The New York Yankees acquired a superstar of a different variety on Wednesday when they traded future considerations to the Texas Rangers for the rights to Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, the Rangers announced, according to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.
"This is a unique opportunity for us to learn from an extraordinary athlete who has reached the pinnacle of his profession," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said in a statement. "After talking to a number of our players, there is a genuine excitement in having Russell join us for a short time in camp. We are all looking forward to gaining insight into how he leads teammates toward a common goal, prepares on a daily basis for the rigors of sport, and navigates the successes and failures of a season."
Two months after making a gigantic splash by acquiring reigning National League MVP Giancarlo Stanton from the Miami Marlins, the Yankees added Wilson - a four-time Pro Bowler and a second baseman - to their depth chart.
"I want to personally thank the Texas Rangers for giving me the chance to experience professional baseball again," Wilson said. "Growing up taking grounders, hitting BP, and throwing deep post routes early in the mornings with my dad and brother is where my love of sports came from, and those memories stick with me every morning I wake up ...
"While football is my passion and my livelihood, baseball remains a huge part of where I came from and who I am today. I've learned so much on the baseball field that translates to my game physically and mentally playing quarterback in the NFL. I thank the Rangers and their great fans for making me feel at home and a part of the family! While I embrace the chance to be a New York Yankee, I will forever be grateful to have been a part of a world-class organization like the Texas Rangers."
The 29-year-old does not intend to try and play both sports like Bo Jackson or Deion Sanders, according to an ESPN source, although he does want to continue with his ties to baseball, which could include spring training appearances.
'Wilson is expected to be in Major League camp in March. While he is in Tampa, Wilson will participate in pregame workouts with the club and watch games from the Yankees' dugout," the Yankees said in a statement.
Wilson was originally drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the fourth round of the 2010 draft and appeared in 93 games with the organization's minor-league affiliates before he was acquired by the Rangers in the Triple-A phase of the Rule 5 draft in 2013.
Wilson, who is one of the NFL's elite quarterbacks, hit .229/.354/.356 with five home runs and 26 RBIs during his time in the minors before helping lead the Seahawks to the Super Bowl XLVIII title in 2013.