Friday, July 01, 2005

Three Cruel Words

The Yankees designated for assignment P Paul Quantrill and P Mike Stanton today - and given that neither is likely to accept an assignment to AAA Columbus, they will likely be free men in 10 days time.

While DFA may be three cruel words, MLB contracts are guaranteed, and they will receive their full salaries (plus any associated buyouts for 2006 and beyond) from the Yankees, unless (a) someone claims them in the 10 day period or (b) they sign on elsewhere after they have been released - at which point the Yankees are released from the pro rata remaining share of the MLB minimum salary, but must pay the balance.

So for not turning up for work after July, these guys get a full year's pay... maybe those three words aren't so cruel!

The following players have all been DFA'd this year -

Charles Johnson - $9.0M
Steve Karsay - $6.5M
Danny Graves - $6.0M
Mike Stanton - $4.0M
Paul Quantrill - $3.4M
Joe Borowski - $2.3M
Matt Herges - $1.0M
Pedro Astacio - $0.8M

Together they represent $32.0M of salary - enough to help a Royals or Devil Rays almost double there payroll! If you add in Danny Neagle - who was released following an unfortunate meeting with the Denver police while he was otherwise engaged, who had $19.0M remaining on his contract, although I never saw the terms of his negotiated settlement - you are talking about teams spending $40.0M+ on players who no longer add a cent of value - a true example of addition by subtraction.

Setting aside Charles Johnson, the common theme is pitching - teams appear increasingly willing to accept the fact that they make expensive mistakes with pitchers, and would rather eat the contract than continue to allow these guys to create further nightmares on the mound every fifth day, or sit unused, except in blowouts, in the bullpen.

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