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Nationals Actively Seeking Bullpen Help

Let's take a time-out from our 24-7 Mark Teixeira Watch to visit another area where the Nationals are looking for a big upgrade -- the back end of their bullpen. Terrell Young, the 24-year-old right-hander they took in the Rule 5 Draft yesterday, was only a start.

It appears the Nationals are exploring the free agent market for relief pitchers, including at least one -- left-hander Brian Fuentes -- who is widely consider the best remaining closer on the market. Fuentes's agent, Dan Horwits, confirmed the Nationals expressed interest recently in Fuentes, but added the Nationals seemed focused on finding a hitter before they turn their full attention to the bullpen.

"I'm not sure he'll still be [available] by then," Horwits said.

Horwits declined to address which other teams are interested in Fuentes, 33, but the St. Louis Cardinals are believed to have the strongest interest.

The Nationals have also expressed interest in Juan Cruz, who had a dominating season as Arizona's set-up man this year and has closer potential. He led the NL with a ratio of 12.4 strikeouts per nine innings and held opposing batters to a .192 average.

Given the Nationals' aversion to signing free agent pitchers, I put their interest in closers under the category of "opportunism" -- a word team officials have dropped frequently this winter. Along with corner outfielders, closers (and potential closers) are the most plentiful commodity on the market, leaving the possibility of big savings. (For proof, look at the deal the Mets got on Francisco Rodriguez, whose three-year $37 million contract represents only about half of what his agent was originally seeking.)

In addition to Fuentes and Cruz, Trevor Hoffman and our old friend Chad Cordero remain unsigned, with Huston Street and Jose Valverde possibly available via trade.

Would the Nationals go three years, $30 million for Fuentes? No way. But would they go three years, $18 million (just making up numbers here) in a depressed market? Maybe.

By Dave Sheinin  |  December 12, 2008; 12:13 PM ET
 
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Next: Angels Make Eight-Year Offer to Teixeira

Comments

from the last post:
-----------------
No, the plan was to be in a position to pick up free agents if it meant that it would give them legitimate shot at the playoffs, which means the existing team would have to have shown an ability to be up around .500 instead residing in a black hole. Picking up a major free agent when the team had the worst record in the majors was never part of any plan the team tried to sell us.

-----------------

this is absolutely correct. the Lerners see Tex as a rarity that is worth deviating a bit from The Plan for.

that, combined with the atrocity that was last season has kinda moved up the Plan's timetable. I have to think that they REALLY don't want a repeat of last season.

Posted by: MrMadison | December 12, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

i see less and less reason we'd have to put up more than $160 million for tex. all these AL clubs will be fine with him going to the nats. boston doesn't need him, yankees don't need him, angels really don't need him either.

i'm more and more convinced he's ours for the simple reason we are no threat to these other teams. and the league owes us a favor for the whole transition fiasco.

it's a done deal. mr teixiera, welcome home.

Posted by: longterm | December 12, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Apparently, Joel Sherman from the NY Times puts the Nats offer for Tex at 7/140, not 8/160. Don't know which is right, but I can't imagine they would have only gone 7.

I was thinking about the bullpen earlier today. While starting pitching was not a strenghth of the team last year, it was leaps and bounds better than the pen. I think that without adding any other starters, the rotation would be Olsen, Lannan, Balester, Redding and someone else every fifth game. On a previous entry, someone mentioned that you can safely add around 30 innings to a young guy's previous year total. That would mean that you would have Olsen at 200 innings, Lannan at 215, Balester at around 190 and Redding at 180. That isn't terrible if the team actually has faith in the bullpen. Add some bullpen arms and this team has a decent staff. Not great, but not brutal either.

Posted by: Cavalier83 | December 12, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

"It was an easy offer to make - if you land him, great if not, pocket the cash as well as the money from folks who renewed their season tickets as a result of hte offer."

Interesting idea. Will anyone fess up to season ticket buying based on the Tex offer? I know me and my fellow holders didn't take that into consideration while expanding our plans.

Posted by: Section506 | December 12, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Section 506--

I didn't re-up my ticket plan because committments just prevented me from making a lot of games and it was a waste. I may go to more games if they sign Tex, but I'm not going to throw a couple thousand for seasons simply because they got him.

