The Yankees will not be signing Stephen Drew according to Peter Gammons, making the market for Boston's free agent shortstop that much smaller:
Brian Cashman yesterday said Yanks are not signing Stephen Drew. How Sox do pillow contract that isn't shoved down his throat is delicate— Peter Gammons (@pgammo) December 31, 2013
It's frankly surprising how little interest Drew has drawn on the open market. A .253/.333/.443 line left him by all accounts a top-10 MLB shortstop at the plate last year, with a solid performance with the glove adding to a 3.4 fWAR season--eighth in terms of value despite missing a month at the start of the season due to a concussion.
Perhaps his postseason performance has something to do with it. All told, Drew hit just .111/.140/.204 in 54 at bats in the playoffs. It's not enough to offset his strong year outside of October, but it may have raised a red flag for some teams, particularly when taken in conjunction with his injury history.
Gammons' tweet brings up the possibility of a pillow contract with the Red Sox. That certainly wouldn't be what Scott Boras had in mind at the end of the tunnel for Drew, but it might be what they have to take at this point. Of course, the question then becomes just how much is Drew worth to the Red Sox, and how do they fit him in? A contract for Drew would likely leave the Sox pressed up against the CBT threshold, and with Will Middlebrooks and Xander Bogaerts both set to start on the left side (to say nothing of recently-acquired utility player Jonathan Herrera) the team would be left with a juggling act to say the least. Still, if they're confident they can make it work, Drew would add another source of talent to a team with some question marks on the left side of the infield.