Friday, December 28, 2012

Yankees Sign Matt Diaz To Minor League Deal

From Mark Feinsand:
The Yankees’ search for a righthanded-hitting outfielder may not be over, but they took a step in the right direction Wednesday night with the signing of veteran Matt Diaz.
Diaz, who has spent his 10-year career battering lefthanded pitching, inked a minor-league deal with the Bombers that includes an invitation to spring training.

If Diaz makes the club, he'll earn $1.2 million. He can earn up to $800,000 more in incentives based on at-bats.

“I’m healthy and I feel like I can go to camp and show what I can do,” said Diaz, who played only 51 games in 2012 after undergoing midseason thumb surgery. “If I can go and do what I do, which is hit lefties and take tough at-bats against them, that’s what the Yankees need and want. It will be a good fit.”

Diaz grew up in Lakeland, Fla., where his father used to lead team chapel services for the Tigers during spring training. Diaz became a big fan of Matt Nokes, so when the catcher was traded to the Yankees in 1990, Diaz switched allegiances and became a Yankees fan.

“My dream in life as a kid was to play for the Yankees,” Diaz said.
In 2012, Diaz hit .222/.280/.333 in 51 games for Atlanta.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Yankees Eying Vernon Wells?

From Anthony McCarron:
Next up on the Yankees’ winter shopping list is a righthanded-hitting outfielder, and the Angels’ Vernon Wells reportedly is a potential trade target.

The Yankees and the Angels discussed a possible deal for Wells at the baseball winter meetings in Nashville, according to a report Saturday on

The Yanks are also prowling the free-agent market in search of a righty bat to complement their all-lefty outfield of Curtis Granderson, Brett Gardner and Ichiro Suzuki. Ichiro has agreed to a two-year, $13 million contract that will become official once he takes a physical and some contract language is completed.

The Yankees have interest in Scott Hairston, who hit 20 homers for the Mets last year. They might be a match with the Angels for a trade because the Halos just signed Josh Hamilton and now have a glut of outfielders, meaning the 34-year-old Wells could be available.

Wells is due to make $21 million in both 2013 and 2014, which does not fit into the Yankees’ plan to drop their payroll under the luxury tax threshold of $189 million by 2014. So it’s likely that the Yanks would want the Angels to eat much of the contract. Wells’ contract has a no-trade clause, but he waived it for the trade that sent him from Toronto to Anaheim before the 2011 season.
I supposed a right-handed outfielder would help, but I can't see the Angels picking up that much of his salary. Well hit .230/.279/.403 with 11 HR in 77 games for the Angels last year, and hit .218/.248/.412 with 25 homers in 131 games in 2011.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Ichiro Coming Back For One More

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Kevin Youkilis is Yankees

Monday, December 10, 2012

Ichiro Deal Expected In the Next Few Days

Some Think Youkilis is Waiting For A Non-Yankee Offer


"You think he just doesn't want to play for the Yankees?" ex-Sox infielder Lou Merloni asked Monday night on 'Uno's Sports Tonight'. "The history, and playing for the Red Sox? . . .

"I think like he's waiting for other offers because he just doesn't want to play for the Yankees."

Here's the video from the article:

It does seem kind of odd that he has not yet accepted the offer from the Yankees, especially when you consider that as of now nobody else is in the mix. Oh well, I assume we'll have our answer in the next day or two.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Youkilis 'Seriously Considering' Yankees as Cleveland Signs Reynolds

From the NY Daily News:
The Yankees could have an answer to their third-base problem shortly and the possibility it’ll be Kevin Youkilis may have gained steam Sunday night when Mark Reynolds reportedly agreed to a deal with the Indians.

Cleveland was viewed as the Yankees’ biggest competition for Youkilis. But, which first reported Reynolds’ agreement and said he was going to play first base for the Indians, said the move meant Cleveland would use Lonnie Chisenhall at third.

