It being an off day for the Yankees and the Yankees on a mini-losing streak, the local papers have decided to try to give credence to the biggest fantasy of all Yankee fans: that is, Doc Halladay to the Yankees.
Kevin Keenan of the New York Post said it’s the right move for the Yankees to go and get Roy Halladay. Oh really? Well, then the Yankees should snap their fingers and make that happen. Never mind that to get Halladay to agree to a trade they would have to sign him to a budget-busting contract that would take him well into his late 30s—well after he starts to decline. Check out the article in SI written by Joe Posnanski and Bill James about the phenomenon of ballplayers turning 33 and the precipitous drop in their skills. Guess how old Holliday is? 32.
And never mind that the Yankees would have to give up a bunch of top prospects for an aging player. Think Austin Jackson, Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, Mark Melancon or Jesus Montero. And would have to take He Who Was Once Vernon Wells, who's signed through 2014 and owed nearly a 110 million in a huge back-loaded deal. Which would give the Yankees 5 of the 9 biggest contracts in baseball, with 3 of those recipients 30 or older. And that doesn't include the gargantuan deal they Yankees would have to bestow Halladay.
Anthony Rieber of Newsday feels that if the Yankees offer to take Vernon Wells with Halladay, that should be enough. Maybe through in Gardner, Melky and/or a few low-level prospects, and then Toronto would jump. What? Are you kidding me? The Yankees would have to take both, and then throw in Hughes, Austin Jackson and Jesus Montero and then Toronto might flinch.
"No young talent should be off limits," continues Kernan. Never mind that for years, sportswriters eviscerated the Yankees doing just that, trading young talent for expensive aging stars. Doug Drabek for Rich Rhoden. Jay Buhner for Ken Phelps. Bob Tewksbury for Steve Trout. Fred McGriff for Dale Murray. Willie McGee for Bob Sykes. Al Leiter for Jesse Barfield. The list goes on.
All of this ignores the number 1 reason why the Blue Jays wouldn't trade Halladay to the Yankees. Because they would have to face him. And their fan base—what's left of it; 26th of out 30 in MLB—would desert them. Forever. Could you imagine if the Yankees went on to win the World Series this year with Halladay? Or the Red Sox? It would be the Blue Jays worst nightmare ever.
No, the Blue Jays—if they have any brains left—will trade Halladay to the Dodgers or Phillies. Or maybe the Rockies, where Halladay is from....anywhere outside the American League, and nowhere near the American League East. The Phillies were ranked 12th in Baseball America's organizational farms system rankings. Surely they would give up a few blue-chippers for Halladay. Especially with the way Hamels has pitched of late.
OK, maybe this article is a little overstated. Of course, it would be super-fantastic if the Yankees got Halladay. My point is, the way the tabloids write it up—it's not only inevitable, but impossible for it not to happen. And it's more likely than it's not, that the deal won't happen. The Blue Jays would want a mint plus the Statue of Liberty from the Yankees to keep him in the division. And Halladay would want a huge paycheck (think Sabathia-esque) well into his declining skill days.
So sure, Yankee fans. Dream of a playoff rotation of Sabathia, Halladay and Burnett. Just understand, it is most likely a dream. A wonderful, ridiculous dream.