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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Yahoo Sports: Passan: Darvish bidding process is a cloak and dagger affair

The deadline for bids on Darvish is today at 5 pm (eastern time).  Passan makes the whole process sound like executives have spent several years in Australia bulding up an immunity to iocane powder just for this moment.

The Texas Rangers, for example, have told rivals they’re cash-poor this offseason. A TV deal that will net them $80 million annually doesn’t kick in until 2015. The purchase price of the team for the ownership group – jacked up in an auction by Mark Cuban – wound up tens of millions of dollars higher than expected and sucked up the $90 million signing bonus Fox Sports delivered. And the TV contract itself wasn’t nearly as lucrative as Chuck Greenberg, the club’s deposed CEO, purported it to be.

To which one GM said: “Yeah, right.”

And another executive said: “They’re sandbagging.”

Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 14, 2011 at 04:02 PM | 66 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: blue jays, japan, nationals, rangers, yankees

Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. Anonymous Observer Posted: December 14, 2011 at 04:29 PM (#4016160)
Passan makes the whole process sound like executives have spent several years in Australia bulding up an immunity to iocane powder just for this moment.


Inconceivable!
   2. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 14, 2011 at 04:36 PM (#4016173)
Never start a bidding war in Asia.
   3. Greg K Posted: December 14, 2011 at 04:39 PM (#4016175)
Never go up against a Grecian-Canadian when a Japanese pitcher is on the line.
   4. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 14, 2011 at 04:44 PM (#4016185)
Have you ever heard of Branch Rickey? Pat Gillick? John Schuerholz? Morons!
   5. Don Geovany Soto (chris h.) Posted: December 14, 2011 at 04:45 PM (#4016187)
"A word, young sir. We are but poor, lost circus performers. Is there a village nearby?"

Darvish: "There is nothing nearby, not for miles."

"Then there will be no one to hear you scream."
   6. Erix Posted: December 14, 2011 at 04:50 PM (#4016196)
Since bidding ends today, when do you figure the bids will start leaking out?
   7. Nasty Nate Posted: December 14, 2011 at 04:57 PM (#4016207)
Pitching is pain, Darvish. Anyone who says differently is selling something.


My prediction: Yankees win bidding.
   8. Don Geovany Soto (chris h.) Posted: December 14, 2011 at 05:22 PM (#4016230)
"Darvish doesn't get acquired by the Yankees at this time."

"What?"

"The Yankees aren't getting him. I'm explaining to you because you look nervous."

"I wasn't nervous. Maybe I was a little bit concerned but that's not the same thing."
   9. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: December 14, 2011 at 05:24 PM (#4016233)
How long after the Dice-BB bidding ended did we know the winner?
   10. chemdoc Posted: December 14, 2011 at 06:10 PM (#4016283)
So basically, whoever can round up a holocaust cloak, a sword, and a wheelbarrow of cash rescues Darvish.
   11. Don Geovany Soto (chris h.) Posted: December 14, 2011 at 06:15 PM (#4016291)
"I AM THE DREAD PIRATE STEINBRENNER, AND THERE WILL BE NO SURVIVORS!"
   12. McCoy Posted: December 14, 2011 at 06:23 PM (#4016300)
Steinbrenner's recruitment speech, "Someday you – with all your strength and charm and good looks – you – all of you, will call me master!"
   13. CrosbyBird Posted: December 14, 2011 at 07:05 PM (#4016348)
Dabney Coleman could not be reached for comment.
   14. John Northey Posted: December 14, 2011 at 07:16 PM (#4016361)
Y'know, if the Japanese team can give some of the posting fee to the player then why not bid $100 million then sign Darvish for $20 mil? The Japanese teams keeps $10 mil (as the article says they'll be happy with) and Darvish gets just shy of $20 per year without fears of it adding to the official payroll. Sneaky and a one time trick as I suspect MLB would quickly change the rules after that type of stunt.
   15. yb125 Posted: December 14, 2011 at 07:20 PM (#4016368)
For a second McCoys post scared me, I thought there was a line for The Princess Bride I didn't recognize, which really worried me, then I goggled it and was relieved.
   16. Willie Mayspedester Posted: December 14, 2011 at 07:22 PM (#4016371)
Upset Japanese Baseball Exec: Darvish I wish you would just go play in the US!

