Poll: How Much Will C.C. Sabathia Get?

The prevailing opinion is that Yankees ace C.C. Sabathia will opt out of the remaining four years and $92MM remaining on his contract, since he could easily get more money or years.  Bill Madden of the New York Daily News wonders if this will result in the Yankees making another Alex Rodriguez-like overpay, committing at least $125MM over five years in total.

On the high end, though, Sabathia could attempt to top the guarantee he received three years ago: $161MM over seven years.  Since that offseason, Sabathia has added three 230+ inning seasons to his resume, never posting an ERA over 3.37 in a season.  He's still only 31 years old.  Last winter Cliff Lee was 32 upon signing a five-year, $120MM deal with the Phillies.  At the time, we heard that Lee turned down offers guaranteeing $148MM over seven years from the Yankees and $138MM over six years (including heavy deferrals) from the Rangers.

There's more money in the game than there was three years ago, and Sabathia's resume is at least as strong as Lee's was.  Sabathia won't be able to match the 2.13 postseason ERA Lee carried into that offseason, but with a 3.47 mark in ten Yankees postseason starts C.C. hasn't been bad.  Sabathia's postseason work outside of '09 has been subpar, but I'm not sure that will affect the free agent bidding.  I see Sabathia's ceiling as Lee's $24MM salary over another seven-year term, which would be a new record for a pitcher at $168MM.  As with Lee, that seventh year will probably be a sticking point for all involved teams.  Let's hear what you think about the total dollars in today's poll.


50 Responses to Poll: How Much Will C.C. Sabathia Get? Leave a Reply

  1. My apologies if the poll answers appear randomized.  I fixed that, but you may need to refresh a few times to see it.

  2. Nicholas Deuel 4 years ago

    Didn’t CC say a couple of weeks ago that he wasn’t going to opt out? Am I wrong on this 

    • melkor77 4 years ago

      If he did I missed it

    • stl_cards16 4 years ago

      He said New York is the best baseball city.  Which in negotiating langauge means, “I’m opting out, you need me bad, I’m going to say I love it here and you are going to double my contract.”

    • i think if even if that is the case, cc is the yanks only pitcher and if they get knocked out in the first round, it might be enough to make him change his mind

      • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

        Opt out to go where? Who is really going to offer the combination of the most money and one of the best chances of being competitive? And consider, what other teams have the need to justify a $23 mil a year salary? The Angels MIGHT do it to make a statement and he would certainly be interested in returning to Cali but that’s a real long shot.

        • Gator4444 4 years ago

          The only one i can think of is Texas.  If they’re gonna throw 100M at CJ Wilson you might as well go all out to CC.  They are possibly WS favs with him. 

    • Jay LeBlanc 4 years ago

      I know he did say he wouldn’t opt-out during spring training. I bet the Red Sox throw a TON of money his way, if only to jack up his asking price from the Yanks (paybacks for admitting doing as much during the Crawford negotiations).

      • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

        Every team does it including the Sox. Stop making an issue of it. Sox did it towards Mariano this winter and CC when he was a free agent in 2008.

  3. pepperdog13 4 years ago

    Who is going to offer that kind of money besides the Yankees?




    • melkor77 4 years ago

      I have a buddy who’s convinced it will be the Jays although I don’t see it

      • ukJaysfan 4 years ago

        Although I’d love to see CC in a Jays uniform, and off the Yankees roster, I can’t see Toronto getting involved here, unless it’s to drive the price up.

      • jwsox 4 years ago

        if the jays could afford him they would have kept roy…

      • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

        Can’t see the Jays offering him $23 mil a season and I can’t see CC leaving a team that’s given him 3 shots in the playoffs to go to a team that hasn’t been able to surpass the Rays, Sox or Yanks just to make it INTO the playoffs.

    • stl_cards16 4 years ago

      It depends of which “kind of money” you are talking about.  If you’re talking about the 100-110MM, I can see quite a few teams getting involved.  If you think the Yanks are going to reach 140MM+ then you are probably only looking at the Yankees and depending how “all in” the Nationals are ready to go, I could see them making a crazy offer.

    • I predict Scrooge McDuck will be looking for an ace to lead the Junior Woodchucks as they look to defend their title from those nasty Beagle Boys.

    • AP 4 years ago

      Wow could you imagine if Philly did?

