Friday, April 11, 2008

Moves the Yankees Need to Make

Get a quality utility infielder.

With Jeter getting injured lots of ideas have been thrown around about how to fill in at his position. Some have suggested that A-Rod could move over and play in his old spot. Wilson Betemit has no place on the team. His defense is below average and his hitting is poor. Robinson Cano has fielded poorly this year and hasn't had a terrific bat. The Yankees need a solid defensive replacement off the bench to fill in for Jeter or Cano. A guy with speed who could be used as a pinch runner would be an added benefit.

Currently the Yankees have brought up Alberto Gonzalez who is hitting .375, but no one expects these numbers to hold up. Gonzalez is decent in the field, which is a plus and he can play second. If Gonzalez can keep hitting halfway decently he could fill in but he's probably not quite there yet.

Keep Gonzalez on the Roster or try to sign someone with a bit more experience.

Betemit should be let go.

Get a decent backup catcher in the system

Right now aged veteran Chad Moeller is the backup catcher behind Molina. If Posada continues to have trouble throwing he'll need to be moved to the DH spot or possibly first base. With Francisco Cervelli's broken arm, the Yanks are depleted in the catching position.

Straighten out the DH/1B/OF situation

The Yankees have Damon, Matsui, Giambi, and Posada who are all looking more like DHs than full time position players. Duncan is more of a novelty than anything else. Morgan Ensberg makes a nice addition to fill in at first when needed but perhaps Posada should consider a move if his arm continues to struggle. Matsui and Damon bring different tools to the plate, but the team really doesn't need both. Giambi has become the starting first baseman, but he's getting older and more prone to injury in addition to having an abysmal offensive start. Ensberg isn't the guy you want starting full time and the Yanks don't have too many other options to play 1st other than bringing Shelley Duncan back.

The bottom line is that there are too many players for too few positions here. Perhaps the Yankees could trade one to fill another need or arrange a two for one trade. The problem is that it can be difficult for the Yanks to get anyone to take over one of their veteran's contracts.

Get a long reliever

The Yankees have quite a few question marks with their starting pitchers. You never know when one of the young arms gets pulled out of a game early or when an injury to a starter needs a quality spot starter to fill in.

Right now the Yanks don't have any long relievers on the team. Karstens was injured at the end of spring training and Rasner and Igawa were sent down to the minors. I'm not thrilled with Rasner but Karstens and Igawa aren't up to the challenge.

It wouldn't hurt to give Rasner a chance. The Yankees can easily clear room on the roster by getting rid of Farnsworth and Hawkins. Albaladejo should be brought back up as soon as possibly also.

So there you have 4 areas that the Yankees need to address. They've got a few guys who are 100% expendable like Farnsworth, Hawkins and Betemit. They also have a dearth of sub-par outfielders who could be traded. Not all of these areas need to be addressed through outside help and one or two could be filled from within if Gonzalez performs well or Rasner gets brought up.

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