The Yankees signed switch-hitting first baseman Mark Teixeira to an eight-year deal, worth $180-million on December 23rd, further proving that they are “recession proof.”
This is, of course, after they signed pitcher C.C. Sabathia to a seven-year, $161-million deal (which apparently included a $9.5-million signing bonus) and former Blue Jay A.J. Burnett to a contract worth $82.5-million over five years, both in the second week of December.
Here’s an interesting tidbit I plucked from a Gordon Edes column on Yahoo! Sports:
“The Yankees will have nine players being paid $13 million or more in 2009. Those nine players – Teixeira, Sabathia, Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, A.J. Burnett, Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera, Hideki Matsui and Johnny Damon – combine for $159.1 million, more than the payroll of any other team.”
Who’s next for the Yankees, Manny Ramirez?
In a funny side-story, the Yankees are offering old-time prices for a pair of exhibition games against the Cubs in April at their new stadium. Fans can buy tickets for as little as a quarter – which is what it cost on opening day in 1923 at Yankee Stadium.
That’s before the real prices kick in, which peak at $2,500.
The NFL made itself a cool $20,000 last week after a couple of snow-related incidents by players that Commissioner Roger Goodell deemed fine-worthy.
The first $10,000 fine went to NY Jets defensive end Shaun Ellis who threw a “snowball” at Seattle Seahawks fans as his team left the field, after a 14-3 loss.
In the heavily-viewed YouTube video it looks like it’s snowing, but it’s actually snowballs being fired at the visitors. What I originally read was that Ellis threw some snow back...but in the video, you see that Ellis clearly throws what’s equivalent to the bottom third of a snowman into the crowd!
Here it is:
Next up – Wes Welker of the New England Patriots gets fined $10,000 for making a “snow angel” in his club’s 47-7 rout of the Arizona Cardinals.
The NFL’s leading receiver scored his third touchdown of the year on that snowy Sunday, and celebrated by dropping to his back and moving some snow around.
This is one thing that I hate about the NFL. You want exciting games, but God forbid a player shows any personality!
History says they’ll repeat…
If the history of the NBA is anything to go by, the Harlem Globetrotters…I mean, the Boston Celtics, will have a second straight NBA Championship banner hanging from the rafters of the TD Banknorth Garden by opening night in 2009.
With their 26th win of the year, a 124-105 win over the NY Knicks, the Boston Celtics tied the 1966-67 Philadelphia 76ers and the 1969-70 Knicks for the best start in NBA history at 26-2. Both of those teams went on to win the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy.
With their next win, the Celtics beat the 76ers 110-91 for their 19th straight win, setting a team record (they lost to the Lakers in LA on Christmas Day though). They also set an NBA record with their 27th win in 29 games. That’s ridiculous!
It’s a good time to be a sports fan in Boston – at the TD Banknorth Garden, the Celtics have won 12 straight games, while the Boston Bruins have won their last 13! According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it’s just the second time in NBA/NHL history that co-tenants of a building have had double-digit winning streaks at the same time. Coincidentally, it was the Celtics and Bruins that did it the last time it happened too, around this time of year in 1973-74 when they won 27 straight between them.
Boston teams are 20-0 at the Garden to wind out 2008. November 14th, when the Celtics lost to the Denver Nuggets, was the last loss of the year.
Honorable Mention: After a 31-21 loss at Green Bay, the Detroit Lions became the first team in NFL history to go 0-16…winless through the entire season. Ouch. They’re selling “2008 Preseason Champions” shirts in Motown. Gotta love it.