Welcome to Buster Olney's Yankee Talk
I'm not sure why I keep reading Buster Olney's chats. I guess I read them for the same reasons people like to catch a glimpse of a car accident. I am also not sure why they try and mask this as a baseball chat when the majority of the questions pertain to current Yankees, ex-Yankees, players the Yankees are chasing, or teams that directly relate to the Yankees (i.e. Boston). It is basically Yankee talk until someone begs Buster to throw in some arbitrary comment about a small market team.
Roger (Chicago): Buster - Do you think the Mets will make anymore trades or signings to strengthen their bullpen?
Buster Olney: (1:09 PM ET ) Roger: You'd think they would. Let's say, for argument's sake, that the Mets are successful on this Beltran thing (and I don't think they have any chance). But if they sign Beltran for $17-18 million annually, with Pedro locked up at 13-14, that really doesn't leave a lot of cash left to fill many other major holes. You mentioned the middle relief, and they still don't know what they'll get out of Reyes at short or Matsui at second, and they don't know who their first baseman is going to be. I thought they'd be more aggressive on addressing the middle relief, but they haven't...
It would be nice for the Mets to make some bullpen moves, but if someone can tell me anyone out there that is a good pickup, I am all ears. Steve Kline would have been nice, but no one is crying about that one. Besides, the Mets are going to hope four or five of the ten or so people in the organization can fill those holes with nothing better out there. Someone please tell me who they need extra cash for to aggressively chase to place in the bullpen? Ron Villone? Rob Nen? As for their many other holes, I believe we are referring to one outfield spot and first base. They can afford to fill those as they are a sizeable amount of money away from $100 million at this point. Why must people insist the Mets are not in the largest media market in the world with their new network debuting in 2006. They are not the Kansas City Royals here. Finally, what do Reyes and Matsui have to do with anything? If one goes down they are shit out of luck anyway. What money do they need to earmark for positions already filled? Why does he think Kaz is such a question mark? Yes, it's a new position, but the guy was regarded as one of the best shortstops on the planet before he came to the states. It is reasonable to assume he will field good enough. Besides, that is why they brought in Woodward amongst others and have Keppinger and Garcia. They are there to fill those needs if need be.
Also, Buster repeated the sentiments that he does not think the Mets have any chance in the Beltran hunt. For weeks the Mets have been rumored to be interested. At the very least he could have called them long shots. But now, he comes out singing a different tune. I would be happier and respect him as a journalist more if he simply admitted that Mets are going to be at least team that has a shot because that was true fact. They were willing to spend and with a Boras client, that means they have a chance whether it be one in million or a five to chance, but there was a chance nonetheless. If you believe reports that the Mets offered Beltran a contract worth $17 million, then that would cost the Yankees $23.8 million if they simply matched the offer when you add in the luxury tax.
Ben (Rochester, NY): Can you tell me where Carlos Beltran will be playing in 2005? I'm dying to know this!
Buster Olney: (1:26 PM ET ) Ben: I think it's going to be the Yankees, but really, it depends on what Carlos Beltran wants in his life. Does he want to be comfortable, play in an easy-going place where he knows the players? Then he'll re-sign with Houston, for much, much less money than he might get in New York. But if he wants the cash, if he wants a chance to win every year, if he bends to the desires of the Players Association, then he's going to take the biggest offer and I think that's going to come from the Yankees, in the end. Omar believes he proved everybody wrong by signing Pedro Martinez, and maybe he'll do that for the Mets with Beltran. I just can't see Steinbrenner every letting himself get outbid by the Mets; George would overpay by $20 million or $30 million to maintain domination of the Mets.
If nothing else, Omar should lay a big fat offer on the table to raise the Yankees counter offer. If he truly does end up on the Yankees it will be nice to have the Mets drive up his price close to $20 million a year (close to $28 million with the luxury tax) for the Yankees so their already ridiculous payroll can look as ridiculous as possible. It's not exactly a win win situation for the Mets but it is close enough.
The funniest question of that day goes too...drum roll please....
Justin (NYC, NY): Not enough Yankees talk yet, so I have to ask. What about Beltran/Delgado? And will they be able to move Kevin Brown? Will Giambi be back?
I hope he did not write that with a straight face.
The best question of the day goes too...another drum roll please....
Taylor (Lafayette, LA): Will somebody please blow up the entire Yankee's organization?
Mike (Morgantown, WV): What about God Buster? Can't he strike them down or something?
It had to be tie between Taylor and Mike since it was really a two part question. I'm with you Taylor. Blow it up. Blow the entire damn thing up.
"Omar showed me a lot of respect, a lot of commitment," Martinez said at his introductory press conference less than three weeks ago. "Not only that, he didn't show up with a lot of people. He showed up himself, went to get me in the Dominican. ... That's the reason I'm here, to help Omar win a championship and help the city of New York and the Mets to actually get a championship."
People seem to like the guy and want to play for him and as a result, play for the Mets. As much as I think Jim Duquette will make a good GM, he does not seem to have these traits right now. Players dedicate themselves to Omar and that is a good thing for the Mets.
"I don't believe there's a compromise on the name," Anaheim Mayor Curt Pringle said. "They're trying to have it both ways with the silly name they chose."