Chris Young finished strong with the Yankees this season after flopping with the Mets and Mark Feinsand and Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News are reporting that there’s “mutual interest” in him returning to the Bronx.
With Jacoby Ellsbury, Brett Gardner, and Carlos Beltran already in-house, the Yankees envision bringing Young back as a fourth outfielder for 2015. The 31-year-old hits right-handed and can play all three outfield positions, so he could have value in that role.
The Mets gave Young a one-year, $7.25 million contract last offseason to be their regular left fielder, but he batted just .205 with eight home runs and a .630 OPS in 88 games before being released in August. He quickly latched on with the Yankees and hit .282 (20-for-71) with three home runs and an .876 OPS over 23 games.
Just minutes after announcing a three-year contract extension with general manager Brian Cashman the Yankees have fired hitting coach Kevin Long, according to Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News.
Long has been New York’s hitting coach since 2007, during which time the Yankees lineup scored the second-most runs in all of baseball. However, they ranked 13th in runs among AL teams this season after ranking 10th last year.
It’s hard to blame Long for guys like Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, Carlos Beltran, and Ichiro Suzuki getting old/hurt, but big-money free agent pickups Brian McCann and Jacoby Ellsbury also underwhelmed this season.
Mostly this just seems like the Yankees wanted to find a scapegoat while not wanting to part ways with Cashman or manager Joe Girardi, in which case it’s easiest to cut the hitting coach who presided over a terrible offense regardless of how much blame he deserved.
Couple of updates here on the developing market for Cuban defector Yasmany Tomas, who was declared eligible for free agency late last week by MLB …
Ben Badler of Baseball America reports that the Padres held a second private workout with Tomas on Wednesday in the Dominican Republic. The first was last Friday. Both of these workouts were attended by new Padres GM A.J. Preller, who also scouted the 23-year-old corner outfielder at his open showcase on September 20. That means Preller has seen Tomas three different times in about three weeks.
Tomas is thought to be seeking more than $100 million and the Padres don’t often spend big, but perhaps team ownership has opened up the purse strings a bit for Preller. San Diego is in desperate need of a long-term power bat, and Tomas probably fits that mold better than anyone on the market this winter.
George A. King III of the New York Post, meanwhile, is hearing that the Yankees do not plan to seriously pursue Tomas. They’re committed to a starting outfield of Brett Gardner, Jacoby Ellsbury, and Carlos Beltran, and the designated hitter spot should be filled next season by Alex Rodriguez.
Tomas has done other private workouts in the Dominican with the Rangers and Phillies.
Jacoby Ellsbury was lifted from Friday night’s game against the Blue Jays in the top of the fifth inning with a strained right hamstring, Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News reports. According to McCarron, Ellsbury was clutching at his hamstring after hitting into an RBI fielder’s choice in the bottom of the fourth. Ellsbury will undergo an MRI to determine the severity.
Ellsbury was in the midst of a productive night at the plate, going 2-for-3 with a single and a two-run home run. With the Yankees quite unlikely to make it into the post-season, this may be the end of Ellsbury’s season. If that’s it, Ellsbury put up a productive first year in the Bronx, batting .271/.328/.419 with 16 home runs, 70 RBI, and 39 stolen bases.
The red-hot Jacoby Ellsbury was unavailable today with an ankle injury and it showed. Drew Hutchison and Aaron Sanchez combined for a one-hit shutout in a 2-0 win over the Yankees this afternoon at Rogers Centre in Toronto.
Hutchison was dominant in the victory, facing five batters over the minimum over his seven innings of work. He struck out nine, walked two, and hit two batters. The lone hit was a double by Mark Teixeira in the fourth inning. Rookie right-hander Aaron Sanchez took over in the eighth and retired all six batters he faced with three strikeouts for his first career save.
Jose Bautista provided the only offense of the afternoon with a two-run homer off Michael Pineda in the first inning. He has now gone deep in four straight games and has 28 homers on the year.
The win moves the Blue Jays back to one game over .500 at 68-67. The loss dropped the Yankees to 70-64 on the year, putting them three games back for the second Wild Card spot in the American League.