Report: Yankees not planning to pursue Carl Crawford or Jayson Werth

15 Comments

Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News hears from “a source” that the Yankees “aren’t planning to make a hard charge for Carl Crawford or Jayson Werth” this offseason.

That certainly makes sense because the Yankees are pretty set in the outfield with Brett Gardner, Curtis Granderson, and Nick Swisher, and Gardner in particular has a relatively similar skill set to Crawford at a fraction of the price.

However, the notion that the Yankees won’t pursue the No. 2 and No. 3 free agents on the market hardly seems set in stone.

What happens if they make Cliff Lee a six-year, $120 million offer and he turns it down? Are the Yankees just going to put that money away for a rainy day and head into 2011 with the same roster? Maybe, but it seems more likely that the moment Lee turns them down would be the same moment their interest in Crawford and Werth increases, even if that means trading one of their current outfielders for pitching help or overpaying for a modest upgrade.

J.D. Martinez tells teams he prefers an outfield role

Getty Images
3 Comments

Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.

That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.

Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.