Yankees free agency and trade buzz: Anthony Rizzo is Astros’ top free agent target for first base
Here is the latest free agency and trade buzz surrounding the Yankees..
Nov. 14, 8:15 p.m.
The Houston Astros have “identified” Anthony Rizzo as their No. 1 free-agent target at first base, according to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal.
After he opted-out of his contract, New York extended Rizzo a qualifying offer to stay for another season at the hitter-friendly Yankee Stadium before pursuing a multi-year deal next offseason.
With the elimination of most infield shifts in 2023, the left-handed-hitting Rizzo is likely to see his batting average get a boost when facing more traditional defensive alignments. The question is whether Rizzo, who will garner more interest in the market because of the shift, can strike a better contract now or later.
Rosenthal notes the Astros are considering re-signing Yuli Gurriel and pursuing free agent Jose Abreu at first. And signing Rizzo would see them not only bolster the World Series-winning roster but also see them weaken the team they swept in the ALCS.
Nov. 10, 4:55 p.m.
The Yankees have expressed interest in Japanese OF Masataka Yoshida, according to The New York Post’s Jon Heyman.
Yoshida, 29, has a career slash line of .326/.419/.538. with 135 home runs, 164 doubles, and 474 RBI over 781 games in seven seasons.
In 2022 with the Orix Buffaloes, Yoshida slashed .335/.447/.561 with 21 homers, 28 doubles, and 88 RBI to go along with a career-high 80 walks and just 41 strikeouts at the plate.
Yankees GM Brian Cashman said that he’s “aware of him,” while another person with the Yankees told The Post that they are interested in the lefty.
Nov. 10, 2:15 p.m.
The Yankees announced a few roster moves on Thursday afternoon, including outfielder Tim Locastro electing free agency rather than accepting an outright assignment.
The 30-year-old Ithaca College product was traded to the Yankees from Arizona in July 2021 and then re-signed with the Yankees last offseason. In 38 big-league games in 2022, Locastro slashed just .186/.239/.349 with two homers and four RBI.
Additionally, the Yankees added RHP Jhony Brito and LHP Matt Krook to the major league roster.
Nov. 9, 8:20 p.m.
Yankees GM Brian Cashman told MLB Network’s Jon Morosi that he has been “listening and engaging” on multiple trade possibilities during the GM Meetings in Las Vegas this week.
Cashman added that includes inquiries about the team’s many infielders.
With Anthony Volpe waiting in the wings, the Yankees would have to make room for him or one of the free-agent shortstops on the market. Oswald Peraza and Oswaldo Cabrera have appeared in the big leagues and could have some value, while Gleyber Torres‘ name did come up in trade talks at this season’s trade deadline.
After Anthony Rizzo opted out of his contract, the confirmed infielders on the roster for the Yankees include Peraza, Cabrera, Torres, Josh Donaldson, DJ LeMahieu and Isiah Kiner-Falefa.
Nov. 7, 8:34 p.m.
Anthony Rizzo opted out of his 2023 contract with the Yankees and is now a free agent, according to MLB Network.
He signed a two-year, $32 million contract with the Yankees on March 17.
The deal included a $16 million player option for the 2023 season.
In 130 regular-season games this past year, the 33-year-old Rizzo slashed .224/.338/.480 with 32 home runs and 75 RBI.
Nov. 7, 10:53 a.m.
The Yankees are picking up the $15 million option on RHP Luis Severino for the 2023 season, the team announced Monday.
The move was expected, with GM Brian Cashman saying this past Friday that the team planned to exercise the option.
“I haven’t talked to anybody yet about it, but he’s a really impactful pitcher, so the answer to that would be an easy yes,” Cashman said at the Yankees’ end-of-season news conference.
Severino, who will turn 29 in February, had a 3.18 ERA (3.79 FIP) and 1.00 WHIP while striking out 112 in 102 innings in 2022, but injuries limited him to just 19 starts.
In two appearances in the 2022 postseason, Severino allowed six runs in 11 innings.
Source: Yahoo Sports