Results tagged ‘ A.J. Burnett ’

Yankees receiving two Pirates prospects

The identities of the other players being discussed in the A.J. Burnett trade have been learned by MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo.

They are: OF Exicardo Cayones and RHP Diego Moreno (click for stats/bios).

Moreno, 25, spent most of last year at Class A Bradenton and got as far as Double-A Altoona for seven games. He has a 2.41 ERA in 194 Minor League innings, and was 2-4 with a 3.63 ERA in 41 games at his combined two levels last year, finishing 21 games. At Double-A, Moreno had a 4.91 ERA in 11 innings, and he has lit radar guns up in the mid-to-high 90′s.

Back in July 2010 while with Altoona, Moreno was disciplined by the Pirates for unprofessional behavior and was sent back to Bradenton to serve out a suspension. Pirates GM Neal Huntington told MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch at the time that Moreno’s actions had been “untrustworthy.”

“We have a certain standard that we expect of our players,” Huntington said. “Certainly at the Double-A level, we need to be able to trust our players. We’ve addressed it and addressed it aggressively. Hopefully, he’ll learn from it and move beyond it.”

The Pirates didn’t protect Moreno in December’s Rule 5 Draft.

Cayones, 20, played in the Gulf Coast League and with Class A State College last year. A product of Venezuela, he throws left and bats left, but he struggled in the New York-Penn League (.063 batting average in 32 at-bats, spanning 11 games). He hit .293 in 27 GCL games last year.

As expected, since the Pirates are paying $13 million of Burnett’s contract, the Yankees aren’t getting back any Major League-ready talent. There are qualities to like about both players, it seems, but they’re far from sure bets.

The A.J. trade watch continues

Valentine’s Day is upon us, and A.J. Burnett is still slated to report to camp in Tampa, Fla. by Sunday with the rest of the Yankees’ pitchers and catchers.

It also remains very possible – and, some feel, likely – that Burnett could be changing his travel plans and heading to Bradenton, Fla. to see what life would be like as a member of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

A source told MLB.com over the weekend that the Pirates are “optimistic” that the Burnett trade will eventually go through, and it would seem to be in the Yankees’ best interest to do it before Burnett gets to camp. With four teams said to be interested in Burnett to some level, there is a level of confidence that the Yankees can unload him and save some of the $33 million that he is owed, even if it winds up not being to Pittsburgh.

The New York Post reports the key number appears to be $13 million; the Pirates haven’t yet agreed to pick up that much.

Is there a chance this all gets turned around before then? There sure is. It’s not impossible to picture Burnett standing at his George M. Steinbrenner Field locker, explaining how he handled all of the speculation. But I don’t know if the Yankees would enjoy enjoy a camp where all eyes are trained on the daily Grapefruit League progress reports of Burnett vs. Phil Hughes vs. Freddy Garcia.

  • There’s also another interesting nugget in the Post today from Joel Sherman, who notes that there is some concern that free agent Johnny Damon has sacrificed some of his plate discipline to chase 3,000 hits — which might be part of why the Yankees don’t seem too hot on his trail for their DH opening. Damon has made it no secret that he wants to get there, in part to boost his Hall of Fame candidacy, and there are some numbers to back up the suggestion. Sherman points out that Damon’s on-base percentage fell 29 points last year, his walk ratio dipped to 7.9 per 100 plate appearances, and Fangraphs.com reports that Damon chased 31.3 percent of pitches outside of the strike zone.

Yankees, Pirates discussing A.J. Burnett trade

The Yankees and Pirates have discussed a possible A.J. Burnett trade, with the Yankees willing to pick up a portion of the $33 million they owe the right-hander over the next two seasons.

That figure has been said to be in the $8 million range. CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported in a blog post that New York and Pittsburgh are still separated by a few million dollars.

Burnett could be an extraneous piece for the Yankees, who currently have seven pitchers to fit into five rotation slots. He would head to Spring Training competing with Phil Hughes and Freddy Garcia for New York’s fifth starter job. Heyman notes that the Yankees asked for slugger Garrett Jones, but were rejected.

The New York Post’s Joel Sherman tweeted that the 10 clubs on Burnett’s limited no-trade list are all on the West Coast. Burnett signed a five-year, $82.5 million contract with the Yankees before the 2009 season and is 34-35 with a 4.79 ERA in his three seasons wearing pinstripes.

Cashman: I’m comfortable with A.J.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman continues to stand behind A.J. Burnett, again defending the embattled right-hander as he answered fans’ questions at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn. on Tuesday.

“I am comfortable with A.J.,” Cashman told a young fan, according to ESPNNewYork.com. “He’s extremely talented and has been inconsistent, but I can tell you I’m comfortable with the effort he’s giving; I’m comfortable with everything that he does, the accountability that comes with him.

“Obviously, we signed him to have more success than he’s having, but it’s a competitive industry and as long as he’s not going to give up on himself, then I’m going to have his back the entire way.”

Burnett figures to be in the mix of contenders for the No. 5 spot in the rotation. CC Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, Michael Pineda and Ivan Nova will likely fill out the first four slots, in some order, leaving Burnett, Phil Hughes and Freddy Garcia to duke it out for the final opening.

“This year, we have a whole bunch of starting pitchers – knock on wood – and so we’ll see how it all shakes out, who plays in what role and where,” Cashman said, according to the website. “But if we have the ball in [Burnett's] hands, I believe that he’ll do well for us. He won one of our playoff games against Detroit and we only won two, we were trying to win three. He stepped up big in Game 4 and pushed us back to New York to give us Game 5. It’s in there and the ability is there, and he does care, so I’m going to stay with him.”

Yankees open to dealing A.J.

The Yankees have continued to tell teams that they are willing to listen to trade offers for any player without a no-trade clause, a group that includes A.J. Burnett.

But thus far, no club has shown interest in Burnett, who is owed $33 million over the next two seasons. The New York Post reported that the Yankees are willing to pick up $8 million of Burnett’s remaining salary.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said that the market in Dallas has proven extremely difficult to find willing trade partners. He hedged when asked if the time spent at the Hilton Anatole has been productive thus far.

“Productive implies I feel we’re going to get somewhere,” Cashman said. “Right now, I feel like productive is too strong of a word. We’re working, but I think it’s going to be hard to add to what we have currently.”

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