The Yankees might be finished making significant moves this offseason. At the very least, they’re acting and talking like a team that’s not planning anything big between now and the start of spring training. So what was the big news of the weeks?
That says more about just how quiet things have gotten rather than just how exciting NRIs can be. With no World Baseball Classic this spring, the Yankees significantly cut back on the number of extra guys coming to camp. Guys like Greg Bird and Addison Maruszak, who were invited last year, were left off the list this time.
Another interesting omission is Ronnier Mustelier, who seemed like a potential candidate for some sort of bench role (a long shot, yes, but still somewhere in the conversation). Instead, the Yankees have not invited Mustelier to camp, which essentially takes him out of the running. A few interesting names that were invited: Emerging utility prospect Jose Pirela, Cuban outfielder (and sometimes infielder) Adonis Garcia, and new-to-the-prospect-radar lefty Fred Lewis.
· Your A-Rod news of the week: Major League Baseball has asked the court to completely dismiss Alex Rodriguez’s latest lawsuit against both the league and the players union. The league says that Rodriguez’s claims to not come “remotely close” to the standard needed to overturn an arbitration decision.
· Major League Baseball approved the use of protective, padded caps for pitchers next season. This would be much more significant news if not for the fact that it seems unlikely very many pitchers will actually wear them.
· A few guys talked about their offseason workouts this week. Mark Teixeira spoke to the Wall Street Journal about the looming uncertainty that surrounds his wrist, and CC Sabathia spoke at a Roc Nation event about his offseason work to add strength while staying relatively thin. Those two are huge pieces of the 2014 puzzle. Still a ton of uncertainty surrounding them, though.
· This was a week with a lot of prospect talk (spurred by a bunch of prospect rankings). Basically, all of those rankings and discussions confirmed what we already knew: the Yankees farm system has more questions than standouts, and Gary Sanchez is a near universal pick as the team’s top prospect.
· Doesn’t seem likely that he’ll be coming back to the Yankees, but A.J. Burnett has decided to pitch again next year. One potential destination is Baltimore, where Burnett could stay close to home and give the Orioles the luxury of patience with their elite rotation prospects.
· Michael Young will not be coming to the Yankees. Considered right-handed option at third base (but a bit of a long shot for the Yankees), Young will retire rather than play another season as a kind of utility type. He’d said publicly that it was basically a choice between reitrement and the Dodgers. Another third base option, Jeff Baker, is reportedly getting close to signing somewhere, but the Yankees seem unlikely.
· The Yankees announced a bunch of additions to their pro scouting department, including former Yankees spot starter Dan Giese.
Associated Press photos