The fire hasn’t completely disappeared from the Yankees front office.
Today, team president Randy Levine ripped Rangers CEO Chuck Greenberg for his public comments that the Rangers late push for Cliff Lee might have been what ultimately led Lee to sign with the Phillies.
According to the Daily News, Levine called Greenberg “delusional” and said he would be impressed if Greenberg could get the Rangers off “welfare,” a reference to Major League Baseball’s revenue sharing.
To be honest, I didn’t take Greenberg’s statement as any sort of boast or as a slam against the Yankees — he seemed to be saying that the Rangers made one last attempt to keep themselves in the mix and accidentally gave the Phillies time to swoop in — but I suppose Lee must be a sore spot with all of the Yankees front office, and it’s hard to argue with Levine when he says Greenberg should “let Cliff Lee speak for himself.” Also, it’s hard to ignore the fact that Greenberg made some negative comments about Yankee fans during the playoffs.
A few more notes and links from today:
• In other Yankees front office news, Hal Steinbrenner spoke to the New York Post and said disagreements between the front office and Brian Cashman have been blown out of proportion. That’s pretty much the same thing Cashman has been saying.
• The Associated Press moved a short story today about Derek Jeter and Kevin Long wrapping up their early work in Tampa. The final line of the story was this: Long is scheduled to spend time with third baseman Alex Rodriguez and designated hitter-catcher Jorge Posada next week.
• The Rays made another small move, signing Casey Kotchman to a minor league deal. Every time I hear Kotchman’s name, I think back to the Angels minor league system in the middle of the decade, when Kotchman, Dallas McPherson, Brandon Wood, Howie Kendrick and Erick Aybar seemed on the verge of giving the Angels an incredible young infield. Instead, Kendrick has been pretty good, Aybar has been solid and the other three — generally considered the best prospects of the bunch — have been massive disappointments.
• Speaking of AL East moves, Orioles are reportedly still after Vladimir Guerrero, but Buster Olney says the O’s have been told that Guerrero has an $8-million offer on the table. Why he’s not taking it, I have no idea.
• One more AL East move: The Orioles have agreed to terms with former Yankees infielder Nick Green to a minor league deal. I happened to witness the worst season of Green’s career — he hit .233 with Scranton in 2008 — and the next year he was the Red Sox regular shortstop for a while. Crazy. By the way, Nick was always great to deal with, even when he was at his very worst as a player. Good guy. I was legitimately happy for him when he got that gig with Boston.
• The Twins are making a slight change to the beautiful Target Field, improving the batter’s eye by — among other things — removing some trees that were distracting hitters. The news has nothing to do with the Yankees, but I really like that park, so I thought I’d mention it.