So with one serious suitor down, the Yankees’ chances may have improved, though the Mariners and Dodgers are among the teams that also have reportedly shown interest in Youkilis. Youkilis’ agent, Joe Bick, said Sunday his client is “giving serious consideration to the Yankees” but wouldn’t offer more detail on what other teams were involved.

“Kevin’s in the process of considering options and we’ll obviously make a decision at some point not too far in the future here,” Bick said.
It would appear that the Youkilis signing is inevitable. Stay tuned...

Rosenthal: Yankees Likely To Resign Ichiro

From Ken Rosenthal:
Ichiro Suzuki enjoyed playing for the Yankees so much, he likely will be back with them again.

The Yankees are showing strong interest in re-signing the free-agent outfielder, according to major league sources.

“They are all over him,” one source says. “That (a deal with Ichiro) will happen.”
That's good to hear..... Rosenthal also mentioned that the Yankees are still exploring the idea of trading Curtis Granderson.

Heyman: Hamilton to Yankees Not Happening

With Greinke Signing Dodgers Will Outspend Yankees

From Joel Sherman:
If it needed any further punctuation, the Dodgers established that they — not the Yankees — are the financial heavyweights of baseball yesterday by reaching agreement with Zack Greinke on a six-year, $147 million contract.

Unless the Yankees come out of their economic cocoon, they will not have the largest payroll in the game for the first time since 1998. With Greinke’s signing, the Dodgers are up to about a $220 million outlay — and they do not appear finished yet.

The Dodgers have a 3 p.m. deadline today to finalize a deal with Hyn-Jim Ryu after winning a posting bid for the star Korean lefty 30 days ago. And there have been indications they also may go after a free-agent starter such as Anibal Sanchez.
This will be the first time since 1998 that the Yankees won't have the highest payroll in the sport. Of course, that would change if the Yankees decide to make a splash or two.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

They Haven't Forgotten About Ichiro
As I've said all winter, I think it's very important that they bring Ichiro back.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Yankees Check in on Josh Hamilton
Not Cashman? Are the Yankees brass pulling another Rafael Soriano type move here?

There was also an article by Joel Sherman in today's New York Post where he says that George Steinbrenner and the old Yankees brass would never pass up on the chance of getting Josh Hamilton in Pinstripes, which is very true. At the end of the day, this could just be another baseless Winter Meeting rumor, but it will still be interesting to see how this whole thing plays out.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Granderson, Nova & Hughes are Available

Yankees Offer Youkilis One-Year, $12 Million Deal
Ken Rosenthal and Bob Nightengale have both confirmed the report.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Yankees in Talks With A.J. Pierzynski
This would be a solid signing for the Yankees, who as you know are in desperate need of a catcher.

Sox Sign Shane Victorino
The contract is reportedly a 3-year deal worth $39 million.

Replacing A-Rod Update: Youkilis, Keppinger, Scutaro
Also, according to Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi, the Yankees and Cadinals have both shown interesting is Marco Scutaro.

Kepner: Ian Stewart Makes Sense For Yanks
Stewart has been struggling with injuries over the past two seasons, but if he could regain his 2010 form of .256/.338/.443 with 18 HR and 61 RBI he would be a decent and cheap fill-in while A-Rod recovers.

Now most of this is just pure speculation, but other possible replacements I've seen mentioned are Kevin Youkilis, Asdrubal Cabrera, Stephen Drew, Eric Chavez, Hiroyuki Nakajima, Jeff Keppinger, Chase Headley, Mark Reynolds, Scott Rolen, Jerry Hairston Jr. and Marco Scutaro. For more on these possible 3rd base replacements, check out this article by Joel Sherman.

Yankees Open To Trading Granderson & Hughes
Well, there's always this option to replace Granderson:
ESPN's and XM's Jim Bowden really feels like the Yankees may still sign Josh Hamilton. Brian Cashman is once again doing his laying in the weeds thing, before he possibly strikes, Bowden believes.

