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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 1/23/24

Nestor Cortes and Carlos Rodón already working hard in Tampa; Projecting the Yankees lineup, and where Soto/Judge will hit; Yankees and Mets both vying for Hector Neris

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MLB: Washington Nationals at New York Yankees Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

SNY | Andy Martino: The market for reliever Hector Neris continues to develop. Martino reports that the Yankees remain interested in the right-hander, but that the Mets are also involved at “[Neris’] asking price — which, according to sources, is for one or two years at $7-11 million per year.” Another Yankees target, Wandy Peralta, has also reportedly been in contact with the Mets. The Yankees’ crosstown rival seems interested in adding a reliever, as the Mets have also been linked to Adam Ottavino and Aroldis Chapman (in related news, the Pirates signed Chapman yesterday).

MLB.com | Bryan Hoch: Looking to prove that their miserable 2023 campaigns were a fluke, Nestor Cortes and Carlos Rodón have reported to Yankees facilities in Tampa well ahead of the team’s February 14 report date for pitchers and catchers. Brian Cashman is optimistic about what he’s seen and heard. “The feedback I’m getting is really good, that his arm action is good,” Cashman said. “[Rodón] looks like he’s worked his tail off. I’m very optimistic that Rodón can return to form.” The GM reiterated that he doesn’t think Cortes’ and Rodón’s respective talents just disappeared last year, and that with a healthy spring, he expects both to perform at a high level in 2024.

The Athletic | Brendan Kuty: ($) Last week, Aaron Boone hinted at how he thought the Yankee lineup would be filled out in 2024, saying that he was leaning toward “Juan in the two-hole, [Aaron Judge] third,” though the manager did state that nothing was at all set in stone. So The Athletic took a swing at projecting the Yankee starting lineup, and they went with DJ LeMahieu leading off, Judge batting second, with Soto third and Gleyber Torres cleaning up. Giancarlo Stanton slides down to sixth in the order in this projection.