While everyone else basks in the glow of continued labor peace and begins to explore the minutia of the latest pact between the league and its players, the Yankees remain committed to a PR campaign against the collective bargaining agreement and its (negative) influence on the team’s ability to compete. The latest critique comes courtesy New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman in a piece from George King III of the New York Post.
We’ll get to that in a moment. Before we do, though, we should acknowledge that, yes, the Yankees pay a substantial amount both in revenue sharing and luxury tax. Yankees president Randy Levine indicated that the former obligation was $90 million in 2015 — from a combination both of the standard 34% revenue sharing and also a performance factor, explained in greater depth here by Wendy Thurm. As a result of these obligations, the Yankees are giving more money back to small-market teams than any other club in baseball. Add in more than $300 million in luxury-tax/competitive-balance penalties over the last decade, and it’s pretty easy to see the Yankees’ grounds for dissent.
That’s not the real cause of the Yankees’ failure to dominate in recent seasons, however. Rather, poor spending and failed player development have been the team’s main issues.
But back to Cashman, for a moment. In his recent comments, he was unambiguous about the effect that the last few CBAs have had on his club.
“The CBA is going to affect us in the long term,” general manager Brian Cashman said Tuesday at Yankees scout Cesar Presbott’s Thanksgiving turkey giveaway in The Bronx. “It’s already crippled us in the short term. Exhibit A is our free agency last year and a lot of the international markets I’ve been taken out of.
“The previous CBAs have really hindered us, so I think the next one is something we’re clearly going to be interested in on how it will impact us over the entire course of the term of the contract. The previous ones have impacted us in a bad way.”
As noted above, the Yankees have been compelled to contribute quite a bit in revenue sharing, etc. — ultimately paying out probably more than a billion dollars directly to their competitors over the last decade. It’s not that simple, though.
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