After a long winter, the boys of summer report to Florida and Arizona respectively. Hope springs eternal and you dream of the possibilities for how and why your baseball team can put together a successful season.
I had those sort of feelings getting ready for the 2017 New York Yankees.
Yes, it’s a very different spring training. The Yankees are not a bunch of household names and there is a ton of inexperience throughout the roster, but that’s refreshing quite frankly.
The Yankees are no longer stale; there is legitimate hope for the future, long overdue.
Well, those good feelings of spring training lasted all of about three days after Yankees president Randy Levine acted in an immature and unprofessional manner following the arbitration hearing of star reliever Dellin Betances.
To put Levine’s comments in perspective, it is the only time I can remember a media firestorm following an arbitration hearing.
These hearings happen quite often between teams and players. Sometimes the team wins, other times the player wins, but following the proceedings the story fades away.
It’s a non-issue. It doesn’t receive media attention and both the team and the player go about their business.
The aftermath of the Betances case was quite perplexing and downright befuddling to understand.
The Yankees won their arbitration case against the star reliever, and he settled for $3 million a season.
After the case, Levine scheduled a conference call and in the process threw his star reliever and his representatives completely under the bus for the way they handled the negotiations.
I understand arbitration hearings can get contentious at times, but Levine went out of his way to take shots at both Betances and his agent after they won their case.
Both sides are well within their rights to have philosophical differences, but after the case is settled you move on.
Why on earth Randy Levine decided to schedule a conference call with reporters after the fact was very unprofessional and simply idiotic.
Betances and his representatives had every right to be irate after Levine’s ridiculous comments.
There is a legitimate fear that Levine’s comments could have a serious effect on Betances' relationship with the Yankees organization.
Now, the good news for Yankees fans is that Dellin Betances is not a free agent for another three years, and it may very well be the case that time and money heal all wounds.
However, Randy Levine’s ridiculous handling of the aftermath of the arbitration case may have potentially caused an unnecessary rift between the Yankees and their best player over the last three years, and for what reason?
There was no reason for Randy Levine to open his mouth, as my mother told me a long time ago, “sometimes when you don’t have anything nice to say, you don’t say it all.”
I wish Randy Levine would have taken my mother’s advice because he created an unnecessary media firestorm for no reason.
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