The Derek Jeter contract negotiating saga continues on its inevitable course: the Yankees officially offered the Yankee captain a three-year, $45 million offer, which was reportedly met with ambivalence from Jeter. Jeter's camp has allegedly insisted on a four or five-year deal, worth around $20 million a season. The Yankees feel their offer was reasonable, so "bad cop" GM Brian Cashman called Jeter out, and encouraged him to test the free agent market with other clubs, and see if he can get a better deal.

While the reality of contract negotiations for an aging all-star are unsurprising, the Times is shocked at how nasty the conversation between the two sides has become in the media, with each side trading off pull quotes and painting the other as the villain. The Five Thirty Eight blog breaks down the statistics around Jeter, and found that while "he does not have very much flexibility in exploring the market," he brings certain intangibles to the Yankees which can't be underestimated:

...because he is such a popular and identifiable member of the Yankees, and relates well to the media and to fans in a city where many athletes don’t, he helps the Yankees brand, which in turn puts more people in the seats (or the same number at higher ticket prices), directly improving the Yankees’ bottom line.

While they lean toward the idea that Jeter could end up with "hurt feelings" over the showdown with the organization, ESPN thinks Jeter has more to lose, and could sully his "good guy" reputation. As long as Jeter doesn't decide to put on a one-hour special in which he announces he is going to take his talents to South Beach, we think we'll still like him just fine.