$300 Million?

So Robinson Cano asked for $300 million, not a complete shock.  The Yankees probably need him a lot more than he needs them at this moment and he is smart to see if they will panic and accept his number.  I am more surprised by the numbers the Yankees reportedly offered. According to the Post, the Yankees initially offered 8 years at $17.5 million per year. When that was rejected, they offered 7 years at around $23 to $24 million per.

In July, ESPN Insider did a projection on Cano’s future value and found him to be very valuable over the next 8 years starting in 2014. Even in the final year of an eight-year deal, they projected him to be worth 1.8 wins above replacement. They pegged him to be worth 8 years and $181 million, or $22.625 million per year.

So the Yankees are close to “fair value” for Cano. Now the ESPN numbers only factor in on-field contributions and do not factor in the “AIS” factor. (Asses in the seats) Cano obviously sells some tickets and the Yankees have to figure that part out on their own. (I strongly suspect the AIS factor was what led to Ichiro’s two-year deal last offseason.)

They will also need to factor in what they expect the luxury tax threshold to be under the new labor deal after the 2016 season. Next year MLB will start new TV contracts that are worth about twice what the old deals were. So, I would expect the $189-million threshold to increase. And, with each team in line to receive about $50-million from national TV rights alone, the game will be awash with cash.

It’s going to be an interesting offseason and it starts Monday.