Yankees may be close to getting Washburn from Mariners
By Jon Heyman, SI.com
The Mariners, Yankees and pitcher Jarrod Washburn are all working on a possible agreement to move Washburn from Seattle and New York, and there now appears to be optimism something can be worked out fairly quickly, perhaps even in the next day or so.
The Yankees have signaled a willingness to take on the left-hander Washburn's entire contract, which includes a $10.35 million salary for 2009, and Washburn is also said to be open to the idea of waiving his veto rights and moving cross-country to New York.
Accommodations are being arranged to offset the no-trade provision in his Seattle contract, and he appears likely to waive it without being granted an extension. Yankees people have said they are unwilling to extend Washburn beyond 2009.
The trade likely would be strictly a "salary dump'' situation, with the Yankees giving up only a minor league for Washburn, who is in the third year of a four-year, $37 million deal.
Washburn 4-9 with a 4.75 ERA, is due to throw Sunday, and the Yankees might like to finish the trade in time for him to fly from Toronto, where the Mariners are playing, to meet the Yankees in Boston. Curiously, the Yankees' own Web site has "to be announced'' where Sunday's pitcher is listed when previously it had been Sidney Ponson. A Yankees spokesman said that there was no reason to read anything into the Web site listing.
The Yankees' trading season got off to a smashing start with deal, finalized Saturday morning, that brought outfielder Xavier Nady and reliever Damaso Marte to them for four minor leaguers. Going to Pittsburgh in that deal were outfielder Jose Tabata and pitchers Ross Ohlendorf, Dan McCutchen and Jeff Karstens. McCutchen and Karstens were substituted late by Pittsburgh with the Yankees agreement for unknown reasons. The original agreement had pitchers Phil Coke and George Kontos going with Tabata and Ohlendorf.