Darvish: AS YOU WISH!!!
   17. WillYoung Posted: December 14, 2011 at 07:27 PM (#4016381)
Let me 'splain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up. Darvish's posting ends in little less than four hours. So all we have to do is get in, submit the high bid, fool the other teams,... after I insult the Yankees.
   18. Enrico Pallazzo Posted: December 14, 2011 at 07:39 PM (#4016394)
Darvish: I know something you don't know.

MLB: And what is that?

Darvish: I...am not right-handed.
   19. Don Geovany Soto (chris h.) Posted: December 14, 2011 at 07:50 PM (#4016407)
Darvish: I know something you don't know.

MLB: And what is that?

Darvish: I...am not right-handed.

Bautista smiled.

Darvish: "Why are you smiling?"

Bautista: "Because I know something you don't know."

Darvish: "What is that?"

Bautista: "I am not right-handed either."
   20. TerpNats Posted: December 14, 2011 at 08:18 PM (#4016431)
After a disappointing Winter Meetings week for the Nationals, I wouldn't be surprised to see the Lerners go big on Darvish -- especially with the Capitals being a disappointment so far, the Redskins meandering and the Wizards meh. Just a hunch.
   21. Misirlou's been working for the drug squad Posted: December 14, 2011 at 08:19 PM (#4016433)
Winning bidder GM to Darvish: "What is my bid? The game of wits has begun. It ends when you accept an offer and we both sign. Then we will know who has won, and who got shafted.

Darvish: But it's so simple. All I have to do is devine what I know of you. Are you the type of man who would put a big offer in front of himself, or his enemy's? Now, a clever man would put the best offer in front of himself, knowing only a great fool would reach for what is offered. I am not a fool, so clearly I cannot take the offer in front of you. But you must have known I am not a fool, you would have counted on it, so clearly I cannot take the offer in front of me.

GM: "So, you've made you decision then?

Darvish to winning bidder: "Not remotely. You've bested the Yankees, which means you are incredibly rich, so rich that what you propose is a small fraction of what you can afford, so clearly I cannot take the offer in front of you. But you also bested the Rays, which means you have studied, and in studying, you should know that lock up all their talent early and cheaply, so clearly I cannot take the offer in front of me."

GM: "You're stalling. You're trying to trick me into giving something away. It won't work"

Darvish: "It has worked! You've given everything away. I know which offer to take."

GM: "Then make your choice."

Darvish: "I will, I choose...WHAT IN THE WORLD IS THAT?"

GM looks over his shoulder as Darvish adds a few zeroes to the contract in front of him

GM: "What is what?"

Darvish (chuckling): "Oh, nothing. I thought I saw Theo Epstein in that Starbucks"

GM: "What's so funny?"

Darvish: "I'll tell you in a minute. First, let's both sign the contract in front of me." (signs)

GM: "You guessed wrong"

Darvish: "You only think I guessed wrong. That's what's so funny. I added two zeroes while you weren't looking. You fell for both of the classic blunders, the most famous of which is never sign a Japanese pitcher, but only slightly less well known is never enter into negotiations without knowing Theo Epstein's exact location. HA HA HA HA!"

(Looks at the contract again, and faints)

Darvish Agent: "Who are you?"

GM: "I'm no one to be trifled with"

Agent: "But I saw him add zeroes to the contract when you weren't looking"

GM: "He added zeroes to the length, no the amount. I told him he should let you negotiate"
   22. vortex of dissipation Posted: December 14, 2011 at 09:11 PM (#4016480)
GM looks over his shoulder as Darvish adds a few zeroes to the contract in front of him.


A6M2s or A6M5s?
   23. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: December 14, 2011 at 09:16 PM (#4016488)
Y'know, if the Japanese team can give some of the posting fee to the player then why not bid $100 million then sign Darvish for $20 mil? The Japanese teams keeps $10 mil (as the article says they'll be happy with) and Darvish gets just shy of $20 per year without fears of it adding to the official payroll. Sneaky and a one time trick as I suspect MLB would quickly change the rules after that type of stunt.
The Japanese team cannot give any of the posting fee to the player. Speculation on this was rampant during the Matsuzaka negotiations and MLB made it clear that this was against the rules.
   24. charityslave is thinking about baseball Posted: December 14, 2011 at 11:26 PM (#4016621)
Yu: Hello. My name is Yu Darvish. You dishonored me by not bidding. Prepare to die.