      1. Halladay
      2. Sabathia
      3. Lee
      4. Hamels
      5. Oswalt?

      120 plus win season perhaps? Obviously this won’t happen (thank God) but theres always that “what if” factor. Nobody expected them to land Lee.

  4. melkor77 4 years ago

    That I may have missed it means very little

  5. chico65 4 years ago

    Eleventy billion dollars…mwah ha ha ha

  6. Boz 4 years ago

    I can really see Boston making this a tough re-up for the Yankees.  Given how they are going to be in the Market for more pitching and because of Cashman’s comments about making Theo overpay on the other CC.

    • furioustoaster 4 years ago

      After the money wasted in the offseason last year, you think Boston is still buying?

      • chico65 4 years ago

        This CC is certainly more of a certainty than the current CC cleaning up after a clubhouse collapse.

      • Boz 4 years ago

         in short, yes.

        obviously they are going thru some changes with Tito gone and Theo with one foot out the door. they are going to need to do something to appease the pitch fork wielding masses. what better way than to steal CC away from the Yankees. With CC and a healthy Beckett, Lester, Buchholz and even a slightly improved Lackey they will have a formidable rotation for years.

        meanwhile in Yankeeland they will have a question mark in Hughes, a young (albeit promising) Nova, a couple of open rotation spots and well… Burnett.

        …and this is coming from a Yankees fan.

        • jwsox 4 years ago

          thats a heck of a lot of money in one rotation though…if and its a huge if CC signs with the bosox your talking him at, at least 20 mill avg per year..beckett set to make 15 next season..lackey at 15 and Dice-K, lester, clay combined at 20 mill total…thats a big chunk of change for a pitching rotation and thats not including the 20 mill per year at carl 21 at gonzo and the 12 for youlk your talking 70 mill in the rotation alone and 53 mill for 3 position players….i doubt the bosox look at CC….and 20 mill per year was a low ball offer for CC

          talking here aboout 115 mill for 10-11 players not including pedroia. The potentially huge ARB raise to Jacoby an arb raise to salty and all the other minimum player raises and arb raises…i doubt the bosox raise payroll my guess…is trades involving current players to clear money, and playing youngers guys from the farm…or trading farm guys for vets

          • thegrayrace 4 years ago

            Not an AL East fan so I’m speculating here… but couldn’t the Red Sox afford CC if they decided to let go of David Ortiz, along with other contracts they may have coming off the books?

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            The Sox “could afford” to sign CC and keep David and the others, but it all depends on two things: one would obviously be if they are even given a chance (I still think CC gets an extension before he opts out), and the other would be if they determine that the risk is worth the reward (they have sort of an unwritten rule not to give pitchers over 30 more than 4 years [amazingly the guy they chose to break that rule for was Lackey…]).

  7. Phillies_Aces35 4 years ago

    I think whatever the Yankees’s final offer to Cliff Lee was should be at least what CC gets if he resigns with them.

    • Boz 4 years ago

      Legacy Sports called, they want to add you to the payroll.

    • Encarnacion's Parrot 4 years ago

      Shame that the Phillies offered Lee a $25MM AAV and is a better pitcher than Sabathia at this point (not a knock against CC).

      If Sabathia opts out, I think he’ll get exactly the same contract he originally signed, maybe a little more since the Yanks kinda need him badly.

      • NomarGarciaparra 4 years ago

        He will definitely get more than $92/4 years if he opts out (which he most certainty will). Especially if the Red Sox get in on this, and because of how much the Yanks need CC.

        • NomarGarciaparra 4 years ago

          Oh nevermind, I read your comment wrong. I thought you were saying he’ll get what’s left of his original contract.

  8. chico65 4 years ago

    Seriously though- my guess is he re-signs for the exact same terms as the first time, but this time with no opt out.

  9. Come to the NL and pitch with your buddy Lee!

  10. MetsFanXXIII 4 years ago

    Opt-out clauses are one of the many tools of the devil.

    • stl_cards16 4 years ago

      Actually, if the Yankees were in a position to let him walk, this would be a perfect scenario for them.  If they had 3-4 other really good starters, this would be the perfect time to let CC walk.  The only reason it’s going to work out bad is because if he leaves, they are left with a well below average pitching staff, so their back is against the wall with him.

