Tuesday, December 2, 2008
The Yankees Do Not Offer Arbitration
It was announced yesterday that the Yankees have decided to not offer arbitration to any of their free agents. None. Not-a-one. This means that if Giambi, Abreu, Pettitte and Pudge sign on with another team, the Yankees will not get a single draft pick as compensation. For someone as concerned about the farm system as Cashman is, its surprising that he would fore go the draft picks, but I guess I can see it from his perspective. From his perspective Giambi made $21 million, Abreu and Pettitte made $16 million, and Pudge made $13 million. The Yankees supposedly want Pettitte back, and they seem to be willing to live with Abreu for another year, but allowing them to go to arbitration will likely mean a pay boost for Abreu and Pettitte will probably not get the pay cut the Yankees would hope for. At $21 million an arbitration case for Giambi would be interesting. As a rule, a team cannot offer less than 80% of the previous seasons salary to a player in arbitration. That means that Giambi would be eligible for at least $16.8 million for next season if he accepted arbitration. By this same rule, Pettitte would get at least a $12.8 million salary and Pudge would get at least $10.4 million. Giambi is likely to get some interest from other teams, but what teams would sign him for more than 2 years at $16 million a year? Giambi likes New York, and I think he'd prefer the 1 year at $16.8 million over 2 years at $16 million. That is just a guess of course since some team could easily offer him more, but he is an aging player who can't play much defense, and has lost some pop over the years. I don't know what teams are looking for a catcher, but the Yankees definetely don't want Pudge for $10.4 million. The market for Abreu, Giambi, and Pudge is weak, and a 1 year deal for a lot more money than they can expect to see from other teams, why not sign on for the season? Then if the Yankees sign Pettitte, which they are expected to do, then the Yankees end up with no draft picks anyway. I think it was a safe move.