Angels/A's/Mariners/Astros: Stop saying that!
   25. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: December 14, 2011 at 11:40 PM (#4016631)
Mark Grace says that if Darvish has trouble adapting or underperforms, he need only seek the Road Skanks of Unusual Size.
   26. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: December 14, 2011 at 11:54 PM (#4016637)
They say that the Yanks aren't interested, but who can really measure the street value to a young and healthy boy of a vault filled with Derek Jeter gift baskets?
   27. RMc is a fine piece of cheese Posted: December 14, 2011 at 11:55 PM (#4016639)
It had better not be the Yankees, not just for the obvious reason but because of the Yu/you puns the NY tabloids will be sure to use:

WE LOVE YU!
YU THE MAN!

and the inevitable

SCREW YU!
   28. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: December 15, 2011 at 12:06 AM (#4016645)
It had better not be the Yankees, not just for the obvious reason but because of the Yu/you puns the NY tabloids will be sure to use:

WE LOVE YU!
YU THE MAN!

and the inevitable

SCREW YU!


If you want to compile a list of the 100 worst pun headlines of all time, the Washington Post will spot the New York tabloids 48 on the string and not even work up a sweat. At least the NY Post and the Daily News can come up with something actually clever once in a while, thanks to a certain lack of political correctness. The WP would treat us to about 365 variants a year of "Yu Know What? Yu Is Better Than We Thought", or "Here's Something Yu Didn't Know About Nats' Newest Acquistion". It's like a ####### Chinese water torture.
   29. puck Posted: December 15, 2011 at 01:49 AM (#4016736)
MLB has a collection of tweets about the posting.

FWIW, here's some of them:

# The Nippon Ham Fighters were very excited by how large the high bid was according to Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com (on Twitter). Still no word on the the money, though.

# The Yankees did post a bid, according to ESPN.com's Buster Olney (Twitter link).

# The Angels did not bid on Darvish, according to MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez (on Twitter).

# Three MLB executives speculated that the Blue Jays and Rangers are candidates to win the bidding for Darvish, according to ESPN.com's Buster Olney (on Twitter).

# The Red Sox did not bid on Darvish, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe (on Twitter).
   30. JJ1986 Posted: December 15, 2011 at 01:58 AM (#4016743)
I'll bet it's the Nationals if there's a surprisingly high winning bid.
   31. toratoratora Posted: December 15, 2011 at 02:18 AM (#4016753)
You kids have fun storming the States
   32. Willie Mayspedester Posted: December 15, 2011 at 02:21 AM (#4016757)
Yuuuu! Yuuuuu! Yuuuuu!

He had true honor from his home country team!

Yuuu! Yuuuu!

True honor saved him in the fireswamp!

Yuuu! Yuuuu!

His true team will try and continue without him!

Yuuuu! Yuuuu!

Now he runs to the enemy like a coward! He is the prince of filth! The prince of scum! The prince of slime!

Yuuuu! Yuuuuu!
   33. Willie Mayspedester Posted: December 15, 2011 at 02:21 AM (#4016759)
Will he pitch well over there? It would take a miiiracle.
   34. bunyon Posted: December 15, 2011 at 02:35 AM (#4016762)
"Dice-K, you know how much I love watching you work. But I have my posting to arrange, a contract to sign, a new PR campaign to start and an agent to hire. I'm swamped."

"Get some rest. If you haven't got your health, you haven't got anything."
   35. Lassus Posted: December 15, 2011 at 02:52 AM (#4016772)
Nippon Execs after accepting winning Mets bid:

Exec 1: "What about the W.O.U.F.'s?"

Exec 2: "Wilpons of Unusual Finances? I don't believe they exist."
   36. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: December 15, 2011 at 03:00 AM (#4016777)
Steinbrenner: Get a pitcher. Get a pitcher. Your way!

Cashman: Oh good, my way... What's my way?

Steinbrenner: The bidding for Darvish is coming up. As soon as he's posted, you bid one hundred million dollars!

