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UPDATE: Yankees invite C.J. Wilson to New York

Nov 15, 2011, 10:05 PM EST

C.J. Wilson Getty Getty Images

The competition for the top starting pitcher of this year’s free agent class is beginning to intensify.

After the Angels wined and dined C.J. Wilson’s agent Bob Garber last night in Milwaukee, Marc Carig of the Newark Star-Ledger reports that the Yankees have invited the free-agent left-hander to New York to meet with “team decision-makers.”

The invitation was made when Yankees general manager Brian Cashman met with Garber this afternoon. While Garber also represents free agent right-hander Roy Oswalt, he said this particular meeting was mostly focused on Wilson.

“I told him where we were at, they understood, and want us to come out,” Garber said at the general managers’ meetings. “I think it’s a good fit. We have a lot of teams we have to narrow down. I think the Yankees are a team that we’ve narrowed down as a team we want to spend a little time with.”

“At this point, there’s still six or seven teams we’re in serious talks with,” Garber said, counting the Yankees among them. “(Cashman) knew (Wilson) was the Cliff Lee of this year and didn’t want to come out short. I just liked his aggressiveness.”

Garber told Carig that the meeting in New York, which will take place on an unspecified date, will be attended by Cashman, Yankees director of pro personnel Billy Eppler and Hal Steinbrenner.

While Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times wrote yesterday that Wilson is likely to command a six-year deal in the $100 million range, Carig has him around five years and $90 million. It’s still very early, but having the Yankees involved in the conversation will surely up the ante for all interested teams.

UPDATE: Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that Wilson and his agent have requested a visit to the Yankees before next month’s winter meetings. The Bombers are said to be considering the request.

  1. uyf1950 - Nov 15, 2011 at 10:30 PM

    If after Brian and Co. have done their homework on CJ and are satisfied that he can help the team I’d max out at 5years/$85M ($17M per). In 2 years AJ will be gone (if not sooner) so the $17M per to CJ effectively is just a continuation of the dollars they are paying AJ. Besides 5 years/$85M seems like a better bargain then the $5 years/$63M (vested contract) the Phillies just signed Papelbon to.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Nov 15, 2011 at 10:34 PM

      63 million and 58 dollars to be precise. Anyway, on topic…I’m not sold on Wilson. I’m not sure why though. I just have this feeling that he will regress. I feel like he could be an absolute disaster.

      • proudlycanadian - Nov 16, 2011 at 5:07 AM

        C J reminds me of A J. I also suspect that he will regress.

      • paperlions - Nov 16, 2011 at 7:54 AM

        CJ isn’t anything like AJ…who had a long history of great stuff and poor results. Moving away from Arlington, which is by far the most hitter friendly MLB stadium, should help him quite a bit. While teams may not look at him as a true #1, most teams don’t have a true #1 or a pitcher on their staff as good as he has been.

  2. Ari Collins - Nov 15, 2011 at 10:34 PM

    I’m torn on whether, as a Sox fan, I want the Yankees to get Wilson. I think he’s a better pitcher than some people think (just because he’s not pitching at a HOF level like Halladay or Lee or Sabathia or Verlander doesn’t mean he’s not an ace), but he also doesn’t have the track record of Greinke or Hamels, next year’s frontliners. So maybe they’d be “wasting” money if they get Wilson, but I’m pretty sure that getting Wilson wouldn’t keep the Yanks from outbidding everyone on another ace next offseason.

    So… I guess I’m rooting for them not to get him?

    I dunno. What do Yankee fans think?

    • uyf1950 - Nov 15, 2011 at 10:54 PM

      Personally I don’t think the Yankees will sign him. I think he wants more than the Yankees are or would be willing to pay.. I think the Yankees want to sign someone for fewer years and less money. If they were to sign Wilson for 5 or 6 years that would mean they would have CC and Wilson’s contracts expire at the same time and they would have to replace their 2 front line starters at the same time. Not the ideal situation.
      But who knows that’s why Cashman does what he does and I sit here and make guesses on what I would like for them to do.

