Yankees Hot Stove: A Martin mistake - Lady Loves Pinstripes Yankees Hot Stove: A Martin mistake - Lady Loves Pinstripes Yankees Hot Stove: A Martin mistake - Lady Loves Pinstripes

Yankees Hot Stove: A Martin mistake

“I had a great time in New York,” … “It was probably the best baseball experience of my life, but this is the business and it was time to move on.”

Those were the farewell words uttered by newly ex- New York Yankees catcher Russell Martin after signing a 2-year; $17 million deal with the Pittsburgh Pirates.

I learned of Martin’s (aka Russell the Muscle) departure late last night via FOX SPORTS Ken Rosenthal who tweeted:

[tweet https://twitter.com/Ken_Rosenthal/status/274328132771782656]

This news has left Yankee fans everywhere, myself included, wondering what the heck the organization’s true priorities are?

Everyone knows that inborn owner Hal Steinbrenner wants to get the payroll to $189 million by 2014 to avoid the MLB’s luxury tax but I figured that the $3.4 billion deal the YES Network just signed with News Corp last week at least made the Yankees safe from something like this happening. Not to mention it is Christmas season too.

Russell Martin

Russell Martin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Actually, Hal reiterated his father’s promise after the mega-deal, “The Steinbrenner family expects to have a continuing, long-term ownership stake in the YES Network and we will continue our yearly commitment of fielding a championship caliber team for decades to come.”

Well, FYI to Hal…allowing Russell Martin to go to Pittsburgh makes you a liar and a Scrooge. 

So pardon me for being under the impression that the Yankees still wanted to win championships.

As anyone with a half-a-brain can tell you that a position battle between Eli Whiteside and Chris Stewart in Spring Training for the Yankees starting backstop does not spell CHAMPIONSHIP.

Now, if you are wondering why the Yankees priorities have vanished after the news of losing such a vital position player like Martin, you might want to stop reading now because the answer is going to make you throw-up. Literally.

It came down to money.

What is even worse is that ESPN’s Buster Olney tweeted that the Yankees didn’t even make Martin an offer.

[tweet https://twitter.com/Buster_ESPN/status/274333129534226432]

All I can say is that if the Yankees brass is presuming that fans are going to take this news lightly, they are in for a serious wake-up call.

Maybe MLB should drug test Hal because he has to be smoking something to allow this to happen. Well whatever it is he can smoke it in $100 bills from all the News Corp money he just put in his pocket instead of on the baseball field.

Unless the Yankees plan on slashing the ticket prices in half, that beautiful stadium in the Bronx will be emptier than the Mets home in Queens.

Sorry, but that is just the way it is in professional sports, and this unwritten rule especially applies when that team is the New York Yankees.

Bottom-line is, field a championship caliber team, and the seats will be filled with fans, even in the Legends section.

As the late great Yankee owner Mr. George Steinbrenner once said, “When you’re entrusted with a tradition, you’ve got to protect it.”

And the reality is the inherited Yankees ownership isn’t doing that.


  1. richard says:

    I've never seen someone get so uptight and distraught over a .210 BA catcher. How on earth did the Yankees manage 95 wins with Martin hitting below .200 most of the year.

    Did I hear pitching? Yet the scrooge Yankees brought back Kuroda, Pettite and Mo for about $36M. Sounds like a winning formula to me!!!!

    Day 1 of the winter meetings take place Monday, NOT Spring Training so please take a more mature, professional approach to this. A trade is not out of the picture.

    • Lisa says:

      Kate has every right to wonder what is going on and to express her thoughts on the matter. For you to suggest that she is not being professional and mature is uncalled for.

      • LLP says:

        Thank you Lisa…..I just do not understand the Yanks rational here.

        Richard – If Kuroda wanted 2-years he would not be a Yankee. Russell Martin is an excellent catcher who hit 21-homers for the Yankees in 2013. Plus he is a top defensive catcher. Add his 21 to Swisher's 24 HRs and that is 45 HRs the Yankees need to make up for, as they are a team that relies on the homer offensively.

        Now the Yankees are saying they will look internally to fill the role….internally? Who Austin Romine who was injured all last season and can't hit for a lick? Or Cervelli who is no where near as good as Martin, or Chris Stewart for that matter and if the Yanks thought so why was he not a suitable back-up last season?

        The Yankees just made a gazillion dollars in the News Corp deal and I understand they want to be frugal. But frugal just means displaying some skill and good judgement in the way you spend your money….NOT signing Russell Martin was being cheap and stupid.

        Why not go after AJ Pierzynski or Mike Napoli? Well, the Yanks did not even offer a contract for Martin to mull over which is INSANE.

        Hope the ticket prices go down with the team they plan on fielding.

        • richard says:

          Kate- Everyone in the known and unknown universe (except you) knew he wanted a 1 year contract. Move on!

          It's NOT even day 1 of the winter meetings, so stay tuned and take your meds.

      • richard says:

        You can be a professional with an unprofessional approach.

      • richard says:

        I wrote that her approach was not professional.

      • richard says:

        I didn't suggest anything. I flat out wrote that her APPROACH TO THIS SUBJECT was not professional or mature. There is a difference.

        • Henry says:

          I get what you meant Richard. I think Kate is okay but just overeacted to the news. Martin was popular with a lot of yankee fans but was not popular with most. You can see that when you read a lot of blogs. I hope she reflects on what I just wrote to her.

        • LLP says:

          Richard you are correct but how could it be?
          The Yankees are not approaching this off-season in a professional manner, unless you believe that they are doing everything they can to field a winning team?
          I am mad as hell as the ticket pries will not go down and my dad might not get his tickets for next season because he is so mad. The reason Yankee fans pay to go to games is to see the best ballclub money can by and one with WS hopes. This is not it and it is really sad.

          Hal and Hank can blame themselves for the payroll issue but it is not like the Yankees are not rolling in the green and even more-so with that News Corp deal.

          • lolo says:

            Look at recent history and you will see that most Yankee trades are made AFTER the winter meetings. Maybe this 189M threshold thing will be a Yankee disaster. I have my faith in Cash until he gives me reason not to. I'll worry if it's early Feb and we still have major holes.

      • LLP says:

        Thank you Lisa but I am just really mad at what transpiring this off-season. I would describe it as more emotional.

  2. Henry says:

    Kate please read this carefully. Martin can no longer hit. His 21 homers was okay but he hit 62% of them at yankee stadium. He is awful in the clutch and his fielding is slipping a bit. He does not have as much value as you think. The yankees carried his bat all season. He hits in a lineup full of good hitters which means he is protected. Yankee stadium is a hitter ballpark and you expect more offense out of players and yet he could barely crack 200. You make this out to be a big loss but it isn't. Martin ended up making 17 Million over 2 years. The yankees would have had to give him 2 years at about 9 million per year. They would never do that and rightfully so because he is not worth that much money. They made the right move expecially when you consider the future. He is not a big loss. They resigned so far the important players. Martin is not in the same league with them. The future at catcher is going to be with the farm system. Giradi also had an issue with Martin in June when he called him into his office and told him he is going to have improve his game calling. That came from an article in the New York Times.