Veteran infielder reportedly declined Yankees' higher bid to join Rays

Another person who demanded more playing time instead of more cash.
Tampa Bay Rays v New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays v New York Yankees / Julio Aguilar/GettyImages

When Gio Urshela chose the Detroit Tigers over the New York Yankees' muted overtures for a paltry sum of $1.5 million, it was assumed Brian Cashman just ... wasn't all that interested. Urshela was guaranteed more playing time in the Motor City, sure, but quibbling over $1.5 million certainly sounded like something the Yankees were at the fringes of rather than the center.

Could've been wrong, though. That situation could've spoken about the Yankees' interest in Urshela specifically (and vice versa), but it doesn't appear to be indicative of New York's desire to add a versatile infielder.

Kiké Hernández spilled the beans last week that the Yankees were a surprise finalist for his services, bidding $4 million before being turned down in favor of the comforts (and Ohtanis) of Los Angeles.

Add Amed Rosario to the pile, as Joel Sherman was able to uncover that the Yankees also offered Rosario $4 million, only to see him turn around and sign with Tampa Bay for $1.5 million instead. You know he'll post an .800 OPS there, for whatever reason. That Devil (Rays) Magic was likely too enticing to pass up.

Yankees got beaten out for Amed Rosario despite higher bid

Rosario, of course, tattooed a Carlos Rodón pitch into left field the other day to muddy the embattled left-hander's line. It's starting early.

The ex-Guardian -- formerly the freest-swinging member of that dink-and-dunk lineup -- didn't have a noteworthy 2023 season (.675 OPS in Cleveland, .709 OPS in Los Angeles), and might not be the largest Yankees miss of the offseason. The more noteworthy element of this story isn't that the Rays might unlock a Yankee target. It's the fact that New York's budget is oddly higher for a final bench spot than most would've expected, and now that Oswald Peraza's shoulder injury looms large in the team's Opening Day roster plans, a late addition like Donovan Solano wouldn't feel outlandish.

Something tells us that Solano, or any other potential target, is well aware the Yankees still have $4 million to work with.