Stop me if you've heard this one: So, two Steinbrenners walk into a bar, one wants to negotiate a free agent contract through the media, the other says, "Hank, would you please shut up already?"
Ha. See, that's how the Steinbrenner jokes work usually. Because George Steinbrenner has two sons that run the Yankees, and Hal Steinbrenner, who was recently given the official title of "The Boss II", is typically the reserved level-headed one.
Hank Steinbrenner is the one whose every quote comes back to bite him: Like the time he criticized Joe Torre for not having enough fire, then had to watch Torre's Dodgers team make the playoffs.
Or when he talked his way out of trading for Johan Santana, a move he would surely make if given the same opportunity now.
Or when he declared that the Yankees were done dealing with ARod, only to re-sign him a few weeks later.
So when word spreads that one of the Steinbrenners made something resembling a deadline/ultimatum on the Yankee offer to CC Sabathia (specifically: "We’ve made him an offer. It’s not going to be there forever."), odds would figure it to be Hank adding on to his Greatest Hits collection.
But, no! Any Yankees fans tired of stupid and unnecessary quotes to the media must now cry out: "Et tu, Hal?" For lo, it was the usually sane Steinbrenner needlessly offering out the inflammatory quotes this time.
Now, with most players this might be a reasonable negotiating tactic. The Yankees offer any given player a top dollar contract, a premium media market, and a chance to win every year. This usually gives them some leverage. But in this case, the Yanks need CC; CC doesn't need the Yankees. And if they're smart, they're not going to pull the contract offer from the table until he decides.
If Sabathia was in it for maximum dollars, this would be a done deal already. But obviously he's considering all of his options, and one would think the smarter PR move would be to make him feel comfortable. If you're going to take this route and threaten to retract an offer, you might as well vandalize his house, and tell him to take the $140M or else there's more coming.
But short of those drastic measures, the best move is to make like Hank Steinbrenner the past couple days, and stay quiet.