During Day 1 on Monday, I went on Bowden and Casey Stern's XM MLB Network radio show and, in the midst of our conversation, we came up with something that made some sense. At least, to me.

If the Yankees were to trade Curtis Granderson for a package of young players, they could turn around and use the money they might have spent on free-agent-to-be Granderson on ... Hamilton. Essentially, they would be making a deal of Granderson for Hamilton and the package of young players. Seems to make some sense.

The Yankees do have some doubts about how Hamilton could handle New York. So perhaps Hamilton isn't the guy in the ultimate scenario, but it seems obvious that this is one day the Yankees could make a big splash.

Cashman later appeared on Bowden and Stern's XM show, Bowden asked Cashman, "Is it financially possible to stay within $189M and sign Josh Hamilton?" Bowden even added, "Without trading Curtis Granderson?"

"We have a dynamic, creative front office and ownership," Cashman said. "We are always try to do everything that makes sense in our world."
Obviously there are many legitimate concerns tied to Hamilton, and that's before you consider the huge contract he wants. But when he's hitting the guy is an absolute beast so it's at least something interesting to consider.

Monday, December 3, 2012

So It Turns Out Jeter Isn't Fat

Well, I guess it was a bad camera angle or some Photoshop work because Jeter clearly isn't fat.

Napoli Signs With Red Sox

A-Rod To Have Hip Surgery (Updated)

From Joel Sherman:
Alex Rodriguez was playing late in the regular season and playoffs with a re-tear in his surgically repaired right hip, The Post has learned.

Rodriguez is expected to need a second surgery in the coming days and will miss, at minimum, a piece of the 2013 season. Still, the hope is that the procedure will allow A-Rod to return as a full, successful player as early as the ’13 season and for the rest of a contract that takes him through the 2017 campaign.

The expectation is that Rodriguez wants to play on, not retire. The surgery is expected to be performed in Colorado by Dr. Marc Philippon, who performed the initial surgery in 2009. Rodriguez came back from that operation to play well, driving in 100 runs in just 124 games and starring in a postseason that culminated with the Yankees’ only title during his tenure.


The recurrence of the hip tear potentially helps explain why Rodriguez suffered through such a miserable postseason, which ultimately led to his benching. He was 3-for-25 with no extra-base hits and 12 strikeouts during the playoffs. However, Rodriguez also is 37 and so age could be a factor in the decline and also his ability to recuperate well from another surgery.
Just when you thought that contract couldn't look worse, it does. By the way, in case you were wondering, he's still owed $113 million over the next five seasons.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Ichiro is Becoming Impatient

From George King:
Ichiro Suzuki’s willingness to wait on the Yankees has declined to the point where the veteran outfielder is talking to other teams.

“At the beginning we talked a lot but since that time, zero,’’ agent Tony Attanasio said of discussions with the Yankees. “As far as we are concerned we don’t care what the Yankees do. We have had conversations with multiple clubs. If we see something we like he will go through with it.’

In a week’s time, Ichiro has completely reversed field.

“There has been a lot of interest [from other teams] but he enjoyed playing for the Yankees so much it’s hard for him to say no to the Yankees,’’ Attanasio said a week ago yesterday. “His preference is to stay there instead of going someplace else, but we’ll wait and see.’’

Of course, Ichiro’s reversal doesn’t mean he can’t return to The Bronx, where he was a fan favorite. Thanks to a torrid 14-for-20 stretch over five games in mid-September, he batted .322 in 67 games as a Yankee.

Nor did general manager Brian Cashman eliminate Ichiro from the list of outfield candidates he will talk to about replacing Nick Swisher in right field.

“I’m really not in position to comment, but our focus was first on pitching and see the amount of dollars we needed to secure pitching,’’ Cashman said. “Now we’ll focus on players who want to talk to us.’’
Letting Ichiro sign somewhere else would be a major mistake. That being said, I understand why the Yankees were focused on pitching in the last few weeks. Hopefully, now that they can turn their attention to right field they'll get the Ichiro situation settled quickly.