Is CC Really the Answer??
The Yankees have offered free agent left-hander CC Sabathia a contract, reportedly for six years and $140 million. That would make him the highest paid pitcher in the game, exceeding the $137.5 million deal Johan Santana signed with the Mets last offseason.
My question to New York ... why?
Sabathia, while young and talented and coming off a terrific second half for the Milwaukee Brewers, would bring just as many questions to the Yankees as he would answers. This is a pitcher, mind you, who until heading to the weaker National League had struggled in Cleveland with a 6-8 record during the first half of last season. This is a pitcher who is pushing 300 pounds with questions surrounding his back. This is a pitcher with a 1-3 record and 7.92 ERA in the postseason, numbers that are simply A-Rod-esque. But most importantly, this is a pitcher who by all accounts does not seem certain he wants to play in New York, but rather remain closer to his West Coast roots.
By the time next season rolls around the Yankees will be working on nine years since their last championship -- an eternity by their standards -- and with an unlimited cash supply they clearly want to make a splash this offseason. And while Sabathia clearly is their No. 1 priority, I believe they would be better off to focus on A.J. Burnett (a longtime Red Sox killer) and Derek Lowe (an accomplished postseason pitcher).
Sadly, Sabathia might not actually have as much say as one would think in making this decision. Being that he's the top free agent out there, the players' union may put a lot of pressure on him to accept the Yankees' offer as a way of setting the market. It's a situation reminiscent of Jim Thome, who somewhat reluctantly left Cleveland for Philadelphia after the 2002 season because the Phillies' offer was a year longer.
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