PA). Maybe $8M/1yr.

Yankees are going to have to eat a whole lot more than half his remaining guaranteed contract if they want to free up the roster space. Probably makes more sense to just keep him as a 4th/5th outfielder.
   5. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 10:16 AM (#5604532)
I feel about as bad for the guy as I can feel for someone making a king's ransom to play mediocre baseball. This is just another example of how the league's punitive Budshovik economic model punishes the players - in the absence of the draconian "luxury tax" (market rates for labor being a luxury to plutocrats) the Yankees would happily jettison Ellsbury to play for another team and pick up as much of his salary as was needed to make it happen. Instead, the league demands any of Ellsbury's salary be used as a cudgel to extract more free money from the Yankees, so the team needs to try and foist off more salary on another team than would be acceptable otherwise.

So the loser here is Ellsbury, who may go into the season as a veteran 5th outfielder for a team with a stacked OF alignment rather than start for another team that would actually use him.
   6. catomi01 Posted: January 11, 2018 at 10:41 AM (#5604561)
Buy him a 1B glove and let him get backup work in LF/CF and 1B as needed. Hicks missed time last year, and Stanton and Gardner (while pretty durable last year) both have history of getting banged up (though Garnder's games played totals since 2013 are better than I thought after looking into it). If Frazier is traded for either pitching or INF help, Ellsbury is still expensive, but has a much more clear role on the team, and will probably end up getting close to 500 PA. Play the matchips and optimize that, and it can be a useful player.

All that said, yeah, I would much rather trade him if they can, but there will be playing time to go around if he's unmovable.
   7. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 11, 2018 at 11:00 AM (#5604591)
I feel about as bad for the guy as I can feel for someone making a king's ransom to play mediocre baseball. This is just another example of how the league's punitive Budshovik economic model punishes the players - in the absence of the draconian "luxury tax" (market rates for labor being a luxury to plutocrats) the Yankees would happily jettison Ellsbury to play for another team and pick up as much of his salary as was needed to make it happen. Instead, the league demands any of Ellsbury's salary be used as a cudgel to extract more free money from the Yankees, so the team needs to try and foist off more salary on another team than would be acceptable otherwise.

So the loser here is Ellsbury, who may go into the season as a veteran 5th outfielder for a team with a stacked OF alignment rather than start for another team that would actually use him.


Fortunately, the new CBA makes it optional for the Yankees to give gonzo contracts to relatively 'meh' OFers that had an outlier season that one time, two years before he was a free agent.
   8. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 11:06 AM (#5604602)
He's also 34 and not particularly durable.

If he were a FA, would anyone offer him 3/30?

Well,there's your answer.


I think they would. His last 3 seasons are 1.9, 2.8, and 1.7 WAR, despite the missed time. That's better than Bruce, and he got 3/39.

Hell, teams are giving fungible RPs 3/27.

Had his defense not taken such a decline,

Assumes facts not in evidence. In 2016 he was still solidly above average in CF. He was a little below average in 2017, -3 by both DRS and UZR, in 90 Gs. But he was hurt.
   9. John DiFool2 Posted: January 11, 2018 at 11:39 AM (#5604639)
Shame (his decline that is). As a Sox fan I never really thought of him as being a future HoFer or such, but to see him decline the way he has is a bit tragic, even if he did it for their arch-rival. Some players when they have a season like he did in 2011 (ye olde age 27) end up establishing a new performance level. He then got hurt the next year and was never close to that peak again.
   10. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 11:43 AM (#5604641)
Ellsbury to Miami for Yelich, Ziegler, Prado, and Castro seems like a logical fit for what both sides want to accomplish in 2018.
   11. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 12:10 PM (#5604670)
Fortunately, the new CBA makes it optional for the Yankees to give gonzo contracts to relatively 'meh' OFers that had an outlier season that one time, two years before he was a free agent.


I thought the whole purpose of these artificial intrusions into fair market contracts was to protect teams from their own impulsive bad decisions.
   12. Man o' Schwar Posted: January 11, 2018 at 12:15 PM (#5604677)
Ellsbury to Miami for Yelich, Ziegler, Prado, and Castro seems like a logical fit for what both sides want to accomplish in 2018.

You need to throw in that art deco dancing HR fish thing. It would look great in Jeter's NYC apartment, but he can't just take it without raising eyebrows.
   13. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 11, 2018 at 02:08 PM (#5604786)
I think they would. His last 3 seasons are 1.9, 2.8, and 1.7 WAR, despite the missed time. That's better than Bruce, and he got 3/39.


People - or I guess, the Mets -think Bruce is better than he is.

But I strongly disagree.

If he were a free agent, nobody is giving 34 yo, always hurt Ellsbury 3/30. MAYBE someone would him 1/10. Maybe.

That's the problem the Yankees have... it's probably not even the money - sure, there are teams that would be happy to upgrade and would consider Ellsbury an upgrade next year. But who the hell wants to risk having him for 2019? 2020?

I suspect any interested team views Ellsbury at best - as a one year + team option acquisition. So they don't see it as 3/30 - they see it as 1/15 (or 1/20) plus a 10-15 mil team option. Nobody is going to be interested in that.

That's on top of having to send something back - though I presume we're in bucket of baseballs expectations land on the return.

Perhaps if the Yankees eat enough of the remainder so that a team can view it as a 2018 stopgap, see how it goes, maybe a reasonable 2019 option... but 30 million isn't that. It's probably more like 20 million, if not 15.
   14. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 11, 2018 at 02:26 PM (#5604811)
Perhaps the Yankees could get someone to pay half of the contract if they throw in a couple of decent prospects and take back nothing more than low level roster filler. Not a great use prospects though.
   15. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 02:38 PM (#5604820)
It's a pity that an innocent player has to be held hostage to the penurious whims of confiscatory Budshovism, but what is Budshovism after all but a shiny new way to say "screw the jocks" once the reserve clause was eliminated?
   16. ??'s Biggest Fan! Posted: January 11, 2018 at 03:11 PM (#5604854)
I can live with Ellsbury on the roster and payroll. Keep the prospects. There's a happy spot where Ellsbury becomes an asset to somebody if and when the Yankees eat enough of his contract. At this point, it's a plus if they eat 99% of the contract and trade him to just to clear up their roster and open a spot in the outfield/bench. But Ellsbury on the roster isn't actively hurting the team. And there's going to be injuries in their outfield. Between Stanton, Gardner, Ellsbury, Hicks, would anyone be shocked if one or all of them went down for a month with injuries? 3 of those 4 got hurt for stretches last year.
   17. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 03:24 PM (#5604865)
I can live with Ellsbury on the roster and payroll. Keep the prospects. There's a happy spot where Ellsbury becomes an asset to somebody if and when the Yankees eat enough of his contract. At this point, it's a plus if they eat 99% of the contract and trade him to just to clear up their roster and open a spot in the outfield/bench. But Ellsbury on the roster isn't actively hurting the team. And there's going to be injuries in their outfield. Between Stanton, Gardner, Ellsbury, Hicks, would anyone be shocked if one or all of them went down for a month with injuries? 3 of those 4 got hurt for stretches last year.

Even with no major injuries, there should easily be 350-400 PAs available for Ellsbury. Neither Gradner nor Hicks will be playing nearly every day, since both have real platoon issues, and Hicks is fragile. Ellsbury can probably generate 1.5 WAR in that kind of PT, which is worth half his contract.

If you can't get out of at least $20-25M of the $60M owed, the Yankees are better off keeping him.
   18. Cris E Posted: January 11, 2018 at 03:29 PM (#5604870)
If they decide it's too expensive to move Ellsbury then who do they move? There's clearly a shopping list and a fist full of cash that they want to spend, so something has to shift.
   19. The Good Face Posted: January 11, 2018 at 03:37 PM (#5604879)
I can live with Ellsbury on the roster and payroll. Keep the prospects. There's a happy spot where Ellsbury becomes an asset to somebody if and when the Yankees eat enough of his contract. At this point, it's a plus if they eat 99% of the contract and trade him to just to clear up their roster and open a spot in the outfield/bench. But Ellsbury on the roster isn't actively hurting the team. And there's going to be injuries in their outfield. Between Stanton, Gardner, Ellsbury, Hicks, would anyone be shocked if one or all of them went down for a month with injuries? 3 of those 4 got hurt for stretches last year.

