Brian Cashman says Chase Headley “wants to be a Yankee”

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Free agent third baseman Chase Headley is said to be close to making a decision, perhaps within a day or two, and Yankees general manager Brian Cashman dropped an interesting quote on NBC-New York yesterday by saying:

I do know this. Chase wants to be a Yankee.

Cashman went on to say:

He was a tremendous acquisition in the second half. A great leader. A tremendous defender. A switch-hitter with great discipline. He kind of checks off every box that we’d like a prototypical Yankee to look like. If we can find common ground, I’d like to have him man third base as we move forward.

Previous reports have at least one team offering Headley a four-year deal worth around $65 million, but it’s unclear if the Yankees are willing to offer something similar.

Headley hasn’t been able to duplicate his production from a breakout 2012 season, but he has posted a solid .725 OPS in two years since then despite calling pitcher-friendly Petco Park home for most of that time. By comparison, Pablo Sandoval has a .748 OPS during the past two seasons. Sandoval got a five-year, $90 million deal from the Red Sox.

Giants sign Darin Ruf to minor league contract

Darin Ruf
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The Athletic’s Jayson Stark reports that the Giants have signed 1B/OF Darin Ruf to a minor league contract.

Ruf, 33, played parts of five seasons in the majors with the Phillies from 2012-16, enjoying occasional offensive success. He spent the last three seasons in the KBO League in South Korea with the Samsung Lions, reigniting his career. Ruf hit an aggregate .313/.404/.564 with 86 home runs and 350 RBI over 1,756 plate appearances.

Ruf joins an ever-increasing list of players whose major league careers fizzled out, then found new life overseas — Eric Thames and Miles Mikolas are a couple of examples. Ruf will hope to prove himself as a big leaguer once more in spring training with the Giants.