Today, Rational (sometimes) Mets Musings will focus its attention on a report about the team that plays across town -the team that plays in another league, but whose personnel moves profoundly affect the Mets and the rest of Major League Baseball.
In a report for SI.com, Jon Heyman relays the news that the Yankees recently reached out to the Toronto Blue Jays to express interest in acquiring their (and arguably the American League's) best pitcher. According to Heyman, in exchange for Roy Halladay, the Yankees are willing to include Phil Hughes and Catcher Jesus Montero (the Yankees' top prospect).
There are two parties I'm disgusted with. One of them is the Yankees...who after a World Series Title that came on the heels of one of the biggest spending sprees in the history of baseball, may attempt to add yet another enormous contract (Halladay will seek a 6 year extension worth over $20 million annually) to stack up next to the rest of their mercenaries. The Yankees cannot be faulted for this. It's disgusting, greedy, and absurd, but it's not their fault. They're simply trying to buy every single marquee player in their quest to eventually make the entire baseball season an irrelevant masquerade. The rules are the rules, and there is no hard salary cap. If the Yankees acquired Roy Halladay, their payroll would skyrocket to close to $250 million (almost double what the Mets' payroll is, and $100 million clear of the field).
Regardless of how recklessly the Yankees are acting during the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, the party I'm far more disgusted with are the Blue Jays and Alex Anthopoulous. For those who may not know, Anthopoulous is the new General Manager of the Toronto Blue Jays. In sharp contrast from his predecessor J.P. Ricciardi, Anthopolous has intimated that he has no reservations about dealing Roy Halladay to a team in his own division (namely the Yankees or Red Sox). If the Yankees - and to a lesser extent the Red Sox - were on the same financial level as the Blue Jays, I would agree with lots of Anthopolous' points.
Anthopolous states that if the trade packages are comparable between a team in his division and a team outside of his division, he would almost certainly deal his star player to the team that plays outside of his division. He goes on to say that if the markedly better package is from a team in his division (the Yankees), it's in the best interest of his franchise to deal his star player to that team. While this idea may not be totally absurd if the Blue Jays were the 2nd best team in the Division - making them a contender for the Wild Card each year - it IS absurd since the Blue Jays are also in a division with the Red Sox.
I'm not suggesting that General Managers refuse to deal quality players to the Yankees -that would result in cries of collusion, and create an enormous mess throughout Major League Baseball. My suggestion is that the brand new General Manager of a team in the same division as two financial behemoths, exhausts every single trade option before even considering dealing Roy Halladay to the Yankees. In a perfect world, there would be a hard salary cap in baseball (Maybe $200 million), that would prevent scenarios like Halladay to the Yankees from becoming a reality. With the absence of that hard salary cap, General Managers who outsmart themselves all the way to unemployment must be trusted to not let this situation with the Yankees get any more out of hand.