With Johan Santana still presiding in the Twin Cities, the probability of him packing his bags continues to dwindle. Talks throughout the off-season have continued to flicker on and off, and Twins GM Bill Smith has yet to fully commit one of the three suitors for the southpaw’s services. Those remaining in contention? (it’s not difficult) The Yankees’ Brian Cashman, the Red Sox’s Theo Epstein, and the Mets’ Omar Minaya have all anted up, but a match has yet to reach heavenly heights. The problem? On top of acquiring the top pitcher in the game, the recipient would need to divvy up a substantial portion of their salary cap to resign him, precisely the reason an agreement has failed to reach fruition. After all, if you don’t plan to resign him, what’s the point of dealing some top players? Not to mention, who other than these “Cash Cows,” could afford such an exorbitant luxury? All three have offered their own “a la Cart” package of sorts, each containing a main course. For the Yanks: future ace Phil Hughes (meatloaf), along with outfielder Melky Cabrera, and pitchers Ian Kennedy or Jeffrey Marquez. For the Bo-Sox: Jacoby Ellsbury (turkey) or Jon Lester (chicken)–can’t have both!–along with Jed Lowrie, Justin Masterson, and Michael Bowden. The team who no one has been talking about however, the New York Mets, have appeared to pull even with the AL Kings, but in order for a deal to get done, Minaya would have to fork over one of his steaks, outfielder Carlos Gomez or Fernando Martinez, along with side dish Deolis Guerra, Phil Humber, or Kevin Mulvey. These all appear to be smokescreens, but either way, the deal hinges on Smith, and unless he musters up the courage to pull the trigger, Santana will again dawn a Twins jersey in 2008.
January 24, 2008
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