The Yankees have, rather notably, failed to sign a single free agent to a major league contract this winter. But that doesn’t mean the team hasn’t tried. In fact, the team had a two-year deal for between $11.5MM and $12MM in place with righty Tommy Hunter, Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports. But an unidentified issue cropped up in his physical, leading the club to blow up the deal (the timing of which is unclear). Hunter ultimately received just $2MM in guaranteed money from the Indians, of course, though that perhaps also reflected the fact that he needed core muscle surgery in early January and will miss the start of the season.
Here’s more from New York and the rest of the AL East:
- The Yankees’ opportunistic acquisition of Aroldis Chapman, in the midst of a still-ongoing investigation into domestic violence allegations, raises some hard and uncomfortable questions for the organization, Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports writes. Meanwhile, New York is still waiting to learn what kind of punishment may be doled out, Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News reports. Indeed, the club is not even sure when it will be informed of a decision. Chapman himself says that he has been interviewed by the league and would appeal any suspension, Passan tweets.
- Rays president of baseball operations Mathew Silverman indicated that he’s not ruling out trade activity this spring, as Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times tweets. Silverman explains that the “transaction window is open longer” now than in the past, with other organizations seeming to show an increased willingness to strike deals during camp.
- While the Red Sox are optimistic that Hanley Ramirez can be a productive contributor at first base, writes ESPN.com’s Buster Olney, the club has ways to fill in if the experiment fails. Of course, as Olney notes, there’s plenty of time for assessment before any tough choices are made.