Steinbrenner Wants To Cut New York Yankees Payroll

By Chris Hengst

New York Yankees payrolls over $200 million are a staple of the National Pastime’s tradition. And Hal Steinbrenner has the gall to think it’s time to change that. What’s next, asking Derek Jeter to switch positions with Alex Rodriguez?

In all seriousness, Hal Steinbrenner is the ideal Steinbrenner and when he talks, he’s worth the listen.

He inherited his father’s penchant for business but without any of the bravado. That went to his brother, Hank.

So “streamlining” the payroll — to $189 million — as Steinbrenner terms it, makes sense as the luxury tax penalties become stiffer when the new collective bargaining agreement begins in 2014.

Wallace Matthews of ESPN writes of New York’s financial status:

Currently, the Yankees’ payroll stands at approximately $210 million, and for 2014 they are already committed to $75 million for four players: Alex Rodriguez, CC Sabathia, Mark Teixeira and Derek Jeter.

Robinson Cano earns $14 million in 2012 with a team option at $15 million for 2013. Then, the premier second baseman in baseball hits free agency. A deal approaching $20 million isn’t out of the question.

The Yankees have never been a franchise that lets a good dollar go unspent so while Steinbrenner’s correct in his assessment, is it possible?

Cole Hamels and Felix Hernandez are pitchers to watch on the free agent horizon. If New York has an opportunity to nab either in the future, I’m not certain the luxury tax implications prevent it.

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