      • paperlions - Nov 16, 2011 at 7:55 AM

        That is a lot of confidence….thinking these two guys would still be the Yankees front-line starters in 5 or 6 years. That seems highly unlikely because 6 yrs is a long time in the career of a pitcher that is already 30+ and because they Yankees won’t go that long without adding another top arm.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 9:05 AM

        paperlions, yes it is. And being a lefty and pitching about half your games in Yankees Stadium does allow the pitcher some “wiggle” room as they start to turn from 33 to ripe old age of 34, 35 and 36. I don’t think I’d start to throw dirt on CC’s casket just yet he may just surprise a few people with his performance and longevity on the mound.

    • phukyouk - Nov 15, 2011 at 11:07 PM

      Do not want him. 3 or 4 yrs Maybe. but 6 yrs no friggin way. we dont need another Aj and i have a feeling thats what he will turn into. i would much rather see how the Killer B’s and the rest of our farm develop.
      (not being sarcastic Ari)

      • uyf1950 - Nov 15, 2011 at 11:13 PM

        Maybe we should rename the the Killer “B’s”, BNB for Banuelos, Noesi and Betances. Since Brackman is no longer a Killer B but just a “B”. It’s getting late and I’m getting tired.

      • phukyouk - Nov 15, 2011 at 11:18 PM

        nope. Noesi is a goner. trade bait. he will be packaged for someone, possibly Jurgins. Im not a huge fan of his to be honest.

      • Ari Collins - Nov 15, 2011 at 11:19 PM

        Hah, “BNB” sounds like “B&B”, like Bed and Breakfast.

        Not a big believer in Noesi. Banuelos, though… that kid’s ceiling is through the roof. (It’s an architectural paradox!)

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 4:05 AM

        Ari, you win the prize. That was my intent. I little bit of humor I was hoping someone would see through my little comment that’s why I included the part about it’s getting late and I was tired.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 4:14 AM

        ,,,now having said that about my earlier comment. Fans might be surprised by Noesi this season. I would not be the least bit surprised to see Noesi make the rotation at some point and do very, very well.

        My monies on Betances being part of a trade package some time this year for a “quality” (AKA: #2) starter. Don’t know who or from which team, just know unlike last year when Cashman was mentioned continuously from about the 2010 trade deadline on this year he and the Yankees have maintained a “low” profile so far. Just makes me think somethings up.

    • Francisco (FC) - Nov 16, 2011 at 8:36 AM

      I’m torn on whether, as a Sox fan, I want the Yankees to get Wilson. I think he’s a better pitcher than some people think (just because he’s not pitching at a HOF level like Halladay or Lee or Sabathia or Verlander doesn’t mean he’s not an ace)

      No, that’s exactly what it means. I mean how many aces are there in a deck? The Mariners have King Felix after all (Although he’s an Ace in my book), so its all good unless you got A.J. who is a drama Queen. Worse are the guys who are basically Jack of all trades master of none…

      • Ari Collins - Nov 16, 2011 at 10:20 AM

        There are four aces in a deck out of 52. That’s one in 13, which would be over two ace pitchers per team.

        I’m not even saying that we should consider ONE ace per team, for 30 total aces. But I think 15 is a reasonable number. That gives you the following ace pitchers over the last two years:

        Halladay
        Sabathia
        Verlander
        Kershaw
        Lee
        Haren
        Weaver
        Felix
        Cain
        Hamels
        Carpenter
        Lester
        Lincecum
        Price

        … and Wilson.

        You might quibble here and there (should Greinke be in based more on his peripherals than his ERA?), but the fact is that Wilson has pitched as well as anyone but the top 5 or so. And he’s done it in one of the two or three most hitter-friendly parks, and in the tougher league.

        You can argue that he’s not an ace since he’s only GOT those two years of track record, but it’s hard to argue that he hasn’t pitched like one. Unless “ace” just means “HOF pitcher.” In which case, yes, he’s a step below that.

      • cintiphil - Nov 16, 2011 at 10:49 AM

        Ari:

        I would place Wainwright above many in your list. He is my pick next to Verlander, Lee and Halladay.

      • Ari Collins - Nov 16, 2011 at 11:19 AM

        Yeah, Wainwright is probably an ace, but he hasn’t pitched like one over the last two years due to injury. Here’s hoping he comes back just as good as ever!

      • cintiphil - Nov 16, 2011 at 11:26 AM

        Ari:
        We saw too much of the guy in 2010 in Cinti. He was a 20 game winner then. In 2011, he has Tommy John. He is back for 2012, or supposed to be. Remember too that he was the real star in the 2006 W-S win over the Tigers, coming out of the pen, then started in 2007. The kind of guy any team needs.

