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Olney: Brian Cashman has “full confidence” of Steinbrenners

Jan 15, 2011, 2:44 PM EST

Brian Cashman, Hank Steinbrenner AP

If you ever had any doubt that the Yankees own New York, just look at the back page of the New York Daily News today.

Pretty impressive feat — no, I didn’t use that word because of Rex Ryan — especially on a weekend when the Jets are playing the Patriots in the divisional playoffs.

Anyway, Bill Madden and Roger Rubin wrote this morning that the Steinbrenners were “bothered by Cashman’s blueprint,” specifically that the club was going into the season with a thin starting rotation and little in the way of protection for closer Mariano Rivera. Cashman expressed confidence with in-house options Joba Chamberlain and David Robertson for the bullpen, but team brass ultimately decided that Rafael Soriano was an insurance policy that they couldn’t turn down.

Despite the difference of opinion, Buster Olney of ESPN.com hears that Cashman still has “full confidence” of the Steinbrenners. Jon Heyman of SI.com hears the same, adding that while Cashman preferred to keep the first-round draft pick, he “in no way threw a body block” to prevent the Soriano signing.

So, it sounds like Cashman was overruled in this instance. But is this really a big deal? And do we have any evidence that this hasn’t happened before? As much as we’d like to think that Cashman has been calling the shots personnel-wise, this is just a dose of reality that ownership has the final say, not just here, but pretty much everywhere.

  1. yankeesfanlen - Jan 15, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    It’s kind of funny, and very telling, that this may be the only team where the GM is trying to keep a budget and gets overruled by ownership.Of course, Brian is a willing accomplice.
    Wouldn’t have it any other way.

  2. uyf1950 - Jan 15, 2011 at 3:44 PM

    I would go one step further then just “ownership has the final say, not just here, but pretty much everywhere”. Ownership has they final say everywhere, not just pretty much everywhere. I for one am glad regardless of how it came down whether by decree or just Cashman giving his opinion and the Steinbrenners expressing their desire that Soriano be signed. Since few draft choices make it to the Major Leagues and even fewer are standouts and the percentage that make it in 3 years or less is a fraction of the total. I think the decision was a smart one especially for the Yankees.

  3. jjpileggi - Jan 15, 2011 at 4:39 PM

    Cashman is pursuing a long-term goal of building a sustainable franchise. The farm system is the best way to do that. Ownership wants to maximize revenue and sales, and when you are in New York, big names and playoff appearances are the best way to do that. Not incompatible, except that the occasional off year is a reasonable price for bringing young talent along. The Steinbrenner legacy is that an occasional off year is to be avoided in the short-term, and you can buy your way out of the problem later on.

  4. johnjpileggi - Jan 15, 2011 at 4:42 PM

    Cashman is pursuing a long-term goal of building a sustainable franchise. The farm system is the best way to do that. Ownership wants to maximize revenue and sales, and when you are in New York, big names and playoff appearances are the best way to do that. Not incompatible, except that the occasional off year is a reasonable price for bringing young talent along. The Steinbrenner legacy is that an occasional off year is to be avoided in the short-term, and you can buy your way out of the problem later on.

  5. pisano - Jan 15, 2011 at 5:04 PM

    Cashman held back because he is trying to work within a budget and like johnjpileggi stated he’s trying to build the farm system, that being said he’s to be commended. In the Steinbrenner tradition they felt Soriano is a great find as it not only helps for now, but he will be the future closer. In essence it’s a win, win for Cashman if for some reason Soriano fails or has an injury, again he’s Hank and Hal’s baby. On another positive this also frees up some players for a much needed 3,4,or 5 starter.I say give credit where it’s due,there was no in fighting ,Cashman gave his opinion and was most likely overruled. Remember a boss is not always right, but he’s always the boss.

  6. uyf1950 - Jan 15, 2011 at 10:07 PM

    I hope the Yankees are keeping an eye on the progress or should I say the slow progress of the Cardinals/Pujols negotiations? Not for Pujols but for how it might effect the Cardinals option of Carpenter come the 2011 trade deadline or even them cutting him lose at the end of the 2011 season for financial considerations (have to cut payroll to pay for Pujols’s extension). He would be an excellent guy to have in the rotation at the TD this coming season and 2012.

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