The Yankees are dominating the news from baseball’s Winter Meetings in Indy. In one busy day, the Yankees completed the rumors Generation Third had already reported on. Andy Pettitte was signed to a one-year deal worth $11.75 Million and the Yankees, Tigers and Diamondbacks completed a 3-team trade that sent all-star center fielder Curtis Granderson to the Yankees.
Pettitte was the rock the Yankees needed in their starting rotation to secure another serious run at back-to-back titles. The Yankees rotation now officially includes CC Sabathia, AJ Burnett and Pettitte. The other two slots will be filled by trades, signings and/or Phil Hughes or Joba Chamberlain.
Granderson was a first-time all-star for the Detroit Tigers in 2009, despite only hitting .249. He had 30 stolen bases and 30 home runs and is phenomenal on defense. The Yankees had to give up Triple-A starting pitcher Ian Kennedy, reliever Phil Coke and outfield prospect Austin Jackson to make the trade go through.
I could care less about Kennedy – I don’t think he’ll amount to much (injured too often) but I am a little sad about the loss of Coke, who was a big part of the Yankee bullpen in 2009, and Jackson, who was one of the most respected prospects in the game today. But, we gotta look at the positive that Granderson brings the Yankees – great defense and speed and power in the lineup. He’ll be a great #2 or #6 hitter. For more information on Granderson, read some posts here from the last few days.
What was not answered today is what the Yankees plan to do with Hideki Matsui and Johnny Damon. GM Brian Cashman said that this trade does not affect the Yankees plans with those two, but how could it not? The Yankees have already made it clear that they intend to cut payroll this season, and I am hard pressed to see how adding Granderson and the $25 Million he is owed between now and 2012 is cutting payroll – unless either Matsui or Damon will not return in 2010.