Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Gotta Love It

As a baseball fan who cheers for the Blue Jays, I usually have to find other reasons to pay attention in October. In 2004, I cheered for the then-lovable Red Sox to mount a miracle comeback over the Yankees and win their first World Series in more than 80 years. In 2005, I barely paid attention other than to wonder if the Astros could get Beltran back. 2006 wasn't all that memorable but I suppose on some level I was cheering for the Cardinals, if only because they have supposedly great fans.

One constant is the Yankees. In recent history, they have been either World Series champs or at least in the playoffs. Their success combined with their massive payroll make them easy to cheer against. So, this year I watched Cleveland beat them and felt sort of good about that. Then, I hoped they would beat the now dominant and similarly rich Red Sox, but they failed to do that. The 2007 World Series was over almost before casual observers had a chance to pick a side.

Now we've got hot stove and it couldn't have started any sooner. Scott Boras emailed the Associated Press on the day of game four to announce that Alex Rodriguez was opted out of the 3 remaining years on his contract. A-rod left up something like 80 million on the table to go for even bigger money. The key for the Yankees was that Tom Hicks and the Texas Rangers, who gave A-rod the obscene 250,000,000 over 10 years in the first place, were on the hook for about 33 million of that. The Yankees said, we'll re-up for big bucks, but we want to keep that arrangement with the Rangers.

With one email, A-rod put 33 million back on the Rangers' books and, if the Yankees are to be believed, burned his bridges with them. Very ballsy. Boras is now looking for someone to sign his client for about 300,000,000 over 10 years. All of this would be sickening enough if it wasn't for this quote I read today in the New York Post:

"Intellectually, Alex is tying to understand the difference between his free agency and that of Mariano and Posada," Boras said by phone yesterday. "Alex Rodriguez has never said he does not want to be a Yankee. Filing for free agency doesn't mean that. Because Rivera and Posada are free agents doesn't mean they don't want to be Yankees."
When you know even a bit of the back story here, all you say is "Intellectually, Alex, you are a moron!" You basically made what has got to be the most greedy decision in baseball history and now you wonder why the Yankees don't just pony up the cash? The Yankees have paid a lot of money to a lot of greedy players over the years, but I think you may have just found the bottom of the barrel. The new thing I'm cheering for? For the Yankees to stick to their guns and for you not to find another 300 million dollar moron. Pass the popcorn, this promises to be more exciting than the Series.