2011 MLB Yankee Trade Rumors: Is Francisco Liriano On His Way To The Bronx?

Brian HoltContributor IFebruary 11, 2011

MINNEAPOLIS - OCTOBER 06: Francisco Liriano #47 of the Minnesota Twins delivers a pitch in the second inning against the New York Yankees during game one of the ALDS on October 6, 2010 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

According to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune:

"With six pitchers vying for five spots in the Twins starting rotation, one possible solution is trading Franciso Liriano. Speaking to team officials recently, I’ve been surprised how open they are to this possibility, but the logic makes sense.

Liriano, 27, can become a free agent after the 2012 season. Coming off a resurgent year, he might never have a higher trade value.

One thing is clear, the Twins don’t plan to sign him long term. Last weekend, they avoided arbitration with a one-year, $4.3 million deal. From what I’ve heard, their long-term talks went nowhere, with Liriano’s camp hinting it wanted a three-year, $39 million contract."

While not mentioned in the Star-Tribune quote, it has been noted that the Yankees have inquired about Liriano at least once this offseason. If the Yankees can pull this off without including Jesus Montero in the deal, it could be a coup for a starting rotation desperately in need of a solid starter. Last season Liriano won 14 games with a 3.62 ERA and 201 strike outs. Although he missed the 2007 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery, his play last year showed the potential for a return to his 2006 form. As long as the price isn't too high, it may be a risk worth taking for the Yankees.