Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Rumor Round-Up: Yankees In on Yunel Escobar? Out on Stephen Drew?

With Alex Rodriguez out for a few months and the Winter Meetings going on in Nashville, expect the New York Yankees and Brian Cashman to be linked to several free-agents and trade candidates throughout the next few days.

Late last night, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports tweeted that the Yankees were among four teams that were expressing interest in Marlins shortstop Yunel Escobar. Buster Olney of ESPN reported that the team was not very involved in those talks.

Escobar has American League East playing experience from two and a half years with the Blue Jays, where he hit .272/.335/.373.

Olney also reports that the Yankees have no shot of signing free-agent Stephen Drew as a utility infielder or back-up player. He is on the market seeking a full-time job as a starter. Ian Stewart was tossed into consideration as an option by Tyler Kepner of the New York Times, who notes that the infielder is healthy.
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The Boston Red Sox are a little hesitant on making a move to sign Nick Swisher now that they realize that they have to surrender a draft pick in order to do so. There appears to be no shot that Swisher returns to the Yankees in 2013 and he is testing the free-agent market, but could wait to sign until Josh Hamilton is off the market.
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Jim Bowden of ESPN called the Yankees a dark horse in the Josh Hamilton negotiations. He's been the only one to really link the two together, especially since it would seem unlikely for New York to be able to sign him without abandoning their sub-$189M payroll plan.
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Jerry Crasnick of ESPN tweeted that the Yankees, Red Sox, and Cubs were checking in on Shane Victorino. After the Angel Pagan and BJ Upton deals, he could have his head in the clouds as to how much money he can make this offseason. There are a few other National League teams with interest.

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