It was 100 years ago today that legendary announcer Mel Allen was born in Birmingham, Alabama. Allen is best remembered as the voice of the Yankees from 1939 to 1964, though his long career also included Indians play-by-play, NFL and college football games and hosting This Week In Baseball from 1977 until his death in 1996.
Here are a few Yankee-related items that may make you say "How a-BOUT that?!"…
- Robinson Cano and the Yankees aren't making much progress in their initial contract talks, CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports. There is "a significant difference in either talent assessment or valuation" between the two sides. The Yankees see Cano as a top-10 or top-15 player in the game, while agent Scott Boras sees his client as a top-five talent — a small gap on paper, but one worth tens of millions in negotiations. If Cano does hit the open market, MLBTR's Tim Dierkes cites the second baseman as "the clear number one choice" as the best free agent of the 2013-14 offseason.
- When Phil Hughes worked out his one-year deal with the Yankees for 2013, "the topic of an extension was hardly mentioned," Andy McCullough of the Star-Ledger writes. Hughes is eligible for free agency after the season but he doesn't expect New York to try and lock him up early. “Coming up with this organization as a pitcher, you know you’re not going to be signed long-term before (free agency),” Hughes said. “Nobody tells you. You just know. No pitcher is getting a long-term deal before free agency.”
- The Yankees' best prospects are in the lower levels of their farm system, which an executive tells MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince is due in part to the club lack of success at finding quality waiver claim pickups or minor league free agents, but also because New York is always successful and thus drafting near the end of the first round. "Depth is an issue in the very short run, but the talent they have coming up in the system is actually surprisingly good," the executive said. "It's impossible to draft a lot of talent with later and limited picks."