TAMPA, Fla. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Chase Headley says Alex Rodriguez has “reached out and introduced himself.”
Headley was signed to a $52 million, four-year contract by the Yankees, who plan to start him at third base and shift Rodriguez to designated hitter.
Returning from a season-long suspension for violations of baseball’s drug agreement and labor contract, the 39-year-old Rodriguez hopes to win back his old job at third base. Headley said A-Rod contacted him shortly after he reached the agreement in mid-December.
“We didn’t talk about that,” Headley said Monday after working out at the Yankees’ minor league complex. “It was just more of an introduction. I think we both care about winning. That’s the most important thing and that’s what we talked about. That (other) stuff will sort itself out. I’m not going to concern myself with that. I’m going to come out and try to do the best I can to do my job, and however that shakes out it will shake out.”
Headley was acquired from the San Diego Padres last July, then became a free agent before signing with the Yankees.
“They made me feel extremely comfortable right off the bat,” Headley said of his Yankees teammates. “I just really fit in well, is the best way I can describe it.”
Rodriguez met with top Yankees officials last Tuesday and apologized to the team as he prepares to report to spring training ahead of the first full-squad workout on Feb. 26.
NOTES: The Yankees agreed to a minor league contract with RHP Jared Burton, who was 3-5 with a 4.36 ERA in 68 relief appearances for Minnesota last year. The 33-year-old, who will report to big league spring training, is 18-19 with a 3.44 ERA in parts of eight seasons with Cincinnati (2007-11) and the Twins (2012-13).
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