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The Yankees plan to scout Chien-Ming Wang during the World Baseball Classic

Feb 15, 2013, 7:01 PM EDT

Chien-Ming Wang Getty Getty Images

Chien-Ming Wang is still out on the free agent market in hopes of getting a major league deal. While he may have to eventually lower his expectations, there’s a chance that one of his former teams will welcome him back into the fold.

According to George A. King III of the New York Post, the Yankees will send scouts to watch Wang pitch for Taiwan during the upcoming World Baseball Classic. While Yankees general manager Brian Cashman told King that he hasn’t had contact with Wang’s representatives, this would seem to indicate that they have some level of interest.

Of course, Wang began his career with the Yankees and posted a 55-26 record and a 4.16 ERA over five seasons with the club prior to having shoulder surgery in 2009. He has struggled to get his career back on track since the procedure, posting a 4.04 ERA in 11 starts with the Nationals in 2011 and a 6.68 ERA and 15/15 K/BB ratio over 32 1/3 innings last season.

Yankees spring pitching instructor Billy Connors came away impressed by a recent bullpen session by Wang, but since the club already has a full starting rotation, he might find a better opportunity elsewhere. Failing that, the Yankees would surely welcome him as depth at the Triple-A level.

  1. soobster - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:06 PM

    If they overpaid him slightly any chance he’d move into the bullpen?

    • dcfan4life - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:17 PM

      If it meant a major league contract im sure hed take it, especially with a contender. However he never seemed well suited for bullpen work. Overall he was way to inconsistant when he did pitch, and still had injury issues. Id expect the Yankees to pass and maybe he goes somewhere desperate for pitching.

      • 4cornersfan - Feb 15, 2013 at 8:10 PM

        Actually, he was inconsistent only after he hurt his foot on the basepaths in a game against a NL team in 2008. He won 38 games in 2006-2007 with an ERA well below 4,00 and was the Yankees best and most consistent pitcher over those 2 years. Most think his arm problems stemmed from foot injury. If he is back he could be a big signing for the Yankees as a starter.

      • dcfan4life - Feb 16, 2013 at 2:29 AM

        I meant he was too inconsistant post injury. Before he was quite good at times. Since he really hasnt been.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:21 PM

      Why would the Yanks look to make a bullpen move? They already have more pieces than they can fit with Rivera, Logan, Robertson, Chamberlain, Rapada and Eppley. That doesn’t even count Kelly and Aardsma…

      • pisano - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:25 PM

        church….Good point, they are looking at him as a starter. If he has anything the Yankees like, they’ll sign him, if the price is right.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:31 PM

        I mean, I wouldn’t mind another reclamation project stashed at AAA, but I’d much rather see Phelps/Adams/Marshall than Wang. Eventually the young guys will need a chance to prove if they can handle the bigs or not.

      • bigharold - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:33 PM

        “If he has anything the Yankees like,…”

        That only works if he’s willing to start the season in the minors. If he’s looking for a come back, the minors isn’t going to help.

  2. yankeepunk3000 - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:24 PM

    I hope he excepts the minor league offer chances are he will be called up sooner then later. Either by Petite getting hurt or CC pulling the groin again. Even if Nova starts to struggle like he did last year, then I can see Wang getting called up by late may or June. I loved seeing this guy pitch and he WAS our #1 for 2 years so I’m sure Yankee fans would welcome him back I know I would.

    • cackalackyank - Feb 17, 2013 at 6:33 PM

      My understanding is that the #5 spot is actually TBD. Nova actually pitched himsef out of the rotation for the playoffs. Look for a competition between Nova and Phelps..maybe Marshall and Adams too. There is also Pineda, who from recent reports may be ready before the All Star break. The NYY may have their depth built in already. Of course Cashman always says you can never have too much pitching. The situation is kind of sad, and imho,Chein-Mig Wang may go down as the poster child for the Designated Hitter. His injury occured rounding 3rd base against the Astros in an inter-league game. Had this game happened in New York instead of Houston this injury probably never happens. Then his attempt to come back too quickly from the lisfranc fracture doesn’t cause the shoulder injury. He might have gone into the books as one of the best sinkerball pitchers, now he is panhandling for work.

  3. 13arod - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:45 PM

    If nova struggles again wang could be a good cheap pick up like the way the yankeys are thinking

  4. digbysellers - Feb 15, 2013 at 10:29 PM

    Impressed by Wang? That’s gold Jerry, gold.

  5. humanexcrement - Feb 16, 2013 at 2:54 AM

    It’s a shame what happened to Wang. He was an amazing pitcher. Maybe not the ace the Yankees wanted him to be, but he was at least a top-notch #2 guy to have in your rotation. And of all things, his career tanked running the bases after getting a hit in an inter league game. I generally prefer the style of play in NL baseball, but that is one good argument for the DH–a pitcher’s career ruined over a meaningless bloop single (as I recall) in a meaningless inning in a meaningless game. And also, Nats fans, in the AL you could have kept Michael Morse and slotted him in at DH, where he belongs. Just a thought.

  6. jwbiii - Feb 16, 2013 at 4:39 PM

    If Wang pitches well in the WBC, some team will give him a major league deal. If he doesn’t, he’ll have to take a minor league deal. So he either will project to be not good or he not be inexpensive.

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