      • phukyouk - Nov 16, 2011 at 11:31 AM

        Price has has one good year and one bad year. def not qualification for an Ace yet by any means. there is another one on the list that certainly does not qualify as an Ace but i will keep that one quiet

      • Francisco (FC) - Nov 16, 2011 at 1:38 PM

        Sooo the fact that my comment was tongue-in-cheek sailed over your head? Ace, King, Queen, Jack didn’t do it for you?

        In any case since you opened the box I will say the Jury is out, he looks promising, I’ll revisit the ace designation in a couple of off-seasons.

    • cintiphil - Nov 16, 2011 at 10:47 AM

      Don’t throw Greinke in the mix with Hamels etal. If you exclude the one year they gave him the Cy, he is really not that outstanding. That one year alone made him a star. Since, NOT so HOT.

  3. dirtyharry1971 - Nov 15, 2011 at 10:38 PM

    No way do i want this guy for 6 years, thats 2 too many

  4. linedrivehit - Nov 15, 2011 at 11:11 PM

    Tsk Tsk… I wish all of you could have seen the looks on your faces when Detroit was celebrating in YOUR house. Tried to buy another championship last year, and gonna try again this coming year.

    Yankess payroll in excess of Tampa Bay Rays: $162 million
    Number of teams with team payrolls lower than the salary of only 3 yankees 12
    The looks on Yankees fans faces with Detroit celebrating in THEIR house PRICELESS!

    • phukyouk - Nov 15, 2011 at 11:40 PM

      DUDE! this is exactly what i was thinking about when the article mentioned CJ Wilson. I mean it makes perfect sense.
      fu*king idiot!

      P.S. you forgot the most important number 27, google it stupid

      • linedrivehit - Nov 15, 2011 at 11:45 PM

        yeah, 27 bought and paid for

    • bigharold - Nov 15, 2011 at 11:51 PM

      “Tried to buy another championship …”

      Because the team you root for plays for room & board and tips?

      • paperlions - Nov 16, 2011 at 7:59 AM

        Well, the team I root for won the WS and had a payroll less than 1/2 that of the Yankees. The fact is that the Yankees are a good team primarily because they spend the most money, whatever the 2nd reason may be….it is a distant second. I’m not saying Yankee fans should care (I wouldn’t if I was one), but denying the obvious is kind of silly.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 8:52 AM

        paperlions my friend, I disagree with your conclusion about the Yankees vehemently. Oh, not because you say they spend a lot of money because clearly they do. But the reason for their success. The Yankees are successful because they are a very well run organization and it’s that, that makes the Yankees successful. You need look no further then the Mets and Cubs as affirmation of that. The Mets and Cubs have generally spent a lot of money on their payrolls in most cases excluding the Phillies they have outspent NL teams by $40, $50M or more. The Cubs and Mets in spite of spending a lot of money are not successful and that’s because they are NOT well run organizations. To my way of thinking there is a big difference in being successful as a team because that team is well run and does spend money versus a team(s) that just spend money like the Mets and Cubs and as we all know aren’t successful.

      • Ari Collins - Nov 16, 2011 at 9:17 AM

        But they have spent a LOT more money than any of those teams, uyf. $50MM to $80MM more a year.

        The reason they’re so successful is a mix of having a far bigger revenue stream than any other team and spending it reasonably well (and being able to outspend their mistakes when they do make them). You don’t think Theo could have made the playoffs the last couple years with $50MM more a year to spend on pitching?

        That said, I’m not blaming the Yankees for “buying their championships.” That’s silly. All teams are trying to buy their championships (is anyone trying to barter for it, or win free agents with rainbows and puppy dogs?), the Yankees just have more buying power. There’s no improved moral standing from having less ability to buy championships. Underdog status maybe, but it doesn’t make those underdogs better in some way.