Even with no major injuries, there should easily be 350-400 PAs available for Ellsbury. Neither Gradner nor Hicks will be playing nearly every day, since both have real platoon issues, and Hicks is fragile. Ellsbury can probably generate 1.5 WAR in that kind of PT, which is worth half his contract.


Agreed. Gardner is going to be 34, Stanton's health history is... inconsistent, and Hicks has yet to break 400 PA in a season (not entirely due to health issues, perhaps, but still). If the Yankees can't find ~350 PAs for Ellsbury, that's a good problem to have; means the rest of their outfield is healthy and productive.
   20. Lassus Posted: January 11, 2018 at 03:40 PM (#5604882)
Had his defense not taken such a decline, he'd have more of a market. But he's basically a light-hitting, platoon LFer at this point.

The Mets' FO ears are burning.
   21. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 04:10 PM (#5604909)
If they decide it's too expensive to move Ellsbury then who do they move? There's clearly a shopping list and a fist full of cash that they want to spend, so something has to shift.

Nobody. They have 6 or 7 legitimate SPs. Spend $10-15M on a mid-range option for 2B or 3B, and go with the kids at the other. Or maybe they trade Betances.
   22. villageidiom Posted: January 11, 2018 at 04:15 PM (#5604912)
I feel about as bad for the guy as I can feel for someone making a king's ransom to play mediocre baseball. This is just another example of how the league's punitive Budshovik economic model punishes the players - in the absence of the draconian "luxury tax" (market rates for labor being a luxury to plutocrats) the Yankees would happily jettison Ellsbury to play for another team and pick up as much of his salary as was needed to make it happen. Instead,
...they are in the draconian situation you describe and can still jettison him and pick up as much of his salary as was needed to make it happen. They could DFA him today, pick up all his salary, remove him from the roster, done. That they aren't willing to do so isn't because they are in this scheme. They aren't willing to do so because they're looking for a better deal than that. I mean, duh.

No reason they shouldn't look for a better deal, of course. But they haven't made such a deal because other teams have pretty much no motivation to do so at this time. The Yankees would like the roster spot and the cash, and in their case the earlier the better because they can use both for further free agent signings as desired. You can probably find teams which should be motivated to "improve" to Ellsbury, but none of them have motivation to do it right now. They have more options on how to improve LF than just this, and he's not such a big improvement over who they have now that they need to rush or else miss out on The Final Piece. They could wait until midway through spring training, really, because the cost of tossing aside who they already have is so small. The Yankees don't want to wait.

If all they want is the roster spot, they can have it today, at a cost. They're willing to wait until tomorrow, or the next day, to see if they can get that cost to come down. Without the artificial constraints they might have a better shot at it in general, but I wouldn't choose to die on Ellsbury Hill making that case.
   23. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 04:35 PM (#5604933)
...they are in the draconian situation you describe and can still jettison him and pick up as much of his salary as was needed to make it happen. They could DFA him today, pick up all his salary, remove him from the roster, done. That they aren't willing to do so isn't because they are in this scheme.


For you to say that the residual effects of any salary not picked-up by a new team on the Yankees' efforts to avoid the obnoxiously punitive "luxury tax" wouldn't be part of the team's consideration is openly ridiculous. It's a simple and incontrovertible fact that every dollar paid by the Yankees is a dollar closer to massive penalties, fines, confiscated draft picks, and probably the loss of two-ply toilet paper in the home clubhouse.

if you remove those disincentives and instead count the player's salary as just, you know, money, then you change the entire discussion. There's value to Ellsbury's roster spot on a team with 4 other credible outfielders and a 5th as a blue-chip prosepect in AAA. Would the team be better-served using that roster spot for someone other than an expensive 5th OF? Almost certainly.

If all they want is the roster spot, they can have it today, at a cost.


Plus the cost of being close to the onerous penalties imposed from without to artificially suppress player salaries of course. It isn't a question of wanting to be rid of Ellsbury's salary so much as being rid of his salary as counts against the arbitrary cap imposed to suppress market spending on player talent. You should be aware of that. It's this cap that is keeping Ellsbury from being released to find a starting position elsewhere. He's a bench-bound hostage to Bushovism.
   24. Trout! Trout! Let it all out! Posted: January 11, 2018 at 05:11 PM (#5604967)
Those poor Yankees. Victims I tell you!

I agree with YR on some level that I think it's unfair that player salaries would be depressed by the luxury tax. I also think it's not a terrible thing that there is a penalty for dumping 400M on Ellsbury McCann and Beltran in one offseason. As stated by others above, the Yankees are certainly able to afford to outspend this mistake, but they have chosen to avoid that course of action, prudently or otherwise. I don't have much sympathy for them or their fans.

The question is whether player salaries are actually getting squeezed, as we have seen some crazy money go to relief pitchers this off-season. We will see how the rest of the dominoes fall, but I suspect that luxury tax reform is going to be necessary at some point.
   25. Walt Davis Posted: January 11, 2018 at 05:40 PM (#5605002)
I understand the hesitancy on Ellsbury but I refuse to speculate too wildly about the free market value of such a player in a league where Kendrys Morales can get 3/$33 or Adam LaRoche could get 3/$40 (or whatever it was) or 3/$45 on Beltran's age 37-39 seasons (and another $16 M for age 40) or teams are reportedly offering Hosmer 7 years.

Anybody know how MLB figures cash for lux tax purposes? For example, if a team agreed to pay all $22 M of Ellsbury this year while the Yanks pick up all but $8 M of the next 2 years, do the Yanks get $22 M of payroll room this year? Or is it pro-rated such that they get out from under $10 M per year?

To clarify -- the lux tax is not stopping the Yanks from freeing up the roster spot. The lux tax would penalize the Yankees if they filled that roster spot with an expensive FA/trade acquisition. Ellsbury might be happier to be released but the Yanks (for now) have decided they don't want to give him away.
   26. cmd600 Posted: January 11, 2018 at 05:43 PM (#5605004)
I think they would. His last 3 seasons are 1.9, 2.8, and 1.7 WAR, despite the missed time. That's better than Bruce, and he got 3/39


And projected for 0.8 if he gets 600 PAs next year.
   27. cmd600 Posted: January 11, 2018 at 05:49 PM (#5605015)
Plus the cost of being close to the onerous penalties imposed from without to artificially suppress player salaries of course. It isn't a question of wanting to be rid of Ellsbury's salary so much as being rid of his salary as counts against the arbitrary cap imposed to suppress market spending on player talent. You should be aware of that. It's this cap that is keeping Ellsbury from being released to find a starting position elsewhere. He's a bench-bound hostage to Bushovism.


They can include Torres in an Ellsbury trade and teams would be more than willing to take on all the salary the Yankees want them to. There is an argument that the CBA has restricted players salaries too much. The argument that its not fair that the Yankees cant afford to make mistakes just like everyone else seems a bit much.
   28. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 11, 2018 at 06:06 PM (#5605025)
also think it's not a terrible thing that there is a penalty for dumping 400M on Ellsbury McCann and Beltran in one offseason.


It's only $400M If you include the penalty. But hey, what's $117M among friends?

They can include Torres in an Ellsbury trade and teams would be more than willing to take on all the salary the Yankees want them to.


You'd pay $67M for Torres' pre-FA years?

Anybody know how MLB figures cash for lux tax purposes?


It's prorated. Marlins won't pay any of Stanton's future earnings if he opts out, but the commitment to do so reduces the AAV that counts toward Yankees' tax number.


   29. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 11, 2018 at 06:11 PM (#5605029)
There is an argument that the CBA has restricted players salaries too much. The argument that its not fair that the Yankees cant afford to make mistakes just like everyone else seems a bit much.


But it's the artificial constraint on payrolls that suppresses salaries. How do you propose to have the former without the latter?
   30. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 11, 2018 at 06:21 PM (#5605037)
You'd pay $67M for Torres' pre-FA years?


I think so... assuming we're still in bag of balls going the other way territory.

If teams could just "buy" top prospects, what would the going rate be?

