According to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com, the Yankees are sticking to a tight budget in their search for a left fielder. That means that Xavier Nady has priced himself out of New York and was also the reason they did not match San Francisco’s 2-year $12 million offer to Mark DeRosa.
“No chance on Matt Holliday, no chance on Jason Bay,” a Yankees official told the New York Daily News on Monday. “Zero. None. Underline it.”
The fact that DeRosa and Jason Bay are now off the market is not going to cause the Yankees to panic either.
“There’s plenty of time,” the official told the newspaper. “There’s no hurry. And there are a ton of outfielders out there. We are just tweaking at this point. We’ll sign an outfielder between now and spring training.”
By my estimate the payroll is already at $204.48 million which is already over the Yankees budget of $200 million so this news makes sense. The Yankees have historically lied about where their budget is, such as a year ago when they said they would not be able to afford Mark Teixeira, but this time it rings true. They have never really gone too much further over $200 million and they do seem genuinely set on the idea of waiting until next offseason to spend.
They are expected to deal at least one pitcher, either Chad Gaudin or Sergio Mitre, but trading one or even both would not free up a lot of space necessary to land one of the remaining big names and the rest of the roster seems fairly set in place. It is possible the Yankees could go into the season with Brett Gardner as one of their outfielders, but it also seems possible they could sign a cheaper free agent, Reed Johnson’s name has been out there a lot.