Here’s Brian Cashman, talking about the Yankees’ need for Cliff Lee:
“I don’t feel like we are in a desperate situation here. I think we have a lot of quality players on this team that won 95 games and fell two games short of a World Series.”
To the extent that you’re never “desperate” when you’re the New York Yankees and that one player does not make all the difference in the world, yes, he’s right.
To the extent that anyone takes this comment to mean that Cashman’s number one priority this offseason isn’t to get Cliff Lee signed, they’re crazy. Improving the pitching staff without signing Lee is just way, way more difficult otherwise, and I’m sure Cashman would enjoy the holidays approximately 349% more if Lee is signed.
That quote aside, it’s a good article about Cashman and Lee, with Cashman talking a bit about his visit with the Lees in Litte Rock on Wednesday. Guess what? According to Cashman, Kristen Lee loves New York.
The Reds lost their first arbitration case of the offseason, per a report from Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Second baseman Scooter Gennett was awarded the $5.7 million salary figure he was seeking from the team, a $600,000 bump over the $5.1 million they countered with last month.
Gennett, 27, is coming off of a career-best performance in 2017. After getting claimed off of waivers by the Reds last March, he broke out with an impressive .295/.342/.531 batting line, 27 home runs and 2.4 fWAR in 497 plate appearances. By season’s end, he ranked among the top five most productive second basemen in the National League (and 12th overall). He’s currently set to remain under team control through 2019.
Gennett was only the second Reds player to go to an arbitration hearing this winter. Fellow infielder Eugenio Suarez was defeated in arbitration last week and stands to make just $3.75 million compared to the $4.2 million he filed for in January. All 22 arbitration cases have now been resolved. Twelve were decided in favor of the players.