Andy Pettitte has retired and then unretired before, but Yankees general manager Brian Cashman told Andy McCullough of the Newark Star Ledger that he won’t try to change the 41-year-old left-hander’s mind because “I know that I won’t be able to convince him like I’ve done in the past.”
On the other hand, manager Joe Girardi has previously said–somewhat jokingly, I’m sure–that he’ll definitely give Mariano Rivera a call this winter just to see if he can talk the future Hall of Famer into coming back for another season.
Pettitte has certainly seen his performance slip more than Rivera has, but he’s still an effective mid-rotation starter with a 3.88 ERA and 123/.46 K/BB ratio in 176 innings this season. Pettitte, who makes his home in Texas, will take the mound for the final time in Houston this weekend.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.