How Are the Stars Being Acquired: Infield

Ranked by WAR amongst players with at least 300 plate appearances:

First base

Albert Pujols – drafted
Prince Fielder – drafted
Adrian Gonzalez – traded
Miguel Cabrera – traded
Mark Teixeira – free agent
Kevin Youkilis – drafted
Derrek Lee – traded
Ryan Howard – drafted
Joey Votto – drafted
Kendry Morales – amateur free agent

Scoreboard:
5 drafted
3 traded
1 free agent
1 amateur free agent

Second base

Ben Zobrist – traded
Chase Utley – drafted
Dustin Pedroia – drafted
Felipe Lopez – traded
Robinson Cano – drafted
Ian Kinsler – drafted
Aaron Hill – drafted
Brian Roberts – drafted
Placido Polanco – traded
Brandon Phillips – traded
Juan Uribe – free agent

Scoreboard:
5 drafted
4 traded
1 free agent

Third base

Evan Longoria – drafted
Ryan Zimmerman – drafted
Chone Figgins – traded
Kevin Youkilis – drafted
Alex Rodriguez – traded
Pablo Sandoval – amateur free agent
Casey Blake – traded
Mark Reynolds – drafted
Michael Young – traded
Scott Rolen – traded

Scoreboard
5 traded
4 drafted
1 amateur free agent

Shortstop

Hanley Ramirez – traded
Derek Jeter – drafted
Troy Tulowitzki – drafted
Jason Bartlett – traded
Marco Scutaro – traded
Yunel Escobar – drafted
Erick Aybar – amateur free agent
Brendan Ryan – drafted
Rafael Furcal – free agent
Elvis Andrus – traded

Scoreboard
4 drafted
4 traded
1 free agent
1 amateur free agent

All told we have a breakdown of: 18 drafted, 16 traded, 3 free agents, and 3 amateur agents. I’m sure most people see the developing theme here, but let me state the obvious: the best players in baseball this year were not acquired on the free agent market. Despite the hype and headlines that come with big-time contract signings and hot stove nature, the aggression on the trade, draft, and international scouting fronts seems to pay off with more impact players. Maybe it’s a one-year fluke or maybe it’s just an infield thing. We’ll cover the outfield and wrap up the series tomorrow.



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Logan
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Logan

This is misleading.

“Miguel Cabrera- traded”. Nope, traded and then SIGNED, for a lot of money, same with Lee (less $ though)

“Alex Rodriguez- traded”. Same thing as Cabrera, more $ though.

“Derek Jeter- drafted”. Yeah, and then signed for one of the largest contracts in baseball history.

Look, this is a cute thread, but let’s be real, money talks. If the playoffs started tomorrow, 6 of the 8 teams would be in the top 10 in payroll. Something needs to be done to ensure competitive balance in baseball.

Kevin
Guest
Kevin

Nope, capitalism baby. If the Yankees have more money / are willing to spend more money, then they should be able to do it.

Revenue sharing is immoral.

Jack
Guest
Jack

Eliminating the competition is not good for the Yankees in the long run. They need a team to play against after all.

Paul Thomas
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Paul Thomas

You do realize that you haven’t actually presented an argument here, right?

Why “should” they be able to do it?

Tom B
Guest
Tom B

its called revenue-to-payroll percentages. until a minimum is enforced across the league no one has a right to complain about the yankees spending money.

Raf
Guest
Raf

Why shouldn’t they?

Every year, every league has its doormats. Installing a salary cap or revenue sharing whatever financial control people want to dream up wont change anything.

Paul Thomas
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Paul Thomas

Instituting a salary cap will make the doormats and powerhouses differ a lot more from year to year. You will of course have doormats, but they won’t be the same doormats every single damn season.

The exception is if a team is brilliantly or horribly run, in which case they may be able to sustain success or failure over the long haul (see: Patriots, Raiders).

Toffer Peak
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Toffer Peak

“Nope, capitalism baby. If the Yankees have more money / are willing to spend more money, then they should be able to do it.

Revenue sharing is immoral.”

The day the Yankees allow a third (fourth, etc) team in NY is the day you can claim this. Until then MLB is anything but capitalistic.

Raf
Guest
Raf

“You will of course have doormats, but they won’t be the same doormats every single damn season.”

Which is the way it is now. There have been several cases of teams going from “worst to first,” and there are teams that have sustained mediocrity, like Pittsburgh. But I don’t see them as any different than the Indians of the 60’s – 80’s.

Rob in CT
Guest
Rob in CT

This is largely correct, in that rich teams get to keep the starts they draft or trade for, and simply tagging guys like Jeter, etc as “drafted” doesn’t really make sense.

As for “something must be done!” I hope you don’t mean a salary cap, which is a cure that is probably worse than the disease. ~28 or so owners would love it, the players would fight tooth and nail against it (as well they should), and crappy teams that have no intention of investing in their product would benifit the most. If you add a salary floor then you’ve totally screwed intelligently-run poor teams. It’s a disaster waiting to happen, I tells ya!

This year is definitely a big-money year, but recent years have had a mixture of rich and poor teams making the playoffs. There are a number of equalizers out there. Primarily the draft, but also revenue sharing, the Yankees tax, and the inherent randomness of the playoffs (if you can get there). That doesn’t remove the advantages the big boys have, true. So maybe those things can be beefed up?

My pipe dream solution is to put more teams in big markets. The NY metro area could support 3-4 teams. Boston could probably have 2 (they used to). LA and Chicago could have 3 apiece? The owners, of course, would never go for that. They love their little cartel.

Aaron/YYZ
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Aaron/YYZ

If there was some kind of floor on the teams receiving Revenue Sharing it might help a bit. I’m thinking of the Marlins in particular, who have gotten more money from revenue sharing in recent years than they were spending on player salaries. I somehow doubt that the rest was being re-invested in the product.

Brian
Guest
Brian

i often find myself thinking “if only i could watch MORE boston-ny games on espn, then i’d finally be content.”

Tom B
Guest
Tom B

there is no such thing as intelligently run poor teams. lucky? yes. intelligent to not spend the resources available to you? no.

Raf
Guest
Raf

When the NY Metro area had 3 teams, the Yankees were still the class of MLB.

Even as it stands now, with two teams, other than a brief run in the late 80’s early 90’s, the Yankees have outperformed the Mets.

Paul Thomas
Guest
Paul Thomas

Lol @ TomB: Poor teams are dumb because they don’t spend resources they don’t have?

OK. And I suppose Nigerian peasants who die of parasite infections are “dumb” because they don’t just fly to the US and get cured, too. I mean, what are they thinking?

“Poor” and “dumb” are not synonyms.

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