  11. pmc765 4 years ago

    Anything which saddles the Yanks with another albatross contract is all good. More luxury tax paid, more roster inflexibility, pay pay pay. If the choice is between CC getting it and the Steinbrenners keeping inherited wealth, that’s an easy one. CC’s $$ are half taxes anyway.

    I guess I would like it if he paid state income tax in my home state, but I don’t want my home team strangled by a long term contract with a fat pitcher either. To my friends in NY I say….watch out what you wish for.

    • jwsox 4 years ago

      its really hard to call any contract that the yankees have an albatross…they pretty much print money there

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      Yeah the Posada, Arod and Jeter contracts really kept us from improving the team.

      Yanks have two things in their favor. $$$$$ and a very dependable farm system that has allowed them to offset the big contracts and to replace injured players w/o being desperate on the market.

      Certainly CC is a must have but I don’t see him being an albatross. The key is to have Hughes and Nova mature as a pitcher and to have some of Bets, Bans, etc succeed as mlb pitchers in NY.

      We gave up too early on IPK, although Grandy has been huge this year, but hopefully the others will prove to be homeruns.

  12. Dynasty22 4 years ago

    If CC opts it will probably be for years rather than money.

    • MaineSox 4 years ago

      I’m going to guess that if he opts out he’ll get money for years…

    • Guest 4 years ago


    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      I think it will be the same exact terms with 2 or 3 more years tacked on. If he opts out and signs another 7 year deal he will turn 38 half way thru his last year (in July). That’s basically the same age that Lee and Halladay are signed thru. No one is calling those guys albatrosses (not directed at you Dynasty).

      • Dynasty22 4 years ago

        Basically everything I would have said if I elaborated.

      • Ta-Kuan Fuan 4 years ago

        The type of pitchers Halladay and Lee are age much differently than the type of pitcher CC is. Halladay and Lee are both command pitchers in tip-top shape while CC is a power pitcher with weight issues.

  13. Alex 4 years ago

    I really think it needs to be noted that CC has never once given any indication that he intends to opt out. I believe last season he said that he would NOT opt out; however, in an interview early this season, he declined to comment on a possible opt out situation. The media of course then jumped all over it and it has spiraled out of control to “The prevailing opinion is that he will opt out,” when there has been absolutely no proof that CC plans to. This is what happens when blogs and sports media outlets simply regurgitate each other in circles, until what was opinion and speculation eventually becomes “fact”.

    • Alex 4 years ago

      Let’s take a look at a timeline here. Feel free to follow along, click the “C.C. Sabathia” tag, I will only be using evidence from this site:
      March 25: “Speaking to Jack Curry of the YES Network, Yankees ace C.C. Sabathia stuck to his vow to avoid commenting on his opt-out clause until after the season. However, he added “I’m a Yankee” and said he can’t see himself “playing anywhere else.”
      April 17: “Davidoff thinks there’s a “decent chance” that the Yankees and C.C. Sabathia work out a contract extension before the left-hander’s opt-out date next winter.”
      July 13: “Yankees ace C.C. Sabathia “has done some selling on the Yankees” to his friend Prince Fielder. Heyman doesn’t take this as a sign the Yankees are interested in Fielder as a very expensive designated hitter, but rather an indication that Sabathia expects to stick around with the club after this season.”
      August 14: “It’s nearly a certainty that C.C. Sabathia exercises his opt-out at season’s end. Sherman sees the 31-year-old asking for a raise, from the four years and $92MM he’ll have left, to no less than the seven years and $161MM he originally signed for.”
      October 2: “Yankees left-hander C.C. Sabathia is expected to opt-out of his contract but earlier today he confessed that New York is the best place to play baseball, tweets David Waldstein of the New York Times.”

      Sabathia has never once actually said that he intends to opt out of his contract. He merely said that he wanted to avoid commenting on the situation until after the season, which is more than reasonable and a common occurrence in the Yankee organization. This media circlejerk where baseless speculation gradually begins getting reported as verifiable fact is completely out of control.

  14. Gator4444 4 years ago

    Lee was a safer option at 31 years old becuase of his control.  CC is a power guy who’s production could get ugly in 4-5 years.

    • Gator4444 4 years ago


    • I agree.  The Yanks might extend his deal a year or two but to increase his salary for 7 years guaranteed won’t happen.  Yanks are stinging from the A-Rod deal after he (apparently) lost it at 36, which is the same age as CC will be when his deal is over.

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