Yankees setting sights on Ellsbury?

According to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, the highly regarded free agent
pictured above could be playing in pinstripes starting in 2014.

Jan-Christian Sorensen Contributing Writer

Well, the World Series is barely over, the Duck Boats haven’t rolled yet and already Jon Heyman of CBS Sports is reporting that the New York Yankees have held “internal discussions” about, among others, free-agent centerfield speedster Jacoby Ellsbury.

Ellsbury is easily one of the most attractive targets on a thin free-agent market this off-season, and No. 2 behind Robinson Cano, who reportedly is looking for a 10-year contract in the neighborhood of $305-$310 million.

The Red Sox are expected to make a one-year qualifying offer to Ellsbury, meaning they will receive draft-pick compensation if the star centerfielder signs elsewhere.

So far, rumors have been swirling about Texas and Seattle eyeing Ellsbury, but his agent, Scott Boras, told Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe yesterday that he’s already fielded phone calls from as many as 11 MLB teams about Ellsbury.

Andy Martino of the New York Daily News also reported that the New York Mets aren’t likely one of those teams that made inquiries, as GM Sandy Alderson isn’t comfortable with the type of contract Ellsbury will likely command.

It was reported yesterday by Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal that Ellsbury will have an MRI on his left hand after playing through an injury in the postseason. Despite his hand being swollen up to the forearm and discolored, Ellsbury went 2 for 4 in the clinching Game Six of the series while wearing a protective brace over the hand.

Ellsbury put up a .298 average and stroked 31 doubles, 8 triples, nine home runs and drove in 53 while stealing an MLB-best 52 bases in 134 games with Boston in the regular season. He hit .344 in the postseason with four doubles, one triple, seven walks, six swipes and six RBI in 16 games against Tampa Bay, Detroit and St. Louis, winning his second World Series ring with Boston when the Sox defeated St. Louis 6-1 on Wednesday night at Fenway Park.

More surprising is Heyman reporting that the Yankees may also be talking about making a run at Red Sox shortstop Stephen Drew, which would be an odd turn of events considering New York re-signed Derek Jeter to a one-year, $12-million deal today to replace a $9.5-million player option, making him the longest-tenured player in team history come opening day 2014. Drew is also expected to receive a qualifying offer from Boston, as is first baseman Mike Napoli.

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