Monday, November 3, 2014

A-Rod Reportedly Paid Cousin $900k to Keep Quiet About Steroid Use

Things just keep getting worse for Yankees Third Baseman Alex Rodriguez.

The 39-year-old three-time MVP apparently paid his cousin Yuri Sucart just under $1 million to stay quiet about his recent PED use, The New York Daily News reports. Rodriguez, who has played for the Yankees since 2004, was suspended for all of 2014 after it got out that he had again taken banned substances.

From the NYDN's article:

"Alex Rodriguez’s infamous 'Cousin Yuri Sucart' threatened to expose the Yankee superstar's doping secrets unless the scandal-ridden slugger coughed up 'enormous sums of money,' according to court papers filed last week in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.
Rodriguez caved, entering into a confidential settlement with Sucart on June 5, 2013, agreeing to pay Sucart one $700,000 payment for his silence, in addition to three more payments made to Sucart that totalled $200,000."
According to the piece, Sucart's former attorney, Jeffrey Sonn, demanded $5 million and a "life estate" for Sucart in late 2012, following the start of MLB's investigation. Though he didn't ended up getting that amount, the current figure of $900,000 still can't help the Yankees slugger, on whom much of the baseball world has already turned its back.
Rodriguez's temporary ban ended following the last out of last week's World Series, and as of now, he's still set to participate in the team's spring training next February.

Yankees Begin Talks w/ Chase Headley

Jon Heyman of is reporting that the New York Yankees have already begun discussions with free agent third baseman Chase Headley on a contract for the 2015 season and beyond. If you believe this report or look too much into it this would lead you to believe that the Yankees are not interested in either Hanley Ramirez or Pablo Sandoval at this base and do not have confidence in Alex Rodriguez for next season. Either way with the Boston Red Sox already showing interest in Headley as well as the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim New York needs to get this wrapped up while they have exclusive negotiating rights.

Twelve Players Get Qualifying Offers, One Yankee

In total twelve players received qualifying offers today that basically equate to one year deals worth $15.3 million. You know the drill, if the player rejects the offer and signs with another team then the players original team gets a compensation draft pick. If the player accepts he is on the roster for one year at the aforementioned $15.3 million. Got it? Now here's the list this offseason and keep in mind that no player has ever accepted one of these. That seemingly backfired last postseason as Stephen Drew and Kendrys Morales had to sit out until after the June MLB draft after failing to find a deal last winter.

Here is the list:

Max Scherzer, SP - Detroit Tigers
Hanley Ramirez, SS - Los Angeles Dodgers
Pablo Sandoval, 3B - San Francisco Giants
James Shields, SP - Kansas City Royals
Nelson Cruz, DH - Baltimore Orioles
Melky Cabrera, LF - Toronto Blue Jays
Russell Martin, C - Pittsburgh Pirates
Francisco Liriano, SP - Pittsburgh Pirates
Victor Martinez, DH - Detroit Tigers
David Robertson, CP - New York Yankees
Ervin Santana, SP - Atlanta Braves
Michael Cuddyer, OF - Colorado Rockies

MLB Trade Rumors Has New York Signing Three

MLB Trade Rumors released their Top 50 free agents this winter and predicted where they would land and the crew over there has New York signing three key free agents this season. MLB Trade Rumors has the Yankees signing Max Scherzer, Hanley Ramirez, and relief pitcher Jason Grilli. For the entire post please click HERE but I will post the Yankees related excerpts here for you. Enjoy:

1.  Max Scherzer – Yankees.  Scherzer is the best starting pitcher in a free agent market loaded with quality arms, a 30-year-old strikeout machine with a Cy Young award on his resume.  Including the postseason, he tallied a 3.08 ERA in 461 1/3 innings spanning 2013-14.  Clayton Kershaw’s seven-year, $215MM deal seems out of reach, as does its $30.7MM average annual value.  A better target would be something closer to the total outlay the Yankees made last winter for Masahiro Tanaka: seven years, $175MM.  Extension talks with the Tigers broke down in March after Scherzer rejected a six-year, $144MM offer.  The Kershaw, Tanaka, and Zack Greinke deals all included opt-out clauses, something agent Scott Boras will likely seek as he negotiates on behalf of his best free agent starting pitcher since Barry Zito.  As he has before, Boras may attempt to bypass GMs in favor of convincing a team’s owner to invest.  The Yankees, Cubs, Red Sox, Astros, Dodgers, Rangers, Giants, Nationals, Orioles, and Mariners are speculative suitors we’ve kicked around, with varying degrees of probability.  And we can’t count the Tigers out entirely quite yet.

4.  Hanley Ramirez – Yankees.  Ramirez is the best available free agent position player this year.  The Dodgers and previous GM Ned Colletti were unable or unwilling to extend him, leaving shortstop an open question for 2015 for new chief Andrew Friedman.  Ramirez is a premium right-handed bat at a time when offense is harder to come by, yet he managed only 214 games from 2013-14 due to injuries.  He also comes with defensive question marks as a shortstop, and could spend much of his next deal at the hot corner.  The new Dodgers regime could re-engage Ramirez, but otherwise his market is unclear.  The Yankees, Giants, Mariners, and Tigers are speculative matches, though there’s no perfect fit at this point.  A six-year deal is likely for Ramirez, and he has a shot at reaching seven years like Shin-Soo Choo and Jacoby Ellsbury did last winter.

