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John Tomase: Baseball Is Better When The Yankees Spend Like Idiots

John Tomase
(NBC Sports Boston Screen Grab)

John Tomase Makes A Bold Claim

Earlier this Friday, Red Sox Insider for NBC Sports John Tomase posed the idea that baseball as a whole is more fun when the Yankees spend like ‘idiots’. I’m not sure what would qualify a team as spending like idiots, but John Tomase has to know that the Yankees have the second-highest payroll in the league, right?

I won’t sit here and slander Tomase for his claims, because some of them are true. The Yankees did cheap out this off-season, especially in the pitching category. They did dumpster dive for Corey Kluber and traded for Jameson Taillon as well, he isn’t wrong in those claims at all. When those two landed on the injured list, the Yankees had to turn to guys such as prospect Luis Gil, Nestor Cortes, and Andrew Heaney.

“Replaced them with a series of band-aids”

Tomase referred to the aforementioned replacements as “band-aids”. If you’re talking about Heaney alone, then yes, he was completely being utilized to eat innings until the starting pitching got healthy. However, let’s not act Luis Gil wasn’t already high on the Yankees radar this season. And Nestor Cortes? Probably the Yankees’ most reliable starter in these last two-three months with the exception of Gerrit Cole. His 2.79 earned run average and 2.5 WAR speak for themselves.

I don’t understand the “own” that Tomase is trying to get at here. The Yankees have underperformed this year, yes. They aren’t where many of us expected them to be, but they’re still in a playoff spot nonetheless? After reading this piece by Tomase, you would be convinced the Yankees haven’t won a game all season.

The Rivalry Hasn’t Lost Its Juice Either

Tomase later stated that “Fans often wonder why the rivalry has lost its juice.” I find this quite ironic because I haven’t heard a single fan from either side say that within the past few years, if anything it’s more entertaining. You have arguably the greatest rivalry in sports competing for both wild cards, with an opportunity to play each other for the 1-game Wild Card Game? If you’re not excited and convinced the rivalry is dying, then you’re just lying to yourself.

Tomase Critiques Trade Acquisitions

Tomase ridiculed the Yankees deadline acquisitions in Anthony Rizzo, Joey Gallo, and Clay Holmes. He believed they gave up too much to each team to stay under the luxury tax. I mean, two of the names alone in the Gallo trade are rule-5 eligible this year, Glen Otto and Randy Vasquez. For Rizzo, they did give up two prospects, but in return didn’t have to pay a cent on Rizzo’s remaining $16.5 million, also worth it in my opinion.

The one that irked me the most was Clay Holmes. Clay has easily been the Yankees’ best tradeline acquisition. They traded Hoy Park who for some reason Yankees fans thought was going to save their season. When you look at his stats since joining the Yankees, it’s evident they won the trade. However, when you see they have Holmes for another 3.5 years, it’s robbery, and you can’t help but feel bad for the Pirates yet again.

Instead of this, Tomase suggested the Yankees go after a guy like Max Scherzer, you know, the Cy-Young candidate for the Dodgers. Once the Dodgers had their eye on Trea Turner as well, it was their deal to lose. They were going to give up whatever it took to get both Scherzer and Turner. To think the Yankees would even attempt to rival that package is hilarious.

Tomase on Hal Steinbrenner

Tomase did make a claim about Hal Steinbrenner not being anything compared to his father when it came to running the Yankees. And he’s right in that regard, but you’re just stating the obvious. The game of baseball has changed incredibly since the ’90s and early 2000s. Teams aren’t buying their championships anymore in general. Almost all the teams who have made the World Series in the past few years had their fair share of homegrown players. Tomase isn’t wrong on Hal, he’ll never compare to George. However, this era of baseball will also never compare to that era of baseball.

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