If the Yankees can’t get Cliff Lee, plan B is Carl Crawford

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If the Yankees don’t get Cliff Lee, they’re not going to go with the so-called second best options on the market to bolster their rotation. Mostly because those second best options are allegedly Jorge De La Rosa, who isn’t that good, and Carl Pavano, who the Yankees wouldn’t sign again if he was the last ballplayer left on Earth.

Nope, According to Ken Davidoff of Newsday, the Yankees will pursue Carl Crawford if they are unable to sign Cliff Lee. The thinking being that they can then trade either Brett Gardner, Curtis Granderson or Nick Swisher for a starting pitcher. That’s certainly not ideal, in that the Yankees would no doubt love to keep their relatively low-cost outfield intact and spend to get Lee instead. But it sure beats trying to sift through a bunch of unpalatable options on the free agent market.

This may all be academic at this point, of course, because I’m still having a hard time seeing the Yankees not get Cliff Lee.

Report: Brewers sign Yovani Gallardo to a major league deal

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Free agent right-hander Yovani Gallardo is headed back to the Brewers on a major league deal, The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports. No other terms have been reported yet, as the agreement is still pending a physical.

Gallardo, 31, completed a one-year run with the Mariners before getting his $13 million option declined by the team last month. He provided little value during his time in Seattle, pitching to a 5-10 record in 22 starts and putting up a 5.72 ERA, 4.1 BB/9 and 6.5 SO/9 in 130 2/3 innings as both a starter and reliever.

Still, assuming the veteran righty is on the cusp of a comeback, he may as well try for it with his original club. Gallardo last appeared for the Brewers from 2007 to 2014, racking up a cumulative 20.8 fWAR and peaking during the 2010 season, when he earned his first All-Star nomination and Silver Slugger award. This will be his ninth career season with the club.

Even with Gallardo aboard, the Brewers are expected to continue deepening their pitching stores for 2018. With team ace Jimmy Nelson still recovering from shoulder surgery, the club will enter the season with a projected rotation of Gallardo, Zach Davies, Chase Anderson and Junior Guerra, the latter of whom pitched just 70 1/3 innings in 2017 following a right calf strain and shin contusion. Another big name pitcher could help cement Milwaukee’s rotation and keep them competitive for another year, though they don’t appear to have made any concrete moves in that direction so far.