The New York Yankees have been fairly active this offseason with the signings of Brian McCann, Jacoby Ellsbury, Carlos Beltran, Brian Roberts and Matt Thornton. However, it appears as if everything is now in a holding pattern as the Yankees await word from Major League Baseball regarding the future of Alex Rodriguez and await word on whether or not Masahiro Tanaka will be posted by his Japanese club.
Right now, rumor has it that Tanaka’s situation should receive some clarification by Christmas. So far, it looks like Tanaka won’t be posted this offseason. That would severely hamper the Yankees’ plans for adding quality starting pitching as they are not expected to go after Ubaldo Jimenez, Matt Garza or Ervin Santana.
Then, there is Rodriguez who is appealing a 211-game suspension by MLB for his involvement with Biogenesis. He has, of course, appealed that and both Rodriguez and the Yankees are waiting on word if his suspension will be upheld, reduced or thrown out.
The Yankees have said that they will either stay under the $189 million luxury tax threshold or go way over it. It is widely believed that if Tanaka isn’t posted and Rodriguez is suspended for an extended period the Yankees will stay under the luxury tax. They have made Tanaka their number one priority in the starting pitching market and to see him not posted would be a huge blow, especially when you consider that the in-house options for the rotation spots behind C.C. Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda and Ivan Nova are Michael Pineda, Vidal Nuno, David Phelps and Adam Warren. Brett Marshall was just designated for assignment so he isn’t in the equation anymore.
If Rodriguez isn’t suspended for the whole season or a long period of it then the Yankees will likely make a run at Stephen Drew who is reportedly waiting on Rodriguez’s situation to become clear before making a choice. Drew could very easily find about 600 at-bats playing some shortstop, third and second base for the Yankees.
The Yankees offseason and, quite possibly, the 2014 season hang on the fates of Tanaka and A-Rod.