There seemed to be a little curiosity over David Phelps, during Tuesday’s 3-2 loss to the Orioles. Phelps started and pitched a mediocre 2.2 innings giving one earned while striking out two. During the game the Seattle Mariners had scouts in attendance while the New York Yankees were in Sarasota. With Seattle having some injures in their pitching staff and in the market for a possible starter, according to reports they might be shopping second baseman Nick Franklin in exchange for an arm. Yankees might be receptive if the deal was right, apparently a straight up trade for the two is unlikely. The Mariners would have to give up more just to get Phelps.
Scouts were also interested in the Yankees backup catchers. The Chicago White Sox and Milwaukee Brewers have also been in attendance. Both teams are looking for backup catchers, and both teams have possible infielders to spare. The White Sox have a messy backup catching role, but it’s been rumored before that they could move utility infielders Gordon Beckman or Alexei Ramirez. They also they also have a several young prospects at second base, but there no reports of them wanting to get rid of young talent.
The Brewers are also looking for a backup catcher, they have second baseman Rickie Weeks and possibly third baseman Aramis Ramirez as trade chip. Both have hefty contracts, but if a trade ever were to happen the Brewers would have to swallow a quite a bit of money if anything were to ever happen. GM Brian Cashman has stated earlier this spring that if any moves were to made, they would have to be inexpensive.
It’s not uncommon for all teams to have scouts out looking to fill any potential witness, that includes the Yankees. I doubt the Yankees will seriously be looking at any players with long term contracts that have big numbers attached. Unless the Yankees have something go really wrong with any starters this spring, I don’t see any immediate moves being made at all. Phelps is battling for the fifth starters spot and even a place in the bullpen, it’s probably someone the Yankees brass will hold on to. With six weeks of spring training still left, this is something we will keep an eye on.