Just a few late-afternoon notes as I try to get back in the swing of things.
• First, a heads up that Mark Teixeira is going to be on the YES Network’s Hot Stove show tonight at 6:30 p.m. ET. Teixeira missed most of last season after having wrist surgery, so there’s some value in hearing what he has to say about his recovery and his offseason workouts. Lot of talk about Brian McCann and Robinson Cano and whatever free agents the Yankees might add in the next couple of months, but Teixiera is a hugely important part of 2014.
• Speaking of players the Yankees want to sign, ESPN New York reports that the Yankees are planning to tell Cano’s representatives that their current offer might not last forever. There’s an offer on the table, and the Yankees will have to move on at some point. The early McCann signing might give the Yankees some leverage in that claim. They’re certainly not sitting still. They’re ready to make moves, and Brian Cashman said last month that he Yankees wouldn’t be able to wait forever on a Cano decision.
• Non-Yankees move: The Pirates DFAd corner outfielder/first baseman Garrett Jones. Just speculation, but Jones could be a candidate for the Yankees as a left-handed platoon player capable of hitting for power against righties. I wouldn’t say he’s an ideal fit considering the Yankees have Teixeira, a pair of veteran bench outfielders, and remain in the market for an everyday right fielder, but if the price is right he could play a role. He’s a career .271/.337/.489 hitter against righties. Can’t hit lefties, though.
• Pretty good news for Dave Robertson — but perhaps bad news for the Yankees’ search for late-inning insurance – Joe Smith has signed a three-year, $15.75-million deal with the Angels. It’s not extravagant money, but it’s a pretty substantial contract for a non-closer. Relievers are getting paid these days, even relievers without ninth inning experience. If the Yankees let Robertson hit the open market next winter, he’s going to be a valuable commodity.
• I love that the McCann signing prompted our great friend Sweeny Murti to tweet a link to this video from 2009. That year, McCann hit a foul ball that Sweeny fumbled in the press box. The guys on YES made fun of Sweeny, but to his credit, I was sitting next to Sweeny in Tampa Bay when he made a perfect catch on a foul ball for a bit of redemption.
Associated Press photo