The Yankees have contacted DH/first baseman Carlos Pena, the free agent told Rich Herrera and Mel Antonen during an appearance on MLB Network Radio's Home Plate program (Twitter link). Pena also said he's keeping his options open at this point.
We heard earlier today that the Bombers have also been in touch with free agent Johnny Damon, so they're clearly kicking the tires on reasonably priced DH/1B types after trading Jesus Montero to the Mariners on Friday.
After reestablishing himself as an MLB starter with the Rays from 2007-10, Pena hit free agency last offseason and signed a one-year deal with the Cubs. The left-handed hitter, a Boras Corporation client, slugged 28 homers and posted a .225/.357/.462 line. He'll turn 34 in May.
The Yankees' current projected payroll is at about $212MM, according to Marc Carig of the Star-Ledger, who heard earlier in the offseason that New York doesn't want to go above that figure (Twitter links). So, it sounds like the Yanks will either have to stray from their plan, or sign a Damon or Pena type at a fairly steep discount.