NEW YORK — The New York Yankees and free agent outfielder Randy Winn agreed Wednesday to a $2 million, one-year contract, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press.
The agreement, which all but eliminates any chance Johnny Damon has of returning to the World Series champions, is subject to a physical that is scheduled for Thursday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because a final agreement was not in place.
Winn hit .262 with two homers and 51 RBIs for the San Francisco Giants last year, but his on-base percentage was just .318. The 35-year-old was an All-Star in 2002, when he batted .298 with 14 homers and 75 RBIs for Tampa Bay.
New York figures to start Curtis Granderson in center field and Nick Swisher in right most of the time, with Winn and Brett Gardner sharing time in left.
Damon helped the Yankees win the World Series for the first time since 2000, hitting .282 with 23 homers and 82 RBIs, but he was coming off a $52 million, four-year contract and New York valued the 36-year-old at far less.
“The Yankees along all have said they had $2 million and that obviously removed them out of the marketplace of a lot of talented players. We really did not have a lot to talk about,” said Damon’s agent, Scott Boras. “Johnny knew what their budget was, so there was never any expectancy. The Yankees could never make an offer because they knew Johnny’s performance value far exceeded what their budget was.”
Despite repeatedly referring to budget constraints, the Yankees’ projected payroll for 18 players with agreements likely to make the opening-day roster is at $205 million following the deal with Winn.