It’s time for the Yankees to stop being international spectators.
The Bombers have watched from the sidelines in recent years as teams gambled on Aroldis Chapman, Yoenis Cespedes and Yu Darvish, hitting the jackpot each time.
It was easy to understand the Bombers’ hesitation, the wounds from the Kei Igawa disaster fresh in their minds seven years later. The statute of limitations is over. It’s time to jump back into the big-money international market, with a do-whatever-it-takes approach to signing Japanese ace Masahiro Tanaka.
On Christmas morning, the question all of baseball has been waiting on was finally answered: Yes, kids, there really is a Masahiro Tanaka. And he is coming to America.
You wait some more.
Like another 30 days. The way the new posting system for Japanese players works — passed over the objections of Tanaka’s Rakuten Golden Eagles team — once a player is posted, a 30-day free-for-all ensues. Any major league team can negotiate with him during a 30-day window, which will reportedly begin Thursday. Yes, it is possible he could reach an agreement with a club before the 30 days expires, but, come on, you expect another Christmas baseball miracle?
John Tomase (@jtomase) of the Boston Herald discusses the wounded lineup of the Boston Red Sox with the offseason subtraction of Ellsbury, Saltalamacchia and possibly Stephen Drew…
Barring a trade, the Red Sox have finished their offseason game of roster arithmetic, with subtraction being the operation of choice.
Gone are Jacoby Ellsbury, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, and for the time being, Stephen Drew. They probably will deal a starting pitcher before all is said and done, too.
In their places are rookies Jackie Bradley Jr. and Xander Bogaerts, as well as veteran catcher A.J. Pierzynski. The high volume of signings that marked last offseason wasn’t necessary this time around.
Don’t expect the Orioles to resolve their closer situation any time soon.
As the club tries to distance itself from the mess the situation with Grant Balfour created, the Orioles’ external search still seems to be focused on free-agent right-hander Fernando Rodney. Interest in Rodney has reportedly picked up, both in general and from the Orioles, but it appears that the sides are far apart.
The possibility of the Orioles opening spring training with Tommy Hunter as the team’s closer is becoming more real by the day. Once the team dealt 50-save closer Jim Johnson to Oakland, the club saw Hunter as a fallback option. But now he’s turning into much more of a possibility.