I'm also expecting the Yankees to sign Fielder.
One of the reasons Fielder has not yet signed is likely due to the fact that Boras is aware of the Yankees interest. The Yankees just needed to free up the DH spot, which they did in trading Montero. The next logical step is Fielder, as the Yankees collect all-stars at almost every position.
I don't buy the argument that the Yankees intend to get under the luxury tax. Quite the contrary, the Yankees are likely to increase their spending to further undermine competitive balance. That is what the Yankees do. As teams like the Red Sox and Angels spend more, the Yankees increase their own spending, to maintain their advantage.
Moreover, the wild card will soon be a major negative in comparison to winning the division. By signing Fielder and trading for Pineda, the Yankees would lock up first place for years to come, leaving the Rays and Red Sox to fight for the wild card and roll the dice on the one game playoff.
I wouldn't bet 10 cents against this. As much as Fielder wants to be a fielder, he'd surely rather get 8+ years, and who else has the resources to give him that right now? He's 4 years younger than Teixeira, so he could get some time @ 1B.
There's no way the Yankees concern with their "budget" is really being driven by anything other than a guilty conscience. They may have some stadium debt, but they still are way in the black. While they have shown much more restraint WRT drunken sailor style spending, they still are more driven by winning than by keeping their payroll in line with the rest of MLB.
They are not underwater in any way, shape, or form:http://www.forbes.co...ees_334613.html
edit: non secquitur quote gone.
Edited by Hee-Seop's Fable, 14 January 2012 - 01:32 AM.