Yankees Not Scouting Joe Blanton?

5:05pm: Joel Sherman of the New York post says the Yankees were not watching Blanton specifically.  The scouts were just doing normal coverage.

12:22am: According to John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle, the Yankees had a scout watching Oakland starter Joe Blanton on Sunday.

Blanton, 27, saw his salary escalate to $3.7MM this year as he reached his arbitration years.  He’ll remain under team control through the 2010 season.  The projection would change if Blanton switched to pinstripes, but PECOTA sees a 4.36 ERA in 187 innings from him this year (a performance valued at $8.8MM).

The Yankees are relying on Chien-Ming Wang and Andy Pettitte to front their rotation.  They’ll round it out with Phil Hughes, Mike Mussina, and Ian KennedyJoba Chamberlain is expected to join the rotation mid-summer.  I imagine the Yanks are just doing their due diligence with Blanton; a preseason trade doesn’t seem likely.

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