Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Yankees Trade Cabrera For Vazquez

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The New York Yankees have acquired right-hander Javier Vazquez from the Atlanta Braves for outfielder Melky Cabrera and left-hander Mike Dunn, sources told ESPN The Magazine senior writer Buster Olney.

The Braves also are sending right-hander Boone Logan to the Yankees, sources said, and the Yankees are sending the Braves $500,000 in the transaction.

Vazquez, with a 15-10 record, ranked second in the National League last season with 238 strikeouts and sixth in ERA at 2.87 as the No. 2 starter in the rotation. This is his second time around with the Yankees, having pitched in New York in 2004, when he went 14-10 with a 4.91 ERA.

This move opens the door for outfield moves for both teams. The Yankees now are expected to explore both the free-agent and trade markets for a left fielder. But they’ve continued to portray themselves as uninterested in anyone in the price range of Matt Holliday, Jason Bay or Johnny Damon.

One name that has been on their radar screen is Mark DeRosa, whose $6 million asking price is in the dollar area they appear willing to allocate.

The Vazquez deal frees up about $9 million for the Braves to spend on upgrading their offense — Vazquez’s $11.5 million salary, minus the $3 million or so Cabrera figures to earn via arbitration, and getting the $500,000 in cash from the Yankees.

They’ll now look to use that surplus on an outfield bat, a first baseman or possibly both.

Damon is one possibility, particularly because his home in Orlando is within minutes of the Braves’ spring-training complex. Another option is free agent Xavier Nady, who could play first or the outfield and would come at a relatively low base because he is recovering from his second Tommy John surgery.

Or the Braves could look to deal an outfielder — either Cabrera or possibly Jordan Schafer — for a bat. They’ve been linked in trade rumors to Florida Marlins second baseman Dan Uggla, who could potentially slide to first base.

Information from’s Jayson Stark was used in this report.

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