The news that the Yankees had signed Rafael Soriano had barely sunk in when reports surfaced that this wasn't anything general manager Brian Cashman wanted to do. This came from the powers above him.
Those reports were quickly followed by declarations that Cashman still has the "full confidence" of the Steinbrenners, but really. It's never a good thing for an organization when somebody is eager to make it immediately known after a major move that the GM was opposed. Either the GM is convinced that it's a blunder and wants the rest of baseball to know he's not responsible, or the higher-ups are setting him up.
And it's really never a good thing for an organization to let Scott Boras make its personnel decisions.
Meanwhile, one has to wonder what this means for Joba Chamberlain. The Yankees of the past 15 years plus have not been patient with young pitchers, and young pitchers need patience. Cashman wanted to go into 2011 relying on Chamberlain and David Robertson in set-up roles; the Steinbrenner brothers didn't agree. The Yankees don't see Chamberlain as an effective starter, and they have some unsettled spots in the rotation.
Joba the Heat may now be Joba the Trade Bait. One can argue with how the Yankees have handled him, but trading him for a starter seems likely. That's the Yankee Way.
When (OK, if) Carl Pavano re-signs with Minnesota, the Twins will have six established starters. I wonder how the Twins view Chamberlain. Would they trade Nick Blackburn or Kevin Slowey for him? Would the Yankees accept either?
Poll stuff: My misworded question on Hall of Fame candidates (it should have referenced the 2012 class, not 2010) drew 37 responses. If those voters were representative of the actual electorate, none of the four listed would win election.
Barry Larkin led with 24 votes, but that's just 65 percent -- well short of the 75 percent he needs from the writers. Alan Trammell had 16 votes (43 percent), Tim Raines 15 (40 percent) and Jack Morris 12 (22 percent). Four respondents said none of the above.
New poll up