I can't imagine that there are many people who will buy seasons for that reason. Casual fans don't generally buy season tickets for a baseball team. If they sign him, however, that may encourage people (the LAC crowd) that the team is committed to winning, and that may get more seasons purchased. It will definitely get more folks who dropped their plans to buy singles.

Posted by: Cavalier83 | December 12, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Okay, as a die-hard planista, I feel some clarification is needed.

The Plan is to build from the bottom, adding pieces to a team that contend down the road by drafting, trading, and signing players that will be of impact then.

Teixeira for 8 - 10 years is absolutely within this mold, because if we are not competing then, then The Plan has failed. You sign him now, because 1) he's available and 2) you get the BONUS of him being a compelling player now as well and 3) you have plenty of money to spend and 4) he can make an impact in PR and in the clubhouse while others are learning.

Dunn and Manny for 3 - 4 years is absolutely not part of The Plan. It's wasted money because neither player is known for his clubhouse presence (one is, in fact, known for his divisiveness) and neither one is going to help you win when it counts.

Posted by: Section506 | December 12, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

That first part should read, "...just because they offered him..."

Posted by: Cavalier83 | December 12, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Coicidentally, 506, my fellow holders didn't take the Tex offer into consideration, either. It was all about faith in The Plan, as always.

(Blocking out memories of failing to sign Crow and possibly having a low draft budget .... there!)

So we're actively seeking bullpen help ... from a guy in A-ball in the Reds' system. Where will we look next? Under the bed? Maybe there's a closer hiding in the closet.

Posted by: BobLHead | December 12, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

yes, texiera has been part of the plan all along. i'll pat myself on the back and remember that i called it over a year ago. if was even clearer when we passed over smoak we had another future 1b in mind. marrero's time here will be short.

o's can take comfort in the fact that they are paying $20mil a year indirectly to teixiera. dc will be happy to finally get some taxes off these player salaries.

Posted by: longterm | December 12, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

"Picking up a major free agent when the team had the worst record in the majors was never part of any plan the team tried to sell us."

Having the worst record in the majors was never something that the team tried to sell us, was it? Like any plan, the Lerner/Kasten plan was never fixed in stone. It was and is a PLAN, not a GUARANTEE. Big difference, and one the entire Lerners-are-cheap crowd has never quite grasped. They are doing exactly what they have always said they'd do, which is to build the team from the farm system first, then by trades, and with free agency as the last piece of the puzzle. But within any plan, there always has to be the possibility for deviations based on changing circumstances and emerging opportunities. Having the worst record in the majors is not a circumstance they anticipated, and the possibility to get Teixeira is an emerging opportunity that they'd be stupid not to pursue. Their plan is flexible enough to accomodate that.

Posted by: raykingsgutfeeling2 | December 12, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

strasburg better stay healthy...

Posted by: longterm | December 12, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

As to The Plan, I would say that it relies on the following steps:

1. Rebuilding minor league depth (improving from 30th to 9th was a good start, even if we're likely to slip back into the teens this year);

2. Promoting top minor-league talent to the majors (Lannan, Balestar, perhaps Martis and Zimmermann, and arguably Flores who we "promoted" from the Mets minors).

3. Trading for relatively young talent at the major-league level (Milledge and Dukes last year, Willingham and Olsen so far this year).

4. Filling any remaining holes with relatively inexpensive role players while we wait for younger players to step up (this is where we sometimes get it right, with Meat in 2007, Belliard, Willie Harris, Redding, O. Perez, and other times very wrong, with Meat in 2008, LoDuca, Estrada, etc.).

5. Finally, selectively adding top-tier free agents at positions of need, either (a) ideally, where the player can be the long-term solution at his position and potentially play on a contending team for a number of years (Teixeira); or (b) where a player is not necessarily the long-term solution but might be the final piece of the puzzle that puts us over the top over a shorter period (1-3 years).

That's why Teixeira is consistent with The Plan, in my view, whereas Manny is not (sorry Brue). He might be a hitting savant, but he's a liability in the field and in the clubhouse (particularly on a young team with several questionable personalities already), and doesn't play a position of need.

