The Yankees are thought to be interested in free agent outfielder Torii Hunter because he would be a cheaper alternative to Nick Swisher and free agent Josh Hamilton, but it turns out that even Hunter may be too expensive for them.
According to Joel Sherman of the NY Post, the Yankees would not even be willing to offer Hunter a two-year, $20 million contract this offseason. Even in a weak free agent market that probably won’t be enough to finish in the top three biggest contracts outfielders will sign this offseason.
“We are not going to be over the $189 million,” Yankees GM Brian Cashman definitively told Sherman.
I would like to hope that this has more to do with the player’s age and the fact that they want to avoid a multi-year deal. Hopefully they would be open to something in the $10-$12 million range on a one year deal that wouldn’t affect the 2014 budget because it’s one thing for the Yankees to be smart and budget conscious, but $10 million isn’t a lot for an outfielder for the Yankees. If they are unwilling to to spend even that much on an outfielder their offense is going to take a hit next year.
Cheaper alternatives to Hunter could be Cody Ross or Ichiro Suzuki which should be good news for Ichiro fans. If you are hoping that this could open the door for a Justin Upton trade, Sherman says that the Yankees are not in on him right now.