Alex Rodriguez is one of the greatest to ever play the game — in the regular season. When we enter October and it’s time for some playoff baseball, A-Rod is a whole different player, and this season A-Rods shortcomings in the clutch took the blame for the Yankees loss to the Tigers. Rodriguez is not the player he used to be, and might need a change of scenery to fix his recent struggles. Will A-Rod be on next years Yankees team? Read below to find out.
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[one_half]By: Jake Dal Porto
But with several decisions to make, and a luxury tax that they need to stay under, the Yankees need to trade Alex Rodriguez as the first step int their plan to regain the A.L supremacy.
The Yankees Can Eat Up His Salary If Needed
The one thing that’s going to offset potential Rodriquez suitors, is obviously his massive contract and how much of that contract would they have to take on to land the struggling veteran.
In the bear future,the Yankees are planning to cut their payroll down to avoid the luxury tax, so if they are to dangle A-Rod, they will look for the best deal. But the fact of the matter that is, that even if New York trims just a few million from their payroll, than dumping Rodriguez still qualifies as a great exchange.
Sure, Rodriguez has been a star for the majority of his career, but he’s owed precisely $114 million over the next five years to play an undefined role. Manager Joe Girardi was by no means hesitant to bench him during the playoffs, and it’s doubtful that his hesitance will fade during in a regular season scenario. Granted, Rodriguez will have a relatively longer leash, given that it’s not the playoffs, but no actions can be ruled out at this point. So, the solution is to deal him, and avoid all of the above scenarios.
Their Decision Could Change
Just because the Yankees are sticking true to their word that Rodriguez will be wearing Yankees’ pinstripes next year, doesn’t guarantee anything. In fact, Yankees’ general manager Brian Cashman told the New York Daily News that Rodriguez is no longer viewed as a “star” player in his mind. Yet, they’re telling the baseball world that he’s off the block.
However, put yourself in Cashman’s shoes for a few moments. Say that an unanimous team proposed a deal to New York, and asked you if you could pick up 80 percent of the remaining $1114 or so million left on his contract. Why wouldn’t he and his group jump on that offer? Most teams would demand a 90 percent pickup rate, but 80 percent is approaching no-brainer territory.
The point is, the Yankees might be set on sticking with Rodriguez for 2013, but if an enticing offer comes their way, there is a good reason to believe that the once superstar third baseman might be on his way out of the Bronx.
The Yankees Want To Get Younger
The Yankees have made it boldly clear that they want to become a more youthful oriented squad in the near future, but that will be a tough task given that average age of all their batters combined checks in at 32 years-old.
Of course, they don’t have to shed all of their veterans because veterans are a crucial part to creating winnings teams. However, by dealing Rodriguez, 36, that average will take a turn for the better and will free up some space for Cashman to plug in a younger alternative. Chase Headley would look like an appealing option should the situation present itself, but the Yanks would have to salvage an awful lot of type “A” prospects to land the National League’s 2012 RBI leader.
[one_half_last]By: Phil Watson
General manager Brian Cashman as much as said so himself on Sunday.
“If anyone wastes their time thinking Alex Rodriguez is not going to be with us in spring training, they’d be wrong,” Cashman told the New York Daily News.
That’s not to say Rodriguez’s status hasn’t changed. Cashman said he would be willing to entertain offers for anyone on the roster, including the three-time Most Valuable Player. But he also said its “unrealistic” to think the team will be able to move A-Rod.
There was some speculation shortly after the Yankees were swept by the Detroit Tigers in the American League Championship Series about Rodriguez’s movement potential. Supposedly, New York president Randy Levine and Miami Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria had a quick, light-hearted conversation about A-Rod, according to ESPNNewYork.com.
But the key figure in a potential deal for Rodriguez was former Marlins closer Heath Bell. Bell was traded to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday, thus putting the kibosh to the Miami talks for now.
What might have been able to make such a proposed trade work is that Bell’s contract was as bad for Miami as Rodriguez’s now is for New York. Bell is still owed $21 million on a three-year contract he signed in December. The Yankees, meanwhile, are still on the hook for another $114 million for the next five years for Rodriguez, thanks to the ungodly contract Hank Steinbrenner negotiated with A-Rod after the 2007 season.
In February, the Yankees dumped one of their worst contracts to the Pittsburgh Pirates. But part of the deal sending pitcher A.J. Burnett to Pittsburgh was that the Yankees agreed to pay $20 million of the $33 million Burnett was still owed for 2012 and 2013. Basically, they paid Pittsburgh almost 61 percent of the remaining money on the contract to take him off their hands.
That would seem like pocket change next to what the Yankees would have to swallow to deal Rodriguez.
For starters, it seems like at this point Cashman would have to get a “Godfather” type of offer for A-Rod; an offer that would simply be too good to refuse. And even then, it’s likely that New York would have to eat 80 to 90 percent of the remaining money on Rodriguez’s deal.
It’s bad enough to pay $20 million to a team in order to avoid having A.J. Burnett on your pitching staff. But an A-Rod trade would likely cost the Yankees upwards of $90 million. That would be more than half the teams in Major League Baseball paid their entire rosters in 2012.
Also looming are changes to baseball’s revenue-sharing taxation system. The payroll threshold for the luxury tax will be $189 million come the 2014 season and the Yankees have repeatedly said they plan to trim costs so they are less than that figure.
Teams have to pay a 40 percent tax on every dollar more than the threshold. The Yankee payroll was roughly $210 million in 2012. Next year, the threshold is $178 million and Levine told MLB.com.
September there was no way the Yankees would get to less than that figure.
There really is no market for a 37-year-old former superstar who put together one of the most horrific postseasons in recent memory. If the Yankees have any hope of dealing Rodriguez, it will have to come after A-Rod proves he’s back to 100 percent and can actually hit right-handed pitching again.
And that won’t happen until a significant portion of the 2013 season is complete … with A-Rod still in pinstripes.