Cashman: My way's not very sportsmanlike.
   37. bumpis hound Posted: December 15, 2011 at 09:10 AM (#4016901)
Grandpa: Yu doesn't get high bid by the Yankees at this time.
The Grandson: What?
Grandpa: The Yankees don't get him. I'm explaining to you because you look nervous.
The Grandson: I wasn't nervous. Maybe I was a little bit "concerned" but that's not the same thing.
   38. Arch Stanton Posted: December 15, 2011 at 10:10 AM (#4016906)
Epstein: Give us the checkbook.
Ricketts: I have no checkbook.
Hoyer: Zambrano, tear his arms off.
Ricketts: Oh, you mean this checkbook.
   39. bunyon Posted: December 15, 2011 at 01:17 PM (#4016914)
Okay, I'd thought of another, but 38 wins.
   40. WhoWantsTeixeiraDessert Posted: December 15, 2011 at 02:48 PM (#4016932)
Costello: What's that pitcher's name?
Abbott: Yu
Costello: I'm not asking about the name of the tree he's leaning on, who's the guy?
Abbott: Yu
Costello: Did you become German today? I don't care what religion he practices, I want to know his name.
Abbott: That's what I've been saying, his name is Yu, Yu Darvish.
Costello: I don't even know what you just called me, Abbott, but it doesn't sound nice. I just want to know what to call that pitcher.
Abottt: Not you, Lou, Yu! Darvish!
Costello: I know I'm short Bud, but I'm not a dwarfish. I, I'm a bad boy.
Abbott: Oh what are you talking about now. I've just been answering your question about that Japanese person.
Costello: Someone's niece? You don't mean her?
Abbott: Don't be ridiculous, Herr's been out of the game for years. The man's name is Yu.
Costello: His name is you.
Abbott: Now you've got it.
Costello: His name is Abbott!
Abbott: No this pitcher has two arms, are you blind?
Costello: I don't even know what I'm talking about!
   41. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: December 15, 2011 at 02:55 PM (#4016940)
Cloak and dagger, or chrysanthemum and sword?
   42. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: December 15, 2011 at 04:16 PM (#4016978)
Just to be clear, rich or not, I would not expect the team who has just signed mega-FA Nick Punto to have money left in the budget to bid on Darvish.

Less snarkily, although they're two different players, I don't think a team that has just gone through the Matsuzaka Era would be interested in staring at Japanese League MLEs and trying to project a pitcher to their division again quite so soon.

I'd have been shocked if the Sox were in.
   43. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: December 15, 2011 at 04:20 PM (#4016982)
Less snarkily, although they're two different players, I don't think a team that has just gone through the Matsuzaka Era would be interested in staring at Japanese League MLEs and trying to project a pitcher to their division again quite so soon.

I'd have been shocked if the Sox were in.


The ONLY reason I would disagree with you is Bobby Valentine. Given his experience with Japanese baseball I would not have been surprised if the Sox felt like "hey, maybe he can reach Darvish in a way Tito never could with Matsuzaka."
   44. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 15, 2011 at 04:25 PM (#4016986)
Well, the report is that the Sox didn't bid on Darvish. So whatever's going on there - budget restrictions, concerns about the error bars on NPB conversions, concerns about pitcher injury in moving from NPB to MLB, concerns about Darvish in particular - they weren't interested.

The "budget restriction" explanation is growing more and more powerful with each passing day.
   45. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 15, 2011 at 04:28 PM (#4016992)
Latest on Darvish from MLBTR is that the following teams did not bid:

Giants, Athletics, Marlins, Mets, Rays, Angels, Twins, Red Sox and Orioles

And the following teams did:

Yankees, Cubs, Rangers, Blue Jays

Princess Bride allusion.
   46. Don Geovany Soto (chris h.) Posted: December 15, 2011 at 04:32 PM (#4016995)
#37: really? Did you not even see #8?

