Monday, December 29, 2008

Todd Jones Cries About Yanks Spending

Retired Tigers closer Todd Jones writes a blog on Today he had this rant (hat tip to Scott Proctor's Arm) about the Yankees, their spending, and us fan. (I think Jones is just bitter about his 1-3 record with a 5.59 ERA against the Yanks in his career. Or maybe it's his 0-1 record and 14.85 ERA over the last three.)

First there was CC Sabathia. No one thought too much about that signing. The Yankees usually act like the spoiled only child who threatens to hold his breath until he gets what he wants. They wanted pitching, so they signed him. Now all Sabathia has to do is win 20 games and/or the Cy Young Award every season for the next seven seasons.

Then, there was A.J. Burnett. He was the first pitcher to use his opt-out clause to the tune of five years and $82.5 million. That's cool. He has the big fastball that general managers and fans love, and he won a career-high 17 games in 2008. Good for him.

But now comes Mark Texeira. I'm talking eight years and $180 million. And he's not even the highest-paid player on his new club?

Is it just me or does he sound very bitter?

Now that the Yankees have spent so much and have future Hall of Famers up and down their roster, they're supposed to win. Anything short of reaching the World Series will be a disappointment.
Uh, Todd, this isn't anything new. Where have you been? This is the Yankee way. 26 World Series championships will do that to you.
That is no way to go through a season. Baseball turns into a job really fast when you strap such an 800-pound gorilla on your back the first day of spring training and carry it around during a six-month-long regular season (and perhaps into the postseason).

I wonder if Yankees fans ever blush. What's so special about pulling for the bully at the end of the street who beats up on the smallest kid in town? What's cool is when you're rooting for a team that comes from nowhere. Most of us like the underdogs, and they still have their day in baseball, as we saw with the Rays this past season.

The Yankees should know by now that money can't buy a championship. You know, I have a feeling this won't turn how the Yankees are planning.

Why are people acting like this is something new? The Yankees spend money, it's what they do, and it's what they have done - for many years now. This fake outrage that so many people have shown in recent days is ridiculous. Get over it, and move on with your lives.

In 2009 the Yankees will likely have a smaller payroll than they had last year. Nobody seems to care about this. To me it sounds like something pretty significant, but that's just me. Yes, they signed the big three free agents on the market, but overall they should actually CUT spending. And in the process, they've made themselves a whole lot better.

Regarding us fans, I love rooting for the Yankees, and yes it's fun to root for the Yankees too. What's better than rooting for the most successful team in professional sports that's also consistently trying to improve themselves? It's certainly not rooting for the Minnesota Twins.

Also, I'm getting a little tired of Yankees fans being upset or ashamed that their own team spends money like the Yanks do. They spend to put the best product possible on the field. Isn't that exactly what every fan wants from his or her team? You think any Marlins or Pirates fan would feel bad if their team's spent the kind of money we do?

Don't feel bad, feel proud. After all, you're a big part of what makes this possible. If it wasn't for us fans the Yankees couldn't spend the way they do. We buy the four million tickets each year, we buy the hats and jerseys, we watch the YES network. And seriously, would you rather if Hank and Hal just pocketed the money? I know I wouldn't. But I guess then nobody could complain and make you feel bad, right?


Anonymous said...

Yeah he sounds like a baby he wishes he could of played for the yankees. Funny thing is he played for the Tigers who had the 2nd highest payroll last year.

Also Yankee's do not have a hall of famer or an allstar at every position people are overreacting. Nady, Gardner, Swisher, Damon, Matsui are good players but are not allstars.

Anonymous said...

He's jealous, partly. Probably sad that the Yankees never wanted him.

Did he forget how many players the Tigers bought? How they signed the injured Magglio Ordonez to a huge money deal, when there didn't seem to be any other reasonably close offers on the table? I wonder what he had to say about that. Gary Sheffield? Miguel Cabrera? Pudge Rodriguez? Those players were all free, right?

I'm sure he was excited his team was trying to do what it could to win. Of course, when the Yankees do everything within their power to win, it's not fair.

I've said this before, but what does the rest of the baseball world want the Yankees to do? Just not sign people? Lower their payroll voluntarily to under $100M? The MLB payroll rules are the rules, and the Yankees follow them, abide by them, share their revenue and pay luxury tax.

MLB (and idiots like Todd Jones) need to get on owner's asses about re-investing in their teams. Instead of pocketing the revenue sharing money, they should be accountable.

The Florida Marlins 25-man payroll in 2008 was $22.6M. Do you know how much they got in revenue sharing? $25M. That's right. They got more money from revenue sharing than they even spent on their payroll. So they had over $3M left to pay other expenses, non-roster players, scouting, minor league expenses, etc. And that's before any ticket sales profits, TV/Radio contracts, and concessions. True, they are the Marlins, and their revenue from those things isn't that high, but nevertheless they are making some money off of those things, which means they are making a solid profit.

Point being, the Marlins ownership is ripping people off, and maintaing a low payroll to pretend they need a new stadium. You know why? Because then they'll make more pure profit from ticket sales while revenue sharing continues to pay for their entire payroll.