      • PanchoHerreraFanClub - Nov 16, 2011 at 9:29 AM

        My friends, bringing up the Mets and Cubs to make a point about the Yankees is just wrong in so many ways. It’s like saying that a Rolls is so good by comparing it to a pair of Yugos that have a some body rust and don’t run.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 9:59 AM

        Ari, I don’t know if the Sox would or wouldn’t have made the playoffs if they had more money to spend the past 2 years. Because if you ask me spending $300M to secure the services of 2 players for 7 years is a pretty good chunk of change. No disagreement on the Yankees have a very big revenue stream only a fool would deny that. And I’m certainly no expect on any teams financial resources. But it would seem to me that you perhaps are confusing the Red Sox desire not to “go the extra mile” and sign a player here or there when necessary with their inability to do so. Remember the Red Sox don’t just compete against the Yankees the compete against 12 other AL teams for a playoff spot. And the Red Sox in 2010 for example outspent the next 2 highest payroll AL teams the Tigers and White Sox by $40 and nearly $60M. Also let’s not forget while the Yankees own a 50% share of the YESNetwork the Red Sox own 80% of NESN.
        Listen, I would never disagree with anyone that says the Yankees spend a lot of money on their payroll. I only disagree when people say the main or only reason for the Yankees success is because they spend a lot of money. In my opinion as I’ve said they are successful mainly because they are a well run organization and it’s that that fuels their revenue stream and allows them to spend money to be successful. Perhaps we are just arguing semantics.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 10:05 AM

        Pancho, you couldn’t have missed my point by any more then you did. The point is the Mets and Cubs have spent a lot of money and failed miserably.
        Your analogy is ludicrous. The correct analogy would be the Mets and Cubs have spent enough money to buy a Rolls but instead bought Yugo’s. That speaks to their management not there funds. Which is what I initially spoke to.

    • dirtyharry1971 - Nov 15, 2011 at 11:58 PM

      when was the last time detroit won a WS? oh thats right, 1984!!! Know your place

    • djpostl - Nov 16, 2011 at 12:07 AM

      Aw muffin, you mad because your team ddn’t win it all? Yup, Detroit did great. Hats off.
      But they didn’t do it for free last time I checked. Go cry more I guess.

      I know you’re still butt hurt thinking about losing the World Series to the Cards because your pitchers couldn’t manage to field a ball and throw it to a base accurately.

      In the end, your team was nothing but an also ran this year as well. ’84 is a long time ago haha.

      Just curious, when they won that year with their payroll that ranked as one of highest in MLB (granted it was only like 9.5 million, but then again the top one was only like 10.5) did you think of that title as “bought”?

    • protius - Nov 16, 2011 at 12:17 AM

      The look on your face when you caught me with your wife the other night was even better. Lmbo

    • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 4:43 AM

      linedrive, how quick some fans are to forget. Forget how the Tigers blew a 7 game lead on Sept. 6th 2009 over the Twins only to come up one game short of the post season that year. Did you know what the respective team payrolls in 2009 were? Detroit Tigers – $115M ; Minnesota Twins – $65M.
      Seems to me if payroll was the only thing that won Division Titles and Championships the Tigers should have run away with the Central division in 2009.
      Just for your information do you know how many teams had a LOWER payroll than the Tigers in 2009? It was 25.
      BTW, I won’t ask you if you remember the look on the Tigers players faces that year because I’m sure it wasn’t pretty.

    • henryd3rd - Nov 16, 2011 at 5:32 AM

      And how far might I ask did Detroit go after defeating the Yankees? And how many Championships does Detroit have? And one more question. How many games did you go to this year?

      If the Yankees want to squander their money on free agents so be it. After all its only a game. As for CJ all I can say is more power to him. I see him re-upping with Texas and using the Yankees to pry more money out of Ryan and company

  5. concernedcitizen001 - Nov 16, 2011 at 12:24 AM

    I realize that pro contracts are supposed to be over-inflated, but why would you not sign him to a 5 yr deal @ say $14 million/per with INCENTIVES that are very achievable to take the total yearly worth to the $17.5-$18.5 million range. This way, if he bombs (see A.J. Burnett) they aren’t paying for “potential” but rather results. If they are realistic goals/incentives given he stays healthy and pitches the way his agent sells him, then no problem and the athlete gets paid. I mean who can’t live on $14-$15 million a year?!?!?!?
    I’m so sick of pro athletes bitching about “out performing their contract.” You signed it, right? If you sucked, would you give part of the money back?

    • drmonkeyarmy - Nov 16, 2011 at 12:46 AM

      Performance based bonuses are forbidden under the CBA. Plate appearances or where one finishes in MVP/Cy Young voting, Gold Gloves can be used. However, you can’t get an extra 3 million if you have an ERA under a certain number of hit a certain amount of HR’s.

