"HEY FOLKS! HAPPY NEW YEAR! THE PARTY DOESN’T HAVE TO END! I HAVE A LINE OF REALLY EXPENSIVE USED ARMS FOR THE TAKING! COME ON DOWN TODAY AND LET ME HELP YOU DRIVE OFF WITH A PRICEY, OVERRATED, FREE AGENT PITCHER! GET DOWN HERE NOW!! BRING THE KIDS! WE HAVE FUN FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY!
TAKE A LOOK AT THIS GARZA! OR MAYBE THAT JIMENEZ IS MORE YOUR STYLE!! BOTTOM LINE IS I WANNA MAKE YOU A DEAL THAT YOU’LL MOST CERTAINLY REGRET!! DON’T LET THIS AWFUL YEAR OF FREE AGENCY PASS YOU BY! COME ON DOWN TODAY!!"
That’s my used car salesman pitch of for you old timers, my Crazy Eddie pitch. If you young peeps don't know what I'm talking about, click HERE. Anyway, I picture myself in the bad khaki and golf shirt combo, standing on a lot with mediocre, available Big League pitchers in the backdrop. This is my low budget commercial. And it’s being filmed by my wife’s cousin (who is a real whiz with the camcorder I’m told) while I bellow and scream with over the top enthusiasm trying to make you to buy an Ervin Santana at a price WELL over what he is worth.
This is my off-season fear for those holding the purse strings for the New York Yankees. It is true that the club in all in on trying to lure a Japanese phenom to the Bronx…but what if that falls through? What if Casey Close, who probably still has a slight bone to pick with the way the Yanks handled Derek Jeter’s contract issues years ago, decides Tanaka needs to play in the comfort of an air conditioned Arizona dome?
What if the starting rotation still only holds three locked in arms heading into the late winter? What if the thought of a declining CC, an up and down Nova and an ever-aging Hiroki Kuroda makes Brian Cashman dial 1-800-BAD-IDEA? It could happen.
This is a terrible crop of free agent arms (Save the question mark that is Tanaka). Garza? Yeah, he’s been good…but he isn’t that good. Ubaldo? He was UNREAL…once. Bronson? Sure, he eats up innings like Davy Hogan (Lard Ass in “Stand By Me”) eats blueberry pies…by also gets lit up like the Rockefeller Christmas tree. He’ll win you a lot of 10 to 8 ballgames. The question I pose is, WHY PAY ANY OF THESE GUYS?!
Look at what Phil “OH DEAR LORD DON’T THROW IT THERE!” Hughes got from the Twinkies. I know he is still young-ish and needed a change of scenery, but what kind of message is that? “Hey, kids! Grow up, be ok to poor and make the big bucks!” Wrong.
Let’s be completely honest. The Yankees don’t develop Major League arms with the best of them…and when they do…well, Phil, Joba, and Kennedy…please stand up. I understand that the organization developed Mo and Andy…but that was a LONG time ago. What to do about it? I haven’t cracked that code yet, but the answer is NOT to give Matt Garza 4 years and 60 plus million.
The Yankees must take a few pages from Tampa’s playbook and let the kids throw. Yes, the prospect of letting a Pineda stumble or a gamble on Manny is scary, but this is what must happen in order for them to have a chance to become an Andy Pettitte.
There are those that think I am being too tough on those arms still looking for homes. A buddy of mine recently said, “Mikey, Garza is worth 12 times a David Phelps.” In his defense it was New Year’s Eve and he had been drinking. 12 times?! Not true.
The Yankees NEED pitching. I believe they will have a better Sabathia than the impostor that wore the #52 for the team last year. I think Hiro will be Hiro…until late August when the gas tank light blinks: EMPTY. I have no earthly idea if Nova will be “Super” or “Ivan the Terrible”…and be honest, neither do you…nor does he.
I’d love to see Mikey Pineda become the horse we all saw before the trade…it’d also be a nice “Take that with your flannel & coffee, Seattle! Oh and tell Cano we said hey.”
It’d be awesome to see one of the remaining Killer B’s charge through the black, smoky cloud of injury and setback like Cole Trickle in “Days of Thunder” and become a big time Yankee starter. But can it happen?
We’ve all heard the expression “Impulse Buy”. It usually happens last minute shopping or in line at the checkout counter. You grab something you don’t really want or should not pay for and then look at it days later and say, “What the hell was I thinking?!”
Please stay strong, Yankee Brass. Go down to the lot if you want to. Kick the tires, get a free t-shirt and balloon…and then leave…quickly. It’s a trap!
--Mike O'Hara, MLB Fan Cave Host, Season 1
"Paulie was always my favorite player."
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