The Yankees have a plan this offseason, and spending money on the top slugger isn’t one of them. According to Christian Red of the New York Daily News, Yoenis Cespedes can cross out the Yankees as a potential landing spot this winter.
But don’t expect free-agent Cuban slugger Yoenis Cespedes to be one of the Yankees’ targets, despite Cashman saying last week that he’s “talked to Cespedes’ agent (Brodie Van Wagenen)” and that the two sides would talk again.
Cespedes is coming off of a three-year deal with the Mets that he opted out of after just the first season. After his market failed to materialize in a big way last offseason, Cespedes settled for a contract that would guarantee him another shot at free agency this offseason, or $75 million over three seasons.
After betting on himself, Cespedes hit 31 homers and slashed .280/.354/.530 over 543 plate appearances. That’s his best on-base percentage since his rookie season with the Athletics back in 2012.
It’s somewhat strange that Cashman said the two sides would talk again if Cespedes isn’t a part of their offseason plan, but there’s a couple ways that it makes sense. First, the Yankees could just be doing their due diligence, monitoring the market of a player they would be silly not to employ at the right price. Second though, while the Yankees have made attempts to get below the luxury tax, Hal Steinbrenner has made it clear that spending isn’t out of the question. For the Yankees, spending always seems like an enticing option.
Considering that Brett Gardner could be moved this offseason, there is a feasible way that Cespedes could find himself quickly part of the Yankees’ offseason picture. However, as of right now, he isn’t. And while players certainly don’t like to see teams rule them out this early in the offseason, the amount of suitors this time around shouldn’t be an issue for Cespedes.