The New York Yankees are always one of baseball’s busiest teams during the offseason. Their near-endless cash supplies and desire to win at all costs means they are usually very busy during MLB free agent season.

This winter is no different as the team moves on from some veteran players, searches for a new pitching coach and looks to build off a loss to the Houston Astros in the ALCS.

David Cone Interviews for Vacant Pitching Coach Position

According to the New York Post, former Yankee pitcher and current commentator, David Cone has been interviewed for the vacant pitching coach position in the Bronx. Long-time franchise pitching coach Larry Rothschild was let go from the organization in October 2019 after eight seasons with the club.

It was one of a few moves from GM Brian Cashman aimed at updating the Yankees’ coaching staff recently. The big idea from Cashman is to move to a more data-driven model at the organization.

Didi Gregorius Yankees Didi Gregorius #18 of the New York Yankees falls to the ground after fielding a ball against the Boston Red Sox during the fourth inning in Game Three of the American League Division Series at Yankee Stadium on October 08, 2018 in the Bronx borough of New York City. Photo: Elsa/Getty Images

Rothschild had lost much of his former influence in the eyes of the team’s executives over the past few seasons, as evidenced by the hiring of Sam Briend to the position of director of pitching development. So, it was somewhat unsurprising to see Rothschild fired with just one year remaining on his contract.

David Cone is not well-known as a data expert in pitching. So, his consideration contrasts with those of Chris Fetter and Matt Hobbs, pitching coaches at Arkansas and Michigan, respectively, and rivals of Cone for the vacancy.

Not only are both more than twenty years Cone’s juniors, but they are also both known to have embraced analytics in the context of coaching. Meanwhile, Cone has dipped his toes into analytics as part of the YES Network where he works as an analyst during Yankees games, the New York Post added.

“I’m very much self-taught, but also I’m not openly campaigning for a job. When people asked a question about managing the Yankees, I said, ‘If they call…’ [The analytics] are high-tech stuff. I knew what they were talking about,” Cone shared.

This move shows that the Yankees with Brian Cashman are keeping an open mind in their hunt for a new pitching coach. With the season only having just ended, there is also no rush for the bombers to make up their minds.

Didi Gregorius Unlikely to Return to the Bronx

The Yankees already passed on extending a qualifying offer to shortstop Didi Gregorius. This year’s offer had to be $17.8 million for a one-year contract, a huge jump from the former Arizona Diamondback’s 2019 salary of $11.75 million.

With there already being a log-jam of sorts in the Yankees infield, it seems unlikely they will take great pains to re-sign Gregorius in the free agent market. Gleyber Torres had a breakout 2019 at second base and could easily move to the other side of the bag.

He will likely earn somewhere in the region of $1 million in 2020, so he would save Cashman and company plenty of money. Meanwhile, DJ LeMahieu can play almost anywhere in the infield so would fit at second for Torres easily.

Gregorius also saw a regression in 2019 after coming back from Tommy John surgery. Not only did his power numbers suffer, he saw an uptick in strikeouts and a downturn in walks, two stats which should be unaffected by an injury layoff.

All this means that for the Yankees to take Didi back, it would have to be for a very reasonable salary. However, with such a weak field of shortstops available on the market this season, Gregorius will likely not settle for a discount and, soon to enter his 30s, seek a long-term contract worth a lot of money.