- When Alex Rodriguez signed that $252 million contract eight years ago, the Texas Rangers were crucified by baseball people for giving the then-shortstop almost $100 million more than any other team offered. But for a franchise with no real history of winning, that’s the only type of bid that was going to land the game’s best player, especially with at least one northeastern team in the mix.
Now, C.C. Sabathia is in the same situation, about to sign with one team for significantly more than anyone else was willing to give. Only this time, it’s not a second rate team from out west ponying up the extra cash; it’s the Yankees, the world’s most famous sports franchise, who had to do everything but literally kiss the extra large ass of their new ace to get him to come to the Bronx.
It’s finally clear just how little interest Sabathia had in New York. Not only did he need $60 million more, but also the right to opt out in three years if things become too hard, if the pressure is too much for the cool California kid to handle. Say what you want about how poorly ARod handles everything in his life, but he does face the media every day and the guy wants nothing more than to succeed under the biggest spotlight in sports.
Sabathia can learn a lot from the most scrutinized athlete in the country. He can learn how to say all the right things when everything is going well and how to handle himself if/when Tony Bleacherseat starts calling him a bum. Or he can just run away.
The Yankees have given him that option.
- By the way, would it be too much if the Yankees asked LeBron James to throw out the opening pitch at the new Yankee Stadium?
- Why is that Kevin McHale, a man responsible for one good thing (drafting Kevin Garnett) in the last 13 years with the Minnesota Timberwolves, continues to get a pass from those that cover the NBA when Isiah Thomas is lucky to even be allowed into any building in the league?
- Spare me all the nonsense about what a good guy Jason Varitek is now. Here’s a guy that didn’t hit .250 in batting practice last season, who was unwilling to accept arbitration from the Red Sox. If he actually believes he’s worth more than the $10 million he probably could have made, then he is just as clueless as the fans who gave him a pass for hitting like the right fielder on your son’s little league team last season.
- You ever see those NFL/United Way active generation commercials. Part of the reason our children all look like mini-C.C. Sabathia’s is because ESPN has made it cooler to say “all-in” than “I got next.”
But the World Wide Leader can remedy the situation. It just needs to push Speed Pool down our throats the way it does the WSOP. Think about it: Pool hustlers that actually hustle.
Now that’s a generation of kids that I want to meet.
- It really sucks to be the UConn football team. Not only do they have to celebrate the New Year in Canada (yes fellas, New Year’s Eve is December 31 everywhere) but they’re also getting screwed when it comes to the gifts the International Bowl provides. This year, all Connecticut and Buffalo players will receive: A Timely Watch Co. watch, Two-piece Armor Gear rolling travel duffel bags and computer backpacks. In comparison, a number of other bowls are giving iPods or “Best Buy Parties” where players can spend up to $400 on electronics.
One star gifts for one star recruits, I suppose.