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Yankees Agree To A One-Year Deal With Second Baseman Neil Walker

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The New York Yankees have signed switch-hitting second baseman Neil Walker to a one-year contract.

The deal became official on Monday. According to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com, Walker will receive a base salary of $4 million. With incentives, his salary will be close to $5 million.

Walker, 32, is expected to compete for the Yankees starting second base job. He can also play first base, which means that he will likely be the backup to Greg Bird. In 111 games combined with the New York Mets and Milwaukee Brewers last season, Walker hit .265 with 14 home runs and 49 RBIs.

Before the signing of Walker, the Yankees starting second base job was thought to be a competition between highly anticipated top prospect Gleyber Torres and Tyler Wade. However, the team decided to option Torres to Triple-A on Tuesday, which means that he is no longer being considered to be the Opening Day second baseman.

With Torres now out of the picture, there is a good chance that Walker will be the Yankees starting second baseman when the regular season begins in a couple of weeks. Although Wade would also be a decent option, he lacks experience. He was called up by the Yankees in June of last season and batted .155 in 58 at-bats.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman has made a lot of smart moves this offseason. In the past few weeks alone, he has improved the team’s infield depth by signing Walker and acquiring third baseman/second baseman Brandon Drury from Arizona Diamondbacks. Walker and Drury can both play multiple positions.

Walker is expected to make his debut with the Yankees on Friday when they play the Houston Astros. He should get plenty of at-bats over the next few weeks as the Yankees try and evaluate what they have at second base. Considering who he is competing against, it will be very surprising if Walker does not end up winning the Yankees Opening Day second base job.

American League

Yankees’ Luis Severino Alters Diet to Improve Late-Season Energy

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New York Yankees pitcher Luis Severino will be entering an important season as he tries to prove that he is a legit ace for a team that bolstered it’s starting rotation this offseason.

And that means a change in his diet.

Severino has altered his diet, cutting a number of snacks, including his favorite twice-fried plantains, out of his diet in an effort to avoid late-season fatigue.

“It’s not easy, it’s tough” Severino said, according to ESPN’s Coley Harvey.

“When you are at the finish line and you feel like you need a little bit more than five days to be ready, you know that something’s going on,” Severino said.

Severino made the decision to change his diet following the Yankees’ Divisional Series lost to World Series Champions the Boston Red Sox.

“Even though I feel like he was certainly healthy, he probably dealt with some fatigue issues with being a young pitcher in this league, and for the second consecutive year kind of getting around that 200-inning standpoint,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said.

“But in a lot of ways, we saw the normal progression of a young star pitcher. And even though he had some struggles in the second half, he had some flashes where he pitched really well for us, righted the ship a little bit.”

Severino still could be the starter on Opening Day.

“I would say there’s a very good chance of that,” Boone said. “We hadn’t had those kind of conversations exactly yet. But my expectation is that he would be that guy.”

Severino noted that the diet change was hard.

“I hate eating vegetables,” Severino said.


Where I came from, we just eat anything we see in the fridge, fried and fast food,” Severino said. “But we’re eating more vegetables and stuff like that, and get your body going faster and then recover fast. So that’s my main stuff, focusing on my workouts and avoiding doing a lot of weights that maybe make me a lot more tired.”

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American League

Yankees Keeping Tabs on Manny Machado

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Don’t completely count the New York Yankees out of the Manny Machado sweepstakes just yet, because they are simply playing the waiting game.

According to SNY.tv’s Andy Martino, the Yankees are keeping tabs on Machado with the hopes that a golden opportunity arises.

While they aren’t interested in Machado at shortstop, they would play him at third base and move Miguel Andujar to first base should they be able to haul in Machado.

While nothing is imminent, and even though the report states that a deal is unlikely, there is no counting the Yankees out of it just yet as Spring Training approaches.

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American League

Athletics Sign Brett Anderson

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The Oakland Athletics have agreed to terms with left hander Brett Anderson, according to the San Francisco Chronicle’s Susan Slusser.

Anderson is taking a physical on Tuesday.

Anderson pitched to the tune of a 4.48 ERA for the A’s last season.

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