Its very quiet right now, and though its probably because Thanksgiving is coming up and free agents don't want to make any major decisions approaching this family holiday, it still makes for an eerily quiet atmosphere. The calm before the storm? Maybe, but let's review where the big free agents stand:
CC Sabathia - After getting a blow out offer from the Yankees, Sabathia has done nothing. It is said that Sabathia wants to be on the west coast closer to home, so my belief is that Sabathia and his agent are waiting for the Angels or the Dodgers to fall through on Teixeira or Manny respectively, and then turn to Sabathia to make their big free agent splash. If this is the case, Sabathia and the Yankees are going to be waiting a while. Both Teixeira and Manny are represented by a Mr. Scott Boras who is known for drawing out the free agent negotiation process in order to get as much money as possible. Further more, although many teams have expressed interest in Teixeira, none have extended a formal offer. Manny had an offer on the table, but did not take it, and it was withdrawn. So with no offers currently sitting on the table for either of those guys, were not going to see either of them signed any time soon. If Sabathia keeps waiting, the Yankees may have to remove their offer, and he can go play for the Brewers for $40 million less.
Mark Teixeira - Although he has not been given any offers, many teams are believed to be interested. He says that he would like to play for Baltimore or Washington, which would likely put the two financial juggernauts in a bidding war that can end in Teixeira getting the millions of dollars dreamed of by arbitration eligible players the league over. The Angels are likely his best suitor, but they sure are taking their time.
Manny Ramirez - By the sound of things Ramirez had a sweet deal on the table from the Dodgers equaling out to $45 million over 2 years, and a $15 million option year. Ramirez and Boras want more guaranteed years and beleive he can get them. The question is from where? The Dodgers have offered the best deal, and it is unlikely to be topped. Unless of course the Yankees decide they need more pop, which they do.
AJ Burnett - He wants 5 years and the Yankees don't want to give it to him. Having the Yankees interest is key for any free agent since it assures you can negotiate at a high level. Without some of these bigger teams in the mix, a free agents price plummets. The Blue Jays are interested, but likely cannot afford his contract. They may, however, be willing to give him the years for less pay per year. I wouldn't be surprised if some team gave him 5 years, but it most definetely should not be the Yankees.
Derek Lowe - If the Yankees officially remove themselves from the Apple Jacks race, than Derek Lowe becomes a huge priority. Boston is expressing some interest though I suspect he won't want to go there after his last departure. However that doesn't mean he won't take the leverage that comes with having Boston interested in him.
Now that we know where they stand, let's hope they all get their signings done before Christmas so the speculation can end.