Plus - again, Ellsbury isn't totally worthless.
   31. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 06:41 PM (#5605046)

Anybody know how MLB figures cash for lux tax purposes? For example, if a team agreed to pay all $22 M of Ellsbury this year while the Yanks pick up all but $8 M of the next 2 years, do the Yanks get $22 M of payroll room this year? Or is it pro-rated such that they get out from under $10 M per year?


I think the totals are averaged over the life of the contract. A deal that pays $59M, $500K, $500K counts as $20M p.a. for the tax for each year. Likewise, if the new team takes $15M of the contract (in whatever year it's paid) the Yankees get a $5M break p.a.
   32. joeysdadjoe Posted: January 11, 2018 at 06:56 PM (#5605052)
Yankees are going to have to pay this down to 3/15M and accept a bag of balls.
   33. Greg Pope Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:06 PM (#5605056)
So the loser here is Ellsbury, who may go into the season as a veteran 5th outfielder for a team with a stacked OF alignment rather than start for another team that would actually use him.

Pretty sure Ellsbury wanted the guaranteed salary. He signed for, what, 7/150? The Yankees surely would have jumped at 4/110. Every single FA thread here says that the teams want shorter contracts and the players want longer ones. And that everyone knows that the team is paying for dead weight at the end. Well, this is the result. Ellsbury wanted the guaranteed money in case he got hurt or sucked. Now he's got the money, but he's not worth the Yankees playing him. I don't think he's the loser here, but if he is, it's because he got exactly what he wanted.
   34. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:07 PM (#5605058)
For you to say that the residual effects of any salary not picked-up by a new team on the Yankees' efforts to avoid the obnoxiously punitive "luxury tax" wouldn't be part of the team's consideration is openly ridiculous. It's a simple and incontrovertible fact that every dollar paid by the Yankees is a dollar closer to massive penalties, fines, confiscated draft picks, and probably the loss of two-ply toilet paper in the home clubhouse.

if you remove those disincentives and instead count the player's salary as just, you know, money, then you change the entire discussion. There's value to Ellsbury's roster spot on a team with 4 other credible outfielders and a 5th as a blue-chip prosepect in AAA. Would the team be better-served using that roster spot for someone other than an expensive 5th OF? Almost certainly.
Oh, boo hoo. This could've all been avoided if the Yankees didn't decide to give a 7/$153M contract to a guy who should've gotten half that much.
   35. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:13 PM (#5605062)
And the Yankees are prepared to pay Ellsbury as promised. The question is why you bottom-feeding Yankee-hating losers are so enthusiastic about an economic model that will punish Ellsbury for signing his contract by preventing the Yankees from letting him go to a team that will let him start.
   36. villageidiom Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:24 PM (#5605067)
For you to say that the residual effects of any salary not picked-up by a new team on the Yankees' efforts to avoid the obnoxiously punitive "luxury tax" wouldn't be part of the team's consideration is openly ridiculous.
I'm just starting from your basic premise that the Yankees would "pick up as much of his salary as was needed to make it happen" under a much different system. The Yankees had already contractually agreed under a similarly-restricted system to pay Ellsbury this sum, so your contention that the Yankees can't afford to meet their obligations because of this system is laughable. Were that the case, then it stands to reason that in an unrestricted system the Yankees would be trying to get out from under an even bigger Ellsbury contract than they are now, and trying to sign more expensive players now. In total, the Yankees under your preferred system would be far less likely to "pick up as much of his salary as was needed" to be rid of him. They might be more likely to pick up as much of THIS salary, but this salary is irrelevant to that scenario because it's not what the Yankees would owe him.

So is Ellsbury, for that matter. But we'll get to that.
It isn't a question of wanting to be rid of Ellsbury's salary so much as being rid of his salary as counts against the arbitrary cap imposed to suppress market spending on player talent. You should be aware of that. It's this cap that is keeping Ellsbury from being released to find a starting position elsewhere. He's a bench-bound hostage to Bushovism.
His salary was already being counted against the arbitrary cap the day the Yankees convinced him to sign the contract. And yet they did. Ellsbury could have chosen to sign a shorter-term deal that would not have left him shackled to a team that would bench him, but he didn't, and his health has put him in a position at great risk of that happening. All of that would be true under a different system. It's as though every time the Yankees spend money it's in ignorance of the system, but every time they try to save money it's in recognition of the system. Maybe they should try to be less ignorant.

Y'know what has changed since Ellsbury signed? They traded for Stanton. You're getting ticketed today for driving 85 in a 30 zone, and saying the ticketing system instituted in 1962 is at fault. Well, in a technical sense you're correct, but in all practical senses you're facing the consequences of your actions in a system you knew existed and whining about its unfairness. You're the jailed Bundy family arguing that your second amendment rights should allow you to carry guns in prison. The Yankees' Ellsbury problem, to the extent that it's related to the artificial cap, is really a we-had-Ellsbury-but-acquired-Stanton-anyway problem. Which means it's really a Stanton problem: they knew they couldn't afford Stanton and Ellsbury, but they acquired Stanton nonetheless. Actions have consequences. Maybe they should try trading Stanton and picking up as much of his salary as is needed to make it happen. They might find some takers.

Ellsbury is an example of someone whose salary might be lower because of the payroll pressures of this system. So is pretty much every free agent. What Ellsbury isn't an example of is someone who is a "bench-bound hostage" because of this system. The Yankees have more player salary than they can afford, as a direct result of their eyes-wide-open actions. If the Yankees were clever enough to get themselves into this situation in this system, they would be clever enough to do it in another.
   37. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:26 PM (#5605068)
Yankees are going to have to pay this down to 3/15M and accept a bag of balls.

At $5M they might as well keep him.
   38. PreservedFish Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:26 PM (#5605069)
And projected for 0.8 if he gets 600 PAs next year.


By Steamer, which is still a mystery to me. ZiPS gives him 1.5
   39. cmd600 Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:31 PM (#5605076)
The question is why you bottom-feeding Yankee-hating losers are so enthusiastic about an economic model that will punish Ellsbury for signing his contract by preventing the Yankees from letting him go to a team that will let him start.


There is nothing preventing the Yankees from letting him go. And you aren’t the least bit upset about Ellsbury’s situation but that the Yankees can only trade for Stanton instead of sign Darvish as well. Maybe they can, you know, not make stupid decisions in the first place?
   40. cmd600 Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:36 PM (#5605082)
But it's the artificial constraint on payrolls that suppresses salaries. How do you propose to have the former without the latter?


There is more than enough middle ground where players’ percentage of revenue is well above 40% and the Yankees are set back a bit (but not enough to prevent them from acquiring Stanton) for making dumb moves.
   41. Trout! Trout! Let it all out! Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:52 PM (#5605091)
It's only $400M If you include the penalty. But hey, what's $117M among friends?


my bad...I didn't look it up but I remembered 153 for jacoby, 85 for McCann. thank you for the correction
   42. Greg Pope Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:52 PM (#5605092)
an economic model that will punish Ellsbury for signing his contract by preventing the Yankees from letting him go to a team that will let him start.

WTF? Ellsbury is being "punished" by getting paid $21M/year when he's not actually good (and can't stay healthy)? This makes no sense. Ellsbury wanted this exact situation! "You want me for my next 4 years which will probably be good? Fine, guarantee me another 3 years even if I suck."
   43. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 11, 2018 at 07:59 PM (#5605096)
Please tell us where this middle ground lies. The present system exists to constrain player salary growth. The fact that MLB slapped a "competitive balance" label on it doesn't change that fact, no matter how much you all mock YR.
   44. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 11, 2018 at 08:06 PM (#5605099)
Ellsbury wanted this exact situation!


No need to impugn Ellsbury's character. Of course he wanted the money, but I'm sure he'd much prefer to be a perennial All-Star on a HOF career path and have Heyman writing about his contract being the biggest bargain in the history of free agency instead of writing about him being untradeable.
   45. Trout! Trout! Let it all out! Posted: January 11, 2018 at 08:18 PM (#5605103)
And the Yankees are prepared to pay Ellsbury as promised. The question is why you bottom-feeding Yankee-hating losers are so enthusiastic about an economic model that will punish Ellsbury for signing his contract by preventing the Yankees from letting him go to a team that will let him start.


