Without a doubt, a lot of the attention this off season is going to revolve around Roy Halladay. He's available, he's an elite pitcher, and many teams will be interested in him. The Yankees have a pretty good farm system, with many appealing players they can trade for him, but this may not be enough. Many teams have prospects they can trade, and if it comes down to who can trade the most and the best prospects, the price could easily become too large. Could you imagine getting into a bidding war where we end up trading Joba, Hughes, Jackson and Montero? But the Yankees have something other teams do not. 27 world championships you say? Yes, but not what I was thinking. The Yankees have money. Bundles of it. Even the bat boy sleeps on a pillow stuffed with $100 bills, and Cashman washes his Bentley with $50's. Money is there. How does money get us Halladay? Well, hear me out...
The Blue Jays gave one of the worst contracts in their history to a player they thought would be a perennial power threat. They then back loaded this contract making it nearly impossible to trade the man. I of course am talking about centerfielder Vernon Wells. I can already hear your scoffs and gnashings of teeth, but hear me out. Wells is signed through 2014 where he will play at the age of 35. He's had a bit of a power outage over the last couple years, and injuries have really affected his play. That being said, in 2008 in 108 games he hit .300 with 20 homeruns and 78 RBI's. That's while missing more than a third of the season. 2009 he experienced a dip, playing 158 games and batting .260 with 15 homeruns and 66 RBI's. What was the issue? Well, back in March 0f 2009 it was reported that Wells missed a spring training game with a sore left wrist. He had fractured the wrist in 2008. Just a week ago, Wells had surgery to repair cartilage damage in his left wrist. I think its reasonable to assume that that had something to do with his drop in production last season.
The Blue Jays are stuck with this contract, and as a team that does not have immense financial resources, this sort of contract can handcuff them. Think Miguel Tejada and the Baltimore Orioles. What's his contract you ask? In 2010 he makes $12.5 million, but that goes up to $23 million in 2011, and then $21 million from 2012 - 2014. Yeah that's why you don't backload contracts. But, if the Yankees were willing to take this contract off their hands, the price in prospects for Halladay would reduce immensely. Now, I'm not saying the Yankees should take the entire salary. Toronto needs to pay some of that contract. Maybe $5 or $6 million a season comes from Toronto for us to take this contract off their hands. The trade off is great for Toronto, they pay $25-$30 million to have $98.5 million taken off their hands. We would still have to give something up for Halladay, but maybe instead of a package led by Joba, Hughes, and Montero, we can get by with a package of Joba OR Hughes plus a couple prospects not named Jesus Montero or Austin Jackson.
Would Vernon Wells be a good fit in center field for us? If the wrist was the main thing holding back his offense, I could see him giving us a .280 average with 20 homeruns easy next year, and lets not forget that the man has 3 gold gloves to his name. He's struggled over the last few years, but I think he can still be a productive player. Would he at least be more productive than Melky? If yes, then we've upgraded our outfield, and landed Roy Halladay for a nominal cost in prospects, though a large increase in payroll. Do you guys think it would be worth it?