The annual baseball Winter Meetings will be held next week in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Call it a premonition, but I have an idea how things might go during the meetings for the cross-town New York Yankees and New York Mets. Let's take a look.
Yankee general manager Brian Cashman spends the day taking congratulations for not killing himself while rappelling down the side of New York City buildings. Oh, and a few congrats for also getting Mariano Rivera to sign on for two more years. Mets general manager Sandy Alderson spends the day accepting congratulations from well-wishers for landing his still-new gig with the team.
With his peers still glad to see Cashman alive and well, he steps to the podium and announces the signing of Derek Jeter for three years and $49.99 million. "See," he tells Commissioner Bud Selig. "I told you we would sign him for less than $50 million!" Alderson continues accepting well wishes, and begins begging for spare change.
With his peers beginning to wish his harness had snapped while he was rappelling, Cashman steps to the podium and announces that Andy Pettitte will return to the Yankees for his final season. Until he decides to have another "final" season in 2012. Pettitte, after all, has become the baseball version of Brett Favre -- he can't retire even when he wants to retire. For good measure, Cashman announces the signing of free-agent catcher Russell Martin. Alderson announces the Mets' big move of the winter, signing free-agent pitcher Chris Young to a league-minimum, incentive-laden, contract. Young was limited to four games in 2010 due to shoulder injuries.
With his peers now throwing rocks at him, and Nolan Ryan trying to burn a hole in his forehead with a nasty glare, Cashman announces the signing of Cliff Lee. He then hustles for the airport to begin planning the Yankees' 2011 parade down the Canyon of Heroes. Alderson spends his day forlornly holding a sign that says "We need players ... as long as you pay for them." He waits until everyone leaves and then scours behind open room doors and underneath couch cushions for more spare change.
Back in the Bronx, Cashman holds a press conference telling the world the Yankees are absolutely done shopping. They are tapped out. There is no more Steinbrenner cash for Carl Crawford. None whatsoever. Over in Flushing, Alderson goes back to scouring the list of free agents for guys who will work for cheap. And planning a bake sale.