Yankees want to win, they sign good players…Orioles want to win and…and…and…never mind.

December 04, 2013 | Drew Forrester

I called the Jacoby Ellsbury to New York move back in September.

That one was as easy as predicting the Orioles won’t sign any REAL free agents in the winter.

The Yankees not only added a quality player, but they’re now going to face the Red Sox 19 times a year with Ellsbury on THEIR team instead of the other way around.

Ellsbury’s injury history makes it easy for people jealous of the Yankees to snicker and point their finger at New York’s front office while saying, “You dummies…that guy is always hurt!”

He wasn’t hurt last October when Boston was winning the World Series.

I completely understand that people in Baltimore are conditioned to criticize all free agent signings of the Yankees and Red Sox.  Go back and look at the way the orange apologists in town laughed and scoffed at Boston last winter when they inked Mike Napoli and Shane Victorino to contracts.

How’d that work out for the guys in Boston?

Back in 2009 when the Yankees landed Sabathia, Teixeira and Burnett, lots of folks in Baltimore LOL’d at New York for forking over $400 million for those three guys.  They won the World Series that year.  Sabathia has been phenomenal in New York, Teixeira was very good until his injury last year and Burnett was outstanding the year New York won the title but has since moved on.

They signed those three players because they wanted to win.

And win they did.

We pick on everything those franchises do because we want their signings to fail — but as the Red Sox showed last year, when you sign good players they rarely fail.  That’s why they’re good baseball players.  Some of the signings don’t work out.  See my comments above about A.J. Burnett in New York.  But, if one girl in your high school economics class says, “No thanks, I’d rather feed my goldfish” when you ask her to the prom, do you not ask anyone else?

I also understand the need to review a player’s health while evaluating his worth, but please don’t be one of those goofs who says “I wouldn’t take Ellsbury on my team, he’s injury prone.”

No, he isn’t.

Nolan Reimold — now there’s a guy living in the definition of “injury prone”.

He doesn’t play.  Because he’s always hurt.

And, when you don’t play, you have ZERO value to the team.

Ellsbury — and some of his injuries have been more about his style-of-play than anything else — is a helluva baseball player who clearly got paid a king’s ransom in New York because he’s the proverbial “table setter” for the rest of the lineup.

Sure, he can’t be missing 60 games a year over the next seven seasons or his $153 million dollar deal will be outrageously out-of-balance, but you can’t go into any sort of “mega contract” pre-predicting a player’s health or you wouldn’t sign anyone of value.

This, of course, speaks far more about the Yankees wanting to win than it does anything else.  They had a gaping hole at catcher heading into the winter and quickly solved it in a big way by bringing on Brian McCann.  They wanted an upgrade in centerfield and quickly solved it by adding Ellsbury.

Did they overpay for those two?

Most certainly they did.

Are the Yankees a MUCH better team this morning than they were two weeks ago today?

You bet your pin-striped rear end they are.

And that’s how they roll in New York, where their quest for winning trumps everything.

In Baltimore, where the Orioles have GOBS ANB GOBS of money at their disposal, the quest for winning comes in 3rd or 4th place on the list of “what’s really important to us this off-season?”

By the way, the Red Sox will also be heard from over the next month or so.

Sure, they just won the World Series – something we haven’t done in Charm City for 30 years now – but they’re not going to sit back and dismantle their team while the Yankees get better.

The Orioles don’t compete with the Yankees and Red Sox for players for one reason and one reason only.

Because they choose not to.


11 Comments For This Post

  1. Steve from Sandpoint Says:

    And we pay a clown 15 million a year(markakis) to hit singles, what a joke, but he’s a gold glover…big deal!!! The O’s always on the CHEAP, when are the fans going to say enough already, Drew do you know? It’s the same crap every year, will it ever end, I don’t think so !!!

  2. Robert Says:

    Nothing new to see here; move along. Cheers.