How can people not be complaining about THAT? That's good for baseball??? They complain and complain that the Yankees are ruining things, but if the Yankees didn't even exist, would the Marlins suddenly be competitive? Would they suddenly be signing free agents?

It infuriates me. You want to know what's wrong with the baseball economic system, look no further than the Marlins, A's, Pirates, Nationals, Twins, etc who's payrolls are not commensurate with the amount of money they're taking in - both in revenue and through revenue sharing.

And a final comment on Todd Jones, I do think that he's probably just bitter that he had been one of the worst closers in baseball over the past several years (and pretty much most of his career), and that he never got a ring. Loser.

Anonymous said...

Anon - with regard to the non-superstar players, also remember the Yankees have many home grown players... Cano, Posada, Rivera, Jeter, Wang, Joba, along with a whole bunch of bullpen guys who have done quite well, and a few guys (like Giese and Bruney for example) who came to the Yankees as "nobodies" and have contributed significantly.

There's just no reasoning with someone who's an established Yankee hater. Why more people don't hate the Red Sox like they hate the Yankees, I don't know. They do the same thing the Yankees do, and had VERY little home-grown, cheap players that helped contribute to their two world series wins. Big money guys acquired by trade or FA signing like Beckett, Schilling, Damon, Matsuzaka, Ramirez, Pedro, etc were the biggest forces behind their championships. Not the little guys.

If you don't like the way the Yankees do things, change the system. Personally, I'd like to see teams like the Marlins change the way THEY do things. At least the Yankees interests are putting together a product that fans will enjoy and want to see. The Marlins? Not so much.

Anonymous said...

The Red Sox aren't hated as much because they haven't won 26 championships.
I believe if they had they would be hated as much as the Yankees.
The reason why people are upset is because there are a lot of anti-Yankee people out there. So whenever the Yankees improve themselves those people won't like it. and find fault in it. Of course they would like the Yankees to sit and do absolutely nothing to improve their team.
Also keep in mind that along with this jealousy/envy that other teams and their fans have with the Yankees, comes along with the anti New York bias.
I've seen this in other sports with New York teams. The rest of the country hates New York. So that plays a significant role in the anti-Yankee hate too.

Anonymous said...

I myself am tired of the whining. Evry other team could sign top players - if they weren't so worred about making $20+ Million yearly. If they sunk more of that money into players, they would eventually make more money by revenue from more fans.

You said it right Greg. The Yanks sell $4 Million tickets a year because they keep putting a top product on the field.

Anonymous said...

"In 2009 the Yankees will likely have a smaller payroll then they had last year. Nobody seems to care about this."

That's because it doesn't suite peoples argument.
For years Yankee payroll has been the argument when anti-Yankee people talk. But since they realize that the payroll will be lower despite the Sabathia, Bernett and Texiera signings, there isn't much to them, to discuss.

Joe said...

Since when does money spent have anything to do with winning? I think since 2002 it shows that it doesn't mean anything. What are these players complaining about, do we get extra wins at the beginning of the season or an easier schedule, please?

Blame the market. If teams are allowed to spend as much money as they want, do the Yankees stand by and let Kansas City sign a player. And what about the players? As a job seeker, do you look for a smaller salary at a floundering company, or a big salary at an established salary. The Yankees are the most privileged team in a market that rewards it.

That being said, payroll and championships have little correllation.

Anonymous said...

seriously, any gripes should be with MLB not the Yankees. The Yankees do not make the market or spending rules. When MLB wants to put in rules like the NFL it will, but people like Jones have the wrong target. Also I'm not sure where Jones gets his spoiled child bit, where are the Yankees holding their breath until they get what they want? they pay up, and they pay up big. they don't withhold their check from MLB; Petitte's offer is still on the table. far from strong arming anyone the Yankees pay full fair market price for its free agents.

Now if we want to talk about the Yankees whining about a stadium and tax payers having to foot the bill, there would be something to gripe about.

Anonymous said...

Do you all realize how much negative publicity the Steinbrenners would be receiving right now if the Yankees payroll was about 120 to 150 million? They would be mocked for having fielded an "inferior" team and would be chastised for pocketing a chunk of the YES profits.

Greg Cohen said...

Yep, very true.

The Yanks are damned if they do and damned if they don't. But as a fan, and as someone who puts money into their pockets, I'm glad they spend the way they do.

Anonymous said...

Without question. Every season (and every offseason) I remind myself how lucky I am to be a Yankee fan. Especially since I started following the Yankees on some of their darkest years (early to mid 80s).

Anonymous said...

Yup - I remember what it was like when the Yankees were just another team that wasn't guaranteed to make the playoffs. That's what made '96 so amazing - it wasn't a given that the Yankees would be good. It was sort of like the Giants winning the Super Bowl last year. You just didn't really know if they were good enough to do it, and they hadn't done it in ages.

Mike B. said...

Todd Jones? Is he that smelly-looking slob? I don't remember him....

I can't tell you how proud I am to be a Yankees fan--always have, always will.


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