Last week during a radio interview Cliff Lee said that he chose Philadelphia over New York in part because “it seems like some of the Yankee guys are getting older.”
First of all, technically “some of the Yankee guys are getting older” is a statement of fact. We’re all “getting older” (with the notable exceptions of Halle Berry, Benjamin Button, and Mike Carey).
Setting that aside, Calcaterra noted that according to the average age of the rosters, the Phillies are actually the oldest team in baseball and the Yankees are merely the ninth-oldest.
Naturally general manager Brian Cashman was asked about Lee’s comments regarding the Yankees’ age and replied:
Some of our core guys that we have relied on have gotten up there, but we have a group of young players that we’re excited about. All we care about is being called champions. You can say anything else you want about us. When you call us old, that’s fine. It was a marriage that was not meant to be. That’s life.
All of which is more or less what you’d hope a GM would say when asked to respond to some random, one-sentence comment another team’s player made on the radio.
Lee turned down the Yankees because he’d rather play for the Phillies and rather play in Philadelphia. I’m not sure exactly how many times Lee needs to be asked to explain himself or how many articles need to be written analyzing the motives behind his decision, but I’m pretty confident the answer in both cases is “fewer than have already occurred.”
Veteran Omar Infante has spent the overwhelming majority of his career as an infielder, but the Tigers plan to give him some playing time in center field this spring. The Tigers’ center field situation is still murky and adding more versatility would increase Infante’s odds of making the roster.
Infante, 35, signed a minor league deal with the Tigers in December. He played 39 games for the Royals last season, batting .239/.279/.321 in 149 plate appearances while playing second base exclusively. Infante last played in the outfield in 2010 with the Braves, and last played center field specifically in ’09 with the Braves.
The Tigers currently have Mikie Mahtook, Tyler Collins, and JaCoby Jones at the top of their center field depth chart. It is not what one would call “optimal.”
Eduardo A. Encina of the Baltimore Sun reports that the Orioles are close to acquiring pitcher Vidal Nuno from the Dodgers in exchange for pitcher Ryan Moseley.
Nuno, 29, went to the Dodgers from the Mariners in the Carlos Ruiz trade this past November. He and the Dodgers avoided arbitration last month, agreeing on a $1.125 million salary for the 2017 season. The left-hander finished the 2016 campaign with a 3.53 ERA and a 51/11 K/BB ratio in 58 2/3 innings spanning one start and 54 relief appearances.
Nuno will provide the Orioles starting pitching depth and could serve as a valuable left-handed option out of the bullpen.
Moseley, 22, played his first season of professional baseball in the New York Penn League last year. In 12 relief appearances, he put up a 3.20 ERA and an 18/9 K/BB ratio across 19 2/3 innings. The Orioles selected him in the eighth round of the 2016 draft.