Deep in a lengthy series of notes from Jon Heyman is this little nugget about Freddy Garcia.
Garcia enjoyed his time with the Yankees and would like to come back. A cut finger and six-man rotation cost him about five starts, so he finished with 25 starts and missed out on $1.75 million in bonuses ($750,000 for 28 starts, $1 million for 30).He did a nice job, and Yankees people liked him.
Garcia’s an easy guy to like. Of course his stuff has diminished with age, but he showed last year that he can be effective — and occasionally outstanding — without the big fastball he had when he was in his 20s. Garcia was a great find for Brian Cashman, and I can’t imagine the Yankees would have been upset to give the man an extra $1.75 million.
Whether to bring him back next year probably depends on the contract (for the Yankees) and the opportunity (for Garcia).
Given all of the young pitching talent, a one-year deal with a guy like Garcia could make a lot of sense for the Yankees. They don’t necessarily want to commit long-term to a back-of-the-rotation starter, but someone like Garcia would provide short-term insurance without disrupting long-term plans.
That said, it would be hard to blame Garcia for wanting to be more than a fifth-starter insurance policy. With CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, Phil Hughes and Ivan Nova, the Yankees already have four-fifths of their rotation — probably — accounted for. Obviously that could change because of trade or performance or injury, but for now those are in place, and the Yankees could add another starter from the free agent or trade market. Did Garcia do enough this year that he could find a better opportunity and a bigger payday elsewhere?
Associated Press photo