Posted by: BobLHead | December 12, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

To tell you the truth, I don't want to see Tex on the team 8 years from now. But I'd like to see him on the team from now through the next 3-4 years. He will certainly make them more tolerable. Give him 8 years with an early opt-out clause.

Don't you think the Rangers would have preferred to have ARod's opt-out be after 3 years instead of 8?

Posted by: jctichen | December 12, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Bob L.,
Not sure your interpretation of "The Plan" is the same as Kasten/Lerners envisioned it. I'm pretty sure The Plan was to avoid 8yr+ 160mil+ contracts. But that was before 59 wins, and 9,000 MASN ratings. I think the pursuit of Tex classifies as "The (Emergency) Plan"

Posted by: jctichen | December 12, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

I think the plan in Kasten's mind is less stringent than that, jctichen. Certainly as a general principle, that is true, but a player like Teixeira (who is a lot more consistently better (I know) than Soriano) is one of the rare circumstances where longterm/big dollars is helpful, especially since there doesn't seem to be anyone he's holding up (though I still pull for you Chris and Bill!).

Posted by: Section506 | December 12, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Longterm,
The Angels need Teixeira because they are losing a lot of offense if he leaves. They only have Vlad, who looks like a 60 year old man with his bad knees. The question for the Angels is, how much are they willing to pay? For Boston, Lowell is injured and old. Youkilis can play third leaving first base open. The Yankees have a ton of cash and Nick Swisher at first. All of those teams have a reason to go after Teixeira.

I love how people get annoyed because "the plan" changed. We aren't signing Teixiera to 4 years 160 million, he's a long term solution (8-10 years), which goes with the plan.

Posted by: BillyBeane | December 12, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to think signing Teixeira was always consistent with The Plan.

That said, I do think that a combination of factors may lead the team to fill some holes with upgrades that are a step or two above the Bowden reclamation projects of the past. Hopefully, the dismal 2008 season will indeed create some pressure to improve the product on the field. Also, it's possible that the economic downturn has depressed prices for all but the top-shelf free agents.

Could this play into our hands? K-Rod reportedly took half of what his agent originally thought he could get when he signed with the Mets. What if we could sign the likes of Orlando Hudson and Rafael Furcal for 3-4 years at $7-10m per? We would still need a true CF and pitching, but we would have some assets to trade (outfielders, Johnson, Belliard, Guzman) and might be in position to add that last remaining FA piece as soon as 2010.

1. Furcal, SS
2. Hudson, 2B
3. Zimmerman, 3B
4. Teixeira, 1B
5. Dukes, RF
6. Willingham, LF
7. Milledge, CF
8. Flores, C

Now that might even sell some of those $300 seats.

Posted by: BobLHead | December 12, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Just a reminder, while we sit around awaiting the birth of our new first baseman...

If you remember from last week (or if you were asleep), my boyhood baseball idol, Frank Howard, is no longer a member of the Yankees organization... and Dave wrote a piece in NJ about how it would be a cool idea for the Nats to ask him to join the organization. If you missed this, go back in the Nats Journal to this link: http://tinyurl.com/hondo

You can also read some blogs about this topic, and if you haven't signed the email petition, please do... We'll be forwarding those to the Nats next week.

Blog: http://planetnj.net/nats/?p=39
Petition: http://hondo.planetnj.net/

Posted by: wigi | December 12, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

This from today's chat over on Caps Insider:

Fort Washington, Md.: Want to take this opportunity to say "thanks" for the great coverage of the Caps. It's good having a "Insider" to keep us up to date.

Tarik El-Bashir: Thank you for stopping by The Insider. Our numbers are WAY up this season, and the bosses are taking notice of the demand for more Caps coverage.

"We will get the coverage we deserve."

Posted by: BobLHead | December 12, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Oh how I wish everyone would heed Dave's request:

"Let's take a time-out from our 24-7 Mark Teixeira Watch ..."

There could be many changes a-comin' after midnight tonight (the deadline for MLB teams to tender contracts to all arb-eligible players otherwise they become free agents). I'm looking forward to waking up tomorrow to see who didn't get tendered a contract and who I should add to my list for Santa BowdenKastenLerner.