Also, #38 is terrific.
   47. JJ1986 Posted: December 15, 2011 at 04:44 PM (#4017002)
Latest on Darvish from MLBTR is that the following teams did not bid:


They're now reporting that Toronto bid more than $50m.
   48. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 15, 2011 at 05:08 PM (#4017023)
How has Antonio Alfonseca not made an appearance in this thread?
   49. Juilin Sandar to Conkling Speedwell (Arjun) Posted: December 15, 2011 at 05:22 PM (#4017035)
Despite my love of The Princess Bride, and the really high quality of the puns here, the one that killed me, for some reason, was #22.
   50. Paul D(uda) Posted: December 15, 2011 at 09:30 PM (#4017285)
Twitter is saying it's Texas or Toronto.
   51. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 15, 2011 at 09:35 PM (#4017294)
I'm shocked this hasn't leaked yet.
   52. bunyon Posted: December 15, 2011 at 10:03 PM (#4017329)
50. Paul D (AKA The Other Canadian) Posted: December 15, 2011 at 03:30 PM (#4017285)
Twitter is saying it's Texas or Toronto.
51. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 15, 2011 at 03:35 PM (#4017294)
I'm shocked this hasn't leaked yet.


I do not think that word means what you think it means.
   53. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 15, 2011 at 10:11 PM (#4017335)
I do not think that word means what you think it means.

I mean the actual team and dollars. Not speculation.
   54. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: December 15, 2011 at 10:33 PM (#4017354)
My Primey vote goes to #21 and it's not close. #36 is a clear second, though.
   55. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: December 15, 2011 at 11:00 PM (#4017381)
Did McCoy really quote something from Dragonlance? I guess I don't know why I am surprised that Dragonlance would come up on BBTF at some point. Is this the first instance? Have I missed a thread on it?
   56. McCoy Posted: December 15, 2011 at 11:02 PM (#4017383)
Darvish to Steinbrenner after it is announced that Toronto is the winning bidder, “You've been chasing me all off-season, only to fail now. I think that's the worst thing I've ever heard; how marvelous.”
   57. TerpNats Posted: December 15, 2011 at 11:08 PM (#4017388)
If Toronto gets Darvish, Fielder becomes a Ranger.
If Texas gets Darvish, Fielder likely goes to the North Side.
   58. Willie Mayspedester Posted: December 16, 2011 at 12:59 AM (#4017451)
Fielder becomes a Ranger


Everything is bigger in Texas.
   59. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: December 16, 2011 at 01:13 AM (#4017458)
My Primey vote goes to #66. I just have a good feeling about it.
   60. TerpNats Posted: December 16, 2011 at 01:19 AM (#4017461)
My Primey vote goes to #66. I just have a good feeling about it.
Well, let's see who lands in that position.
   61. Lassus Posted: December 16, 2011 at 01:26 AM (#4017464)
I demand a mystery team!
   62. JJ1986 Posted: December 20, 2011 at 04:56 AM (#4019866)
Jeff Passan reporting Texas
   63. Greg K Posted: December 20, 2011 at 05:10 AM (#4019878)
Noooooooooooooooooooooooooo!
Darvish to the Rangers
   64. Lassus Posted: December 20, 2011 at 05:19 AM (#4019886)
Oh, Canada.

Don't I remember Darvish saying something once about being concerned about having a middle eastern and Japanese background and what kind of negativity that might bring in the U.S.? Could he not want to sign with Texas for that reason, rightfully or not?
   65. Misirlou's been working for the drug squad Posted: December 20, 2011 at 05:25 AM (#4019893)
iMy Primey vote goes to #66. I just have a good feeling about it.

Wait for it.
   66. Misirlou's been working for the drug squad Posted: December 20, 2011 at 05:28 AM (#4019896)
Grandfather: "1 month later, the main square of Arlington City was filled as never before, to hear the announcement of the great Prince Daniels's new pitcher to be"

Trumpets play, the owner and manager on the balcony. Daniels enters.

Daniels: "My people, a month from now, out team will celebrate its 51st anniversary. On that sundown, I shall sign a pitcher who was once a foreigner like yourselves. But perhaps you shall not find him so foreign now. Would you like to meet him?"

People: "Yes!"

Daniels: "My people, meet the pitcher, Darvish!"

Darvish enters among the crowd to the sound of trumpets. The people bow.

Grandfather: "Darvish's emptyness consumed him. Although the law of the land gave Daniels the right to sign him, he did not want to play in Texas."

A melancholy Darvish looks up at Daniels.

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