Rivera throws from a mound, sort of

Mariano Rivera was back on a mound for the first time since tearing his ACL on Friday, but don’t get too excited, he’s not going to be throwing simulated games next week. Via Bryan Hoch, Mo took to the mound and tossed some “prop baseballs” as part of a commercial shoot yesterday. Still, it was Rivera’s first time on a mound in six months, and the Yankees’ closer told Hoch that he felt good about it all the same. “I’m feeling good,” said Rivera. “The rehab has been great; it’s been tough, but at the same time, I’m seeing good results.” And though he said he hasn’t “discussed anything” in terms of a new contract, he reiterated that he’s absolutely coming back for another season. “Like I told you guys before, I didn’t want to go out like that.” Continue reading Rivera throws from a mound, sort of

Kuroda rejects offer

You can add Hiroki Kuroda to the list of players who rejected their qualifying offers. He had until 5 p.m. to decide.

In fact, every player who received the $13.3M qualifying offer from their respective teams, B.J. Upton, Michael Bourn, Kuroda, Nick Swisher, Rafael Soriano, Kyle Lohse, Adam Laroche, and Josh Hamilton, rejected them.

If Kuroda, Soriano and Swisher all sign elsewhere, the Yankees will get draft picks. Continue reading Kuroda rejects offer

Swisher, Soriano, reject offer

Obviously not a surprise, but now it’s official: Nick Swisher and Rafael Soriano have both turned down their qualifying offer from the Yankees, and will remain free agents. The Yankees are not expected to make an attempt to keep either player on a multi-year contract, but they will receive a supplemental first round draft pick for each if/when they sign with another team.

The Yankees are also waiting for Hiroki Kuroda’s decision on his offer. That’s not such a foregone conclusion as the other two, but the Yankees expect Kuroda to reject his offer as well. Continue reading Swisher, Soriano, reject offer

Baseball America’s top 10 Yankee prospects

Baseball America is out with their list of the Yankees’ top ten prospects today, and the list has some rather…interesting quirks. You can get the whole list for free here, but need to be a subscriber to read the full scouting reports. Here’s the list:

1. Mason Williams OF
2. Slade Heathcott OF
3. Gary Sanchez C
4. Tyler Austin OF
5. Jose Campos RHP
6. Brett Marshall RHP
7. Angelo Gumbs 2B
8. Manny Banuelos LHP
9. Ty Hensley RHP
10. Rafael DePaula RHP

I won’t put out my own rankings until late February, but I’ve got some quick thoughts on these rankings after the jump.

(click “view full post” to continue reading) Continue reading Baseball America’s top 10 Yankee prospects

Re-Signing Russ Is The Right Move

(The following is being syndicated from An A-Blog for A-Rod) It could be a lot different.  Russell Martin could be kicking back right now recuperating from the long season and waiting to enter the second year of a 3-year contract.  But he chose to decline the Yankees’ offer before this season and took the plunge on another 1-year deal.  That plan backfired a little bit on him, as Martin’s .211/.311/.403 batting this season didn’t do a lot to help his negotiating leverage this offseason.  But Martin is a known commodity in the Yankee organization, and a valued on at that, Continue reading Re-Signing Russ Is The Right Move

Joakim Soria Seems Like A No-Brainer For The Yankees

Rafael Soriano will not accept his $13.3m qualifying offer, and the Yankees look destined to bring Mariano Rivera back for at least the 2013 season. The team will lose one great closer, and gain back the greatest closer. Still, they could have used the type of reliable setup man they lost when Soriano was promoted to closer, and Cory Wade was demoted to Triple-A. The outlook for next season has Rivera closing and David Robertson setting up for him in the 8th inning. With Joba Chamberlain and David Aardsma fully recovered from Tommy John surgery, they figure to compete for Continue reading Joakim Soria Seems Like A No-Brainer For The Yankees

Morning update: Swisher and Kuroda

Today is the deadline for free agents to accept or reject qualifying offers from their respective teams, and the Yankees are waiting on three such decisions. We’ve already hear that, as expected, Rafael Soriano will decline his offer, and Mark Feinsand reports that Nick Swisher will do so the same. That, of course, is also not a surprise, and Feinsand also reports that Swisher has already received serious interest from five teams, including the Mariners and Rangers. The Mariners seem like a good fit to me, as they desperately need help at the plate and would probably benefit by putting some additional resources into trying to actually compete before they have to make a serious decision about Felix Hernandez‘s future there. There’s also been a lot of noise here in the Baltimore area that the Orioles have him on their radar, another match that would make a lot of sense given that, beyond some starting pitching, the O’s could really use some more on base guys. In any case, if you were holding out any hope that Swisher was going to make a miraculous return to the Yankees, you can pretty much forget about that now.

The most interesting decision for the Yankees is that of Hiroki Kuroda, as there’s at least a chance Kuroda will accept the Yankees’ $13.3 million offer.. It would, after all, represent a raise from his 2012 salary and a pretty good contract for a pitcher in his late 30’s, but Kuroda is coming off of the best season of his career and should draw a lot of interest on the open market that’s thin on quality starting pitching. He’s shooting down reports that he’s limiting his choice to either the Yankees or the Hiroshima Carp, and that figures to get several teams involved on him. The Red Sox and the Dodgers are already showing interest, with the latter apparently making him their top pitching target. You would have to think that means that both teams are prepared to offer him more than the qualifying offer that’s already in front of him. A week ago I thought the odds of Kuroda accepting the offer were probably 50-50, but today I’m leaning more towards the realm of slim to none. Continue reading Morning update: Swisher and Kuroda

Marlins name Tino Martinez their hitting coach

Earlier today, there were reports that the Red Sox and Tino Martinez were in talks to have Martinez join Boston’s coaching staff as their hitting coach. Yankee fans were horrified. Tino in a Sox uniform? The horror!

Well, fret no more kids. Danny Knobler reported via his Twitter account that Martinez has been named hitting coach for the Miami Marlins.

The move came out of nowhere but that’s the way these things go sometimes. Remember Mark Teixeira’s signing? Or even the A-Rod trade? And no, I’m not comparing these moves, I’m just saying that baseball is, well, unpredictable.

Honestly, I would have been happy for Tino either way and it’ll be good to see him back in baseball once again. Continue reading Marlins name Tino Martinez their hitting coach