Yankees GM Brian Cashman says he intends to hold onto his 2011 first round draft choice, according to Chad Jennings of the Journal News. That means the team won’t sign any of the three remaining free agents tied to draft pick compensation: Rafael Soriano, Carl Pavano and Grant Balfour.
“I will not lose our No. 1 draft pick,” Cashman said. “I would have for Cliff Lee. I won’t lose our No. 1 draft pick for anyone else.”
Since Soriano, Pavano and Balfour turned down their teams’ offers of arbitration after being ranked as Type A free agents, clubs have to surrender a top 2011 pick to sign them. The Yankees’ first round pick (31st overall) is unprotected.
Though the Yankees were in contact with Soriano and agent Scott Boras, they are not pursuing him. It's hardly shocking to hear that the Yankees are out on Pavano, who spent four injury-plagued seasons in the Bronx and earned nearly $40MM in the process.