The Yankees trail the Rays by 1.5 games in the AL East and the quest to overtake them could be about to become harder.
The Rays, who have primarily used Diego Castillo and Jose Alvarado to close games this season, have been "keeping in touch" with free agent reliever Craig Kimbrel, reports Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Along with the Rays, there are a bunch of other teams who have been keeping in touch with Kimbrel, such as the Mets.
SNY's Andy Martino reported on May 2 that the Mets were having "continued dialogue" with Kimbrel, but that he wouldn't call a signing "likely"
The 30-year-old Kimbrel entered the offseason looking for a deal worth $100 million or more, which was an absolutely insane ask. Since then, his demands have dropped, with Jon Heyman reporting last month that Kimbrel would be open to a "good" three-year deal.
With Kimbrel still on the market along with starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel, whispers are starting to get louder regarding one or both of them waiting until after the MLB Draft in June to sign.
Both Kimbrel and Keuchel are attached to draft pick compensation since they turned down qualifying offers. If they wait until after the Draft (which concludes on June 5) to sign, that compensation will no longer be required from a signing team.