The Yankees have made their initial offer to top new free agent target Carlos Rodon, and word is there’s a sizable gap between the sides and still plenty of work to do.
The star left-hander is said to be seeking seven-plus years for at least $30 million a year, and the Yankees apparently have other ideas, at least initially.
Rodon remains the Yankees’ top priority despite the gap, and the sides are expected to work on potential compromises over the next few days. The Yankees believe Rodon wants to come to New York, but if they can’t bridge their difference, they may turn to their next choice, believed to be ex-Yankee Nate Eovaldi. Rodon brings some advantages, his left-handedness being one in Yankee Stadium.
Superstar Aaron Judge suggested improvements when he re-signed for $360 million and nine years earlier this month, and the Yankees seem motivated to bridge the gap that exists. They also believe Rodon, a Miamian known for a tough streak, may want to be a Yankee despite having several other choices. One theme of this winter is players preferring New York to San Francisco and other locales.
The Cardinals are also in the bidding, and the Giants, Twins and many other teams have been linked to Rodon, who is easily the top remaining starter on the market.
The Giants have signed two starters in consecutive days — Sean Manaea and Ross Stripling — but the San Francisco Chronicle suggested they are still interested in Rodon, who posted a 2.88 ERA with 237 strikeouts in 178 innings for the Giants in 2022.
Eovaldi is a distant second on the market that does have some depth, with Noah Syndergaard (who is thought to be progressing in talks, presumably elsewhere), Michael Wacha, Johnny Cueto, Zack Greinke and about 10 other viable starters still free. The Yankees want to upgrade a rotation that is already very good, with ace Gerrit Cole plus Nestor Cortes and Luis Severino at the top of it.