47.  Jason Grilli – Yankees.  Grilli, 38 in November, re-emerged as an effective reliever with the Pirates in 2011.  The Bucs sent him to the Angels in a change of scenery swap for Ernesto Frieri in late June this year.  Grilli did solid work for the Halos and should be a popular late-inning option.

2015 Free Agency Royal Rumble – Third Baseman

Ladies and gentleman welcome to the 2015 Major League Baseball free agency Royal Rumble brought to you by The Greedy Pinstripes. Tonight we have all the potential third base options for the New York Yankees heading into this winter in one ring vying for the contract of a lifetime, let’s go down to the ring.

In the red corner stands former World Series MVP Pablo Sandoval, in the blue corner stands Hanley Ramirez, in the green corner stands Chase Headley, and in the black corner stands Mark Reynolds. Let’s get it on!

Hanley Ramirez hurts himself getting into the ring but tries to fight through it. When things did not go his way against Pablo Sandoval he threw a temper tantrum hurting himself even more and had to forfeit his chance at the contract. Chase Headley steps into the ring boasting his AL East and New York Yankees experience and mixes it with his ability to play first and third base and steps to Mark Reynolds. Reynolds laughs at Headley as he also has experience both in the AL East and in the Bronx and boasts that his defense at first base is better than Headley's. Reynolds takes his above average third base defense and right handed power bat and uses it to throw Headley over the top and out of the ring. Sandoval tries to throw Reynolds out of the ring while he is celebrating but gets distracted looking at all the question marks regarding his weight and his durability and Reynolds takes advantage as he throws him out to win the match and the contract.

Congratulations to Mark Reynolds and welcome to the 2015 Yankees on a one year deal worth $10 million.

Most Popular Article of the Week: Yankees May Still Terminate Alex Rodriguez's Contract

Stay tuned, I think this may become a weekly post for us now as we article revisit every Monday the most popular article of the week on the blog. 

Just think Yankees fans in a week or so there will be nothing left for us to talk about except for Alex Rodriguez and his return to Major League Baseball and the New York Yankees. I can't wait, can you? I personally like to be a trend setter rather than a follower so I will begin the A Rod talk now after reading that the Yankees may still be able to terminate the remaining three years of Alex's contract. With the new developments in the Biogenesis case and the new set of court cases Alex may have not only been a user but a steroids pusher and dealer as well.

Anthony Bosch, Yuri Sucart (the cousin of A Rod), and Jorge Velazquez (a known A Rod associate) have already been indicted in this knew round of indictments. In THIS article from the Daily News the following regarding terminating his contract was brought up:

If A-Rod is indicted, the Yankees could conceivably invoke Clause 7(b)1 in the CBA (under Termination options), which states that a “club may terminate this contract upon written notice to the Player . . . if the Player shall at any time: fail, refuse or neglect to conform his personal conduct to the standards of good citizenship and good sportsmanship . . .” The club could cite the damage to the club’s brand and reputation resulting from an indictment and argue that the damage constitutes grounds for termination; Rodriguez could still appeal.
Remember that the last contract to be terminated in Major League Baseball was Shawn Chacon when he was a member of the Houston Astros. Chacon choked then GM Ed Wade before his contract was terminated so history is definitely on A Rod's side right now.

Until next time...

Joel Sherman Predicts Top 10 Free Agent Salaries

The New York Yankees are expected to once again be active in the Hot Stove and free agency market, even if it's a one and done type winter, so I found it interesting when Joel Sherman of the New York Post predicted the salaries of the Top 10 free agents this winter. Should this keep the Yankees away?

Max Scherzer

Projection: 7 years, $175 million

Jon Lester

Projection: 6 years, $145 million

James Shields

Projection: 5 years, $100 million

Yasmany Thomas

Projection: 7 years at $100 million

Pablo Sandoval

Projection: 5 years, $90 million

Hanley Ramirez

Projection: 5 years, $80 million

Nelson Cruz

Projection: 4 years, $72 million

Victor Martinez

Projection: 4 years, $60 million

Melky Cabrera

Projection: 4 years, $52 million

Russell Martin

Projection: 4 years, $52 million

TGP Daily Poll: Someone WILL Accept Qualifying Offer

For some reason I have a feeling that someone, any of the free agents, will accept a qualifying offer this season after watching Stephen Drew and Kendrys Morales sit out for half a season.

Vote in our poll!

This Day in New York Yankees History 11/3: Enter Paul O'Neill

It was on this day in 1992 that the New York Yankees finally acquired right fielder Paul O'Neill. The Cincinnati Reds traded O'Neill and minor league player Joe DeBerry to the Yankees for Roberto Kelly. This trade works out for the Yankees as O'Neill was an integral part of four World Series championships before retiring after the 2001 season.

Also in this day in New York Yankees history that we probably don't want to remember a pair of World Series milestones happened against the Yankees in the World Series. On this day in 2001 in Game 6 of the World Series the Arizona Diamondbacks collected 21 hits in the first six innings establishing a new record for most hits in a World Series game. Also on this day in 2009 Chase Utley tied Reggie Jackson's 1977 record with his 5th home run of the World Series.