This morning Brian Cashman put in some volunteer work, donating coats and helping out for New York Cares’ winter coat drive. Wherever Cashman goes reporters are bound to follow. Following the event both Marc Carig of the Star-Ledger and Erik Boland of Newsday provided dispatches. Here’s a rundown of what he said, along with the relevant commentary. You can find the original quotes from both Boland’s and Carig’s Twitter feeds.
(On a side note, even if you’re not into the whole Twitter thing, I highly recommend you sign up for an account if only to follow some of the beat writers. They provide quick, interesting information throughout the day. It helps that they’re mostly good guys, too.)
- Cashman said that teams have already inquired about the Yankees’ catching depth. From Carig’s article: “There would be interest in those guys. I’ve had a lot of teams express, ‘Hey, if you’re ever going to do something there, mark us down,’ that type of things.” The Yankees have not only Jesus Montero and Austin Romine, but also Gary Sanchez and J.R. Murphy a few rungs below.
As Mike mentioned during the World Series, the Yankees could learn from the Rangers in this regard. They had three big-time catching prospects, none of whom panned out. The Yankees could opt to deal from that position of strength this winter. Sanchez in particular could be an enticing bit for a team that’s a bit further away from contention. Romine, too, could play a less significant part in a bigger trade.
- Cashman said that while he’s been in contact with several teams, he’s not yet sure whether the best path to acquiring a starter will be the free agent or trade market. He said that he hasn’t gotten to the point of financials with any player/agent, so we’re probably a long way away from any activity.
- Boland had an interesting bit about Hector Noesi. Cashman wants him to pitch in winter ball, because he “needs innings.” That makes sense after he threw just 81 innings this year between AAA and the majors. Noesi is in line to compete for a rotation spot next year, though his value is that he can pitch both out of the bullpen and in the rotation.
- In other homegrown pitching news, Ivan Nova has been cleared and his strained forearm is “fully 100 percent.” There is nothing to worry about heading into the spring, which is relieving news. Any time a pitcher complains of forearm tightness there’s a fear that it might actually be the elbow. Losing Nova for a year to Tommy John surgery would be quite devastating right now.
- After repeating his line about a set budget for the past two off-seasons, Cashman said that he had the “flexibility to stretch it if needed” (Carig’s words). The Yankees could have between $192 and $198 million committed to the players currently on the roster, so in order to add any pieces, never mind a significant free agent or trade piece, they’d need to go a bit higher than they have in years past.
- Finally, Cashman says they had no interest in Jonathan Sanchez. Clearly he has no reason to admit it if they did have interest. But it really makes no sense. He’s just not the kind of guy the Yankees need to target right now.