Brian Cashman has made it known the New York Yankees will seek pitching this offseason, and the general manager backed that up by publicly acknowledging the club’s rumored interest in Texas Rangers starter C.J. Wilson.
“We haven’t talked to him yet, but we will,” Cashman told the New York Post. “(The Rangers) have won a lot and he’s been a big part of that, so we’ll certainly talk to him.”
But Cashman wasn’t about to target Wilson as blatantly as the Yankees did Cliff Lee last offseason, telling the New York Daily News, “Unlike last year, where Cliff Lee was the priority, this isn’t like that at all.”
Lee was considered another true ace and postseason difference-maker after showing the Yankees first-hand how tough he could be in playoff appearances with the Philadelphia Phillies and Rangers the previous two seasons.
Wilson went 16-7 with a 2.94 ERA last season and has won 31 games the past two years as the Rangers have reached the World Series in both of those seasons.
He is at the top of the list of free-agent pitchers this offseason -- and his status as a left-hander would help at Yankee Stadium -- but he comes with a huge caveat for a team that prides itself on considering the season a failure without a World Series title:
Wilson hasn’t pitched well in the postseason.
He is 1-5 with a 4.82 ERA in 10 postseason appearances (nine starts) and has lost his last five.
“I wouldn’t say,” Cashman told the Post when asked how much Wilson’s postseason struggles would factor in negotiations. “He’s a very talented pitcher who’s shown he can perform in a hitters’ environment in Texas.”