Via Joel Sherman, the Yankees “got out” of their minor league contract with reliever Luis Vizcaino after the righty blew out his Achilles in winter ball. Last month we heard that The Viz broke his ankle and would be out three or four months, but apparently the injury was more serious than originally thought. Vizcaino could have earned $750,000 if he made the club, albeit an unlikely scenario, but now he’s probably out for the year. The Yanks have a small army of pitchers in camp on minor league deals, so there’s little, if any, loss of depth here.
Via Enrique Rojas, righty reliever Luis Vizcaino will be out for the next three-to-four months after breaking his left ankle in winter ball. No, this isn’t a flashback post from 2007, the Yankees signed The Viz to a minor league contract with an invitation to Spring Training last month. He was always a long shot to make the club and was not much more than Triple-A depth, but now he’s an even longer shot. Add in the Rafael Soriano signing, and well it doesn’t look too good for the The Viz at all. He hasn’t pitched in the big league since ’09 and hasn’t been effective since leaving the Yankees after that ’07 season.
Around an hour ago, we heard some rumblings out of the Dominican Republic that the Yanks had signed Luis Vizcaino to a one-year, $1.8 million deal. That rumor didn’t make sense, as Vizcaino, 36, had missed all of the 2010 season. But the Viz will be returning to the Yanks at least for Spring Training. As Marc Carig confirmed, the Yanks signed Vizcaino to a minor league deal with a Spring Training invite. If he makes the team, he’ll earn $750,000.
Vizcaino, an 11-year veteran, spent the 2007 season on the Yanks. He went 8-2 with a 4.30 ERA in 75.1 innings and made a whopping 77 appearances en route to being Torre’d. He took the ball just 43 times in 2008 and only 15 times in 2009 before finding himself unemployed for 2010. A recent report on MLB.com said that he had “re-kindled new interest with his effectiveness in the Dominican Winter League.” During the DWL, he has thrown 11.2 innings, giving up one run on six hits and three walks while striking out 11. He’s allowed just one hit in his last nine appearances, and with Tony Peña as his manager, he has a close connection to the Yanks. This is a low-risk, medium-reward move, but I’m not going to expect too much from Vizcaino.
Tim at MLB Trade Rumors speculates that The Viz may have reached an agreement with the Rockies. If true, the Yanks would get a sandwich round draft pick as compensation, and depending on where some remaining free agents sign, this pick could be as high as #39 overall. At worst it will be #46. So basically it boils down to this: the Yanks traded Vizcaino to the Rockies for LaTroy Hawkins, a draft pick between #39 and 46 overall, and about $8-10M in salary relief. Sweet deal.
The Yanks are looking at Francisco Cordero just in case Rivera doesn’t end up signing a contract. They also want to bring back Luis Vizcaino to fill out their bullpen.