Posted by: erocks33 | December 12, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

While I haven't agreed with everything the Nationals have done since they arrived, I have supported the notion that a bad team doesn't need a good closer. I had hoped that the team would have traded Chad Cordero in 2006 or 2007 (obviously, that didn't work out too well).

Joel Hanrahan has shown flashes of ability along with a 98 mph fastball. Let him have the job of closer for the entire 2009 season and then make a decision as to what the team needs, or doesn't need. And if he can't do the job, I really like Adam Carr & Zech Zincola down on the farm.

Okay, Jimbo --- Texeira is going to the Red Sox (or so I believe). Now go get Adam Dunn and call it good.

Posted by: rushfari | December 12, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Rushfari, I agree that closers can be developed from within and that there is no need to sign a FA closer unless that's a key missing piece on a team that's already in contention.

I disagree, though not strongly, on Dunn, for the oft-cited reasons (batting average, defense, possible lackadaisical attitude). We have too many LFs already and it's hard for me to get excited about him at first. That said, if we can't get Tex and he becomes available at a reasonable price, I can probably get used to the idea (as long as it means we can trade some of our assets to fill other needs with players that can hit and field at positions of need).

Posted by: BobLHead | December 12, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

i think the angels can accept the backup plan at 1b and focus on more pitching. they don't need teixiera to make the playoffs next year. and playoff teams always seem more interested in fixing their pitching staffs.

yea vladdy is looking old. but he is so fun to watch.

Posted by: longterm | December 12, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Joel Sherman says that that signing orlando hudson and adam dunn is plan b after tex.

Posted by: Baseball95der26 | December 12, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

That's a good point. While the bullpen is in need of attention, a closer isn't necessarily the top option for this team.

However, given the economic peculiarities this offseason, Bowden may find himself saying something to the effect of, "I can't afford NOT to buy it!"

If you can lock up a quality closer for multiple years at a discount - effectively taking advantage of the economic slowdown -
you could find yourself with a bargain on your hands in three or four years when (if?) the economy recovers.

So not only could signing a closer help stabalize the pen, it could bring more talent in the future with a good, cheap closer under contract that Bowden can trade.

-----

I have supported the notion that a bad team doesn't need a good closer.

Posted by: JohninMpls | December 12, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Don't we expect Boras would insist on a no-trade clause? I remember hearing in the past that the Nats won't agree to no-trade clauses. It will be interesting to see if they make a little exception this one time. I know not many people would want to pick up a $20,000,000 per year contract, but hey, who knows...

Posted by: Roscoe4 | December 12, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Good point, JiM, same basic case I was making about deviating from The Plan to sign Hudson and Furcal (both of whom are 31). The more the merrier.

Posted by: BobLHead | December 12, 2008 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Don't you think the Rangers would have preferred to have ARod's opt-out be after 3 years instead of 8?

Posted by: jctichen | December 12, 2008 2:19 PM

Let's see -- because the Rangers had A-Rod under contract they were able to trade him for Soriano and Joaquin Arias (who hit .291 in limited duty last year). A decent haul, even if not quite an even trade.

Of course, the Rangers later dealt Soriano to the Nats for Wilkerson, Armando Galarraga and Termel Sledge.

So far, so good for the Rangers, but here's where it gets stupid: Sledge was packaged with Adrian Gonzalez and Chris Young in what might be the most lopsided deal ever. Texas got Eaton -- a bit of a bust who left for Philly, where he's a bigger bust -- and Akinori Otsuka, who has been a very good reliever, but hardly worth either Gonzalez or Young. Sledge, at least, was a bust in SD and was released.

Galarraga wasn't given a real chance in Texas and was dealt a year later to Detroit, where he's now a star. The guy they got in return is in the minors. And Wilkerson left as an unwanted free agent.

So, it's a long sordid tale that worked out terribly for the Rangers -- They have Otsuka, a utility infielder, and a couple of minor leaguers. But, that's because they did a crappy job after they got Soriano.

Posted by: fischy | December 12, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

JohninMpls -- Congrats on the big win today for the people of Minnesota and common sense...

