When you consider that China has been virtually untouched by MLB up to this point, this is obviously a wise investment on the part of the Yankees franchise.
Not only is it an opportunity to seek baseball talent in uncharted waters, but it is yet another way to expand Yankees merchandise globally in the largest-populated country in the world and one of the fastest growing economies to boot.
The Yankees are coming, the Yankees are coming. That's what the Chinese are shouting in China today because the Yankees are heading there in their latest international exploration. Vasco da Gama and Magellan had nothing on them.
The Yankees have scheduled a news briefing today to tell about their plans, but all they said yesterday was that it was about an international venture. With the Yankees, an international venture means international intrigue.
Larry Lucchino, the Boston Red Sox president, didn't call them the Evil Empire without a good reason.
A baseball official, not a travel agent, disclosed that the Yankees were going to China next week. No, the Yankees team isn't going to China. Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter aren't going to China to sign autographs or hold clinics or hit fungoes to wide-eyed Chinese kids.
This will be an executive journey -- Randy Levine, the Yankees' president; Brian Cashman, the senior vice president and general manager; and Jean Afterman, vice president and assistant general manager.
They are not expected to bring back any signed players. China hasn't developed any players who would be capable of playing in the major leagues or even the minor leagues. The Chinese clearly demonstrated their shortcomings in losing all three of their games in the inaugural World Baseball Classic last March by a combined score of 40-6.