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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 2/17/19

Cashman spins the rumor mill; CC announces that 2019 is his final season; Dellin Betances reports late to camp for good reason; Tommy Kahnle back to fighting weight

MLB: New York Yankees-Workouts Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Daily News | Kristie Ackert: Another day, another Manny Machado and Bryce Harper story. Saturday morning, Brian Cashman teased that although the Yankees have already spent money this winter, his job isn’t done yet. As Cashman puts it:

I am doing my job. Whether that’s those two players or other players ... we are trying to constantly be open minded to ways to make this work. We’ve just got to work within those confines to find the best ways to make it all fit. We like what we’ve done to this point, but we’re never a finished product until, at the very least, August 31.

Does this mean the Yankees will sign either star free agent? Probably not. Will we have a new headline with a different quote tomorrow? You bet. Round and round we go.

ESPN | Coley Harvey: Yankee veteran CC Sabathia officially announced that 2019 will be his final season during a press conference on Saturday. Citing a desire to spend more time with his family, his knee trouble, and, of course, his heart surgery this winter, the big lefty decided that it was finally time to call it quits before he “overstays his welcome.” This certainly marks the end of an era for an all-time great Yankee pitcher.

The jury is still out on the use of #LegaCCy, but there was no denying the outpouring of love for Sabathia. Messages of praise came in from his teammates, manager Aaron Boone, general manager Brian Cashman, fellow athletes and celebrities like LeBron James, Steve Kerr, and Fat Joe, and even from the Mayor of his hometown of Vallejo, California. One notable quote came from a former teammate and the current Miami Marlins CEO, Derek Jeter, “I had the pleasure of competing against CC and also with him, and have always considered him one of my favorite teammates.”

Here’s to the Yankees winning a title for the final season of #LegaCCy. OK, I guess I’m into it.

New York Post | George A. King III: Dellin Betances is reporting to spring training a bit later than the rest of the pitchers, and with good reason. On Wednesday, Betances’ wife, Janisa, gave birth to their son, and the new father is understandably taking some time to be with his family. Though he’ll be getting a later start, Brian Cashman isn’t worried as relievers typically need less time to prepare for the season than starters. More importantly, let’s hope he’s as dominant changing diapers as he is on the mound. | Randy Miller: Tommy Kahnle had a rough 2018. After a strong showing in 2017, injuries and ineffectiveness landed him in Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre for most of last season. Thinking his struggles meant that he needed to gain weight, the right-hander put on the pounds, getting up to 254 by the end of the season. Unfortunately, he never saw the results he was hoping for on the mound.

For the 2019 season, Kahnle slimmed down to a fighting weight of 229 and he’s already feeling the difference. As he says:

I lost it to feel lighter and a little quicker on my feet. Maybe that will transition to the mound. I think it will. I hope so because coming into this camp, I have to make the team. I have to impress them again.

Though the Yankees have strengthened their bullpen considerably, having Kahnle at full strength again would be a big addition to the team.