3 Moves the New York Yankees Should Avoid This Offseason
The New York Yankees are known for making huge signings during the offseason like CC Sabathia, AJ Burnett and Mark Teixeira in 2009.
However, the Yankees should prevent themselves from making high-profile signings like in years past. According to NBC Sports, Hal Steinbrenner said the Yankees "plan to decrease their payroll to below the $189 million luxury tax figure by 2014."
The Yankees are losing seven key players this offseason to free agency, including Ichiro, Nick Swisher and Raul Ibanez.
According to Wally Matthews of River Ave Blues, the Yankees have interest in re-signing Ichiro Suzuki and Raul Ibanez for next year.
Both players had successful 2012 seasons and want to continue their success in New York.
Ichiro told Joel Sherman of the New York Post that he “strongly wants to stay” with the Yankees next season.
However, bringing back Ibanez is completely up to GM Brian Cashman. According to Kristie Ackert of the NY Daily News, Cashman said that Ibanez was a great one-year signing, but his price will go up after his production this year.
The Yankees are also willing to let Swisher go and test the waters of free agency. He is looking for a multi-year deal worth between $11-13 million a year.
Catcher Russell Martin denied a three-year $20 million contract last year and will also test free agency this season.
As the Yankees spend the offseason filling some holes, there are three moves the Yankees should avoid to save some money.
Signing Josh Hamilton
Josh Hamilton is the biggest name in this year’s free-agent class.
The Yankees usually pursue the top free agent and sign him to a lengthy deal for a lot of money.
However, Brian Cashman and the Yankees should not think about signing Hamilton.
According to MLB Rumors, Hamilton is asking for a seven-year deal worth up to $175 million.
The Yankees already have contracts for Alex Rodriguez, CC Sabathia and Mark Teixeira worth over $180 million each.
Adding on another contract of that size would limit the amount of moves the Yankees make in the offseason as they try to lower their salary cap.
There are plenty of other outfielders the Yankees could go after as a replacement for Nick Swisher in right field.
Hamilton is an excellent hitter, but as we saw at the end of the season, he couldn’t get a hit. The Yankees can’t afford to have another player with that kind of performance as the AL East will be much more competitive in 2013.
Signing Another No. 1 Starting Pitcher
There are many options for starting pitchers in this year's free-agent class with Zack Greinke and Kyle Lohse leading the pack.
Greinke was the Los Angeles Angels' No. 4 pitcher during the second half of the 2012 season as he was traded from the Milwaukee Brewers at the end of July.
However, many teams see him as a No. 1 starting pitcher and rightfully so.
Greinke went 15-5 with a 3.48 ERA and 200 strikeouts in 2012.
Lohse went 16-3 with a 2.86 ERA, which was eighth in the league. He also was 2-2 in the postseason with a 4.86 ERA.
The Yankees already have their No.1 pitcher in CC Sabathia. They are losing No. 2 pitcher Hiroki Kuroda and should look to replace his production.
As the Miami Marlins try to revamp their team, the Yankees could be on the receiving end of a Miami deal.
With the Marlins selling off parts, source says Yankees, not surprisingly, have an interest in Nolasco, who has 1 yr $11.5 mil left on deal
— Erik Boland (@eboland11) November 14, 2012
Ricky Nolasco had a modest 2012 season, going 12-13 with a 4.48 ERA. However, a change of scenery could help the 29-year-old get back on track.
If this move happens, the Yankees rotation could be Sabathia, Nolasco, Andy Pettitte, Phil Hughes and Michael Pineda—a rotation that could surprise a lot of teams in 2013.
Relying on Russell Martin to Re-Sign
Russell Martin finished the 2012 season on a strong note and improved his free-agent stock, going 10-for-35 with three home runs and five RBI in his last 10 games.
The Yankees currently don’t have a starting catcher for the 2013 season. According to CBS Sports, “They (the Yankees) like Martin very much, and want him back.”
Rangers’ catcher Mike Napoli, who hit 24 home runs and 56 RBI, is also garnering interest from the Yankees. He could be an everyday catcher, but could also fill in for DH when necessary.
The catching free-agent class isn’t that deep, but the Yankees shouldn’t worry if they don’t land either catcher in the offseason.
The Yankees can look at their bench for a starting catcher. Chris Stewart, Francisco Cervelli and Austin Romine could rotate behind the plate throughout the season.
They also have young catchers in their farm system, including Gary Sanchez and J.R. Murphy.
I’m not saying the Yankees shouldn’t send an offer to Martin, because they should, but they should not fret if he declines. Although limited, the Yankees have options at the catcher position.