Brian Cashman told Peter Abraham that, during spring training in 1996, George Steinbrenner was interested in acquiring a shortstop. The team was unsure that Derek Jeter would be ready to start.

Felix Fermin of the Mariners was discussed, and Seattle wanted either Mariano Rivera or Bob Wickman in return. "It was a big fight and we were very close to doing it," Cashman told Abraham. "Thank God we didn't."

Fermin ended up being released on April 13 and signed with the Yankees on May 8. But, they released him, too, on May 22. He caught on with the Cubs on May 29, hit .125 in 16 at bats, and was released on August 9. He did not see Major League action again.