Halladay would reportedly waive his no-trade clause for a trade that would fit him for Yankees pinstripes, according to a story Friday in The Toronto Sun.
The story, written by Bob Elliott, quotes an unnamed Major League executive as saying, "I don't know when he is going and I don't know where he's going. But I do know that Halladay has told the Jays he'll approve a trade to the Yankees."
Halladay, 32, has not been shy about exercising his full no-trade clause in the past. When the Blue Jays were considering possible landing spots for Halladay in July, the Twins were nixed as a destination, and Rangers president Nolan Ryan said in September that his club would have been blocked as well.
The former American League Cy Young Award winner has a career record of 148-76 with a 3.43 ERA over 12 seasons in Toronto, and he has one year remaining on a three-year, $40 million deal.
A trusted mentor to Yankees starter A.J. Burnett during their time together in Toronto, Halladay will earn $15.75 million in 2010 and would become a free agent after the season, unless he is traded and reaches an agreement on a new extension.
Citing a source, the New York Daily News wrote last week that the Red Sox were putting on a "full-court press" to land Halladay, with the goal of pulling off such a transaction before the Winter Meetings start in Indianapolis on Dec. 7.
It is believed that Halladay's preferred teams for a deal would include the Yankees, Red Sox, Angels and Phillies, all of whom can fulfill his desire to contend for a World Series title while also possessing the ability to offer a rich contract.
If the Yankees want to pull off a trade for Halladay, the price is likely to be a young and talented package that could include a Major League-ready pitcher like Joba Chamberlain or Phil Hughes, as well as a top prospect like catcher Jesus Montero or outfielder Austin Jackson.
A similar circumstance was a deal breaker for general manager Brian Cashman after the 2007 season, when the Yankees passed on trading for Johan Santana and instead waited one year to pursue CC Sabathia as a free agent.
New York could use the pitching help, as manager Joe Girardi said this week it appears to be Sabathia, Burnett and "a mix of some other guys."
Andy Pettitte is contemplating retirement once again and has not tipped his intentions, and while the Yankees view Chamberlain and Hughes as starters for 2010, that is not concrete. Behind them would be a patch of back-end candidates that will likely include Chad Gaudin, Alfredo Aceves and Sergio Mitre.
The Yankees are scheduled to meet next week in Tampa, Fla., to finalize their budget for 2010, and they are not expected to put on the same spending blitz as last winter, when $423.5 million in new commitments were issued to Sabathia, Burnett and Mark Teixeira.
But the Yankees have holes to fill, and Cashman has said that he plans to engage the Yankees' own free agents -- including Pettitte, Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui -- before attacking the open market. While Cashman has discussed trades with teams, including the Blue Jays, he said nothing is imminent.
"I don't have a trade sitting in my back pocket," Cashman said.
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less