INDIANAPOLIS — Instead of spending at these winter meetings, the New York Yankees are in a dealing mode.
The World Series champions pulled off the first big trade of this year’s session, reaching a tentative agreement Tuesday on a three-team, seven-player swap that would bring them all-star centre-fielder Curtis Granderson from Detroit.
New York would trade right-hander Ian Kennedy to Arizona, and lefty reliever Phil Coke and outfield prospect Austin Jackson to Detroit, a baseball official said on condition of anonymity because the deal was not yet final.
Detroit would ship all-star pitcher Edwin Jackson to the Diamondbacks, and Arizona would send touted young pitchers Max Scherzer and Daniel Schlereth to the Tigers. The teams were still working on technical aspects of the trade, the official said, including checking medical records.
“Granderson, of course he’s going to make them better,” Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said.
“He’s a pretty good outfielder. He plays with a lot of energy. He’s the kind of guy that fits into that landscape in New York, where he’s going to thrive within that kind of a situation.”
Last year, the Yankees and CC Sabathia agreed to a $161-million, seven-year deal during the winter meetings and New York set in motion an $82.5-million, five-year contract with A.J. Burnett.
Among free agents, the Washington Nationals surprised many by reaching a preliminary agreement on a US$6-million, two-year contract with 38-year-old catcher Ivan Rodriguez. Pudge must pass a physical.
The 14-time all-star figures to be a backup and mentor to 25-year-old Jesus Flores.
Seattle finalized its $36-million, four-year contract with Chone Figgins, who is likely to become the Mariners’ third baseman and No. 2 hitter behind leadoff man Ichiro Suzuki. St. Louis completed a $7.5-million, one-year deal with pitcher Brad Penny, who joins a rotation that includes Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright.