OK, so maybe the Yankees will have some A-Rod-induced headaches in 2014 after all.
While Rodriguez was banned for the entirety of the 2014 season by arbitrator Fredric Horowitz today, his spokesperson Ron Berkowitz told Jon Morosi of FOX Sports that it is “100 percent certain” that the suspended slugger plans to participate in spring training with the Yankees. FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal details why he could be allowed to do so:
We have seen similar situations with suspended players in the past, including Manny Ramirez with the Athletics in 2012. ESPN’s Buster Olney reports that MLB, the MLBPA, and the Yankees will sort through rules in the coming days to clarify Rodriguez’s status for spring training, but it looks like we could have a circus on our hands in Tampa, Florida.
Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports that the Yankees have re-signed left-hander CC Sabathia to a one-year, $10 million contract. The deal does not come with options and is still pending a physical, which is expected to take place later today.
Sabathia, 37, is poised to enter his 18th season in the majors and his 10th in New York. He went 14-5 in 27 starts with the 2017 Yankees, improving on his 2016 totals with a 3.69 ERA, 3.0 BB/9 and 7.3 SO/9 over 148 2/3 innings. He provided a welcome boost in the playoffs, too, keeping the Yankees alive in an ALDS Game 5 clincher and returning in Game 3 of the ALCS with six shutout innings.
The Yankees weren’t Sabathia’s only suitors this winter, which comes as little surprise given the southpaw’s durability and consistency on the mound, to say nothing of the leadership role he’s assumed in the Yankees’ clubhouse. From Sabathia’s agent, Kyle Thousand (via Joel Sherman of the New York Post):
There were very competitive offers out there that really made CC take his time. In the end, he feels there’s unfinished business to attend to. Loves his teammates, clubhouse and the moves the Yankees are making this offseason. [He] wanted to come back for his 10th season with the Yankees.
Chris Cotillo of SB Nation adds that the Yankees had freed up the $10 million for Sabathia’s contract after trading Chase Headley to the Padres last Tuesday. The club is expected to continue pursuing additional pitching depth this offseason, and has been linked to names like Zack Greinke, Chris Archer and Gerrit Cole so far.