The Yankees have been linked to free agent Cuban outfielder Yoenis Cespedes since the day we first heard about him and now Frankie Piliere of Fox Sports has reported that they may be clear front runners in landing him.
There is some thinking that with the new collective bargaining agreement that will limit spending on international free agents starting in July that the Yankees could spend freely on IFA’s while they still can. They have been connected to Cespedes, Yu Darvish, and even Cuban outfielder Jorge Soler.
It makes sense that they would go after Cespedes as he would give them a lot more roster flexibility. They could use him as a fourth outfielder while he gets acclimated to the majors and slide him in for Nick Swisher a year from now. Or they could trade Swisher now and use Cespedes as his immediate replacement. They could even deal Gardner, the Nats keep asking, and use Cespedes as his replacement.
They wouldn’t get the same roster flexibility by signing Soler, who is still just 19. He would probably need at least two and maybe as many as four or five years before he would be ready for the majors.