Really, it's punishing Ellsbury for not performing in accord with his ridiculous contract. He should have considered the possibility that the Yankees could improve and render him less useful while he was under contract. I'm sure if he did consider it, he would have still taken the money; but if being a starter throughout the duration of the contract was important to him, he could have signed with the Padres for less money.

It is difficult for me to see the Yankees or Jacoby Ellsbury as victims in this scenario. The Yankees threw a bunch of money at an injury prone player who had not demonstrated any sense of consistency from year to year, and Ellsbury got a sweetheart contract that literally no one to be taken seriously thought he deserved.

As far as being a, what was it, bottom feeding Yankee hating loser? I root against the Yankees primarily because if they encounter any sort of adversity, many (not all) of their fans immediately begin with this entitled nonsense. What has it been? 9 years since they won the World Series? Must be tough.
   46. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 11, 2018 at 08:51 PM (#5605125)
You know, for all this talk of how Ellsbury is always hurt, he's actually averaged 130 games a season over the past four years (123 starts).
   47. Trout! Trout! Let it all out! Posted: January 11, 2018 at 09:10 PM (#5605140)
You know, for all this talk of how Ellsbury is always hurt, he's actually averaged 130 games a season over the past four years (123 starts).


True, but his performance never justified that kind of contract. It was a huge gamble and it didn't work out. That's ok. It could have been a lot worse.
   48. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: January 11, 2018 at 09:23 PM (#5605154)
What has it been? 9 years since they won the World Series


That's right. There are kids in NY entering the 4th grade(well maybe 3rd grade these days since everyone holds back their kids - - a debate for another day) that have only seen the Yankees as losers. The team that does not finish first but with the also-rans of places 2nd through to 30th. And it's all because of revenue sharing and the Ellsbury contract. More losing ideals and more loser players.

I love when these drift into revenue sharing and YR goes all Adam Smith on everyone. What I find interesting is that YR never seems to realise that MLB is one business competing for the entertainment dollar against the NFL, Game of Thorns, good porn, etc., etc, etc. The Yankees cannot compete against good porn by themselves...they need the A's, Padres, Twins and the rest of the YR's bloodsuckers to create a product which is competitive.

Now I don't know enough about the intricacies to suggest an alternative method of creating a viable MLB entertainment product, however no one team operates in a vacuum and that detail seems to get lost in these discussions sometimes.
   49. Randomly Fluctuating Defensive Metric Posted: January 11, 2018 at 09:48 PM (#5605172)
Or maybe they trade Betances.


I see this point being raised a lot which moves me to mention Betances had 100 strikeouts in 59.2 innings last season. I understand that there's an asethetically displeasing quality to his performance when he's struggling: walking batters, weird pick-off throws, wild pitches. But all said and done, Betances can be a weapon if they get his fastball command straightened back out. He only allowed three homers in those innings last season, and if they are still using the helium baseballs next season, that has tremendous value for a late inning reliever. I don't like walks. Nobody likes walks. But to put it in context, Roberto Osuna only walked nine guys last season, but Betances had a better ERA+. (by the way, would expect a monster bounce back from Osuna next season. Limiting walks and homers is never a bad thing and that 3.38 ERA screams fluke)
   50. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 09:56 PM (#5605176)
His salary was already being counted against the arbitrary cap the day the Yankees convinced him to sign the contract. And yet they did. Ellsbury could have chosen to sign a shorter-term deal that would not have left him shackled to a team that would bench him, but he didn't, and his health has put him in a position at great risk of that happening. All of that would be true under a different system.


What else could be true under a different system? The Yankees, no longer having a role for Ellsbury’s services and correctly seeing his contract as a sunk cost of limited value to the team as currently situated, trade him to a team where he can take a starting role in exchange for nominal salary relief. This would obviously and undoubtedly benefit Ellsbury, who has a full no-trade clause and would otherwise veto the opportunity.

But of course we don’t have such a system. We have a system designed to artificially suppress play salaries and punish popular and successful franchises. And so the Yankees may be forced to have Ellsbury languish on the bench as a part-timer because the his limited part-time value to the team may be better than paying his salary AND absorbing the punitive “luxury tax” risks at the same time. Ellsbury, a professional athlete whose career is limited to a few short years, will be forced to sacrifice his limited opportunities to play professional baseball, even if BOTH he and the Yankees would prefer to get the chance to start elsewhere, just so spiteful losers can enjoy punishing success.

It is what it is. And here is one of the results of creating such a lopsided and draconian system. You can crow “tough titty” as much as you’d like. Marvin Miller had to deal with your ilk too.

The Yankees' Ellsbury problem, to the extent that it's related to the artificial cap, is really a we-had-Ellsbury-but-acquired-Stanton-anyway problem. Which means it's really a Stanton problem: they knew they couldn't afford Stanton and Ellsbury, but they acquired Stanton nonetheless.


Of course they can afford both. Why would they acquire Stanton if they couldn’t afford to add him to their roster? Why are you confabulating nonexistent issues?

The problem is that after making a shrewd trade to improve their team, the Yankees’ no longer have a role for Ellsbury commensurate with his value. Is Ellsbury good enough to start on an MLB team fight now? Almost certainly. Is he good enough to start on the New York Yankees? Barring multiple injuries, almost certainly not. As such, both parties may agree that it is best for everyone to move Ellsbury to the team of his choice from those interested in hosting him for pennies on the dollar.

But that’s not good enough to satisfy the anti-player sentiment that masquerades as baseball’s revamped economic system. Instead, a goal of the artificial suppression of player compensation demands that the teams be penalized twice for offsetting player salaries - once in actual contracted salary, and again with an arbitrarily-determined salary cap with millions in penalties and forfeited access to amateur talent.

So your zeal to swallow the dishonest arguments of Bud Selig and his plutocratic billionaire cronies will claim an innocent victim in the form of a baseball player, from all accounts a decent fellow, forced to languish and lose what little time he has left as an athlete as a part-timer. It’s a small price for your ilk to pay, because it costs you nothing. I can see the temptation. I suppose I’m just too attuned to the idea of fairness and empathy.

The Yankees have more player salary than they can afford


Repeating a lie doesn’t make it true. Repeating it ad nauseum just makes you seem delusional. Even the President gets criticized for doing so, I can see any reason why you should skate.

   51. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 10:01 PM (#5605178)
I see this point being raised a lot which moves me to mention Betances had 100 strikeouts in 59.2 innings last season. I understand that there's an asethetically displeasing quality to his performance when he's struggling: walking batters, weird pick-off throws, wild pitches. But all said and done, Betances can be a weapon if they get his fastball command straightened back out.

He hasn't been dominant since April 2016. Since his scoreless April, he's had an ERA of 3.00 and peripherals to match.

Last year he walked 6.6 batters per 9. That's just a huge red flag.

Right now he's at best the Yankees 5th RP. At $5M or so, if I can flip him for a top-100 prospect, I make the move.
   52. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 10:02 PM (#5605179)
As far as being a, what was it, bottom feeding Yankee hating loser? I root against the Yankees primarily because


Because you want to see winners lose. It’s ok. You can admit it. You get the easy, effortless thrill that comes from being able to root for every team in a league save one. The fandom of a loser.
   53. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: January 11, 2018 at 10:56 PM (#5605198)

What else could be true under a different system? The Yankees, no longer having a role for Ellsbury’s services and correctly seeing his contract as a sunk cost of limited value to the team as currently situated, trade him to a team where he can take a starting role in exchange for nominal salary relief. This would obviously and undoubtedly benefit Ellsbury, who has a full no-trade clause and would otherwise veto the opportunity.


You say they can't just release them because they'd have to pay a bunch of extra money. You also say the luxury tax depresses player contracts. That means without said tax, they'd have to have paid a bunch more money to sign him in the first place. So in both scenarios, they end up paying a bunch of extra money.
   54. Walt Davis Posted: January 12, 2018 at 12:07 AM (#5605233)
Please tell us where this middle ground lies.

