The Yankees have offered Jeter a three-year, $45 million contract.
Looking at it objectively, that is drastically overpaying a 36-year-old shortstop coming off the worst year of his career. In case you forgot how bad Jeter was this year, here are his numbers from June 1st to the end of the season.
.254 BA/.337 OBP/.340 SLG/5 HR/36 RBI
Oh yeah, he’s also a terrible defensive shortstop (if your response to that is “he won gold glove!” please, stop reading this article. Seriously, I’m not kidding).
Let me just quickly tackle the arguments I’ve seen for why Jeter deserves more money….
1. He’s done so much for the Yankees.
This argument truly makes me laugh. Seriously, I was laughing as I wrote that sentence, which is sad because I’m alone right now laughing hysterically at something that I wrote.
Anyway, if you believe that he deserves more money because “he’s done so much for the Yankees” you just don’t understand how business works.
Jeter has been an employee for the Yankees his entire baseball career. A very well paid employee. Dare I say, an overpaid employee? No, not Jeter! There were plenty of teams lining up to give a contact hitter a 10-year contract worth $189 million!
Nobody can deny Jeter’s accomplishments for the Yankees, but they have done just as much for him as he has done for them.
2. He’s going to get 3,000 hits this year
That’s nice. I’m proud of him. No really, I’m NOT being sarcastic, good for him. Bravo, Derek. Umm, how does this relate to his contract? Are people under the belief that the chase for 3,000 will bring more fans to the games? If you truly believe that the Yankees need help with attendance, you are completely lost.
3. The fans will be upset.
Aww, poor fans.
Are they going to stop going to the games? Some will…maybe. Will the Yankees still post phenomenal attendance numbers like they have been doing for years?
As long as they keep winning, absolutely.
4. The Yankees need Jeter more than Jeter needs the Yankees.
This couldn’t be any further from the truth; it’s actually quite the opposite. What type of contract would Jeter get in the open market? Would he get $15 million a year? I highly doubt it.
The Yankees would take a PR hit if they let Jeter go, I understand that. But wouldn’t Jeter’s image also take a hit as a loyal, team-first player if he turned down a three-year, $45 million contract to stay with the Yankees?
5. They gave A-rod and Burnett all that money; why not give more to Jeter?
The Yankees made a mistake with a couple of contracts, no denying that. So the solution is to...repeat the same mistake?
If you believe in the philosophy of repeating past mistakes, you are perfectly suited to be a member of the U.S Congress.
Maybe it’s just me, but I’d prefer that the Yankees stay away from this philosophy.