Yankees interested in Manny Ramirez?

Manny Ramirez dropped off the face of the MLB planet last year but he’s still somewhat newsworthy – especially when the Yankees are interested.

According to Jack Curry of the YES Network, the Yankees have had internal discussions about signing Man-Ram. The club is looking for a right-handed bat to add to their bench, although even Curry admits that a deal with Ramirez is unlikely. He’s a poor defensive outfielder and even at his age, it’s doubtful he’ll want to come off the bench. The Bombers already have a DH in Jorge Posada, so he wouldn’t be a fit there either.

The Bombers are pretty set in the outfield with Curtis Granderson, Nick Swisher and Brett Gardner. They still need to add a starting pitcher (or three), but leave it to the Yanks to try and acquire as many bats as possible. If their pitching is as bad as it current looks on paper, they’ll need as much offense as possible.

Assuming Ramirez doesn’t sign with NY, he could land with the Rays, who are interested in signing the 38-year-old.

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Yankees’ offer to Derek Jeter more than fair

New York Yankees' shortstop Derek Jeter warms up before the Yankees take on the Texas Rangers in game four of the ALCS at Yankee Stadium on October 19, 2010 in New York.   UPI/Monika Graff Photo via Newscom

If SI.com’s Jon Heyman’s report is true, then the Yankees’ offer for shortstop Derek Jeter is more than reasonable.

According to Heyman, the Yankees are on the verge of offering their captain a three-year, $45 million contract. Jeter is reportedly looking for at least a four-year deal, but given his age and declining skills, it’s hard to argue with whether or not the Yankees’ offer is fair.

Jeter means more to the Yankees than what he does on the field, but it’s not as if the Bombers are low-balling him here. He’s no longer a strong defensive shortstop and he’s coming off a year in which he batted .270 over 663 at bats. He posted career numbers in 2009 but nobody expected him to repeat that effort in 2010, which he didn’t.

In some respects, the Yankees have to overpay. Again, his contributions to the organization run deeper than his stat line and New York has to be willing to fork over a little more than Jeter would probably get on the open market. It’s about showing respect to the player that helped lead them to five World Series titles over the past two decades.

But let’s get real here. Jeter wouldn’t get three years and $45 million on the open market – not at 36. It’s up to his agent to get the best deal possible and Jeter’s camp may wind up asking for more, but the Yankees’ current deal is certainly fair for all parties involved.

Yankees not expected to pursue Crawford or Werth?

Philadelphia Phillies' Jayson Werth waits his turn to bat against the Washington Nationals during the first inning of their MLB National League baseball game in Washington, September 27, 2010.  REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

Here’s a shock: The Yankees aren’t interested in a couple of high-priced free agents.

According to Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News, the Yankees aren’t expected to pursue Carl Crawford or Jayson Werth this offseason. As Feinsand writes, the Bombers already have Brett Gardner (who is coming off a breakout year), Nick Swisher (who was solid) and Curtis Granderson (whom the Yankees traded for last offseason). So unless they parted with one of those guys, where would Crawford or Werth fit in?

Of course, these are the Yankees we’re talking about. They want Cliff Lee and will probably stop at nothing to lure him to the Big Apple. But if they miss out on him, does anyone actually believe they wouldn’t pursue another big name? There’s no way. The Yankees don’t hunt through the bargain bins, either – they go top shelf.

I’m not a big fan of Werth, but he would be perfect for the Yankees because they play in a kiddies’ park just like the Phillies do. Werth’s power numbers wouldn’t drop playing at Yankee Stadium like they would if he went to San Francisco. (I’m not saying the Giants are interested; just using their park as an example.)

If I were to make a guess, I think either Werth or Crawford wind up in Boston. The Red Sox are willing to spend and they need to upgrade their outfield. That said, Werth isn’t a lefty so I’m wondering how his power numbers would translate with the “Green Monster” out in left field.

Yankees miss out on Cliff Lee…for now.

Texas Rangers starting pitcher Cliff Lee pitches against the Baltimore Orioles in the first inning of their MLB American League baseball game in Arlington, Texas July 10, 2010. REUTERS/Mike Stone (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

When the news sprawled across my computer screen last Friday, I couldn’t help but say aloud, “Right on time, Yankees.” (And yes, I like to talk to myself.)

By the middle of last week, the Rangers had emerged as the favorites to acquire left-hander Cliff Lee from the Mariners. The sticking point in the deal appeared to be whether or not Texas would part with top prospect Justin Smoak, whom Seattle GM Jack Zduriencik coveted.

Either way, it seemed as though the Rangers were way out in front in the race for Lee. That was, of course, until the Yankees got involved.

Reports surfaced early Friday morning that Brian Cashman and the Yanks were on the verge of acquiring Lee. They were prepared to give up their top prospect, Jesus Montero, but the two sides couldn’t agree on whom the second player in the deal would be and the Rangers wound up getting Lee anyway.

But if history is any indication, Lee won’t be in Texas for very long. His contract is up at the end of the year and we all know Cashman does his best work at the negotiating table. (Not that throwing millions of dollars at a player with reckless abandon in attempts to sign him is difficult.)

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Zambrano to Yankees? Agent says no.

Agent Barry Praver said that he hasn’t heard from Cubs’ general manager Jim Hendry regarding a New York Post report that stated the Yankees inquired about a trade for starter Carlos Zambrano.

From FOXSports.com:

Praver said he has not heard from Cubs general manager Jim Hendry about a possible deal. Zambrano, who has a full no-trade clause, would need to agree to any trade.

“Jim has not approached us about Carlos waiving the no trade provision of his contract nor is Carlos interested in waiving it,” Praver said. — Ken Rosenthal

According to MLB.com, Zambrano is not interested in waiving his no-trade clause in order to join the Yankees. Even if he were, the asking price for Big Z would probably be too much for New York, who would no doubt have to part with a big leaguer like Melky Cabrera or Brett Gardner.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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