Sherman: Yankees still looking to add a late-inning reliever

Nikkan Sports: Yankees made formal offer to Masahiro Tanaka
Weekend Open Thread

Via Joel Sherman: The Yankees have “indicated a desire” to bring in another reliever to help David Robertson and Shawn Kelley in the late innings. They signed Matt Thornton a few weeks ago, but he is a left-handed specialist more than anything at this point of his career. They’ve also signed a bunch of relievers to minor league deals in recent weeks (Matt Daley, Robert Coello, Brian Gordon, etc.) but seem to be looking for some more certainty.

The free agent market doesn’t offer many appealing options right now. Grant Balfour comes with wrist and knee concerns, Fernando Rodney is pretty unpredictable, and it’s tough to consider others like Luis Ayala, Kevn Gregg, and Francisco Rodriguez impact relievers. There are some interesting reclamation projects out there, with Joel Hanrahan and Eric O’Flaherty standing out as the best of the bunch. Both are rehabbing from Tommy John surgery and expected back at midseason. It’ll be interesting to see how the Yankees address their bullpen. It looks pretty sketchy right now.

Nikkan Sports: Yankees made formal offer to Masahiro Tanaka
Weekend Open Thread
  • Theonewhoknocks

    I’d add Madson to the reclamation projects
    I think if they don’t like Balfours medicals, Rodney could be an interesting add if he has to settle for 1 year.
    Krod has been a dependable solid arm for a long time now, though his numbers decline steadily and slightly every year.

    I’m not comfortable with Kelly as a 2nd best reliever. I don’t think the bullpen will hold up well if they don’t add another arm.

  • Ken

    balfour and trade for storen who is available

    • Dalek Jeter

      I was going to suggest Storen, but the way I read the update on mlbtr, Storen probably only becomes available if the Nats sign Balfour.

      • Travis L.

        What would it take to get Storen?

        • Dalek Jeter

          I can’t imagine too much, a C prospect or if they want some ML talent maybe like Nunie?

          • Travis L.

            With the Yankees eating the 4+M on Storen’s 2014 deal? I’m not sure they would take Nunie though. Maybe a non-40 guy like Chase Whitley or Dan Burawa?

            • Ed

              I wouldn’t expect much trade value from AAA guys who got passed over in the Rule 5 draft.

              • Jorge Steinbrenner

                Not necessarily.

  • Joe S

    They are most likely waiting to see if they go over budget with Tanaka signing. If they go over, then they might as well sign another SP, RP, and Third base option.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      They’re probably going over anyway, with or without Tanaka.

      Everything else in baseball seems to be waiting on Tanaka, not just the Yankees.

      • qwerty

        Lots of reclamation projects left looking for a minor league deal. They’re not going over.

        • forensic

          There’s very little chance of them not going over at this point, though if they don’t get Tanaka I wouldn’t mind them giving it a shot.

          But, if you’re so certain they won’t and don’t want to go over, then there’s no reason for them to sign any reclamation projects. They won’t count against the payroll on a MiLB deal, but they’ll just opt out if they’re not added to the 40-man, so there’s no point in signing them in the first place.

          You’re basically contradicting yourself with your two statements.

  • Willie

    It depends pon Tanaka if they get him then they will try to get a proven reliever if not they will go ncheap to keep Big Hals real goal of reaching 189 million.

    • Grit for Brains

      If that’s the real goal, maybe they are on going through the motions to create the appearance that they want to sign Tanaka but are not actually going that hard on it, wouldn’t really surprise me to be honest.

      • Steve (different one)

        If this was the case, why didn’t they just not sign Beltran? It’s not like they didn’t have 3 starting OFers.

        Oh, I know, it’s all part of the conspiracy….

  • forensic

    I would certainly still take a shot on Balfour. I could also be convinced to still take a flier on Madson.

    The rest of the guys? I’m not sure any of them make a good enough difference that would make the price difference between them and internal possibilities worth it.

    • Bill

      Storen is a lot younger and cheaper than Balfour. He is also much less likely to pout if he ends up being the set-up man to Robertson, rather than closing.

      • forensic

        I’m not considering Storen. Too many pieces have to fall in place for that to happen, and I don’t see that coming to fruition.

      • Jorge Steinbrenner

        Balfour’s physicals issue makes it so that he may not have much room for pouting right now.

  • Bill

    Try to get Storen and Zachary Walters from Nats. Maybe offer Nunez and Betances. Storen could complete bullpen as a set-up man for Robertson, with Kelley. Walters could be right handed hitting 3B or 2B option, and can also play short. Make this trade and sign Tanaka and I think the Yanks are ready for Spring Training.

  • Matt DiBari

    Kevin Gregg sure seems like a terrible idea.

  • Rob M

    Could we see Danny Espinosa and Drew Storen coming in a package deal. I wonder what we would have to give up.

    • Bill

      Espinosa hit lefties good in 2011 and 2012 ( didn’t hit ANYONE in 2013) so he would make a good platoon 2B, and could play a little SS in a REAL pinch, but for the money I would rather get Zachary Walters, because he has the potential to play 3B and is younger and cheaper.

      • Rings

        Espinosa was a highly regarded defensive SS prospect. Played well there for 300 innings in 2012.

  • Rick

    RIP to long time radio producer Carlos Silva. Heard his name at least once every broadcast – lost a battle with cancer.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      Carlos Seeeeeeeelva? Really sorry to hear. RIP.

    • RetroRob

      Sorry to hear. I thought he was making progress, but looks like the cancer returned.

  • Bill

    WHERE (and when) can we trade Suzuki. We will get NOTHING for him, but how much of his salary can we dump???

  • Farewell Mo

    I disagree about Rodney.
    He’s had an FIP of 2.84 and 2.13 the last 2 years and misses plenty of bats with K/9 over 9 the last 2 years plus he’s got plenty of late inning as well as AL east experience

    I wouldn’t break the bank to get him but I think he’s probably better than any Yankee reliever other than Robertson

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      I’d be fine with Rodney, although shooting arrows in the sky is pretty anticlimactic in the 8th inning. I imagine he wants a closing gig although, at some point, you just want a job.

      • Farewell Mo

        His little act is douche like but so was Soriano’s untucking.

        Most of the good closer jobs are gone so I’d imagine setting up for the Yankees for closer-ish money would be the next best thing.

        • forensic

          I think there’s a serious difference between what Rodney does and what Soriano did. Soriano wasn’t standing out there forever making everything about him as an individual. He just walked toward the catcher and pulled out his shirt while walking, not doing anything else.

          • Farewell Mo

            Maybe so.

            As long as he gets people out I don’t give a shit.

          • Get Phelps Up

            Plus MFIKY actually wore his cap straight.

  • nycsportzfan

    Bring back Luis Ayala

  • joe

    Trade Suzuki and a low minor leaguer so Yanks dont have to eat Suzuki’s contract. Should have tried it with Wells if they did not. Give up extra to stay below $189 million for the year.

  • Andrew J

    We were told by cashman the door to a pettitte comeback was closed. Any chance the Mo door can still b open? Boy we can use him.