It existed just a few years ago before (near) stagnation in the lux tax level was joined with a jump in penalties for exceeding the lux tax and the policy of re-setting those penalties when a team gets below the lux tax. That is, not that long ago, the only team ever affected by the lux tax was the Yankees. Then the Red Sox were bumping up against it for a while then the Dodgers decided to completely ignore it for a few years. In that long-forgotten world, sure player salaries were dragged down a bit by the fact the Yanks couldn't outbid every team for every player (maybe they give Cano 8/$240 in that world) but, on average, probably not a huge amount.

If, in the last CBA the MLBPA had gotten the threshold pushed up to $250 M, we wouldn't be having this discussion ... or at least we wouldn't be having it until after the Yanks signed Darvish and YR was pissed they couldn't sign JDM and Arrieta too without paying a penalty or trading a chunk of Ellsbury's salary.

This system vs. a $250 threshold vs. no lux tax can be debated but the original lux tax system was certainly one where the Yanks spending was curtailed a bit while being less of a drag on player salaries.

I think some are missing VI's point. His point is that the system has already acted as a drag on salaries. And so without such a system, Ellsbury would have a contract that's bigger than the one he currently has. In that world, maybe he's near 7/$200 and now the Yanks would be looking do dump 3/$84 instead of 3/$67 and they'd be in pretty much the same pickle.

By the way, I don't know nuthin' but I'm pretty sure I talked myself around to Ellsbury's contract being OK. His comps at the time weren't bad at all and he looked like a reasonable bet to age well. HIs inconsistency would have made him hard to judge (like Hosmer) but my memory is that his comps included guys like Steve Finley (who did fine), maybe Cameron and some other wiry, mostly good-defending CFs like that. I think I ended up pegging him around 18 WAR.

And as noted, his fragility is badly over-stated. For 2015-17, he's 107th in MLB in PA. That's not astounding or anything but it's more than Stanton or Marte, basically as many as Braun or Reddick, only 70 behind Justin Turner or Rendon. And some of those PAs were lost to suckitude, not injury -- which doesn't help the Yanks but does mean the issue hasn't been excessive fragility.

Ellsbury 30-33: 10 WAR
Finley 30-33: 8 WAR, 1.5 WAR for 32-33 ... 9 WAR for 34-36
Cameron 30-33: 12 WAR ... 9 for 34-36
White 30-33: 13 WAR (half at age 30) ... 6 for 34-36

Trying to recreate comps ... from 27-29, he had 15 WAR, but inconsistent. He was hurt at 26 so it won't really help us to push farther back. I've noted before that relatively high BA guys with moderate ISOs often have one big outlying ISO season which was Ellsbury's age 27. But his horrible age 28 is a pretty clear outlier as well. Taken together for ages 27-29 he hit 303/356/469, 122 OPS+ which is still probably high on ISO but not far out of line with his career line to that point of 297/350/439, 108.

Expansion era, 11 to 17 WAR for ages 27-29, at least 80% CF ... returns 28 names. Sorted by WAR, Ellsbury is 7th; sorted by WAA he's still 7th ... despite missing about half his age 28 season and being just 22nd in PA. The top 10 by WAR: Puckett, Lofton, Carlos Gomez, Andruw, Cain, Mickey Rivers, Bernie, Ellsbury, Bourn, Van Slyke. A bit below him you get White, Maddox, Cameron, Flood, Granderson ... plenty of less promising names too (Matty Alou).

The contract covers ages 30-36. For those ages, the other 24 (dropping Cain, Adam Jones and Gomez who are all turning 32) had a median of ... well, 12 or 15, it's a sizable gap. Basically it breaks out like this:

28-30 WAR: Butler, Lofton, Hunter
20-22: Puckett, Oliver, Cameron, Bernie, Granderson
15-18: White, Lynn, Lankford, Victorino, Lance Johnson
7-12: Dykstra, Van Slyke, Murphy, Alou, G Thomas, Rivers, Flood
bleck: Maddox, Andruw, Everett, Bourn

Still a mixed bag. If we further take hitting style into account, the most similar for 27-29 were Lofton (the best), Cain, Rivers, White (kinda), van Slyke, Dykstra, Maddox, Oliver and Victorino.

Lofton: 28 WAR
Cain: 8 with 5 years to go
Rivers: 8
White: 19
vS: 11
Dykstra 12
Maddox: 5
Oliver: 22
Victorino: 15

A mess but 18 would be optimistic. On the other hand, at least he's at 10 "already" so we know he wasn't a total bust. For ages 30-33, he's pretty much right in the middle. He is in a group where some continued to produce (Oliver, Granderson, Cameron, Lynn although all 3 are a couple of WAR ahead of him) and those that didn't (most of the blah names above). Probably something like a 10% chance at another 8-9 WAR, about 40% chance at 5-6 WAR, about 50% chance 0-3 WAR. Basically, he's probably destined for that 12-15 median I started with. Not good for $160 M, not the biggest disaster in the world either.

FWIW, Finley didn't show up in this search but I think did in whatever I did 4 years ago. From 27-29 he put up 10.9 WAR, just missing my cut-off. For 30-33 he put up 9 WAR. For 34-36 he put up 9 WAR. Now he was incredibly durable, averaging nearly 650 PA for 30-36 but those 18 WAR were still 4.5 WAA.



   55. Lassus Posted: January 12, 2018 at 07:57 AM (#5605283)
Because you want to see winners lose.

Am I still a loser if I want to see everyone lose?
   56. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 12, 2018 at 07:59 AM (#5605284)
You say they can't just release them because they'd have to pay a bunch of extra money. You also say the luxury tax depresses player contracts. That means without said tax, they'd have to have paid a bunch more money to sign him in the first place.


That makes absolutely no sense. If you put that in a tweet and used smaller words it could have come from Donald Trump.
   57. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 12, 2018 at 08:01 AM (#5605285)
Am I still a loser if I want to see everyone lose?


Wouldn’t that make you some sort of nihilistic supervillain?
   58. Lassus Posted: January 12, 2018 at 08:05 AM (#5605287)
He hasn't been dominant since April 2016. Since his scoreless April, he's had an ERA of 3.00 and peripherals to match.

League average ERA for 2016, including all those closers and RP, was 4.18. Subtract all those (which I have no idea how to do), and 3.00 against whatever the SP league ERA was (5.00?) seems at least approaching a level of dominance.
   59. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: January 12, 2018 at 08:06 AM (#5605288)
It existed just a few years ago before (near) stagnation in the lux tax level was joined with a jump in penalties for exceeding the lux tax and the policy of re-setting those penalties when a team gets below the lux tax.


Fair enough, except that the re-set provision was part of the tax from the start. There was often talk about the Yankees desperately needing to get below for one year under that system. They never did.

One more thing, Ellsbury might have cost more in a no tax MLB, but I doubt he'd have gotten the $230M that he's costing the Yankees (unless they can reset the tax).
   60. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: January 12, 2018 at 09:37 AM (#5605314)
The problem is that after making a shrewd trade to improve their team, the Yankees’ no longer have a role for Ellsbury commensurate with his value.
Oh, please. The Yankees aren't trying to trade Ellsbury because of some altruistic vision of what's best for him; they're doing it because he isn't worth the money they owe him (and never was) - there is no role for him, on any team, "commensurate with" his salary.
Is Ellsbury good enough to start on an MLB team fight now? Almost certainly.
There are some teams he's good enough to start for; but who's going to spend what it costs to acquire him? And in all of these "nobody likes me, everybody hates me, I'm gonna eat some worms" posts, you completely ignore the fact that Ellsbury has a full NTC - the type of thing that allowed Stanton to come to your beloved Yankees and make Ellsbury expendable in the 1st place.

The Yankees have created a situation where they're paying draconian levels of luxury tax, but they're the ones who've done it - not MLB, not MLBPA, not the loosers who hate pinstripes. They decided they needed Tanaka at 7/$150M, and Ellsbury at 7/$150, and Chapman at 5/$86, and then decided to trade for Stanton at $25M+ per - no one forced them to make any of these decisions. Other teams have been successful by choosing to use the draft and/or trade for prospects; the Yankees decided that buying every FA on the market was the way they wanted to go. It's a decision they made of their own volition, and now it's costing them dearly in luxury tax payments - but they knew all along that it might.
   61. Rally Posted: January 12, 2018 at 09:40 AM (#5605319)
Because you want to see winners lose.


