This just in: the Red Sox have signed Alfredo Aceves to a Major League deal.
Aceves was great for the Yankees in 2009. He pitched 84 innings in 43 games with a 3.54 ERA and a 10-1 record. He missed most of 2010 with a back injury and is not expected to be ready to start the season after he needed surgery to fix his clavicle that he broke in a bike accident.
So Brian Cashman released Aceves because he didn’t want him on a guaranteed contract and eating up a spot on the 40-man roster. Yes, he released Aceves while Damaso Marte, who probably won’t pitch at all in 2011, still takes up a spot.
To me this is a very minor move. Back injuries are nasty and there is no guarantee that Aceves will even pitch effectively in 2011. But still, this didn’t need to happen. The Yankees, who have nearly a $200 million payroll were pinching pennies and now lost a potential starter and difference maker in the bullpen to the Red Sox. For what, $500,000?
Again, I don’t want to overstate the importance of this move. The Yankees bullpen should be fine and Aceves wouldn’t have been the rotation piece that puts them over the top. Still, it makes no sense for this to have happened. Not everybody needs to be signed on a non-guaranteed minor league deal.