The Yankees haven’t made a guess as to when Andy Pettitte will be ready to start a major league game. But we can probably rule out all of April.
The veteran left-hander told George King III of the New York Post on Saturday morning in Yankees camp that his legs “are not in shape” yet and that he must get them properly tuned up before he can progress to the next step in his throwing program.
So far, Pettitte has made it through two innings of simulated action. “The last thing I want to do is rush something,” he said Saturday. “At this point, it wouldn’t be smart. [The simulated game] was great, but it’s not a real game. It’s still not another team.’’
Pettitte signed a minor league contract with the Yankees in mid-March. He sat out the entire 2011 season after posting an 11-3 record, 3.28 ERA, 1.27 WHIP and 101/41 K/BB ratio across 129 innings in 2010.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.