I like to see losers lose. And if the teams I don't like lose, then by definition they are not winners. They are losers.
   62. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: January 12, 2018 at 09:51 AM (#5605325)
Oh, please. The Yankees aren't trying to trade Ellsbury because of some altruistic vision of what's best for him


Particularly given that he's expressed the preference to stay with the Yankees and try to win back the CF job.

Personally, I don't think he's a starting-caliber player for anybody anymore, and I'd be reluctant to even take him as a backup given that he's an old guy with a three-year commitment remaining. But if the Yankees want to try and shop him around, best of luck to them.
   63. Rally Posted: January 12, 2018 at 09:54 AM (#5605331)
By the way, I don't know nuthin' but I'm pretty sure I talked myself around to Ellsbury's contract being OK. His comps at the time weren't bad at all and he looked like a reasonable bet to age well. HIs inconsistency would have made him hard to judge (like Hosmer) but my memory is that his comps included guys like Steve Finley (who did fine), maybe Cameron and some other wiry, mostly good-defending CFs like that. I think I ended up pegging him around 18 WAR.


I can't remember what I thought of the deal back then, but 18 WAR sounds about right as for the production he'd have to put up to justify the deal. Use these assumptions and you get 7 years, 153 million:

Initial $mil/WAR = 7.5
Ellsbury WAR year 1 = 4.1

Inflate the $/WAR by 5% each year, and subtract 0.5 WAR for Ellsbury each year. Put it in a spreadsheet, adds up to 152.8 million. This would have him producing 13.4 WAR for the first 4 years. He's only given the Yankees 9.7, so it's a below expected result but certainly not a disaster.

The original plan would forecast only 4.8 WAR for the next 3 years, which is certainly not worth the 68 million left on the deal, but that is a feature, not a bug. The value of a free agent player is always front loaded. You expect better results from them in the early years of the contract, when they are still close to prime age. But the money is almost always paid evenly or back loaded.
   64. Rally Posted: January 12, 2018 at 09:57 AM (#5605334)
Probably a good rule of thumb on any long term free agent deal: If you sign a guy for 7 years, trade him after 4, and can do it without giving up additional talent or eating the money, your initial free agent signing was a home run. You almost certainly got much more value than you paid for in years 1-4 if somebody is willing to take on years 5-7.
   65. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 12, 2018 at 11:23 AM (#5605390)
Oh, please. The Yankees aren't trying to trade Ellsbury because of some altruistic vision of what's best for him; they're doing it because he isn't worth the money they owe him (and never was) - there is no role for him, on any team, "commensurate with" his salary.


It doesn't have to be altruism for it to be the best possible outcome for all parties, including Mr. Ellsbury. The ideal negotiation is one that results in a satisfactory result for everyone.

There are some teams he's good enough to start for; but who's going to spend what it costs to acquire him?


Well that depends on the cost now, doesn't it. Which is sort of the entire crux of multiple posts I've made on this topic. The acceptable cost to the Yankees is artificially inflated by the league's perfidious efforts to suppress player salaries by punishing franchises that pay market rates for talent.

And in all of these "nobody likes me, everybody hates me, I'm gonna eat some worms" posts, you completely ignore the fact that Ellsbury has a full NTC


You're delusional. Cracked. Off the rails and into the field. You may as well have orange skin, a terrible yellow combover, and an addiction to incoherent tweeting. I mean my lord man, in post #50, as clear as the nose on your face:

The Yankees, no longer having a role for Ellsbury’s services and correctly seeing his contract as a sunk cost of limited value to the team as currently situated, trade him to a team where he can take a starting role in exchange for nominal salary relief. This would obviously and undoubtedly benefit Ellsbury, who has a full no-trade clause and would otherwise veto the opportunity.


What more can I say here? How much more explicit can I be and still have my opinions flagrantly misrepresented? Could you blame me for thinking "TDF" must stand for "Trump Delegate Fan"?
   66. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: January 12, 2018 at 12:13 PM (#5605430)
It existed just a few years ago before (near) stagnation in the lux tax level was joined with a jump in penalties for exceeding the lux tax and the policy of re-setting those penalties when a team gets below the lux tax. That is, not that long ago, the only team ever affected by the lux tax was the Yankees.

That is not right. The Yankees were the only team that ever paid significant amounts of the LT penalty. But that is because the other handful of teams or so, that were 'bumping' up against the tax, were often making a dedicated effort to stay under it. If it had not been there, they would have probably often bumped over it. The luxury tax absolutely affected those teams.
   67. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: January 12, 2018 at 02:38 PM (#5605574)
The acceptable cost to the Yankees is artificially inflated by the league's perfidious efforts to suppress player salaries by punishing franchises that pay market rates for talent.
But the "acceptable cost" for any acquiring team is Ellsbury's value going forward - a 34-36 year old CF who is no longer a plus with the bat and can't stay healthy; a guy who the various projection systems see as worth 0.3-1.3 WAR next season (and necessarily, less after that). The fact that NYY chose to sign the guy to a horrendous contract isn't their problem. Here's a thought experiment: Would you trade for Ellsbury and any part of his salary, or just sign Carlos Gomez (MLB Trade Rumors guesses he can be had for 2/$22) or Carlos Gonzalez (1/$12)?
And in all of these "nobody likes me, everybody hates me, I'm gonna eat some worms" posts, you completely ignore the fact that Ellsbury has a full NTC

You're delusional. Cracked. Off the rails and into the field. You may as well have orange skin, a terrible yellow combover, and an addiction to incoherent tweeting. I mean my lord man, in post #50, as clear as the nose on your face:

The Yankees, no longer having a role for Ellsbury’s services and correctly seeing his contract as a sunk cost of limited value to the team as currently situated, trade him to a team where he can take a starting role in exchange for nominal salary relief. This would obviously and undoubtedly benefit Ellsbury, who has a full no-trade clause and would otherwise veto the opportunity.
So...you're saying Ellsbury's going to agree to a trade just anywhere so the Yankees get salary relief? Or are you saying he'll agree to any trade, so long as he gets to start? Tell me - when has someone with a NTC done either of these things?
   68. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: January 12, 2018 at 03:19 PM (#5605617)
Here's a thought experiment: Would you trade for Ellsbury and any part of his salary, or just sign Carlos Gomez (MLB Trade Rumors guesses he can be had for 2/$22) or Carlos Gonzalez (1/$12)?
Whatdyaknow - USA Today counted, and there's currently 19 open OF spots but 37 OF FAs. That sure doesn't sound like a market where a vastly overpaid 34 year old is going to draw a lot of interest.
   69. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 12, 2018 at 03:45 PM (#5605636)
Whatdyaknow - USA Today counted, and there's currently 19 open OF spots but 37 OF FAs. That sure doesn't sound like a market where a vastly overpaid 34 year old is going to draw a lot of interest.

That must include some really, really awful OF. Looking at MLBTR's top-50 FAs, the OFs sill available are:

JD Martinez
Lorenzo Cain
Carlos Gomez
Jon Jay
Carlos Gonzalez
Jarrod Dyson

So, 31 of those 37 OF are worse than Jarrod Dyson,
   70. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: January 12, 2018 at 03:57 PM (#5605650)
So, 31 of those 37 OF are worse than Jarrod Dyson
Jarrod Dyson, '15-'17: 952 PA, 4.6 WAA, 7.9 WAR. MLBTR says 2/$12M should get him.
Jacoby Ellsbury '15-'17: 1536 PA, 1.2 WAA, 6.4 WAR.
   71. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 12, 2018 at 04:07 PM (#5605655)
Jarrod Dyson, '15-'17: 952 PA, 4.6 WAA, 7.9 WAR. MLBTR says 2/$12M should get him.
Jacoby Ellsbury '15-'17: 1536 PA, 1.2 WAA, 6.4 WAR.


I never said Ellsbury was better than Dyson. But you cited 19 open OF spots. There are 6 OF as good or better than Jarrod Dyson.

