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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 12/13/23

Soto’s presser; potential extension talks; Yamamoto’s arsenal; Higgy’s “no thank you”

San Diego Padres v Chicago White Sox Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images | Bryan Hoch: Welcome to New York, Juan Soto. While it would have been fantastic to see Juan Soto in pinstripes, his demeanor on Zoom was still satisfying. He sported a Yankees hat and a chain shining with the number 22. Soto was just as excited as Yankees fans about his arrival in New York. | Mike Axisa: The most important takeaway from Juan Soto’s press conference other than his excitement was his swift brushing off a potential contract extension. As the intense player that is he is, he made it clear his focus was on playing the game and leaving any talks about extensions to Brian Cashman and Scott Boras. Soto has waited a long time for free agency, so he probably won’t change his mind now.

The Athletic ($) | Eno Sarris: Eno Sarris delivered the best scouting report of Yoshinobu Yamamoto to date. The general public perception of Yamamoto centers around his dominant splitter, but there is more to him than just that pitch. Sarris gave the in-depth view of what we should expect from him when he hits in the majors in 2024. | Jimmy Hascup: With all due respect Higgy, we all disagree with your sentiment. Kyle Higashioka’s run with the Yankees lasted 16 years. His defense was among the best in the game while he was on the field, and he toiled his way through 16 years in the Yankees’ organization. If any player deserves love from the fanbase, it’s him.