Beltran Signing Caps A Wild Day

Carlos Beltran signing with the Yankees capped a wild day of deals. (USA TODAY Sports)

Carlos Beltran signing with the Yankees capped a wild day of deals. (USA TODAY Sports)

Carlos Beltran joining the Yankees would normally be a momentous occasion on its own, but it was simply the final touch on what became an insane Friday for Major League Baseball. Beltran was the third of three major free agents to switch teams, with Robinson Cano and Curtis Granderson also changing allegiances, and his signing came right on the heels of Mike Napoli’s two-year return to the Red Sox.

This is as good a time as any for your reminder that the winter meetings haven’t started yet.

It’s fitting that Beltran would sign with the Yankees on the same day that Cano and Granderson left, as he’s responsible, in part, for replacing the production of those two. Granderson inked a four-year, $60 million deal with the crosstown Mets, and Cano took off for the Seattle Mariners on a 10-year, $240 million contract that was reportedly for $65 million more than the Yankees offered. That’s $300 million the Yankees would have needed to spend to retain the pair, but instead, they brought in Beltran — and two others — for less than that, and without having to throw a decade-long commitment in there to boot.

Beltran is the cheapest of the free-agent trio that includes Jacoby Ellsbury (seven years, $153 million) and Brian McCann (five years, $85 million). Combined, the three account for $283 million, which is more than Cano cost, sure, but it will also cover multiple positions, and keep the Yankees from having the holes in their lineup that helped doom them to a third-place, playoff-less 2013. Ellsbury’s signing pushed Brett Gardner out of center field to left, and Beltran is now slated to start in right field, where the lesser ground to cover will make his job easier in his (for baseball purposes anyway) advanced years.

The move also allows the Yankees to keep Alfonso Soriano out of the outfield, and instead use him as the designated hitter, where he can continue to mash homers while avoiding defensive work with the same regularity that he avoids walking. In addition, it makes Ichiro Suzuki, who has hit just .280/.310/.376 with the Yankees, expendable, or, at the least, a piece on the bench.

Even if Beltran starts to slip at the plate over the course of the deal, he’s likely to produce enough to satisfy the Yankees, who have not been able to rely on their farm system for replacements. In his two years with the Cardinals, Beltran hit .282/.343/.493 despite playing his games in a pitcher-friendly park that lessened power production from both sides of the plate — a concern for the switch-hitting Beltran. Now, he’s in the newest iteration of Yankee Stadium, where homers for both right-handed and left-handed batters fly out far more regularly than at Busch, and it should show up in his numbers, even if his skills begin to decline as he nears 40.

Three years might seem like too many, at least at $15 million per, but the Yankees don’t have on-hand replacements, and the threat of missing the playoffs in consecutive seasons was too great, even if it means Plan $189 Million is now in jeopardy. The Yankees might have created the mess that forced them to spend this much on free agency in the span of a week, but at least they’re back to spending like it’s a strength of theirs, and not something to be avoided.

68 thoughts on “Beltran Signing Caps A Wild Day

  1. Soriano looked pretty good in the OF during the time he played for the Yankees last year. The word is that with the Cubs he worked hard at getting better in the OF and was greatly improved. He still seems to run well. I am wondering if Beltran, a switch hitter, would not be a better choice for DH to protect his knees.

    • They might be able to platoon. Yankee stadium is a bit friendlier outfield to play in right, so not a bad idea.

  2. And you suck Jay-Z for letting Cano go to Seatltle.He had a great chance to get a triple crown in NY , but now that’s gone because he will never get enough homers in Seattle .He will bat for a high batting average though .You hurt Cano. Stick to music moran.

    • He did what was best for his client , he got the most money available for the max time . 3rd largest in history , Yankees were wise in decision , both parties won . Why hate on Jay-z? It’s a business on both sides why do fans forget this , why should an athlete take less money would you give a discount to you’re employer?

      • he did what was best for him not his client,just in the case you did not know this a lot of players let themselves be manipulated by agents.a player pays the agent to represent him and do what the player wants not the other way around..imagine you play sport and you tell your agent i want to resigne with this team no matter what and the agent turns around and finds you a deal with another team for a 100 million more,what is up with that

        • If I am not mistaken, it’s the player’s signature at the bottom of the contract… not the agent’s. The agent works the deal and presents them to the player who, ultimately, has the final say.

        • That is the last you will ever hear from Cano. Well, until the M’s trade him because they will stink! Cano will break the IBB record. Why would anyone pitch to him in that lineup. I wonder with all of the walks he will get will it effect his play in the field?

    • 175 million and a nice shiny trophy ( trip crown) in NY
      or
      230 million and a different shiny trophy (silver slugger) in Seattle

      The only history that the new generation of ballplayers care about
      is size of their contracts. Loyalty is practically non-existent. Jay-z is just one in a long line of people getting in line to exploit the culture of sport. What he did is capitalist entrepreneurship, just like Boras and Roosenthal . I think the only “Moran” is you.. thinking a player would give up 55 mill and extra 3 years of job security for just a chance at a triple crown … and your apparent lack of spell check.