  3. Mark Says:

    If every time you went to a certain restuartant, they served you hamburger wehn you ordered and PAID FOR a bone in ribeye, would you continue to support that business? Of course not. So why do people continue to support Peter Angelos’ business? You pay for major league tickets and get a minor league product in return.
    I gave up on this team several years ago and refuse to give them a dime of my hard earned money. Why would I give money to a business that clearly does not care about their customers?

  4. unitastoberry Says:

    Mark it’s a generational thing. People in their 20s and teens missed out on the first destruction of the franchise and many do not care to live in the past. However, if we are about to repeat the years from 97-2000 all over again which is a good possibility then history will repeat itself.

  5. John In Westminster Says:

    So really, do you just have a copy of this blog and have been posting it once a winter for the last 15 and just replace the names of the promising free agents signed by the Yankees and Red Sox each year? 😉

    No, I don’t accept the Orioles continued ignorance of available top shelf talent in free agency. Rather, since they don’t care about the team and winning (#1 expected service provided by any sports franchise to its customers), then neither do I.

  6. joe of bel air Says:

    If Ellsbury gets $22 million a year what will Chris Davis get if he has another couple of good years. All I know is he won’t be getting it from the Orioles. The fact is us making the playoffs in 2012 was an aberration. We may not see them in the playoffs again for another decade because they will continue to dump anyone who wants to get paid.

  7. tsnamm Says:

    It’s pretty funny Drew, the difference in perspective from professional sports analysts such as you, and so called analysts like over on BAL…Last night Brett Hollander on Sportsline was ranting and raving about the Ellsbury signing,” How ridiculous” it is. How they can afford “bad signings” like CC Sabbathia” (!), and how this one is another; and that the Yankees can afford to make lousy signings etc. The real question he failed to answer was if they make such bad signings why have the Yankees been better than the Orioles for the last 15 years? And why is it the Orioles don’t seem to sign anyone? The excuses, whining and complaining were downright embarrassing. I realize that WBAL has been the Orioles radio home practically nonstop since they moved here, but the complete lack of objectivity, as compared to say, their coverage of the Ravens, is downright shocking. If I didn’t know better I would think that WBAL was owned by Angelos. Truly sad…

  8. Dan Says:

    We all should know by now that Baseball is a bidness and some owners emphasize baseball and winning in their daily operations and others emphasize the bidness end of it and couldn’t cars less about wins and losses . As you have pointed out many times Peter is raking in the dough with his baseball team ,, his “Bidness” is doing just fine , thank you very much . We show can hit those home runs ..:) ker ching /

  9. Ralph Says:

    Drew, even though you say things that cut deeply and cause pain and hurt, they are the things that need to be said. Even though you seem to both hate and love the Orioles, we all hate and love them. I would equate our love being of the passionate kind and yours being more how one would love a favorite TV show. That being said, if the Orioles open their wallet, a moth will fly out. You know it, and I know it, and I bet you a dime to donuts Buck knows it. (DF: I love the Orioles. I love them so much I bought season tickets in 2011 so I could take my then-4-year-old son to the games to live out every Dad’s dream. I hate what they’ve become. Cheap, dishonest and unwilling to return on the investment the fans have given them.)

  10. lakerboy Says:

    The guy I feel for most in this current debacle is Buck Showalter. He’s a great manager, but he’s financially hamstrung by the gnome and his minions. I would not be surprised if Buck finally says he’s had enough and walks away from this mess. He has resurrected his managerial value, and other suitors are sure to be knocking on his door.

  11. tsnamm Says:

    What’s even more interesting about Buck Showalter as say compared to the upper management of the Orioles is his respect for the team’s legacy, heroes and history; something you NEVER hear out of Pete. Exhibit A is the stunt he pulled on the 66′ team when they had to have their 25th year reunion at Morgan State, rather than anywhere SPONSORED by the team or its owner, tells you all you need to know. Truthfully I’m surprised Buck has stuck around as long as he has… One thing is for certain, the day he leaves, if it’s of his own volition, Oriole management will try and trash his reputation to the best of their ability, and you can take that to the bank.

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