The Yankees will be moving channels — at least for a few games (SBJ, Jan. 20).
Twenty-one games of the Yankees season will now air on WPIX, a station they used to be on. The Yankees slate of games will air alongside a 25-game slate of games for the Mets.
The YES Network will still produce the games, so the same set of announcers will still be around.
These games would normally have aired on channel 9, WOR, but the two sides couldn’t come to an agreement and the Yankees jumped back to WPIX.
The Yankees held a private workout with Cuban SS Yoan Moncada (Baseball America, Jan. 20).
“Scouts have called Moncada the next Jorge Soler and his skills have been matched up against Yasiel Puig’s at the same age,” reporter Jesse Sanchez wrote last month (MLB.com, Nov. 2). He could eventually land a $30-40 million signing bonus, according to two GMs and two league executives (Passan, Nov. 13).
“That ($40 million) would obliterate any team’s bonus pool, and a signing team would have to pay a 100 percent luxury tax on all overages, in addition to subsequently being prohibited from spending more than $300,000 on a player in the next two signing periods,” explains Steve Adams (MLBTR, Nov. 13), who believes Moncada will likely wait to sign a deal until later this summer.
That said, “He is worth going way over your international spending pool,” a scouting director told MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo, who said Moncada looks like a five-tool player better suited at third base or second base than shortstop.
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The Yankees reached one-year agreements with their three remaining players in arbitration, settling with pitchers Nathan Eovaldi, Michael Pineda and David Carpenter (The Score, Jan. 16).
Eovaldi, acquired from Miami last month, settled at $3.3 million. He was 6-14 with a 4.37 ERA 199 2/3 innings last season.
Carpenter was acquired from Atlanta on New Years Day. He recorded a 6-4 season with three saves and a 3.54 ERA in 65 games in 2014. He reached a $1,275,000 deal with the Yankees.
Pineda, making his return from shoulder surgery, which sidelined him for two seasons settled for $2.1 million.
Friday’s agreements follow a $3.3 million, one-year deal with Ivan Nova on Wednesday.
The Yankees formally announced the signing of 2B/SS Stephen Drew to a one-year deal.
The deal is reportedly for $5 million, and the Associated Press reports the agreement includes $1.5 million in performance bonuses: $500,000 each for 450, 500 and 550 plate appearances.
Drew, who turns 32 in March, was acquired by the Yankees from Boston on July 31. He hit .150 with three homers and 15 RBIs in 155 plate appearances for New York while making 34 appearances at second base and 12 at shortstop as a backup to Jeter.
For the season, counting his Red Sox numbers, he hit .162 with seven homers and 26 RBI. He struck out 75 times in 271 at-bats.
In order to make room on the 40-man roster, OF Eury Perez was designated for assignment.
The Yankees made several additions to their coaching staff this week, including new hitting coach Jeff Pentland. And what’s Pentland most excited about? Working with Didi Gregorius, of course (Daily News, Jan. 15).
Pentland, who called Derek Jeter’s replacement “an incredibly athletic player,” is in his 17th season as a major league hitting coach.
“He’s got a huge future and I’m very excited he’s a Yankee,” Pentland said of Gregorius on Thursday. “I’ve always thought there’s a lot in there. We got to get it out and work it. The problem with young players, you have to be more patient.
“But I think this guy has tremendous upside.”
For Pentland, only a few days into his job, the next step is getting to know Gregorius — and his other players.
“It’s my job to earn their trust and be there for them and develop them as they need,” Pentland said. “I work off being visual. I think I have the knowledge or I wouldn’t be there.”
Rookies aside, the veteran hitting coach has worked with a number of current Yankees over the years including coaching Carlos Beltran in Kansas City.
“I had Carlos when he was obviously a little younger,” Pentland said. “He and I had a great rapport and I’m sure that will continue. He’s not 25 anymore, but there’s plenty left in him — his experience and knowledge of hitting. He’s been in New York before. We just have to keep him healthy.”
Alex Rodriguez, who was recently reinstated after serving a one-year suspension for PED use, believes that he can beat out Chase Headley for the starting job at third base (Marcus, Jan. 15).
Headley just signed a four-year deal with the Yankees, worth $52 million, but that is of no matter to Rodriguez. Says a source close to Rodriguez:
“Alex’s mind is that job’s not Headley’s, it’s Alex’s to lose. That’s what he thinks. Alex is going into training camp thinking that he is the starting third baseman, that if there’s a competition, Headley’s got to win it from him. It doesn’t matter about the money, what they signed Headley for.”
When he was made aware of Rodriguez’s thoughts, Yankees GM Brian Cashman said that “we signed our third baseman” — meaning Headley — continuing that Rodriguez needs to “come in and compete for as much playing time as he can possibly get.”
Rodriguez, 39, has three years and $61 million remaining on his contract.