October 14, 2020 | 9:49pm
Brian Cashman scoffed at the notion the Yankees should feel worse about their loss in the ALDS because of the financial disparity between the Yankees and Rays.
“I don’t think it’s a payroll comparison in any way, shape or form,’’ Cashman said Wednesday.
The GM noted the Rays got to this point through years of operating smartly thanks to good draft picks, shrewd trades and good roster management.
But there’s no getting around the fact the Yankees had an estimated payroll of $84 million in this season shortened by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the Rays came in at $29 million.
“They’re forced to operate a certain way because of the market they are in, and we are permitted to operate in a different way because of the market we’re in, and both ways can have success,’’ Cashman said.
He likened Tampa Bay’s roster to a Swiss Army knife, with the ability to use players at different positions and pitchers in various roles.
“I’m not gonna lay my head low if we get beat by a team that’s worthy,’’ Cashman said. “Payroll is not gonna win it for you.”
Instead, it merely helps to get you a seat at the October table.
“I’d rather be doing this than not make the playoffs,’’ Cashman said of the Yankees’ annual after-season rundown of what went wrong. “Playing meaningful games in October, I am not going to shy away from how important that is. Just because we have the highest payroll, doesn’t guarantee us anything but making sure we are in a position to believe we can win a championship.’’