I seem to have misplaced my calendar, and I can’t figure out if today is “the Yankees are going to overpay Derek Jeter” day, or if it’s “The Yankees are going to hold the line and pay Jeter what he’s actually worth” day. Can someone help me? Ah, there’s Joel Sherman now:
In a meeting in Tampa last week, Yankees officials did the requisite lap of respect with Derek Jeter. They honored his place in organization history, his meaning to the fan base and his legacy on and off the field. But once the admiration portion of the program was complete, Yankee officials also made sure to tell Jeter it is their intention to offer him a baseball contract. Period.
Snark aside, I like the way Sherman — or, if the phrase came from a source, the source — phrases this. Because that’s what we’re really talking about here is whether Jeter is going to get a “baseball contract” or something that places some Face of the Franchise value on him. Sherman called it a “victory lap deal” on his Twitter feed this morning, and I rather like that construction.
But whatever you call it, that’s the kind of conversation that is important. Now that it has been had, the dollars are way easier to consider. Well, that is unless Jeter simply doesn’t believe that he should get a baseball deal as opposed to a multi-faceted marketing/warm fuzzies kind of deal.
Welp, it was probably worth the gamble given that the Angels were paying most of his salary. But the Rangers’ gamble on Josh Hamilton failed and now Josh Hamilton is a free agent. The club has given him unconditional release waivers.
Hamilton underwent surgery to repair lateral and meniscus cartilage in his left knee back in June. During surgery it was discovered that he had an ACL injury as well, which required reconstruction. This whole season was lost and, while Hamilton has one year remaining on his contract, the Rangers are clearly able to compete without him and could use the roster spot over the small chance that he could be an everyday player again.
Hamilton will earn $30 million next season, $26.41 million of which is being paid for by the Angels. Last year in 182 plate appearances with the Rangers, Hamilton hit .253/.291/.441 with eight home runs and 25 RBI. At age 35, it’s not hard to imagine that his major league career is effectively over.
With the continuing caveat that it is really weird and likely as uncomfortable as hell for all of those involved for this to be playing out so publicly, here is the latest news on the Doc Gooden/Daryl Strawberry/possible cocaine relapse story. From the Daily News:
Dwight (Doc) Gooden is insisting publicly that he doesn’t have a drug problem, yet more and more people want to help him — none more significant than the Yankees, who have reached out to say they’ll pay for any treatment he would consider getting.
That’s admirable of the Yankees, as is their refusal to comment on it further (the Daily News got this info from Strawberry). The Yankees, of course, gave both Strawberry and Gooden second chances in the 1990s when their addiction problems threatened their careers.