The Yankees addition of Giancarlo Stanton and his albatross of a contract means only one thing. It’s out with the new and in with the old.
Are the Yankees so desperate for a World Championship they would revert to 2008 when they bought their 27th (and last) title in 2009? Could it be the Yankees have already lost faith in the Baby Bombers movement, and they no longer trust the current roster to deliver? Because on the surface, at least, Giancarlo Stanton is the poster boy for days of old and the repetition of previous mistakes.
Albert Einstein once said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result. Consider this: The Yankees are in the midst of erasing the board in 2018 by keeping payroll under the $197 million luxury tax threshold. Hal Steinbrenner insists on it, and Brian Cashman is on the cusp of delivering. This is a sound financial move for the franchise.
Stanton, if acquired, may or may not tip the payroll over. Writers and probably Cashman himself are tripping over each other to come up with ways of “making it work.” Hold on; it’s already working. The Yankees are poised to stroll into the playoffs and beyond with a tweak here and there with the team they have. Giancarlo Stanton is not a tweak, he a tsunami.
Alex Rodriguez, A.J. Burnett, MarkTeixeira, CC Sabathia, Chase Headley, Jacoby Ellsbury…what do all these players have in common? You guessed it, substantial expensive contracts and one title to show for it. Are we gonna do this again?
With some argument due, it’s fair to say that along with Mike Trout and Jose Altuve, Stanton is one of the top position players on the planet. He will make the Yankees better. But I keep coming back to the same question. How much better do the Yankees need to be?
Does the need to add Stanton mean Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, Greg Bird, Luis Severino, Didi Gregorius, Gleyber Torres, et al can’t do it by themselves? Or is it that the Yankees have reverted to the old days of shortsightedness and a win now or else mentality? Is Hal morphing into his dad?
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George Steinbrenner pulled out all the stops in 2008 for two reasons. One, his health was failing rapidly and he wanted one more taste, and two, the Yankees were opening a brand new venue in 2009, and George insisted that it be baptized properly. I’ll give him that, and it worked out – for one year.
Following that, though, all we heard every year (until now) was how the Yankees were strapped by overblown and far-reaching contracts which limited the team to a string of playoff appearances that went nowhere because the composition of the team was unbalanced. Cashman, for example, couldn’t do what he did last season, bringing in Todd Frazier, Tommy Kahnle, Sonny Gray, and David Robertson because he didn’t have the chips to make it happen.
Look, as general managers go, Brian Cashman is everything but a gunslinger. He’s proven himself to be shrewd and calculating in every move he makes. There’s no calculating in the move for Stanton if he executes a trade with Derek Jeter and the Marlins. It’s pure greed. It’s reason for fans across America, once again, to gang up on the Yankees and their Evil Empire.
The team you love to hate has come a long way over the last eighteen months to rebuild, not only the roster but the Yankees brand. Judge personifies the new image of the team. In fact, the Yankees have a whole cast of Jeters now, and more on the way.
Cashman pulled the trigger. He’d been patient for all this time. We all have. He could have pulled a reverse Shohei Ohtani on Stanton. Told him thanks but no thanks. Your services are not needed in New York. We’re doing just fine.
In a way, the Yankees have taken all the fun out of the 2018 season. It’s no longer a season similar to last year, filled with mystery and surprises. Instead, we’ve reverted back to the old days when they were expected to win – or else.
I didn’t see this coming. George would have been happy. The Dream Team is born again in New York City.