Did you hear about the team in New York that won’t spend any money despite being in the nation’s number one market? Boy are their fans ticked off about it, too. It wasn’t too long ago that they were a financial powerhouse and now they are afraid to go into the free agent market for long-term contracts. There’s talk they will be lucky to finish above fourth place in their division, too.
This is (somewhat) old news for Mets fans but it’s entirely new territory for Yankees fans. Yes, the above paragraph was written about the Yankees. While Mets fans bitch and moan about the club’s lack of moves in the offseason, let’s take a minute to look at that team from the Bronx. Did you know that the Mets have committed to pay more money this offseason than the Yankees? Let’s compare the two squads.
Mets – Signed David Wright to a $138 million contract and picked up John Buck’s $6 million tab.
Yankees – Re-signed Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, Hiroki Kuroda and Ichiro Suzuki and picked up Kevin Youkilis. All except Suzuki on one-year deals while he signed for 2/$13 million.
The total expenditure of big ticket contracts the Yankees signed this year adds up to $62 million, less than half what the Mets committed to with Wright.
According to Cot’s the Yankees payroll for 2013 stands at $201+ million with at least nine spots to fill. Barring a late winter change of plans, they go into Spring Training with Francisco Cervelli as their starting catcher and Eduardo Nunez as their starting DH. Their big offseason acquisition was Youkilis, who hopes to rebound from a 99 OPS+ year.
The Mets are pointing to 2014, when they hope to compete with a staff fronted by young aces Matt Harvey, Jonathon Niese and Zack Wheeler, with promising youngsters like Michael Fulmer and Noah Syndergaard a step away in the high minors. Meanwhile the Yankees are pointing to 2014, too. Their goal for that season is to cut payroll to $189 million to avoid the luxury tax threshold.
The Mets moved towards their 2014 goal by releasing Jason Bay, acquiring Travis d’Arnaud and refusing to deal Wheeler. The Yankees moved to their 2014 goal by cutting ties with Russell Martin and Nick Swisher while shunning anyone who could help who wanted more than two years.
Currently, the Yankees have over $81 million committed to just four players in 2014. One of those is Alex Rodriguez, who may or may not contribute much on the field and certainly will not be worth the $26 million he will be paid. Mark Teixeira is unlikely to be worth the $23.125 million he’ll be pulling down, either.
Still, they’ll have CC Sabathia and nearly $110 million, so no one should feel too sorry for them. However, as a Mets fan it’s nice to hear about the other New York team embarking on a belt-tightening program. And maybe in 2014, the Mets will win more games than the Yankees for the first time since the year 2000.