      • concernedcitizen001 - Nov 16, 2011 at 12:54 AM

        I understand, and not that the teams would structure a contract that way anyway (because that would entail using logic). No, they rather throw huge sums of money at “potential” and pay out for a bust (AJ Burnett/Carl Pavano).

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 4:59 AM

        concerned, you mean like Morneau and Mauer or Barry Zito or John Lackey just to mention a few others?

      • Francisco (FC) - Nov 16, 2011 at 8:49 AM

        The only way to structure a contract based on performance under the current CBA is to guarantee only a portion of the years (which the team might deem acceptable risk) and have options that vest based on IP or PA. Of course that doesn’t help all that much in the case of a healthy pitcher/hitter performing poorly.

        Dr, Papelbon’s option vests based on games finished, I’m not going to say that’s a performance based stat but it’s an interesting loophole in the sense that if indeed he bombs the manager has a perfectly good reason not to let him close and finish games and thus the option doesn’t vest. It’s tricky though because I believe the MLBPA can take action if they perceive a team is trying to unfairly manipulate a contract.

      • Francisco (FC) - Nov 16, 2011 at 8:51 AM

        That came out wrong. it was supposed to be “based on stats” not “based on performance” the point was precisely to say performance based contracts are not really possible, only health related ones.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 9:14 AM

        Francisco, it’s probably very, very likely that baring an injury Papelbon’s option year (2016) will vest. Simply because all he has to do is finish 100 games in the combined 2014 and 2015 season. He can pretty much assure himself of reaching that number by blowing past the halfway mark in 2014 the first year the finished games start to count for the option.
        But I think you are 100% correct that the Players Union would have a serious issue if the team held Papelbon back just so his option didn’t vest. At least that’s my opinion.

      • Ari Collins - Nov 16, 2011 at 10:23 AM

        Didn’t they do that with K-Rod this year? Traded him to a team that could argue they wanted him as a setup man. That’s one way around it.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 11:29 AM

        Ari, yes they did w/K-Rod. But if you will recall he (K-Rod) only agreed to drop the finish games vesting portion of the contract after the Brewers agreed to increase his salary by about $1M or $1.5M and not be offered arbitration which wasn’t really an issue for the Brewers since they weren’t going to offer him arbitration anyway. Also keep in mind K-Rod is a lot younger now (29) when that vesting option would have vested. So he has a lot of paydays ahead of him. Papelbon will have turned 35 when and if his vesting option has a chance to vest. Not a lot of “big” paydays left for a closer at that age.

      • Ari Collins - Nov 16, 2011 at 1:21 PM

        Interesting. Thanks.

      • Francisco (FC) - Nov 16, 2011 at 1:42 PM

        Francisco, it’s probably very, very likely that baring an injury Papelbon’s option year (2016) will vest.

        I agree, that strengthens my perception that these options can give a team a certain hedge against injury-related issues with a contract but performance? fuggedaboudit!

      • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2011 at 2:36 PM

        Francisco – sure it’s true some options do give the teams a “hedge”. And certainly Papelbon’s vesting option has a bit of a hedge for the Phillies built in. I don’t believe it’s that big of a hedge simply because the Phillies have given him 2 years to get to a total number that should be easily reachable again if he stays healthy. Considering Papelbon has appeared in on average 65 games per season over the last 4 year (I realize those are games appeared in and not finished). I think you can draw a reasonable conclusion that Papelbon is more then likely to be able to finish 100 games over 2 season (2014 and 2015) if the Phillies give him the opportunity. Like I said I don’t think in the Phillies/Papelbon case the vesting option is that much of a hedge.

  6. Tribe&Browns&Cavs - Nov 16, 2011 at 7:20 AM

    I rotation with A.J. and C.J…. I feel like there’s an immature joke between there somewhere…

    • phukyouk - Nov 16, 2011 at 9:18 AM

      if only that also had BJ Ryan…

  7. beerjunkie - Nov 16, 2011 at 8:16 AM

    CJ has peaked. To give him more than a 3 year deal is a bad idea. Giving him an average salary over $15 million and close to $20 million is insane. So, then, yeah he will sign with the Yankees for 5 years and $84 million.

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