Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Free Agent Target: Jhonny Peralta

(Courtesy of Getty Images)

Shortstop has undoubtedly been the position of most activity so far this offseason for the Yankees.  They re-signed captain Derek Jeter to a new 1-year contract, they've reportedly agreed to terms on a new 1-year deal to bring back Brendan Ryan as his defensive caddy and injury insurance policy, and they've been heavily connected to leading free agent shortstop Stephen Drew.  So it comes as no surprise that the Yanks are also showing interest in Jhonny Peralta, the next best free agent shortstop on the market after Drew.  Both Ken Rosenthal and Jon Morosi of Fox Sports have tweeted the report, which is enough for me to add Peralta to the ever-expanding pile of free agent targets.

In keeping with the "no stone unturned" approach to the most important infield position, it's only right to profile Peralta and see how he might fit as a part of next year's team.

Yanks Considering A Raul Reunion?

Raul Ibanez was one of the players deemed too rich for the Yankees' blood last offseason.  They dragged their feet making him an offer and he opted to take one that Seattle made him instead.  According to a new report from The Post, the Yanks might be looking to right that previous wrong this offseason:

"The Post has also learned the Yankees have an interest in bringing back the popular and productive Raul Ibanez to be the DH against right-handed pitching."

The Yankees love having that lefty DH role filled and on paper Ibanez would be an ideal candidate for the job.  He hit .242/.306/.487 (.344 wOBA) with 29 HR in 496 PA for the Mariners last year, an across-the-board improvement from the .325 wOBA/19 HR season he had for the Bombers in 2012.  He can also still fake it in the outfield if needed and his splits against R/L pitchers in 2013 were almost identical.

The A-Rod Appeal Resumes

(Photo courtesy of Sweeny Murti)

The sides were back together yesterday for the continuation of Alex Rodriguez's suspension appeal against Major League Baseball.  After not being well enough to make it to New York for a scheduled interview with MLB last Friday, The Horse was in good enough shape to rejoin his legal team yesterday (yay!).

This is supposed to be the final session for this hearing and the early word is that it will go continuously through the next 10 days if needed.  No breaks, no taking weekends off, it sounds like the goal is to get the hearing wrapped up by Thanksgiving so the arbitrator can take his time needed to consider everything and hand down his ruling.  That could take another 3-4 weeks, which would push the decision into late December, after the Winter Meetings are over.  A-Rod, Bud Seling, and Randy Levine could all be called to testify during this session.

The Yankees have been saying all along that they're operating under the assumption that A-Rod and his salary will be around next season, but their aggressive actions on the free agent market speak otherwise.  If something unexpected happens and A-Rod's suspension is completely lifted, we'll see how true those "payroll goal" statements really are.