"Unfortunately... I think things are going to get tougher"
-Brian Cashman in October, courtesy of The Olympian.
"We don't care about draft picks"
-Anonymous Yankee official in Bob Klapisch's latest article.
Hmmm. I think Quote #2 goes a long way towards explaining Quote #1. They really should care about draft picks (they can afford them!), and they should have offered arbitration to Clemens. Is there any downside to offering arbitration in this situation? Any at all?
Update: Billy, a Yankees fan, points out that if the Yankees offered arbitration and Clemens declined, the Yankees wouldn't have been able to re-sign him for a year. I guess the Yankees wanted to bring Roger back mid-season when Kevin Brown's arm fell off.
Update #2 Looks like Billy was incorrect. Eugene Freedman, on Baseball Primer, offers a great explanation of the rules.
"If the player does not accept arbitration the team may not negotiate with or sign the player from January 8 through May 1."
Which brings me back to my original question, why not offer arbitration?