Why did the Yankees end their pursuit of Ubaldo Jimenez?


As recently as yesterday afternoon Tim Kurkjian of ESPN reported that the Yankees were “all over” Ubaldo Jimenez, but once the Rockies ace was traded to the Indians much different details emerged about New York’s interest level.

According to Marc Carig of the Newark Star Ledger the Yankees’ pursuit of Jimenez essentially ended several days ago when the Rockies refused to let him take a pre-trade physical exam and scared off general manager Brian Cashman with their prospect demands.

Given that the Rockies ended up with an impressive four-player package led by Drew Pomeranz and Alex White it’s easy to see why the Yankees may have balked at their asking price, which Carig reports as Ivan Nova plus two of Manny Banuelos, Dellin Betances, or Jesus Montero.

However, with the Yankees believing Jimenez’s drop in velocity could be a major red flag they insisted on studying his health before getting too deep in talks and the Rockies’ resistance to that basically made the asking price a moot point. And that’s a big part of how the most coveted starting pitcher on the trade market ended up in Cleveland.

Mike Fiers may not be ready for start of regular season due to back issue

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Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press reports that Tigers starter Mike Fiers is dealing with a back issue and may not be ready for the start of the season. Manager Ron Gardenhire characterized the injury as a “stiff back” and added, “Maybe a little bit of a bulging disk or something like that.”

Fiers, 32, signed a one-year, $6 million deal with the Tigers in December. He has had a forgettable spring, yielding 12 runs on 10 hits and eight walks with seven strikeouts in 11 1/3 innings.

Fiers had a rotation spot locked up along with Michael Fulmer, Jordan Zimmermann, and Francisco Liriano. Matt Boyd and Daniel Norris were battling it out for the No. 5 spot. If Fiers opens the regular season on the 10-day disabled list, both could have spots in the rotation.