Posted by: fischy | December 12, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

BobL - I'm going to take a slight exception to this. Manny for a couple of years would be a positive influence on the young players. I kid you not. Look at the quotes from Ethier, Kemp et al about what they picked up about hitting from him. He is tremendously analytical / obsessive about hitting. Constant film work. Very early to the park. In fact, WMP gave him a lot of credit for teaching him about hitting in '06. Granted, the lesson didn't stick, but hey . . . I'd love to see him work with Zimmerman, Milledge, and Flores.
------------------------
That's why Teixeira is consistent with The Plan, in my view, whereas Manny is not (sorry Brue). He might be a hitting savant, but he's a liability in the field and in the clubhouse (particularly on a young team with several questionable personalities already), and doesn't play a position of need.

Posted by: BobLHead | December 12, 2008 2:14 PM

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | December 12, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

>But within any plan, there always has to be the possibility for deviations based on changing circumstances and emerging opportunities. Having the worst record in the majors is not a circumstance they anticipated, and the possibility to get Teixeira is an emerging opportunity that they'd be stupid not to pursue. Their plan is flexible enough to accomodate that.<

Tex probably ain't gonna sign here, Boz knows it and the whole league can figure that out. So then is Dunn another 'flexible part of the plan', because that's who you're going to be looking at in a Nats uniform, more than likely. The club is just walking you from move to move, and right now everybody is looking at Tex, and making rationalizations behind it. The next thing that will happen is that they'll say Man-ny isn't part of the Plan. Bank on it. After that, they'll get Dunn on board for at least four years. Why? Because if they can't get Tex, and WON'T get Man-ny, then they better damned sure get SOMEBODY who can hit, or else fans will leave in droves. Dunn isn't part of any of these theories, and that's who we'll end up with. If we're lucky. And sure enough, the apologists will back down even farther because the standard for the plan has slipped to that degree. Talk about predictable.

Posted by: Brue | December 12, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

You'll never make it, Joe! Just give up!

Posted by: Section506 | December 12, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

NYY actively seeking one fewer starting pitcher now that Burnett's on the way.

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3765754

Hulkster - this is how you post a rumor from ESPN!

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | December 12, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Redding non-tendered. Harris given a 2-year deal. Dave'll have more later.

Posted by: Uncle_Teddy | December 12, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Redding non-tendered. Harris given a 2-year deal. Dave'll have more later.

-----------

so no more Vindication?

or maybe just Minor League Vindication....

Posted by: MrMadison | December 12, 2008 6:22 PM | Report abuse

The Yankees apparently have signed AJ Burnette. If true, that would seem to put more pressure on the Red Sox to sign Tex.

They'll be facing Sabathia, Burnette and Wong about a dozen times next year. Ouch.

Posted by: AshburnVA | December 12, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Begin second guessing Willie Harris deal..... now!

Also, when Mark Teixeira comes to town he will vindicate Tim Redding.

Posted by: Section506 | December 12, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Mark Zuckerman reporting the deal is two years $3 million ($1.5M/yr)

Posted by: Brian_ | December 12, 2008 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Not Nats related, but you might want to flip over to the hockey game in five minutes. Suiting up as the backup goaltender? That would be the Capitals web developer.

Let's hope this doesn't give Bowden any ideas...

Posted by: JohninMpls | December 12, 2008 6:56 PM | Report abuse

there's more about Harris, plus the rest of the Nationals-related arbitration news, on the Baseball Insider blog

Posted by: BGinVA | December 12, 2008 7:02 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the heads up, BG.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | December 12, 2008 8:57 PM | Report abuse

random thought: Raul Ibanez sign with the Phils for 10m per year.

has he effectively set the market for any hitter not named Manny Ramirez?

Posted by: MrMadison | December 12, 2008 9:12 PM | Report abuse

Is Ibanez worth $10M per year? Statistically yes. I believe he has more RBI than any other MLB hitter in the last 3 years. He did that while playing for Seattle - not a hitter's haven. Does that set the market? It probably depends on where you view Dunn, Burrell, Abreu, and Ramirez in relation to Ibanez. I've got Dunn over, Burrell under, and Abreu over. Ramirez way over.

