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Peter Gammons, Red Sox homer?


OregonBird

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From Gammons' latest blog:

"Now you start thinking about what it's going to be like when C.C. Sabathia is a free agent at the end of next season, or when Brad Penny and Jake Peavy hit the market the following year.

Bud Selig tried to level the playing fields with revenue sharing, and it did work -- for a while. But there were only four or five teams this offseason that could make a play for Johan Santana or Alex Rodriguez or Miguel Cabrera, or Torii Hunter, for that matter. The situation will be the same when Sabathia is on the market next November, and it won't matter how much C.C. cares for Mark Shapiro and the Indians organization. The steep price will be one the Indians can't afford in their market -- any more than the rate Hunter set for center fielders and Santana will set for pitchers -- and won't fit the budgets of most teams.

It doesn't matter how much luxury tax the Yankees pay or how much Steinbrenner money goes to Kansas City, Minnesota or Tampa Bay. Hank Steinbrenner is going to use his AmEx to win. He gets a year's grace from some of the taxation because of the new stadium that opens in 2009, but if you're out there in a small market, how scary is this winter, with the realization that the Yankees and Mets are both about to open new revenue-cow ballparks?

Don't even think about signing Mark Teixeira, Braves fans. Don't even dream about how much Peavy loves San Diego, Padres fans. The Marlins are smart, because they know they aren't going to have a stadium in time to keep Cabrera, so they have to hope construction is under way when it comes time for Hanley Ramirez to get paid as one of the best players in the sport.

Once the Red Sox tell the Twins they're not getting Jacoby Ellsbury or Clay Buchholz, and if the Yankees' deal for Santana is completed, think about what Steinbrenner & Co. will have done since being exiled from the playoffs by the Indians:

• Given the highest-paid player in the history of the sport a pay raise which amounts to 10 years and between $305 million and $314 million. That, incidentally, is the first $20 million contract signed since winter 2000, when A-Rod, Manny Ramirez, Mike Hampton et al struck it rich and almost forced a strike in 2002.

• Made Santana the first $20 million pitcher and the second player to get a $20 million-plus average annual value (AAV) deal since 2000. When the Yankees "compromise" to something from $23 million to $25 million for six or seven years, they will have given the union another level with which to work their way back to getting the players nearly two-thirds of the growing revenues.

• Made Mariano Rivera the highest-paid reliever ever, in terms of AAV.

• Made Jorge Posada the highest-paid catcher in history, in terms of AAV.

• Traded one of the two or three best starting pitching prospects in the sport in Phil Hughes.

• Traded Melky Cabrera, an energetic 23-year-old center fielder who is filled with upside and has perhaps the best throwing arm of any middle outfielder in the game. Now they have Hideki Matsui, Johnny Damon and Bobby Abreu for an outfield. Santana's groundball-to-flyball ratio last season was 0.92-to-1, although he's so good that he may not miss Hunter as much as one would think, even with the space of Yankee Stadum.

The Yankees, Mets and Red Sox are not allowed to do what Bill Smith is doing with the Twins. Smith is retooling the personnel and the payroll so that when the Twins get into their new ballpark in 2010, Hughes will essentially be Santana; Delmon Young will have blossomed into a 40-homer hitter; and some of the other young players they've acquired will be established. With that in mind, the team may struggle for a season or two, but it will not be like the 11-year playoff drought it experienced after winning the World Series in 1991.

If Hank Steinbrenner hadn't insisted on dealing Hughes and keeping Rodriguez, and the Yankees don't make the playoffs in 2008, what price will other teams have to pay? If the Mets don't make the playoffs next year, imagine the howls. If the Red Sox are five games behind the Yankees on May 1, one will be able to hear the anger of misanthropic mouths that will have forgotten the Sox have won two world championships in four years and have had to raise ticket prices to record levels to do so.

The price of doing business in the Bronx means having the highest-paid player, pitcher, reliever and catcher and a couple of very talented young players -- a price only two or three other teams can even think about paying, even before the new Yankee Stadium opens. If you're in Toronto or Tampa, think about that ... and then apply for a green card in the National League Central."

