SNY's Andy Martino reported on Oct. 29 that the Yankees didn't plan to pursue free agent Bryce Harper, and GM Brian Cashman confirmed Sunday that the team was never in on him. And he was succinct about it.
"No," Cashman told reporters Sunday.
"We're up and running with what we've got," he added, according to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com. "We're excited about what we've got. We're hoping that's enough, but always looking to improve over the course of time if it fits within certain parameters."
As Harper was flirting with the Phillies, Dodgers, and Giants, the Yankees never engaged, with the baseball operations department remaining totally uninterested, Martino reported last week.
Harper, who reportedly had a desire to eclipse the record $325 million deal Giancarlo Stanton signed with the Marlins, did just that -- agreeing to a 13-year deal with the Phillies worth $330 million.
The Yankees' wire-to-wire disinterest in Harper this offseason should come as a surprise since the team is awash with outfielders. And Cashman suggested pretty strongly during the Winter Meetings in December that Yanks had no intent to pursue Harper.
According to Martino, the Yankees had concerns about Harper's defense and his offensive inconsistency, and didn't love the sense of inevitability that had developed linking him to them.
Instead of pursuing Harper, the Yankees' big moves this offseason were trading for James Paxton, re-signing J.A. Happ, CC Sabathia, and Zack Britton, further bolstering the bullpen by signing Adam Ottavino, adding free agents DJ LeMahieu and Troy Tulowitzki to the infield, and signing Luis Severino and Aaron Hicks to extensions.
While the Yankees had no interest in Harper, they did take a meeting with Manny Machado. However, the Yanks were never going to be the high bidder for Machado, and watched him sign a 10-year, $300 million deal with the Padres.