Right-handed pitcher Brandon McCarthy went 7-5 with a 2.89 ERA in 14 starts last season after being traded from the Arizona Diamondbacks to the New York Yankees in July.
The 31-year-old became a free agent in the offseason, and to him it seemed obvious that he would resign with the Yankees after the success he had in New York.
But as Andy Martino of the NY Daily News writes, the Los Angeles Dodgers were the team with interest in the right-hander, offering a four-year, $48 million deal and McCarthy knew he had to accept it:
It was like, we have to strike when the iron is hot. This was my second choice. This is very similar to the Yankees. There are so many things that fit here. They were aggressive. It would be dumb to pass this up.”
Since a change of ownership in 2012, the Dodgers have become more like the Yankees, spending hundreds of millions almost every offseason resulting in a payroll of over $200 million every year. The Yankees are headed in the opposite direction. In 2014, the Dodgers passed the Yankees for the highest payroll in the MLB, and that will remain the same in 2015.
McCarthy didn’t believe the payroll cut would apply to him in New York, and at the end of last season he expected to return to the team that brought him success in 2014:
In my mind, I thought it definitely was going to be the case,” he says, sitting at his locker at the Dodgers’ complex. “At least that’s where I was saying I wanted to go. At that point, I wasn’t considering anywhere else. It was perfect. It’s the Yankees. You don’t think money is going to be an issue. This is just going to be, ‘we’ll just find a way to make this fit.’”
Despite not being signed by the Yankees, McCarthy still may have found what he was looking for: a team in a big city that can pay him well and compete for a World Series every year.
Dodgers FanFest – Brandon McCarthy