So it looks like somebody wanted the Yankees' broken Wang after all.
"Wang's deal is worth $2 million and includes the chance to earn $3 million in performance bonuses, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press." (courtesy of ESPN.com)
Unfortunately for old CMW, that somebody was the Washington Nationals, the black hole of Major League Baseball, where former great players, former good players, has beens, never weres, and never will bes all go to die. That being what it is, this is still a win-win for everybody involved.
Even though he won't be ready to contribue until at least the midway point of the season, Wang on the DL is still probably a better starter than whoever else Washington can throw out there at the back end of their rotation. And if Wang does somehow recover his velocity and sinking action on his sinker, this deal looks like a steal for the Nationals as they try to take a step towards reaching the level of mediocrity.
As far as the Wanger is concerned, after the public tarring and feathering he took at the hands of the NY media and fans for his playoff failures and absolute meltdown into a pitcher of historically significant ineffectiveness last year, it will be good to get a fresh start and even better to get that fresh start in a place that has no pressure, no expectations, and probably not even any real fans. And when he does finally return from his rehab, he won't ever have to worry about exorcising his postseason demons in Washington because the Nationals are so pathetic that they'll be out of the playoff race by mid May.
At worst Wang becomes another shitty starter on a staff of shitty starters, but still making good money. At best, he returns to the form he showed in the 2007-2008 regular season, which could lead to even better numbers than he put up in the Bronx as he will now be pitching in an offensively-diluted league.
So goodbye, Chien-Ming. It was fun while it lasted and it was a shame that it had to end so sadly, but the Yankee Championship Express started running again last year and between your injuries and tendency to choke in big moments, there just wasn't any room left for you on the train.
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