Could reliever Andrew Miller, a potential free agent, return to the Yankees in 2019?
While saying it is way too early to contemplate free agency, the Indians lefthander had no problem discussing his feelings for the Yankees, who traded him for outfielders Clint Frazier and pitchers Justus Sheffield, Ben Heller and J.P. Feyereisen on July 31, 2016.
Miller never wanted to leave the Yankees and even tried to get general manager Brian Cashman to include a no-trade clause in the four-year, $36-million contract he signed before the 2015 season. “I asked for it, I just didn’t get it,’’ he said. “We asked Cash for it. That’s one of those things you need a certain amount of leverage to get and I didn’t have it.
“[Cashman’s] theory is you don’t give it to relievers. I wanted to play for the Yankees. I wanted to play in New York. That’s not something I could squeeze out of him. It’s something you always ask for. When you sign somewhere, you sign somewhere to play there. It’s good for your family and it takes one thing off your mind you don’t have to worry about. But it’s a hard thing to get. It’s getting harder and harder.’’
In 11 appearances this season, Miller has pitched 10 scoreless innings and struck out 17. He has been sidelined with a strained left hamstring, which he suffered against the Cubs on April 25.
Miller is a mainstay for the Indians but still might consider his options when free agency arrives. Would he be receptive if the Yankees were interested? “Yeah, of course,’’ he said. “I didn’t burn any bridges. I didn’t say anything bad about them because I didn’t have anything bad to say. I loved my time here.’’
Warren on the mend
Adam Warren (strained back) played catch and said he is progressing toward a return later this month. “Yeah, I think that’s the plan as long as everything feels good,’’ he said. “I don’t feel any pain so I think that’s a reasonable goal. Now it’s just getting my strength back. Again, we have to see how it feels when we turn up the intensity . . . Just have to build up the arm strength.’’
Walker sorry for Harvey
With Matt Harvey having been designated for assignment by the Mets, Neil Walker — who was Harvey’s teammate for close to two seasons — said, “You certainly feel bad for the man and the player. Matt had a tough stretch these last couple of years with injuries and consistency. When you play with him and against him, you see the talent, the stuff he has. I firmly believe he’ll get back to pre-injury.’’