Last evening, shock-waves were sent through MLB fandom as the New York Yankees and Seattle Mariners bucked up and created an old school, talent for talent, youth for youth trade which is seemingly unheard of in today’s game. It’s always one big name for three or four decent minor league prospects, or, if it’s not that it’s a salary dump, etc. To actually trade high quality, youthful talent for another high quality, youthful talent? Fun stuff.
How does this involve the San Francisco Giants through? Well, for the Yankees, they’re more than likely out on the Cain sweepstakes, assuming there ever is one (which is doubtful). I’m sure a handful of Yankee fans will tell you otherwise, and while I’m certainly not going to ever count the Yankees out on anything financially there’s no doubt they’d be stressed to the max on a $140-150 million dollar open market deal that Cain would require to pitch in New York. That’s not to say they can’t afford one of them (because little changes financially for the Yank with Pineda’s small salary), but with Pineda in pinstripes, it gives the Yankees much more openness on where to distribute their resources.
More than the Yankees being potentially out on Cain though, this might force the hand of Cain’s people as they know the Yankees aren’t as desperate as they were with the addition of Pineda to their rotation. So while they’d certainly love a Matt Cain or Cole Hamels – they’re not going to be as financially free-wheeling for either of them as they would have been sans Pineda, which might give Cain more incentive to re-up prior to the season. Removing the Yankees from the free agent bidding process is a pretty big dent to the plans of both Hamels and Cain’s representatives.
For what it’s worth, I’ve long expected Cain to sign an extension before the season starts as I don’t think he wants to play any place but San Francisco assuming the finances are competitive, but this move only improves the chances of that, in my opinion. There’s certainly no negative for the Giants out of this.