Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Cliff Lee Forfeits Millions So His Wife Won't Get Spit On

Free agent pitcher Cliff Lee shocks the world by turning down a 6-year, $132 million contract with the Yankees (with a possible 7th year at $16m) for a 5-year, $108 million (with a likely 6th year at $25m UPDATED) with the Phillies, all because Yankees fans are disgusting pigs.
Kristen Lee was harassed by Yankees fans during the ALCS.
She says they were spitting and throwing beer in her direction and shouting obscenities.
"The fans did not do good things in my heart," she said. "When people are staring at you, and saying horrible things, it's hard not to take it personal."
At the time Lee downplayed the incident because he wanted to keep the Yankees involved in the bidding.
But it’s obvious he didn’t want his family subjected to that behavior for 6 years, especially after these comments were publicized, putting a target on her back.
I mean if you would rather be surrounded by Phillies fans, you must have a pretty low opinion of those people you are likely to run into at a Yankees game.

As for the baseball side of this deal, it obviously gives the Phillies an historically great starting rotation – on paper.
But that is why grass was invented, so we wouldn’t have to play games on paper.
First of all, in baseball we know nothing is for certain, there are injuries and disappointing performances. And even if the Phillies do dominate the regular season, the playoffs can be a crapshoot, they could lose in the first round.
I think this acquisition gives the Phillies a 10 (Halladay), a 9 (Lee), an 8 (Oswalt) and a 7 (Hamels). If one guy gets hurt and one guy has a disappointing year, then their staff really isn’t that much better than it was last year.
And before we start crowning Lee (if you wanna crown him, then crown his ass), we should note that out of 7 full seasons he only has one ERA below 3.00. So in that bandbox it’s not impossible to imagine him checking in with a 3.50 next season.

In summary:
1) As much as I hate the Yankees, I’d rather Lee signed with him, because they don’t directly compete with the Mets.
2) The Mets weren’t going to be able to challenge the Phillies this year anyway. Maybe in a couple years when they rebuild the Halladay and Lee will be in decline and the Phillies will be stuck with two aging pitchers earning $20 million per year.
3) Let’s not start sucking Cliff Lee’s dick just yet.


jleary said...

Now as Met fans, we know competing for the division in the next 3 years (hopefully not more) probably isnt going to happen. So hopefully that means developing young guys and not makinh a dumb move because they think they are "close"

Damino said...

Great post and I agree with JLeary. I'll happily concede the next 2 seasons for a focus on young talent. Before we know it, the Mets may be a player or 2 away and can make trades/sign free agents and overtake the Phillies by 2013.

I know the Yanks don't directly compete with the Mets but as NYers we're much more exposed to Yankees fans and Yankees coverage. I'd rather see the Phils win the world series than the Yankees.

Reissberg said...

I agree with Damino. The Mets are a lousy team with no hope of competing this year, but it makes it a lot easier when the back pages are all about the Yankees not getting Cliff Lee, not getting Carl Crawford, etc.
I reserve judgment on whether management will have the patience and discipline not to do something stupid.

Paul said...

I'm glad you are all coming around to my way of thinking about this. I hope both Beltran and Santana will be healthy enough to be traded this year.

The Mets need to follow the Giants model and go after young pitching, with a target date of being good in 2013, playoffs in 2014 and World Series in 2015.

Btw, now that the final contract numbers are out, it turns out Lee is getting more money per year from the Phillies.