Posted on: January 11, 2012 9:54 pm
Edited on: January 24, 2012 10:51 am
Edwin Jackson's agent Scott Boras spent Wednesday in Phoenix, site of the baseball owners meeting, and met with Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner to discuss a potential deal for the free agent righthander.
Yankees people seem to like Jackson but want to keep deals short because one of their greatest goals is to somehow get their payroll below the luxury tax threshold of $189 million by 2014. That isn't going to be easy for a team that's had a payroll in the $200-million range for years and is committed to $125 million for 10 players in '14, but the reward is that their tax would go from 50 percent on dollars above the cap to a much more manageable 17 percent.
The Yankees are also in contact with Hiroki Kuroda and Roy Oswalt, two more free agents, but they seem concerned about Kuroda's appetite to pitch in New York and Oswalt's soundness following an injury-plagued year. Jackson has the advantages of youth (he's 28) and durability on his side. While Jackson is 47-41 over the past four years, the Yankees may envision an improvement pitching for them. Jackson is a hard thrower who's had success pitching against the other A.L. East teams (he's 7-1 with a 3.10 ERA vs. the other four AL East teams over the past three years).
Jackson has drawn interest elsewhere (the Orioles and Blue Jays are others thought to have interest) but seems to have a particular interest in playing for the Yankees.