Lots of teams are going to be playing guys much worse than him.
   72. PreservedFish Posted: January 12, 2018 at 04:20 PM (#5605664)
Dyson is a legitimately excellent platoon outfielder. 2+ WAR annually, rarely topping 300 PAs. He should be preferable to Ellsbury at this point.
   73. PreservedFish Posted: January 12, 2018 at 04:26 PM (#5605667)
But snapper is right, after Dyson you get guys that aren't really starters or have huge flaws. Cameron Maybin, Jose Bautista, Melky Cabrera. Curtis Granderson. I think that at least 25 of those 37 are guys that don't have a prayer of starting in the majors on Opening Day - which is to say, they never should have been counted in the first place.
   74. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: January 12, 2018 at 05:47 PM (#5605723)
But snapper is right, after Dyson you get guys that aren't really starters or have huge flaws. Cameron Maybin, Jose Bautista, Melky Cabrera. Curtis Granderson. I think that at least 25 of those 37 are guys that don't have a prayer of starting in the majors on Opening Day - which is to say, they never should have been counted in the first place.

But on the flip side, a lot of those "open" outfield spots counted in the article are not so open. They either have internal options they are evaluating, or other plans. Just going to the first team with listed OF spots in that article, the Blue Jays, with 2. But it also says in the entry, that Steve Pearce and Teoscar Hernandez are the favorites for those 2 spots. So they have a competition with other guys for those spots going, but that does not mean they are looking to bring in extra OFs to fill that spot.

I am not going to go through all of them, but I bet a ton of those 19 spots will melt away pretty quickly.
   75. The Yankee Clapper Posted: January 12, 2018 at 08:18 PM (#5605776)
It's being reported that the Yankees made a 7-year $160M offer to Yu Darvish, but pulled it off the table when he didn't accept within 48-hours. That would probably have required an offsetting move, since the Yankees only have $20M left under the luxury tax threshold after reaching agreements with all their arbitration-eligible players.
   76. Walt Davis Posted: January 14, 2018 at 07:55 PM (#5606421)
That is not right. The Yankees were the only team that ever paid significant amounts of the LT penalty. But that is because the other handful of teams or so, that were 'bumping' up against the tax, were often making a dedicated effort to stay under it.

Which years are we talking about? I don't recall what the lux tax threshold was in different years but the Yanks 25-man payrolls per Cots:

2002 $125
2003 $152
2004 $184
2005 $208

They've basically been there since (low $190 in 2007).

From 2004-9, the most money the Red Sox spent was $143, nowhere near the threshold.
From 2004-9, the most money the Phillies spent was $113.
From 2004-9, the most money the Dodgers spent was $118.

The Red Sox took a big jump to $168 in 2010, hitting a high of $175 in 2012 before falling back. They jumped again in 2015.

The Phillies hit $166 in 2011 and basically stayed there for four seasons.

The Dodgers increased payroll by $111 in 2013, eventually blowing way past the Yanks to $271. Nobody followed.

Nobody was within $50 M of the Yanks until the Red Sox made their move in 2010. That wasn't fear of the threshold, that was an unwillingness to spend anywhere close to the threshold. Yes, starting with the Red Sox in 2010, some teams tried competing more with the Yanks on payroll but, yes, trying to stay below the threshold. That was one team for 2010, two for 2011-15 (Red Sox/Phils then Phils/LAD then Sox/LAD) then the Cubs joined the party in 2016.

So, yes, by the time the last CBA was being negotiated, you had a few teams bumping up against the threshold which is why it was a failure on the MLBPA's part to have agreed to both minimal increases and tougher penalties. It is now effectively a salary cap. (Yes I know the reset was always there but the penalties weren't generally onerous enough to "force" a reset, at least as long as the team kept their payroll not too far over the threshold.)

But for the most part, it has only affected the Yanks until recently. No team was trying to keep with the Yanks on payroll and, even when they were, it's not like the Red Sox or Phils would have spent $240 M without the tax in place. In a few recent seasons, FAs might have found that up to three big spenders were off the market ... except the Dodgers weren't, they were ignoring the lux tax.

So, prior to the most recent CBA, the lux tax limited the Yanks spending for 12 years or so. It limited the Red Sox spending for about 4-5 years, but probably not by much. It limited the Phils spending for about 4 years, but probably not by much. Once they decided to spend, it didn't limit the Dodgers' spending to any significant degree. The Cubs didn't really start spending until the new system was pretty much in place.
   77. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: January 15, 2018 at 07:08 AM (#5606519)
It's being reported that the Yankees made a 7-year $160M offer to Yu Darvish, but pulled it off the table when he didn't accept within 48-hours. That would probably have required an offsetting move, since the Yankees only have $20M left under the luxury tax threshold after reaching agreements with all their arbitration-eligible players.


That seems an enormous amount of money in the context of a slow-moving market, where Cole just got moved for a handful of unspectacular young players. The vague hints I've been seeing were in the 5-year range for a Darvish offer from the Yankees, and over $22m per year is pretty tasty. Can't watch the video - did they say when the offer was made? Perhaps it would have been before the Sabathia signing; the market was less stagnant at the time, and it would have left around $10m for in-season adjustment. Also suggests very high confidence in Andujar, with little or nothing left for veteran insurance.
   78. manchestermets Posted: January 15, 2018 at 07:56 AM (#5606523)
making a shrewd trade to improve their team


Shrewd? Yes, how shrewd to realise that acquiring the second best young hitter in baseball, whose team were determined to get rid of him at any cost, and who would only accept a trade to the Yankees, could improve their team. If only any of the other teams had had such insight.
   79. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:13 AM (#5606524)
and who would only accept a trade to the Yankees


Or Cubs. Or Astros. Or Dodgers.

Of course if you’re a Mets fan your idea of shrewd dealing is not getting fleeced by the guy who says he has a truck full of extra blacktop and will do your driveway for $250.
   80. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:29 AM (#5606526)
Or Cubs. Or Astros. Or Dodgers.

Told by whom, exactly?
   81. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:53 AM (#5606531)
Told by this guy, he covers baseball in South Florida apparently. Also this guy who appears on Sirius XM with him.

Do you think there's something sinister going on here? Are you prepared to cry out, "FAKE NEWS"? Is ((Steinbrenner)) the new ((Soros))?
   82. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:15 AM (#5606534)
Do you think there's something sinister going on here? Are you prepared to cry out, "FAKE NEWS"? Is ((Steinbrenner)) the new ((Soros))?

I'm sure sources indicated at some point that Steinbrenner didn't have anything to do with Watergate or George Spira.

And people spreading unsourced information via twitter isn't fake news. It's people talking on the street.
   83. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:20 AM (#5606538)
The conspiracy runs deep! Coup! Coup!

If you can work Hillary into your wild baseless speculation I bet we can get the splash page of Breibart.
   84. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:27 AM (#5606543)
The conspiracy runs deep! Coup! Coup!

Your shtick is growing weaker than normal if you have to literally make things up about what others are saying.
   85. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:49 AM (#5606551)
And what are you saying? Spell it out for me, I'm not some northern fancy lad, I went to a state school in Mississippi.
   86. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:07 AM (#5606556)
You're from Miami; let's not be ridiculous.

Mish said "being told" Dodgers, Cubs, and Astros were teams Stanton would accept trade to, and I was wondering who told him that. You answered in link a.) that he told himself, which is sort of maybe the opposite of what compelling is; and link b.) doesn't actually mention the Astros or Cubs. Anyhow, maybe Stanton told Mish, who knows? Kind of doubting it. But it's rumor more than reporting, which - to be fair - is what baseball transaction reporting is generally made up of.

I find that the evidence you've presented that Stanton would accept a trade to anywhere other than the Yankees to be scant. I will also admit that the statement he wouldn't accept a trade anywhere else is also conjecture and rumor, but it still doesn't make yours any more believable.
   87. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:29 AM (#5606561)
Mish said "being told" Dodgers, Cubs, and Astros were teams Stanton would accept trade to, and I was wondering who told him that.


The man is a South Florida-based journalist covering a South Florida baseball story and offering a fairly unremarkable bit of information. It was widely reporting on multiple sites, including MLB.com ( link here, citing Rosenthal and others).

Do you think there's some malfeasance afoot? Some dishonest misdirection? What exactly is the issue here?

