Thursday, January 11, 2018
Yu Darvish is widely considered to be the top starting pitcher available in free agency, and while his market — like the market of nearly every other top free agent this winter — has been slow to progress, Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports that Darvish has whittled the decision down to a handful of teams: the Rangers, Cubs, Astros, Twins and Yankees. Darvish himself has hardly been shy about stirring the pot on social media this winter, though, and he created an additional layer of intrigue tonight when he responded to the report by tweeting: “I know one more team is in.” The Dodgers may very well be the sixth team to which Darvish alluded, as Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times tweeted tonight that Los Angeles “remains in the mix” to bring Darvish back to L.A.
I’d be surprised if the Yankees were willing to blow up HalCap™ and sign Darvish. Assuming they’re around $180M in salary cap dollars right now, there’s no way I can see fitting Darvish’s $20M+ salary. I mean, I suppose they could trade someone like David Robertson or Brett Gardner but I’m not sure that ends up being much of a net positive. Darvish is maybe a 3.5 win pitcher right now, but he wouldn’t be replacing a replacement level pitcher in the current rotation so he’s really only like a 1.5 win upgrade. Robertson is probably pretty close to that himself, and I don’t have to tell you that Gardner is worth a lot more than that.
More likely, it’s Darvish’s agents trying to up the offers by insinuating the Yankees in.
I’d certainly be happy to see Darvish in pinstripes, but I don’t see it happening.
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