George Steinbrenner: The Boss' Top 10 Trades and Signings
Wheelin' and dealin'.
If Lil' Wayne coined the phrase "make it rain", George Steinbrenner was his inspiration (okay, maybe not).
Over his four decade reign in the Bronx, no other baseball owner even came close to matching the types of moves The Boss made.
With his ability to get whatever, or should I say whoever, he wanted, his franchise became known as the "Evil Empire."
Even Darth Vader himself would be jealous of these 10 deals.
10. C.C. Sabathia
$161 million isn't cheap.
But for the Yankees, C.C. Sabathia is worth every penny.
Signed before the 2009 season from Milwaukee, Sabathia led a Yankees pitching staff that had been fluctuating more than California's land mass.
During his first season in New York, the workhorse pitched 230 innings with 3.37 ERA and 19 wins.
In the postseason, Sabathia continued on his torrid pace, pitching 36.1 innings with a 1.98 ERA en route to a championship with his new club.
He might very well move up on this list by the time his career is all said and done.
9. Roger Clemens
Before the start of 1999 season, Roger Clemens was traded from the Toronto Blue Jays to the Yankees for David Wells, Homer Bush, and Graeme Lloyd.
The Rocket desperately wanted to win a championship, and he got his wish in New York.
Over five seasons with the Yankees (not including his second stint with the club), Clemens won 77 games and collected two World Series rings (not to mention throwing a bat at Mike Piazza).
The righty brought instant reliability to the front-end of the staff that trickled down to every player on the roster.
8. Bucky Dent
Traded from the White Sox to the Yankees in early 1977 for LaMarr Hoyt, Oscar Gamble, and Bob Polinsky, Bucky Dent hit one of the biggest home runs in Yankees history.
In 1978, with the Yankees down 2-0 to the arch rival Red Sox during a one-game playoff, Dent hit a three-run homer to give the Yankees a lead they would not surrender.
In the ensuing playoffs, Dent hit .417 with seven RBI in the World Series to earn MVP honors.
He later earned to All-Star bids with the club in 1980 and 1981.
7. Goose Gossage
Signed as a free agent in 1977, Gossage was a dominant pitcher with a phenomenal no-nonsense fastball.
The Goose won two World Series with the Yankees during the most productive portion of his baseball career.
His best season came in 1981, when he finished the season with a minuscule 0.77 ERA.
What made Gossage so special was that he would regularly pitch more than one inning by not wasting pitches and going right after the hitter.
6. David Cone
Three days before the trade deadline on July 28, 1995, David Cone was traded from the Blue Jays to the Bronx for Marty Janzen, Jason Jarvis, and Mike Gordon.
It's pretty obvious now who got the better end of that one.
In 1996, the right-handed thrower, who batted lefty, gave the Yankees a stellar performance in Game Three of the World Series against the Braves allowing just one run over six innings.
Cone was a 20-game winner in 1998 when New York won the AL East by 22 games and pitched a perfect game in 1999.
5. Dave Winfield
Dave Winfield is the only Yankee on this list without a ring.
That's the only reason why this great player isn't listed much higher.
Signed in 1981 for $23 million (Steinbrenner thought he was signing him for $16 million, but that's a completely different story, Google it if you're interested), Winfield was a perennial All-Star during his time in the Bronx.
His downfall with The Boss came during the 1981 World Series when Winfield asked for the ball after recording his only hit of the series.
Steinbrenner repeatedly called out Winfield through the media, even going as far as calling him, "Mr. May".
Winfield's best season came in 1988 when he hit .322 with 25 home runs and 107 RBI.
Throughout his career, he collected five silver sluggers and five gold gloves.
4. Tino Martinez
Steinbrenner stole Tino Martinez from the Mariners in December of 1995.
All New York had to give away was Sterling Hitchcock and Russ Davis.
Seattle even threw in quality setup man Jeff Nelson.
In his six seasons with the Yankees, Martinez hit 175 and drove in 690 runs.
His most famous home run came in Game One of the 1998 World Series. With the game tied 5-5, Martinez blasted a seventh inning grand slam to blow the game wide open.
The Yankees went on to sweep that series against the Padres.
3. Paul O'Neil
Yes, although he didn't come through for Kramer on his Seinfeld cameo, Paul O'Neil was everything for the Yankees in the late 90's.
He was acquired by New York in November of 1992 in a trade via Cincinnati.
With the Reds, O'Neil was good, but not great.
That all changed when he traveled to the Bronx (unlike so many other players who switch to New York mid-career).
The slugger hit above .300 his first six seasons with the club and added a streak of four seasons with 100 RBI or more.
2. Alex Rodriguez
Hate him or love him, Alex Rodriguez continues to produce otherworldly numbers.
Traded in early 2004 from the Rangers for Alfonso Soriano and Joaquin Arias, A-Rod was already one of the most dominant players in the game.
In just his first six seasons in the Bronx, A-Rod has hit .299 while averaging 40 home runs and 119 RBI per season.
Despite his crazy statistics, the two-time AL MVP didn't shake his reputation as a choke artist until the 2009 playoffs.
Thanks to six home runs, 18 RBI, and a .365 batting average during New York's championship run, nobody is calling him A-Fraud now.
1. Reggie Jackson
Reggie Jackson was signed during the 1976 offseason to a five-year, $2.96 million contract.
Mr. October, never once, let Steinbrenner down.
During the 1977 World Series, Jackson hit three home runs in the championship clinching Game Six win at Yankees Stadium.
It was Steinbrenner's first of seven world championships as owner of the club.
Jackson's best season with New York came in 1980 when he hit 41 home runs with 111 RBI and a .597 slugging percentage.