clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Around the Empire: Yankees news - 12/17/21

Anthony Rizzo angling for return; Buster Olney explains Yankees inactivity; Clint Frazier reveals mental health struggles; Jameson Taillon injury update; Yankees add several minor leaguers

Cleveland Indians v New York Yankees

Sports Illustrated | Pat Ragazzo: The Yankees have largely been mum when it comes to free agent targets, but one of the few players they have been consistently linked to is Anthony Rizzo. The longtime Cubs first baseman performed moderately well after moving to the Yankees at the trade deadline, batting .249/.340/.428 with eight home runs, 21 RBIs, and a 113 wRC+ in 49 games with the Bombers. Speaking on the Compound Podcast, he revealed that he loved his time living in on the Upper West Side, that it was a a dream-come-true to play for his childhood-favorite Yankees, and that he is eager to return to the Bronx outfit.

NJ Advance Media | Mike Rosenstein: Not many could have foreseen the free agent frenzy that preceded the expiration of the CBA, and equally surprising was the non-participation of the game’s biggest spenders. The Yankees, Dodgers, and Red Sox were notably absent from the spending extravaganza, and Buster Olney of ESPN believes he knows why. He opines that the owners of the three teams “prefer to know the exact terms of the next CBA before committing big dollars.” He also revealed that the Yankees are expected to reengage with the agents for Carlos Correa and Trevor Story after the new CBA is ratified.

New York Post | Joseph Staszewski: Clint Frazier’s tenure with the Yankees came to a rocky end, as he missed the final three months with an undisclosed injury, was released in November, and ultimately signed a one-year deal with the Cubs. He has now revealed that he battled with recurring depth perception issues stemming from his previous concussions, and that he hid these symptoms from the Yankees. Frazier also opened up on the mental health struggles he endured throughout the season, and how they impacted his life on and off the field.

NJ Advance Media | Brendan Kuty: Jameson Taillon underwent surgery after the season to repair a torn tendon in his ankle, and he has now given an update on his recovery. He said the ankle is feeling “great” and that he is “excited” to ramp up the rehab process as the healing progresses. He is unable to do any intensive throwing as of yet, but posted several of his timing drills to his social media accounts. This is encouraging news, as our own Jon Rimmer expressed concern over the perils of non-team-guided training regimens now that players and teams are barred from contact during the lockout.

MLB Trade Rumors | Steve Adams: The lockout prevents teams from inking players to major league deals, however they are still free to make minor league additions. That’s exactly what the Yankees did Thursday afternoon, officially signing outfielder Ender Inciarte, right-hander Vinny Nittoli, outfielder Blake Perkins, and infielder Wilkerman Garcia. Inciarte is a three-time Gold Glove winner whose once-productive bat has been severely limited by a string of back and hamstring injuries. At this point he is nothing more than a depth pickup.

MLB Trade Rumors | Anthony Franco: Later that evening, Jon Heyman announced that the Yankees had also added righty relief pitcher Jimmy Cordero on a minor league deal. He missed all of 2021 recovering from Tommy John surgery and was outrighted by the White Sox after the season. He induces grounders at better than a 50 percent clip and can hit the upper nineties, adding to the growing list of hard-throwing groundball specialists — including Jonathan Loáisiga and Clay Holmes — in the Yankees bullpen.