      • I just hope the Yankees do not let that traitor sing his NY C song again in Yankee Stadium let do a song in Seattle.

        • well,i have never bought his music and i never will, see, jay z is making 36 million dollars on this deal ,that is his 15%

      • A Triple Crown for Cano? Get real. Miggy, Chris Davis, Trout are all going to hit more HR than Cano, who won’t break 25 in Seattle.
        Now that he is stinking rich, his numbers will go WAY down in Seattle. Bank on it

    • triple crown? which one of those three stats has cano ever led the league in?
      he’s 31 and jst signed big contract.
      .288 41 102 will be his stats next year, do any yankee fans actually know anything about baseball

      • You can bet the house he will not hit over 30 in that lineup he has no protection at all unless they pick up 2-3 serious bats , but that’s his decision to play there and that team comes$ with that new contract good luck

    • Last I checked no one in Seattle line up hit more than .260. With Tex and Arod our Canon was rarely pitched to. Don’t see much changing in Seattle

    • Don’t be sour, the word is spelled MORON, Moran is Erin Moran from Happy Days. Cano was as good as he allowed himself to be when he wanted to be. A guy with 100% talent and 88% effort most of the time. Cano should/could have been a 40-40 guy but chose not too. Adios Muchacho! We can place him trust me. And finally there is a thing on your computer called “SPELLCHECK”…. helps avoid embarrassment!

  3. I cant wait to you see go to Yankee stadium. You’ll be back in music there with a big chorus of boos .The contract money difference he would of made with ads and other NY perks.

    • Oh yea, I just cant understand why the keep picking uo Red Sox players. Ells is def not worth the money. Cashman should of been gone long ago.

  4. ok, Cano will replicate A-Rod, big $$$ (Texas) and be buried for yrs in lower echelon team (Texas). its all about the money but NYY loved you Cano. Cannot eat money, or put it on your finger (a la W.S ring) Oh well, history repeats itself and you and A Rod will hve this in common.
    you can listen to J Zee records tho.

  5. Triple crown ?don’t count on it.Here is a question.In 10 years who will be in the playoffs more ? Yanks or Mariners

      • actually the mariners have the best minor league system in baseball they have 4-6 players competing for starting jobs this spring , they have one of the best pitching staffs in triple a 3 of those pitchers will be in the bigs this year with king felix , and they have a lf almonte who is supposed to be the next griffey jr , and a 3b peterson who is sick so don’t be suprised to see the mariners climb out of the al west cellar and compete , and for anyone who thinks they cant compete with the money and rosters of texas and angels look at the oakland a’s 2 division titles in 3 years with the lowest payroll .. and no i am not a mariners fan just a baseball fan in general and a san francisco giants fan go giants

  6. It seems like the outfeild is crowded in NY but they cant trade Gardner, then there is no farmiliarity in the lineup! think of the fans…

  7. Your a friggin idiot Joe, worried about spell check. Cano would of been much better off in NY in the long run. NY or Seattle,,,,,,,,,,,hmmmm,,,let me think? The only big winner here are the Red Sox, and the bottom line is yanks need pitching more than anything.

  8. I’m a big baseball fan and a big Yankees fan and i will miss Robinson but 50 million extra is a whole lot of money and not too many people would leave that on the table….. But to go to Seattle that’s a whole different world…. I know King Felix is there but who really cares he can only pitch every 5 days…..He can’t hit ….Please don’t talk of Junior, Junior was not the only player on that team…. Who’s on this team ???? When do you think he’ll win his first World Series with Seattle ???????? It’s all about the M-O-N-E-Y !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • 4 of the mariners top 10 prospects are starting pitchers and all 4 of them are in the top 50 prospects in baseball , 3 of them will be pitching in the bigs this year seattle is the next up and coming team that will be good for years to come their minor league system is rediculous and now with cano there the rumor is choo is right behind him to land in seattle don’t sleep on seattle

      • Mariners rank as the 13th best farm system in baseball. Turn on the TV or Radio and NO-ONE thinks Seattle is going anywhere in 2014 UNLESS they land TWO other high impact players.

        Until they do, Seattle is simply a smidgen better than last year. They have much work to do yet.

        • No one thought the Red Sox were going anywhere last year either. So much for everyone, lol. Seattle is a great city, Cano will be very happy there I’m sure. It really does not seem like the Yankees wanted him or they would have him. To me, this is fall out from the Yankee “Brain” trusts A-Rod contract. That contract blew the salary structure up just when it was starting to recover from the foolish Tom Hicks’ contract. Anyway, Baseball is more then just the Yankees, or any one player.

          • I am a Yankees fan, and I don’t blame Cano or Yankees for split. 240Mil is way too much to invest in one player, and $70 mil is pretty much impossible to sneeze at. I will miss Cano, but Jay-Z is the only winner here. Yes, Cano can buy a private jet, but it is still now going to take him 9 Hrs to get to his homeland (DR) from Seattle. Jay-z vcan go anywhere in the world but he always gets to stay home in NY.

