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Yankees offer arbitration to only Javy Vazquez

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Yankees Rangers BaseballBrian Cashman has said the Yankees will offer arbitration to only one of their Type A-B free agents.

Javier Vazquez will be offered arbitration. No one else.

The plan would be extraordinarily risky, but Ken Rosenthal reported this afternoon [2] that the Yankees have already been assured that Vazquez will turn down the offer. If he were to accept, Vazquez would be in for a hefty payday on a one-year deal. If he declines, Vazquez will land the Yankees a compensation draft pick. He’s a Type B free agent, and already the Nationals and Marlins seem to be showing interest.

The Yankees elected not to offer arbitration to any of their other compensation-eligible free agents: Derek Jeter, Andy Pettitte, Mariano Rivera, Lance Berkman or Kerry Wood.

There was initially a report that Wood would be offered, but the Yankees already refused an option in his contract, and arbitration would have amounted to roughly the same thing. There was never much reason to expect an arbitration offer for either Berkman or Pettitte.

As for Jeter and Rivera: A one-year deal does not seem to be a bad scenario for the Yankees, but those would be for substantial money, and it seems the Yankees aren’t willing to risk that sort of payment, even on a one-year deal.

UPDATE, 6:57 p.m.: For the record, the Yankees also declined to offer arbitration to Austin Kearns, Nick Johnson, Chad Moeller and Marcus Thames.

Associated Press photo