The Winter Meetings are always full of possibility, and for some teams, that possibility becomes tangible trades and free agent signings. For the Yankees, this year’s Winter Meetings began quietly with Brian Cashman arriving later than most every other executive. By the time Cashman left, the Yankees had won the negotiating rights to a Japanese shortstop and picked two pitchers in the Rule 5 draft.
Cashman told everyone to expect a quiet week, and he delivered exactly that.
“For me to be able to push through something, I’m probably going to have to overpay to do that, and that’s a tough thing to do, especially when you’re sitting with a lot of talent, a lot of people you could slot in and (have them) do this job,” Cashman said. “It’s just, do you want to bet on somebody doing it significantly better at the expense of payroll flexibility going forward or (the loss of a prospect in a trade)? I’m OK with the balancing act. I’m OK with the decision making. I didn’t expect much, and it’s hard to improve on what we already have.”
Here’s a quick look at the past week in review.
• A one-year deal with Freddy Garcia was finalized immediately after the Winter Meetings, giving the Yankees a fifth returning starter and further minimizing the need to make a significant move for the rotation.
• With the highest posting bid, the Yankees won the right to negotiate with Japanese shortstop Hiroyuki Nakajima. The Yankees have a month to secure a deal for a player they view as a utility infielder ready to step in at the big league level.
• The Yankees traded up and took two players in the Rule 5 draft. Lefty Cesar Cabral comes out of the Red Sox organization to compete for a left-handed spot in the bullpen. Right-hander Brad Meyers comes from the Nationals and will try to be the long man.
• The Yankees released outfielder Greg Golson and designated outfielder Colin Curtis for assignment.
• Hector Noesi continued to get himself stretched out in winter ball, making his longest start of the offseason. Cashman said last week that the Yankees have no intention of using Noesi as a reliever next season.
• Yu Darvish was posted, though it’s unclear whether the Yankees plan to make a bid.
• Some of the winter’s top free agents, including Albert Pujols, C.J. Wilson and Mark Buehrle came off the board as the Marlins and Angels were the most aggressive teams of the Winter Meetings.
• It was announced that Rutgers and Iowa State will play in the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium.
Associated Press photo