According to a source familiar with the negotiations, if that's truly what they are, "nothing is about to happen'' between the Yankees and Raul Ibanez, one of four candidates for a designated hitter job, the last opening on the club. According to ESPN The Magazine's Buster Olney, the Yankees are interested in either Ibanez, Johnny Damon or Hideki Matsui for the job, the youngest of whom is Matsui, who is 37 until June 12. Presumably, Eric Chavez, 34, is still in the running as well.
This evening, FoxSports.com's Ken Rosenthal tweeted that the Yankees "are in serious discussions'' with the 39-year-old Ibanez, coming off a three-year, $31.5 million contract with the Phillies. Rosenthal said Ibanez "would take less'' to play for the Yankees than he might elsewhere, although according to a team source, he's got to take even less than that.
"Prices have got to come down a bit,'' the source told Andrew Marchand, before the Yankees interest in Ibanez truly becomes a negotiation. Which of course means the Yankees are interested. Ibanez, like the others a left-handed hitter, batted .245 with 20 HRs and 84 RBI for the Phillies in 2011.