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Saturday, November 10, 2012

SIGN HIROKI KURODA NOW!



The Yankees have gone through the process of offering qualifying offers to certain players, and now as baseball goes, the team that loses players that turn down those offers get a draft pick...or so the process goes.  But I need to tell you, the Yankees should have blew Hiroki's socks off, because while it's obvious there are many choices for the Yankees in right field (allowing Nick Swisher to walk) and we are able to have another option to set up Mariano Rivera (Joba Chamberlain, DRob or even a Joakim Soria), letting Kuroda walk would be foolish. Why? Because Kuroda was our rock in 2012 and bottom line... we need him.

Not only are the Yankees competing to build a good team, they are competing directly with the Boston Red Sox who are out to prove that 2012 was just a minor bump in the road.  The Red Sox want  to be winners again, and if it means poaching the Yankees guys to do it, well, so be it.   Enter guys like Nick Swisher and Hiroki Kuroda, all on the Sox radar.  Look at what they appeared to do overnight, signing backup catcher David Ross to a 2 year deal, pending physical (Read HERE).  Don't forget the Yankees were just looking at Ross, not that we need him, but the point is, if the Sox can rain on our parade, they will... enter Hiroki Kuroda.
It's a no brainer to me.  Hiroki Kuroda was the Yankees savior, literally filling in for Yankees ace CC Sabathia while he battled his injuries as well as Andy Pettitte being out with a fractured ankle after his freak accident.  Not only would it be a big fat “thank you” for Kuroda, it’s stability for yet another season for New York…plus it’s another starting pitcher locked in as we rebuild the rotation again this off season.

As the New York Times (HERE) states today: "At worst, the Yankees will lose all three players but gain draft picks. At best, the Yankees would have had three standout players on one-year contracts, which would have allowed them to slowly get under the $189 million luxury-tax threshold in 2014. The Yankees’ payroll is still expected to be more than $200 million this season.

With all three declining the team’s offer, the Yankees will now begin to determine which of the three players, if any, will come back. The most likely candidate is Kuroda, who has said he is seeking only a one-year deal but is probably looking for more money than $13.3 million. Kuroda is also having conversations with the now free-spending Los Angeles Dodgers, who could offer more than the Yankees might be willing to pay. "


Pitching has always been the Yankees problem over the years. This year the pitching was pretty darn good, and great in the playoffs, and Kuroda was apart of that.  Kuroda needs to be signed... and fast.  Now sure, there are guys out there like Dan Haren, whom I like a lot and cranky back (HERE) and all, he would be great in the Bronx, I know it, but why not just continue on the path that Brian Cashman is going, go alittle cheaper and go snatch up the guys that have really contributed, Hiroki Kuroda.  Again, Kuroda deserves a "Thank you" contract.  Rafael Soriano? He'd be a fool to come back to New York and I think a 3 to 4 year deal as a closer somewhere else would benefit him wonderfully.  He deserves it, it's business.
Nick Swisher? It's my estimation his time is up in New York.  Many believe he should stick around, take a pay cut and continue to roam right field in the Bronx. I say there are cheaper, better alternatives, plus this is the first free agent year ever for Nick Swisher, he needs to test the waters. 

But hey,  let’s not get ahead of ourselves. The Yankees need to snatch up Hiroki Kuroda because he's earned a spot. Plus, we need to keep him away from Beantown and Los Angeles. That's my bottom line, what's yours?

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