Almost as soon as Alex Rodriguez hit the ground Tuesday night clutching his broken hand, the rumors about Chase Headley and the Yankees started flying.
A number of teams had already contacted the Padres about the availability of the third baseman. With A-Rod out, certainly the Yankees would be calling.
A New York radio station even put in a call to a Padres writer at 4 a.m. Pacific time Wednesday morning regarding Headley.
"I got texts about it from family and friends and even people I hadn't heard from in a long time," Headley said. "There's been so much stuff running around lately. As a player, I try not to get too caught up in it. But it is impossible to avoid at this point."
Padres general manager Josh Byrnes last week admitted that he had heard from at least eight teams regarding Headley. And Headley could be available.
The Padres have two other top prospects who can play third -- Logan Forsythe, who is already with the big-league club, and Jedd Gyorko, who is hitting .339 with 16 homers and 57 through 61 games for Class AAA Tucson.
"All I can do is look on the bright side," Headley said. "A lot of teams think I can play. But who knows what is real and what isn't."
If the Yankees are really interested -- and New York general manager Brian Cashman says they're not -- it could be good for the Padres. The price could be rising just by the rumor. And Headley might have spiked his own value Wednesday by hitting his career-high-equaling 12th homer off Tim Lincecum in San Diego's 6-3 win at San Francisco.
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