I find that the evidence you've presented that Stanton would accept a trade to anywhere other than the Yankees to be scant.


Well I have citations from credible baseball journalists and you have hand-waving and whispered innuendo. I find your evidence nonexistent, because it is.
   88. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:55 AM (#5606569)
MLBTR joined the conspiracy in real-time citing Rosenthal, Bowden, and Mich. Meanwhile Heyman opined on the same day that Stanton only really wanted to go to the Dodgers. Truly the tentacles run deep.
   89. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:57 AM (#5606571)
From Risario's reporting in #87:
The report added Stanton would consider trades to the Dodgers or Yankees. Another report, from Craig Mish of SiriusXM, added the Cubs and Astros to the list of Stanton's preferred destinations.
Funny how super-insider Rosenthal didn't hear what Mish had heard. It's almost like they are reporting rumors instead of statements or positions!

Which is, of course, what I said. I did not claim malfeasance or dishonesty. I think it is perfectly plausible that Stanton would not accept a trade to anyone but the Yankees, much in the same way I think it's perfectly plausible Steinbrenner was a liar and a pig.

However, I will give you full credit that there is far more evidence, scant as it is - which is what I said - that Stanton would have indeed gone to the Astros than that he would ONLY go to the Yankees. (Not to mention far less evidence that Stanton would only go to the Yankees than Steinbrenner's dishonest porcine legacy.)

My pushback was to your OMG NO WAY THEY SAID SO response, in the same way you would believe as gospel all the miserable reports of departing Boston players from the Boston press.
   90. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 11:00 AM (#5606574)
MLBTR joined the conspiracy in real-time citing Rosenthal, Bowden

The link you provided of Bowden didn't say anything about the Astros or the Cubs. Again, different people reporting different rumors. And I don't think the reporting of rumors is a conspiracy.
   91. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 11:08 AM (#5606579)
Funny how super-insider Rosenthal didn't hear what Mish had heard. It's almost like they are reporting rumors instead of statements or positions!


So who is the liar? Who? WHO?

Which is, of course, what I said.


You said nothing. You added nothing to the discussion except for veiled insinuations with no evidence, which you aren't even willing to stand behind for a hot second once it was noted. "Not every rumor contains all the information contained in every other rumor on the topic!"
Wotta scoop!

I think it is perfectly plausible that Stanton would not accept a trade to anyone but the Yankees, much in the same way I think it's perfectly plausible Steinbrenner was a liar and a pig.


Lassus's hot take: "I'm perfectly happy to ignore all the actual cited evidence in favor of my own imagination."

I think it's perfectly plausible that you're sniffing glue.

My pushback was to your OMG NO WAY THEY SAID SO response, in the same way you would believe as gospel all the miserable reports of departing Boston players from the Boston press.


"My defense against these widely-circulated citations is based on a fictionalized imagined account of your own reaction to a nonexistent hypothetical story." Seriously, stay away from the glue.
   92. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 11:12 AM (#5606584)
So who is the liar? Who? WHO?

No one lied - they were reporting rumors. Each was reporting different ones, in fact. I'll stop the glue when you have 12 less fewer [/Stannis] shots of espresso.


You added nothing to the discussion except for veiled insinuations with no evidence

They shouldn't have seemed veiled, that was obviously an error on my part.


Do you actually think it's IMPOSSIBLE that Stanton would only seriously consider a trade to the Yankees? That someone would have so much love for the hearth and home and financial injustice warriors for the Bronx that they wouldn't think of being anywhere else? It's that IMPLAUSIBLE to you? (Again, I'm dealing in plausibility here. I think it's plausible that Stanton would only consider going to the Yankees, considering the leverage he had - that's it.)
   93. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: January 15, 2018 at 12:39 PM (#5606639)
Well, while that ticks over nicely, River Avenue Blues has a post up that offers an alternate take on 75 & 77 above. In brief, their timeline is that Yankees and Darvish have been talking, Darvish tweeted that an offer hadn't been made, then corrected himself later to say that one had.

The rumored 7years/160m offer seems to be closer to Darvish's ask range than the Yankees' offer range, so one possibility is that Darvish's side is leaking it to try to set the market, and using the 48-hour window to explain why they didn't just jump on it. Right now, that would look awfully attractive if I were Darvish.
   94. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 01:34 PM (#5606666)
No one lied - they were reporting rumors. Each was reporting different ones, in fact.


No, they were all reporting aspects of the same story. None of them, however, were reporting what #78 claimed - that Stanton would only accept a trade to the New York Yankees, America's most successful and popular sports franchise. That was an unsupportable fiction which I quickly corrected, thereby adding to the veracity of this forum. You're welcome.

I'll stop the glue when you have 12 less fewer [/Stannis] shots of espresso.


Well I can't get thick, sludgy, Miami-style Cuban coffee in Boston, what choice to I have?

Do you actually think it's IMPOSSIBLE that Stanton would only seriously consider a trade to the Yankees?


Yes I do. I think Stanton wanted out of Miami as soon as it could be managed. He also felt like he deserved to have some input on where he landed which was reflected in the reporting at the time - a contender with long-term viability. He was going to get his big salary regardless of where he ended up, so he wanted to make sure he ended up somewhere where he wouldn't be relegated to a decade of bottom-feeding. The four teams widely-reported to by on his list of preferred targets all meet that standard.

Do you actually think that Stanton would have accepted staying in Miami through another teardown and years of cellar-dwelling if the team couldn't work out a deal with only one team, the New York Yankees? That's far nuttier.

(Again, I'm dealing in plausibility here. I think it's plausible that Stanton would only consider going to the Yankees, considering the leverage he had - that's it.)


I find that highly implausible.
   95. The Yankee Clapper Posted: January 15, 2018 at 01:50 PM (#5606682)
Do you actually think it's IMPOSSIBLE that Stanton would only seriously consider a trade to the Yankees?

Oh, whether it's "IMPOSSIBLE" is now the standard for evaluating posts? I can see why some might find that helpful. I'm not seeing any reporting anywhere that Stanton would only except a trade to the Yankees. Got a source for that claim? My recollection is that it was rather widely reported that Stanton preferred the Dodgers since he's from California, but they didn't pursue him, and the Yankees made the best offer. We now know that the Dodgers luxury tax avoidance deal was their higher priority.
   96. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: January 15, 2018 at 02:01 PM (#5606697)
Do you actually think that Stanton would have accepted staying in Miami through another teardown and years of cellar-dwelling if the team couldn't work out a deal with only one team, the New York Yankees? That's far nuttier.

Any nuttier than Ken Griffey Jr. saying "I want to be traded close to my home in Florida...oh, and by the way, that means Cincinnati and only Cincinnati?"
   97. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 02:26 PM (#5606734)
Any nuttier than Ken Griffey Jr. saying "I want to be traded close to my home in Florida...oh, and by the way, that means Cincinnati and only Cincinnati?"

I thought it was widely reported that the Dodgers were Stanton's first choice?
   98. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: January 15, 2018 at 02:40 PM (#5606742)
I think Stanton wanted out of Miami as soon as it could be managed. He also felt like he deserved to have some input on where he landed which was reflected in the reporting at the time - a contender with long-term viability. He was going to get his big salary regardless of where he ended up, so he wanted to make sure he ended up somewhere where he wouldn't be relegated to a decade of bottom-feeding.
Huh. And yet, you think another NYY OF with a guaranteed big salary would gladly accept a trade to play absolutely anywhere but for the draconian salary rules that MLB, MLBPA, NSA, NASA, KGB, the Deep State, and Chris Truby conspired to impose on the Yankees (and only the Yankees) to keep them from assembling a barely competitive team.
   99. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 02:51 PM (#5606746)
(This is where I point out that being a back-bencher 5th outfielder on a contender may not be as appealing as being in the starting lineup for another team, while pretending to respectfully believe that the thought never crossed TDF's mind)
   100. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: January 15, 2018 at 03:21 PM (#5606761)
(This is where I point out that being a back-bencher 5th outfielder on a contender may not be as appealing as being in the starting lineup for another team, while pretending to respectfully believe that the thought never crossed TDF's mind)
(This is where I point out that Ellsbury has said publicly that he expects to earn the starting CF job for the Yankees next year)
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