With yesterday’s unveiling of pricey new acquisitions CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett,  Brian Cashman “finally revealed himself to be a very prickly guy when it comes to dealing with those daring to dissent” opines the Daily News’ Bob Raissman, though in fairness to the Yankee GM, he’s gone toe to toe with master debator Chris Russo more than once.

“It took a lot of pain,” Cashman said while being interviewed on the Yankees Entertainment & Sports Network. “And certainly a lot of hits going through the process.”

Cashman said Thursday’s coronation was really just the “completion of a concept,” an overall strategy, dating back at least a year, leading to Sabathia putting on the pinstriped jersey. If he didn’t pass on Johan Santana, he doesn’t get CC. That’s what the GM was saying. Cashman was convincing. He spoke with conviction. Still, if this was his plan all along, why all the “pain”? Why even care about the “heat”?

Before last season, Cashman was not used to being bombarded by incoming media scuds, not used to being hammered. The only harsh characterizations directed publicly at him came from George Steinbrenner. And almost always – unanimously – the media sided with the poor, picked-upon, baby-faced GM. He was respected. Cashman’s rational responses were in sharp contrast to The Boss’ irrational ravings.

Any objective soul might direct Cashman’s attention to Queens. His Mets counterpart, Omar Minaya, has – in the media – basically been called a racist by those who have, on the air, said he favors Hispanic players. He was also rightfully roasted for mishandling the firing of Willie Randolph.

The media have held Minaya directly accountable for the Mets leading the National League in collapses the past two seasons. And each and every move Minaya makes is overanalyzed by the Joe Benignos of the world.

Cashman’s “intent” is to change the story. But he can’t write it. Not now. Not ever. No matter how he strikes back, or how much pressure others in the Yankees front office might foolishly attempt to apply, there will always be a place for opinions and reporting that the organization won’t agree with.