A couple of weeks ago I wrote that the Yankees would certainly re-sign Hideki Matsui because all of the marketing that surrounds him essentially allows him to pay his own keep. Today Buster Olney tweets that Matsui’s marketability is “no factor” in whether or not they re-sign him, and that, for the Yankees, “it is about getting the right player at the right price.” Because if the Yankees have been about anything over the years, they’ve been about value.
It still makes sense for the Yankees to keep Matsui. He’s still productive, and even if the Yankees aren’t going to rest their entire decision making process on his marketability, “the right price” has to take the money he means to the team into account, don’t they? If price makes any kind of a difference, saying that those concerns are “no factor” makes no sense.
Free agent right-hander Henderson Alvarez signed a deal with the Tigres de Quintana Roo of the Mexican Baseball League earlier this week, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Friday. The righty wasn’t necessarily too fringey a player to hack it in the big leagues, but there were no MLB takers in attendance during his showcase in Venezuela last month and he clearly felt it best to try his luck elsewhere.
The 27-year-old’s last major league gig came with the Phillies, for whom he delivered a 4.30 ERA, 6.8 BB/9 and 3.7 SO/9 over 14 2/3 innings in 2017. While he’s not too far removed from his first and only All-Star bid in 2014, he was besieged by shoulder issues in 2015 and 2016 and underwent season-ending surgeries as a result.
That added injury risk, coupled with the fact that he hasn’t pitched more than 22 innings in a single season since 2014, may have been too much for major league teams to take on this spring. Assuming he steers clear of further injuries, however, a return to the majors may not be entirely out of the question in years to come.