Wallace Matthews of ESPN reports that the Yankees are currently preparing offers for Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera and Cliff Lee. Matthews’ source tells him that Jeter’s offer will be for three years and between $15-20 million per year.
The Yankees are expected to have a deal done with Jeter before either Rivera or Lee, Matthews reports. If the Yankees do manage to outbid the competition for Lee, the team does not expect that deal to be done until mid-December, after the Winter Meetings. The team is holding off on putting together an offer for Andy Pettitte until he decides that he’s coming back next year.
The $15-20 million figure for Jeter is not too far off from what the pundits had been predicted. A little on the high side if they go $20 million a year, of course. And no matter where it ends up, the deal will be worth way more than Jeter is worth on purely baseball merits. But hey, it’s Jeter. It’s the Yankees. You knew those crazy kids were going to stick together and you knew it was going to be expensive.
Forget it Jake, it’s Yankeetown.
All spring training there was at least some mild confusion about Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman. He played in almost no regular big league spring training games, instead, staying on the back fields, playing in simulated and minor league contests. When that usually happens, it’s because a player is rehabbing or even hiding an injury, but the Nats insisted that was not the case with Zimmerman. Not everyone believed it. I, for one, was skeptical.
The skepticism was unwarranted, as Zimmerman answered the bell for Opening Day and has played all season. As Jared Diamond of the Wall Street Journal writes today, it was all by design. He skipped spring training because he doesn’t like it and because he thinks it’ll help him avoid late-season injuries and slowdowns, the likes of which he has suffered over the years.
It’s hard to really judge this now, of course. On the one hand Zimmerman has started really slow this season. What’s more, he has started to show signs of warming up only in the past week, after getting almost as many big league, full-speed plate appearances under his belt as a normal spring training would’ve given him. On the other hand, April is his worst month across his entire 14-year career, so one slow April doesn’t really prove anything and, again, Zimmerman and the Nats will consider this a success if he’s healthy and productive in August and September.
It is sort of a missed opportunity, though. Players hate spring training. They really do. if Zimmerman had made a big deal out of skipping it and came out raking this month, I bet a lot more teams would be amenable to letting a veteran or three take it much more easy next spring. Good ideas can be good ideas even if they don’t produce immediately obvious results, but baseball tends to encourage a copycat culture only when someone can point to a stat line or to standings as justification.
Way to ruin it for everyone, Ryan. 😉