Monday, November 7, 2011

Why Not Wilson?

I'll admit that for a team entering an off season where the biggest need is pitching, displaying little interest in the top free agent pitcher makes little sense. But that seems to be what's going on with the Yankees and CJ Wilson. He's been succesful as a starter, is a lefty, so why have the Yankees been so cool towards him? The main issue isn't whether he will better the team or not. He definitely would. He's a much more stable presence than AJ Burnett or Phil Hughes, and would pitch better than Garcia or Colon can at this stage in their careers. He'd slot in as the perfect number 2 behind Sabathia. However, Wilson is not a number 2 pitcher according to this market. What this means is that the $82.5 million for 5 years we gave to AJ to be our number 2, is probably way too short in both money and years to land CJ Wilson. In this market, he is the top ace and a left handed one at that. This doesn't even take into account that he's only been a starter for 2 years, has a delivery that raises health concerns, and is 31 going into free agency. It would not be surprising for him to get 6-7 year offers, which would put him at 37 or 38 by the end of his contract. For all these reasons, the Yankees haven't jumped all over him as they did with Cliff Lee or CC Sabathia. Personally, I think the Yankees may be best served trying to bring up some of their prospects. Noesi should get a shot, and maybe a mid season call up for Betances or Banuelos could give us some results. But if we do this, we may have to concede the season (think 2008 Joba, Hughes and Kennedy).


Rich Mahogany said...

The Yankees can't take on Wilson for 6-7 years. The Yankees already have a scary future ahead of them with all the money going to the aging ARod, Teixeira, Jeter, Burnett and Sabathia. The last thing the Yankees need is another high-priced player in his 30s.

And it isn't like Wilson is another Cliff Lee. He's had two successful years as a starter, one in which he led the league in walks. I don't like paying for a pitcher's decline years when he has such a limited track record.

If the expected market for Wilson isn't there, we could certainly take a closer look, but my main concern is repeating the mistake of the Burnett, Pavano and Soriano deals - paying big money to a guy who has seemingly "broken out" but is liable to disappoint.

Passing on Wilson will not mean conceding the season. Darvish is a real possibility and would not cost a draft pick, unlike Wilson. Garcia or Colon could be brought back. And there's always the trade market.

Fernando Alejandro said...

I agree. But now they're saying that Wilson may fall in the 5 year, $75 million range. Is he worth it then?