Mid-Rotation Guys, Greene, Return Of Nova, Sabathia Would Give Bombers Many Options

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A day after we learned which players the Yankees reportedly won’t target in free agency, we got a better of idea of who exactly is on their radar.

The popular sentiment heading into free agency was that the Yankees would try to over-spend their way back to the playoffs, much like they attempted to do last season off the first of what is now back-to-back seasons without a postseason appearance — something that is a major no-no in Pinstripeville.

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Then a report surfaced in the Daily News on Tuesday that stated pretty strongly that the Yankees will not make a play for starting pitchers Max Scherzer, Jon Lester and James Shields, or third baseman Pablo Sandoval, players who are at the top of this offseason’s free agent class.

Instead, we are now learning that the Bombers intend to target middle-of-the-rotation arms to compliment front-end horses Masahiro Tanaka and Michael Pineda.

According to CBSSports.com and WFAN baseball insider Jon Heyman, the Yankees have set their sights on signing at least one of right-hander Brandon McCarthy, left-hander Chris Capuano and right-hander Jason Hammel, who spent last season with the Chicago Cubs and Oakland Athletics.

Let’s not forget the Yankees also figure to get back CC Sabathia from a knee injury and Ivan Nova from Tommy John surgery at some point as well, not to mention also having youngster Shane Greene in the mix off a solid rookie season.

McCarthy was tremendous last season for the Yankees after being acquired from Arizona for left-hander Vidal Nuno, going 7-5 with a 2.89 ERA after struggling to a 3-10 record and 5.01 ERA with the Diamondbacks.

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Capuano, who was acquired from the Colorado Rockies over the summer, seemingly gave the Yankees a chance to win more often than he didn’t as a spot starter. The veteran southpaw piched at least six innings in eight of his 12 starts with the Bombers.

Hammel was outstanding for the Cubs before flaming out with the A’s. Still, a 3.47 ERA over a combined 29 starts is nothing to get upset about.

Greene showed serious promise, going 5-4 with a 3.78 ERA in 15 games, including 14 starts — not bad for a kid who really wasn’t considered one of the Yankees’ top pitching prospects coming into the season.

As for not being interested in Sandoval, the Yankees have reportedly been talking to representatives for Chase Headley, who performed well in the Bronx after being acquired from the San Diego Padres last season, batting .262 with six home runs and 17 RBI in 58 games. Headley played tremendous third base defensively and, assuming he re-signs, could be the starter next season depending on what the Yankees get out of recently reinstated Alex Rodriguez.

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