Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Chance to Play for Yankees "Trumps Any Sentimentality" I Had for Japan: Capuano

Earlier this winter, it seemed Chris Capuano was bound for Japan.

The 36-year-old left-hander, 76-87 with a 4.28 ERA in 12 major league seasons, had said how much he "loved" the idea of crossing the Pacific, and since the Yankees were thought to be considering going on a spending spree at the time, it looked like a sure thing Capuano's days in the U.S. were over.

Instead, though, Capuano surprised us all by signing a one-year/$5-million deal with the team Tuesday, likely guaranteeing himself a turn in its 2015 rotation. And why he did do it? The same reason as Chase Headley: because it's the Yankees. 

"I love Japan, but if you get the opportunity to pitch here, in a city like New York, that trumps any sentimentality I had towards Japan," Capuano told Sirius XM's Major League Baseball Radio Wednesday. "I still wouldn't rule it out at some point, but a chance to play for the Yankees, on a good contract, I couldn't pass that up." 

Capuano made just $2,250,000 last season, so his new contract is certainly an upgrade for him. It pays him five times what the Yankees are set to hand out to Michael Pineda and Dellin Betances combined next year, just to give you an idea of how much it is.

Problem is: the Yankees might not have had to surrender that high of an amount to retain him, with Capuano claiming he wasn't actually that close to moving overseas. 

"It more just expanded my options of possible teams I was looking at," he said. "[Brian Cashman] is a straight shooter, he said the best five guys will be out there starting."

As of now, it appears three of those five will be Masahiro Tanaka, CC Sabathia and Pineda, though Ivan Nova is also expected to start in May.

That being said, it's a safe bet Capuano will have a month to prove he's worthy for the fifth spot before Nova's return, probably doing so against a large group of other candidates including David Phelps, Adam Warren and Bryan Mitchell. Yet that may not be all of the guys with whom the veteran will have to compete, as the names of Manny Banuelos and Chase Whitley have too come up in recent weeks.


  1. KEN HANS :
    Always enjoyed your words, and wit. Where are you sir ?
    LF needs to be upgraded. What do you think ? Refsnyder ....interesting ?
    Ken...stay on board. You work is terrific.

    1. Amen to that, we don't have to agree all the time Ken H.

      I apologize for being argumentative and insulting with you, as I have gotten older I have reverted more to my roots I guess.

  2. Refsnyder would be an interesting option in left field, either if Gardner is traded or an injury occurs. He played right field in the minors and with his youth and such left wouldn't be out of the question completely.


Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)