Yankees Set Saturday Deadline to Deal Burnett, Hope to Sign Chavez and Ibanez

Michael NargiSenior Analyst IFebruary 15, 2012

Burnett might be wearing a different uniform by Sunday.
Burnett might be wearing a different uniform by Sunday.Jamie Squire/Getty Images

A.J. Burnett is expected to be dealt before pitchers and catchers report to spring training on Sunday.

Ken Rosenthal reports that the New York Yankees have a "soft deadline" of Saturday for a trade to be completed. 

Rosenthal also notes that the Yankees are expected to sign Eric Chavez and Raul Ibanez quickly after completion of a deal. The Yankees might sign them even if a deal is not done.

New York obviously wants to be able to go into spring training without the elephant in the room on Sunday. 

The Pittsburgh Pirates and Yankees are not seeing eye to eye. Who could blame the Pirates for playing hard ball and trying to take advantage of the Yankees? They know they have no legitimate competition for Burnett and they know the Yankees do not want him.

Every day that goes by, the Yankees are losing leverage in this deal.

Brian Cashman looks to have no other viable suitors for Burnett. The Los Angeles Angels were willing to put together a deal that included former Yankee Bobby Abreu, but sources say Burnett would not waive his no-trade clause to go to L.A.

If there is no deal done, the Yankees season will not get off to the right start. Burnett is bound to bring an awkwardness into any room he steps in to and any fields he takes the mound on.

The clock is ticking for New York to remove Burnett from the Bronx.