Anybody else think Gammons is a Boston homer? Hall of Famer or not, his schtick is getting old. I see nothing about how much money they paid for Dick-K, how much they will have to pay to extend Beckett, etc. Instead its the evil Yankees.

I look forward to a reprint of this blog entry if the Red Sox somehow get Santana or Bedard. I wish he'd quit acting like his "boys" are the underdog, they're not. They are a part of the problem that he's describing.

I'm not crying here, I think the O's could compete by spending somewhere around the St. Louis, Detroit, or Seattle levels. I just get tired of Gammons' slanted blog entries.

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I'm pretty sure that he admits to being a Red Sox fan. He's from there and covered them for almost 20 years (1969-1986).

So if the Yankees spend like drunken sailors on shore leave, they're wrong. If the Red Sox do it, well, then its OK. Just report it both ways Petey....some objectivity.

I'm waiting for a bunch of posters to come on here and defend Petey saying he's a hall of famer, brilliant writer and that the Red Sox represent all that is right w/baseball, while the Yankees represent what is wrong w/baseball. Any takers?

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Yeah I understand that, but I kind of think of Ken Rosenthal the same way. He use to cover our O's but now will blast them at almost any cost because he can't stand PA.

I agree though that for just about any other 2 teams in baseball he can be objective but when it comes to the Sox/Yanks he's a homer...

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I don't see this as evidence of homerism by Gammons. He's just using what the Yankees have done this winter to illustrate a point that relates to all MLB. I doubt he would deny that the Red Sox are just a mini-version of the Yankees in terms of their spending -- but not this winter, so far.

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I don't see where the problem is? The Yanks have spent way more than the BoSox so far this offseason. The Yanks have the highest payroll in the game. They are exhibit 1 of baseball's skewed economic playing field. The Red Sox are exhibit 1A, but nothing in this article disputes that. He seems to be lumping the Mets, Yanks and Red Sox all into the economic elite, but the Yansk are the ones who really have been active so far this winter, so they are easily the best example right now of how things are going.

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Gammons is a $ux homer, but I don't see it in this article, instead I see him suprisingly making fun of the $ux fans with this statement:

If the Red Sox are five games behind the Yankees on May 1, one will be able to hear the anger of misanthropic mouths that will have forgotten the Sox have won two world championships in four years and have had to raise ticket prices to record levels to do so.

The bolded part is key. The Red Sox have ridiculous ticket prices but yet they are so popular people keep paying them to see the product...

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I don't have any problem with this article, he's just laying out facts. Also, while I agree that the Sox are pretty bad when it comes to spending on players, keep this in mind: if the Yankees trade for and sign Santana, and maybe pick up Rowand along the way, they could have a payroll upwards of $230 million.

Last year Boston's payroll was about $140 million, and even if were to go up to $150 million or so, the Yankees would still be outspending the Red Sox by the same amount that the Red Sox are outspending teams like the Twins, Brewers, and Reds.

Source

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Nothing wrong with the article. If you didn't know who wrote it, you wouldn't think it was written by a fan of any particular team. Now, once you know it's Gammons, then you can see how he's not fessing up about his own team being in the same game he's dissing NYC teams for. I agree that he gets old sometimes. But I think in this case you're reading the article differently because you know he wrote it.

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What the Yanks are spending this off-season is a new level of absolutely insane!

Being a Red Sox homer, I'm sure Gammons wanted to tear into them worse than he did. Or better yet, I'm sure he wanted to write a blog about how funny it is that the Yanks can spend like that and still be the odds on favorite to finish second.

Considering what we're expecting MacPhail to do this off-season, it's likely that the difference between the Yankees and Red Sox payrolls will be large enough to pay for the Orioles or Blue Jays roster. If they get Santana and sign him to a new deal, it's also likely that the Yankees payroll will be larger than the combined payrolls of the Orioles, Blue Jays, and Rays.

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Gammons would never deny he's a longtime Sox fan. But I agree with most of these posts in saying that this article doesn't really imply much of that. He is a brilliant Baseball writer, no one could deny that. The fact that he's a Carolina alum doesn't hurt either.

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