Keith Law who gets paid to pass judgement on these things says he doesn't like the deal. (Oh no!!) I really am not a big fan of Law even though he declared the Marlins-Nats trade good for the Nats. I know he's doing what he gets paid to do, but his analysis seems off the mark far too often. (I do it for free)

To my eyes, the NL East is getting tougher. The Mets have improved themselves, the Phillies are maintaining, and the Braves are repairing. The Marlins should contend for last place. The Nats are definately improving and if they successfully add another impact hitter and a reliever they will contend for a wildcard position sooner than most people would be willing to conceed. Don't be afraid to believe.

Posted by: natbisquit | December 12, 2008 11:02 PM | Report abuse

Too bad about Redding being NT'ed. I always thought he would be one heck of a specialty pitcher for this team - the guy who could come in maybe twice a week after a starter gets knocked out early and work 3-4 innings at a time and spare the rest of the bullpen in blowouts since his stuff was onty seemingly good for five innings.

Posted by: leetee1955 | December 12, 2008 11:35 PM | Report abuse

Who is Wong?

@leetee -- that is the problem with Redding, no? Looks great for 4 or 5 innings. He had some terrific outings, but then he'd get spanked by the other team's pitcher. You can't give up big hits tot he opposing pitcher! Still, I thought he'd earned a spot. I hope they have a real Plan B. Not sure why didn't make a real run at Burnett. I'm sure his wife would have been thrilled to get a real offer from the Nats.

Posted by: fischy | December 12, 2008 11:55 PM | Report abuse

OshburnVO -- Who is Wong?

Posted by: fischy | December 12, 2008 11:56 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Willy Taveras was non-tendered. Now, we can get him on a "free transfer"...(sorry, I'm usually over at Soccer Insider)...without giving up Redding. Oh, never mind.

Seriously, though -- the Nats should take a long look at Saito. Even if he does make it back from the injury, he may only have one or two good years in him -- Which describes just about every other pitcher the Nats have brought in since they came to DC.... Seriously, though -- He really could be a good pick-up.

Posted by: fischy | December 13, 2008 12:03 AM | Report abuse

>Random thought: Raul Ibanez sign with the Phils for 10m per year.

has he effectively set the market for any hitter not named Manny Ramirez?

Bowden and Dunn set the market. Because if we don't hop on him, he'll hop on someone else.

Posted by: Brue | December 13, 2008 12:16 AM | Report abuse

"Still, I thought he'd earned a spot"

Given his surgery, I think we would expect Redding to be shaky after 4 innings, instead of after 5, which makes him not worth the amount of money arbitration would require. It's always possible he could be re-signed by the Nationals at a lower rate or to a minor league contract with incentives. No matter where he signs, he will make less than he would have with arbitration.

I would like to see him here, also.

Posted by: Section506 | December 13, 2008 12:46 AM | Report abuse

mlb.com is reporting that the Angels have made an eight year offer to Teixeira. It does not give a dollar amount, but they say it most likely at least matches the Nats offer of $160 million. Still no word on how much Boston has offered, or if they've even made an offer at all...

Posted by: BGinVA | December 13, 2008 1:29 AM | Report abuse

I just read the story over at ESPN.com about the Angels offering Tex an 8 year deal, and then I read the comments. I am more interested in the Nats signing Tex to shut Angels, Yankees and Sox fans up. I mean, I understand the attitude about the Nats signing him, but the Yanks haven't even offered a contract (that anyone has heard of) and Yanks fans are still commenting about how they can't see the Yanks not signing him.

The Yanks will be spending more per year on ARod, Jeter, Sabathia and Burnett than a lot of teams spend on their entire rosters. It would be great to see the Steinbrenners have to contend with 75 mil a year and then have their fans realize that the organization couldn't win with a budget.

Posted by: Cavalier83 | December 13, 2008 7:13 AM | Report abuse

Good move on Super Willie, sorry to lose Redding. More moves are necessary. Teixeira is coming, we need to trade OFs for pitching and get a CF and a leadoff guy (not named Taveras).

Posted by: BobLHead | December 13, 2008 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Don't know whether this was already posted re. the Red Sox' offer:

http://www.bostonherald.com/sports/baseball/red_sox/view.bg?articleid=1139328&srvc=sports&position=3

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | December 16, 2008 9:39 AM | Report abuse

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