The Yankees call the Jays about Roy Halladay

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There has long been an assumption that either the Yankees or the Red Sox will the ultimate landing pad for Roy Halladay, but it’s just been speculation.  It’s getting less speculative, however, as Jon Heyman is reporting that the Yankees have actually called the Jays about Doc

Heyman thinks that the starting point of any Yankees-Jays talks would be either Joba Chamberlain or Phil Hughes (last year the Jays wanted both, but probably weren’t serious about trading with the Yankees).  Catching prospect Jesus Montero is mentioned, but young stud catchers are harder to find than ace pitchers, and given how old the Yankees’ current catcher is, he’s probably off limits.

One direction Heyman doesn’t mention is the possibility of the Yankees going in with little in the way of young talent, but instead eating Vernon Wells’ deal or something creative like that.  That’s certainly something they would have done a couple of years ago, but the Hal Administration has been smarter about taking on big dumb deals lately. They take on big smart deals.

If the Yankees nab Halladay: turn out the lights, baseball, the party — at least for 2010 — is likely over. 

Giancarlo Stanton will defend his Home Run Derby title

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The Marlins announced on Sunday that outfielder Giancarlo Stanton will defend his Home Run Derby title when the city of Miami host’s the All-Star Game festivities next month.

Stanton, 27, defeated Todd Frazier in the finals of last year’s Home Run Derby at Petco Park, hitting 20 home runs to Frazier’s 13. Stanton hit a total of 61 home runs in the Derby. This will be the third Home Run Derby in which Stanton has participated.

Stanton also went 1-for-3 with a solo home run to help the Marlins defeat the Cubs 4-2 on Sunday. He’s now batting .274/.357/.551 with 20 home runs and 49 RBI in 311 plate appearances.

Aaron Hicks to go on the disabled list with an oblique injury

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Yankees outfielder Aaron Hicks left Sunday’s game against the Rangers after four innings due to soreness in his right oblique. After the game, Hicks said he expects to go on the 10-day disabled list and miss the next three to four weeks, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports.

Hicks was 1-for-2 with a single before departing on Sunday. He entered the game batting .288/.397/.515 with 10 home runs and 37 RBI in 198 plate appearances. It is by far the best season of his career.

Jacoby Ellsbury is on his way back from a concussion, so the Yankees will only have to bridge the gap in center field for a week or two. Mason Williams could draw some starts in center field in the meantime.