While I admittedly have spent most of my time focusing on football these past few months, apparently there was a little baseball story in the news recently; something about the New York Yankees signing Giancarlo (formerly known as Mike) Stanton. The baseball world, and Red Sox nation in particular seems to be up and arms over this deal. From what I understand, the Yankees sent over their most popular former player ever to purchase another franchise for a couple Billion, so he could send that teams best player to NY for pennies on the dollar, in the most obvious case of collusion since Russia and DT.
While there is no question in anyone’s mind that the trade should have been vetoed by Bud Selig’s successor, Stanton was already introduced in the insufferable pinstripes at the Winter Baseball Meetings the other day, while Derek Jeter sat in a box at the Dolphins-Patriots MNF game. Clearly Jeter’s task as president of the Marlins was complete, by reloading the already dangerous Yankee lineup.
Aside from the ridiculousness of it all, the question really boils down to this. Who gives a shit?
Giancarlo hits a lot of Home Runs and he is going to hit even more of them with in the little league ballpark in the Bronx. Well guess what? The Yankees already hit a ton of homeruns, more than any other team in baseball last season. If there was one area that they weren’t lacking, it was power hitting. What they can’t do as well is pitch or play defense, two skillsets necessary for successful baseball teams. Sure Judge and Sanchez can go deep with the best of them, but they are all below average defenders, and you can add Stanton right into that mix. What all three of them can also do as well as anybody is in baseball, is strikeout. Sure, Batting practice just got a whole lot more fun for New York, but in my estimation their baseball team isn’t that much better than it was.
I am not saying they are not a good team. They were 1 game away from making the World Series last year, and will be right in the mix again this year, but that was going to be the case with or without Stanton. In 2018, the free agent class includes Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, Josh Donaldson, and Andrew McCutchen, all dynamic players and great defenders. After this move, the Yanks will surely be out of the running for that entire class of studs.
What the bombers will have in a few years are two 6 ‘7 monsters, neither of whom have proven to be durable, on extremely long contracts for hundreds of millions of $, fighting over who can play DH and who can learn to play first base. They still will be sending Louis Severino to the mound in must win games, and they will still be relying on CC Sabathia to bail them out in big moments.
So, for those Red Sox fans screaming for Dombrowski’s head for not calling up Marlins management; just chill out. Give me Benintendi and Betts over either of those guys, and don’t forget about the emergence of Devers down the stretch last season. If Price can return to compliment Sale, then this Sox team will be just fine.
I still can’t get myself to care in the slightest about baseball at this point in the year, but that is my hot take on this matter and I’m sticking to it.