  9. The yankees are crazy letting cano go. Who cares pay him the money he’s in his prime and will produce for years to come. Jacoby was a bad move

    • John youre stupid youre a retard that knows nothing about baseball cano was asking too much ellsbury is a franchise player when healthy you can get other good second baseman for less money if you dont know about baseball dont talk about it jerk

      • Please take your own advice. While value of the contract was a fair assessment, claiming Ellsbury is a FRANCHISE player??? Thats laugh out loud funny stuff….thanks! Now is Cano a FRANCHISE player? Absolutely.

      • Ok yeah I agree keeping Cano would not have helped, it gave us room for a lot more players, but dont call they guy a retard because you dont agree with him im not going to be a snobb and worry about spell check, but dont use slangs like that.

    • paying Cano that kind of money at 31-41 just doesn’t make sense. Ask the Angles about the large AP contract! Now they don’t have money for other players to win the WS! Without roids he will slow down and fade into baseball history.

  10. All Cano wanted was the money. Don’t talk about prospects they may be top rated in the minors but until they prove themselves in the Majors they are just prospects. Prospects don’t win u the World Series. Enjoy Seattle Cano.

  11. Yankees where a great team before Boras and Cashman ruined them. George and Gene Michael new you needed home grown roots to win. He would never let Boras get over on him like that. You can thank Boras for all ticket decline and tv audience. Why root for a team you can’t afford to go see.

  12. Well, my wish is that the n.y. sunkees finish somewhere at the bottom of the pack and don’t make the playoffs for the next ten years !
    Heck they should be demoted to triple-a. they won enough championships until year 4000.
    They should also get a fine for using illegal players like F-roid.
    Go Bosox

    • Sadly you may well get your wish if the madness of signing an offense that could score 7 runs a game continues unabated while the pitching for next year could just as easily give up 8. It is simply beyond comprehension that there is no move to cover the increasingly fragile Sabathia, improve the rotation behind him, and replace (if such a thing is possible) Mo. It’s like the current management has forgotten that you spend half of every game fielding!

  13. I read down through the comments and see person after person dishing on one another in very unkind ways, sad. Random thoughts: Jacoby will do well for the Yankees, he was a heckuva player for Boston. Cano, who knows? He had mad skills, no doubt, so good, in fact, he looked non-chalant (sp?) at times, which is why he’s considered by many as lazy. Yet, there are more players than not who fail to run hard to 1st base on grounders and popups, something that bothers me, considering all the money they get paid. On the other hand, the number of games played takes a toll on their bodies and if one can conserve energy I guess that’s why they do it. I would rather watch guys like Rose, Pedroia, Bench, Griffey and other “old-school” players who play(ed) hard and had the character to give it their all. On the other hand, if Griffey hadn’t run into so many walls, maybe he would’ve been able to play a lot more games after he came to Cincinnati…I really don’t know why a player would have someone like Jay Z as an agent, these are some of the things wrong with MLB in our day. Still, there are a few players out there who are willing to take less in order to stay on a certain club, in a certain environment, etc. I’m thankful for those few (how much money does anybody need anyhow? lol).

  14. I dont care if the 3 contracts end up being busts…id still rather have these 3 contracts than the one Cano just signed with Seattle. I dont get how he demands that kind of insane contract, knowing that the Yanks are struggling so badly with ARod’s right now. ARod at least had 3 MVP awards when he demanded that contract. Cano has never finished higher than 3rd (but his representatives still tried selling him as “the Michael Jordan of baseball”. Actually, the Michael Jordan of baseball plays 1st in Detroit).

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  16. It’s ashame to see players now a days play strictly for the money. What happened to playing for the love and passion of the game? I mean seriously, what’s $240 million gonna do for you that $175 million can’t. Cano could have cemented his legacy as a Yankee. Not to mention Cano was always surrounded by talent. His numbers will not be as good in Seattle. I could see him being miserable over there and asking to be traded in about 3 years or so. Dustin Pedroia signed an 8 year contract with $110 million. That’s a guy you have to admire because he works hard at what he does. He husltes, and you can see the passion he has for the game. As a long time Yankke fan, I cannot say that about cano. Pedroia stayed with boston because he will cement his legacy there, if he hasn’t already done so. Cano on the other hand is lazy. I hated seeing that out of him. I’m glad the Yankees learned not only from the A-Rod deal, but the Puljos deal that these type of contracts don’t pan out. A-Rod and Puljos number’s dropped once they got the money. The Yankees just got better offensively without Cano.

  17. You guys…you guys….you guys! Jay-Z is in the music business to make MONEY, A-Rod, AP in SoCAL, Griffey, Miggy, Boras & Roosenthal….they are in the business to make MONEY….you guys make me laugh…for the “love of the game” STOP IT…I’d leave my current employer in 30 seconds if I was offered $400,000 whoooooooooa, alot of MONEY and I’d be happy in Milwaukee, Phoenix, or Flint, Michigan (well maybe not Flint)….guys stop it….it’s about the MONEY! Got it!

  18. Clearly Soriano is in left, Ellsbury in center and Beltran in right. Suzuki is on the bench or defensive replacement. The DH is for all the old guys as a rest station. Jeter, ARod, Beltran all need days off during the week. they will be lucky to play 130 games.