Cashman downplays Teahen rumor
Report of Yankees' interest in Royals infielder met with denial
With third baseman Alex Rodriguez opting to undergo hip surgery that will keep him out of action for six to nine weeks, the Yankees suddenly have a gaping hole in their infield.
According to The Kansas City Star, Rodriguez's club could be looking to fill that hole with Royals infielder Mark Teahen.
The Star, which did not cite any sources on the rumor, said that Royals officials have been brushing off that idea -- for now -- because Teahen's versatility has increased his value to the club.
In his fourth year in the Major Leagues, Teahen, who will make $3.575 million in 2009, hit .255 with 15 home runs and 59 RBIs. The 27-year-old left-handed hitter has played more than 200 games at third base and right field throughout his career.
Asked on Sunday if the Yankees are looking for other options to fill Rodriguez's void, general manager Brian Cashman downplayed any rumors.
"I'll be honest with you; we have not had any discussions internally about that -- not myself daydreaming or my pro scouting director [Billy Eppler], though I know he's proactive, so I'm sure he's got his lists lined up," Cashman said. "I guess that's a gray area. Thankfully, we're getting [Rodriguez] back, so if something makes sense that you run into, I think we'd gravitate to it. But it's hard to run into things that make sense, so we'd probably wind up going with what we've got."
What the Yankees have right now is Cody Ransom, a 33-year-old journeyman who batted .302 with four home runs and eight RBIs in 33 games for New York in 2008. Throughout his six-year career, the right-handed hitter has played seven games at third base.
The Star quoted one Royals official as saying he or she would like the Yankees to sign Mark Grudzielanek so the Royals could receive a compensatory Draft pick. But with Grudzielanek primarily serving as a second baseman, that move could push Robinson Cano to third base.
Alden Gonzalez is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Bryan Hoch contributed to this report. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.