Free agents can, in fact, change teams

I’d say we’ve officially reached the point in the offseason where the media is really mining the rumor mill for anything remotely interesting they can get. Yesterday it was talk that the Yankees might hit the proverbial bank shot and sign Josh Hamilton after all, and today it’s this report in the Daily News that Robinson Cano may be playing elsewhere in 2014. The problem is that there’s really nothing new in the report, nor anything concrete for that matter. It basically just says that Cano isn’t going to give the Yankees any discounts as he angles for his one chance at a big payday, and that he has no problem signing somewhere else if the Yankees don’t match the going rate for his services.

Actually, I take that back. There is one slightly interesting nugget here, but it’s only tangentially related to Cano. Rather, it’s this assessment of the Yankees’ organization from the ever popular rival executive. “I don’t think [Cano] be with the Yankees beyond next season,” they said.…

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Don’t Be So Sure About Youkilis

I'm just not that into you, Kev

(The following is being syndicated from An A-Blog for A-Rod and was originally posted on Thursday morning)

The Winter Meetings will basically be over this afternoon after the Rule 5 Draft...

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Yankees still talking to Ichiro

Though their primary concern at the moment is waiting on a decision from free agent Kevin Youkilis, the Yankees still have a hole to fill in right field, and with that in mind they are still engaged in talks with their own Ichiro Suzuki, tweets Jon Heyman. Ichiro was a pleasant surprise during his time with the Yankees in 2012, including a very strong postseason performance, and would seem to be a natural fit for a team obsessed with avoiding anything more than one year contracts this winter. On the other hand, many have speculated that the Yankees don’t want to have an all left-handed hitting outfield, especially one that includes both Ichiro and fellow light-hitter Brett Gardner.

All the same, both sides seem to prefer a reunion, and I wonder if a lot of the feather fluffing from both sides isn’t designed as a ruse to push the other closer to an agreement.

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Sayonara Andruw?

Via NPB Tracker, it appears that Andruw Jones may be taking his talents to a whole new country in 2013. Nikkan Sports is reporting that the outfielder, who spent the last two seasons in the Bronx, has agreed to play for the Rakuten Golden Eagles for $3.5 million this coming season. If true, it’s a pretty interesting turn for a player with a borderline Hall of Fame case like Jones to take, as it sees like most of those kinds of players (*cough* Johnny Damon *cough*) do whatever they can to hang around and compile counting stats. I certainly can’t think of any who have spent their twilight years playing in another country, especially when there’s a decent chance he could have landed at least a Spring Training invite stateside.

Of course, that almost certainly wasn’t going to come with the Yankees. Jones was a surprisingly valuable player back in 2011, especially in the second half when he absolutely destroyed left handed pitching, but he was just as utterly useless last season.…

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Jayson Nix clears waivers, accepts Triple-A assignment

Jayson Nix was re-signed last week for $900K and was immediately designated for assignment. It was agreed that if he cleared waivers, he’d accept an assignment to Triple A Scranton/Wilkes Barres. Well, he cleared waivers and while he won’t be on the 40-man roster, he will still be with the organization.

Nix batted .243/.306/.384/.690 with four home runs and 18 RBI in 74 games with the Yankees in 2012.

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Yankees avoid arbitration with Gardner

The Yankees have announced that they have agreed to terms on a 2013 salary with Brett Gardner, avoiding arbitration, the team announced today. The speedy outfielder will earn $2.85 million this season, after making just 9 nine starts before being sidelined for most of the season with an elbow injury in 2012.

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2012 Statistical Trends: Ivan Nova’s XBH Allowed

This year he really was Ivan The Terrible

(The following is being syndicated from An A-Blog for A-Rod)

Last week I looked at Robinson Cano‘s disconcerting decline in production against left-handed pitching this...

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Was Marvin Miller bad for players? #Slatepitch

On Wednesday, Hippeaux linked to this piece written by Dan Rosenheck at The Economist that purports to counter the “hagiography” that has followed the death of MLBPA pioneer Marvin Miller. The basis of the charges: that Miller didn’t care about the rank and file baseball players, be it union members with less service time or non-union minor leaguers and even amateurs. The supposed proof for this is that today’s salaries are largely concentrated amongst the “elite” players, with a far smaller share of the pie concentrated amongst the masses. The raw data is interesting, I guess, but I don’t really agree with the conclusions drawn. Furthermore, I’m going to respectfully but forcefully disagree with my colleague and say that not only is Rosenheck’s premise not “compelling,” but rather obvious hogwash.

First of all, let’s take what is supposed to be the damning accusation here, that the free agent pricing mechanism is irrational because it unevenly distributes salary dollars, and note that this simply isn’t true.…

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