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Cashman on Pujols: 'Wow'

12/8/2011

Early in the process, Albert Pujols' agent reached out to Brian Cashman to see if the Yankees had any room for his client. Cashman politely told Dan Lozano the Yankees did not.

Still, upon hearing that Pujols had agreed to a 10-year, $250 million contract with the Angels, Cashman's reaction was probably similar to yours.

"I just said, 'Wow,'" Cashman said.

While discussing Pujols' new deal, Cashman gave Jesus Montero, the Yankees' DH/backup catcher, one of the highest compliments. He said Pujols' production is "Montero-like." He didn't seem to be kidding around.

"He is obviously one of the greatest who has played," Cashman said of Pujols. "He makes everyone significantly better. If he played for anybody, he would make them all significantly better. I don't know him personally, but I see what he does with that and it is Montero-like.

"I always try to somehow promote the Yankees," Cashman added.

Cashman said he knew the Yankees would never be players for Pujols because the timing wasn't right.

"They touched based with me, but I said, 'No,'" Cashman said. "I gave a nice respectful no. We have made our commitments. ... Even though you could say he could fit on anybody's club, realistically, our money is spent in those directions. How do you add that with our commitments? How do you add that? You just can't. It is not feasible.

"They just checked in. ... But even Dan Lozano recognized [Mark] Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez, Montero. There is no vacancy here."

When asked if a talent like Pujols coming to the American League can impact how the way the Yankees do business this winter, Cashman again said no.

"I think we showed last year after we didn't get Cliff Lee and Boston did everything they did," Cashman said. "There is not more of a tempest situation created than that. It was like, 'Look what Boston is doing,' and we stayed firm and we didn't overreact.

"I remember back in the day, we ended up with Danny Tartabull because the Mets signed Bobby Bonilla. I didn't really work out that well for us so I don't want to do reactionary stuff."