CC Sabathia

CC Sabathia is at least six weeks from rejoining the Yankees

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Initially when CC Sabathia underwent stem cell treatment for chronic knee problems the Yankees said he’d be out at least six weeks, but now it’s four weeks later and manager Joe Girardi says the left-hander will probably be out for at least another six weeks.

Girardi has been pessimistic/realistic about Sabathia’s status all along, suggesting back in May that it’s possible he may not pitch again this season. Sabathia advanced to throwing 25 pitches off a mound Monday, but because he needs to build back his arm strength while also being limited by the knee issues the return timetable remains a long one.

Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News reports that Sabathia “is hoping to beat that estimate.” Naturally. Six weeks from now would be early August, so Sabathia’s return could be sort of like a trade deadline pickup for the Yankees, but obviously no one knows what to expect from him at this point and there’s an awful lot of room for setbacks before than can even be a possibility.

Masahiro Tanaka continue to be lights out in rookie season

 

Report: Royals and Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension

SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 12:  Eric Hosmer #35 of the Kansas City Royals and the American League rounds the bases after hitting a home run against the National League in the 2nd inning of the 87th Annual MLB All-Star Game at PETCO Park on July 12, 2016 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
Denis Poroy/Getty Images
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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.

Yankees sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 17:  Jonathon Niese #49 of the New York Mets delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on August 17, 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images
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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.