Stark: Braves want Yanks to eat Swish’s contract

Rick Peterson: Understanding why young pitchers get hurt
Open Thread: Friday Randomness

In his latest Rumblings & Grumblings column, scribe Jayson Stark takes a look at the state of the free agent market. With just a week left until Spring Training, some big names — Manny Ramirez, Bobby Abreu, Adam Dunn, Orlando Hudson, Juan Cruz — remained unsigned, and the excuse that any or all of these players hurt team chemistry doesn’t really fly.

But that’s not important right now. In the column, Stark gives us a tidbit about Nick Swisher and the Braves. It’s the rumor that just won’t die. He writes:

In the meantime, the Braves seem to have emerged as the club most interested in Yankees outfielder Nick Swisher. But there are indications the teams got hung up when the Braves asked the Yankees to eat some of the $22.05 million Swisher has coming over the next three years — and got turned down flat.

When push comes to shove, I’m going to bet on “no deal” here. The Yanks have no incentive to trade Swisher — or Xavier Nady, for that matter — for anything less than what they want. Doing so would in fact weaken the team’s bench. If the Braves won’t give up the prospects or money for him, the Yanks may very well be better of for it.

Rick Peterson: Understanding why young pitchers get hurt
Open Thread: Friday Randomness
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  • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

    I got something the Braves can eat…

    • Jack

      Ooh ooh ooh! Is it a burrito?

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside


        • Arin

          One of Bobby A.’s delicious Werther’s Originals?

  • MattG

    But you do not know what the second move would be. If Nady or Swisher is dealt, that’s more money off the payroll…and Adam Dunn is getting nervous.

    • whozat

      I’m not sure it makes sense to dump Swisher for Dunn, not when Dunn is kind of a disaster in the OF and the Yankees REALLY don’t need to be searching for a DH.

      • Old Ranger

        And as some have pointed out, if Dunn only signs a 1 year contract…we could replace Matsui with Dumm dadumm dunn.
        He isn’t a player I would pick but, seems like a lot of you would.

        • MattG

          If Dunn would sign a one year contract, Atlanta would just sign him, right? The deal would be Swisher for a good prospect, sign Dunn for 3/27, or something like that.

          Swisher’s fielding does close the gap considerably, however consider that there will probably be plenty of time for Dunn at DH, what with Matsui being the only one for the role. If the prospect is good enough, it might make sense.

          • Old Ranger

            The DH could have more then Matsui if Posada can’t be the everyday catcher and we also have whomever isn’t playing in the OF that day…so what do you do with him?
            I know you are hot for Dunn (as I am for Brett/Cervelli) but, with the two guys I like…we don’t have to make a place for them on the team, if they don’t cut it they get cut! With Dunn, one puts up a lot of money for a DH?

            • MattG

              I hear ya, but I’d listen. I’d go ahead and platoon Nady and Matsui, with Dunn shuffling between DH and OF.

              Now, I like Swisher A LOT. I love that he saw as many pitches as anyone last year. I love that he can play center and first base. And his contract is just fine.

              But I’d listen. And if someone offers the right prospect, I’d have Dunn’s agent on speed dial.

              Oh, but I don’t think Posada spending time at DH is really something to plan around.

              • whozat

                Oh, yeah, totally. But I don’t think it makes any sense at all to salary dump Swisher just to get Dunn on the team.

          • Old Ranger

            Matt, sorry I didn’t make it clear. I meant after this year we replace Matsui with Dunn, I wouldn’t but, a lot of you people like his bat, so…..

  • Kilgore Trout

    I’d be upset if Cashman trades Swisher. Nady, not so much.

    • UNION YES.

      “Life is no way to treat an animal.”

      • Kilgore Trout

        not even a mouse.

    • barry

      Nady is a lot better than you may think. We’re much better off keeping Nady, Swisher, and Damon and trading Matsui. If they do trade Nady it will be at mid-season, not right now. Swisher would probably be the least likely guy to be traded because he’s one of those guys that’s really unappreciated. If Swish can go back to playing like he did in Oakland than he’d be a perfect Right Fielder for years to come.

      • Artist formerly known as ‘The’ Steve

        I like having some bench depth for a change. On any given night we could have either Matsui, Nady or Swisher to pinch it and possibly win us a game.

        I’ll only trade Swish/Nady if the Braves blow us away.

  • The Evil Empire

    Did we have Swiher signed when Cashman said Melky/Brett is playing CF?

    I still prefer a Damon/Swisher/Nady OF until A jack gets the chance to prove himself.

    • Old Ranger

      Swisher dislikes playing CF, plus he has to work at it and isn’t that good…more like, adequate.

      • The Evil Empire

        It’s still better than Melky, and Brett, well idk about that

        • Old Ranger

          I am not so sure it is better. You give up a lot of defence without either one of Melky/Brett. And again, IF (not so big if) Brett can hold his own or Melky gets back to what he showed he was in the beginning…..good for our side!

          • The Evil Empire

            I know BUT this is what I’m thinking:

            Why would the Yankees pay Nady 6M+ to be a bench guy!? Swisher is also making 5M+, and I like swisher better than nady, but I just don’t see the point.

            • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

              Why would the Yankees pay Nady 6M+ to be a bench guy!?

              Why does a dog lick his balls?

              • Jack

                Why not?

              • Steve H

                Because he can

            • Old Ranger

              Because at the time they signed him, they had swisher at 1st base…not tex.

  • Mike R.

    What kind of haul do you think we would be looking at for Swisher?

    • whozat

      Nothing better than what we gave, really. Which is why it makes no sense. Why salary dump him?

    • UNION YES.

      Not sure. My guess is that Atlanta’s thinking Prado, Kotchman, or Francoeur. Hanson, Hernandez, Schafer, or Heyward won’t come that easy. Maybe I’m wrong.

      • UNION YES.

        Erase Kotchman.

      • Kilgore Trout

        Can Kotchman play anything but 1st?

  • Frank

    What makes no sense is if Swisher is traded, the Yanks could concievably go into 2010 with an OF of Gardner, Melky, and A-Jax since Matsui, Damon and Nady are FAs after next season and could all be gone.

  • leftylarry

    I would eat some of Swishers salary & sign Dunn to a reasonably cheap deal for a 29 year old power hitter.I seem to remember Dunn having a very strong arm and who is more consistant than him hitting exactly 40 HR’s everyone of the last 5 seasons.
    I think he’d hit for a higher average in the American league hitting after AROD and with some very good hitters like Cano and Posada behind him.
    Gardner can cover a portion of whatever field Dunn plays and at least Dunn isn’t afraid of walls like Abreu was.
    He walks a lot also.

    • Old Ranger

      With Dunn’s’ No Defence in mind, you may want to look at Bobby’s numbers and compare them to Dunn’s. They both are bad OF players and bad OF huts the team more then a weak hitter (in my opinion), unless the hitter is around .235 with no power. No, I don’t mean Brett, he’ll punch in about .270+.
      We already have a bunch of DH’s, no need for one more.

      • whozat

        “No, I don’t mean Brett, he’ll punch in about .270+.”

        There is literally no reason to think this other than a personal hunch.

        • Old Ranger

          Well the projections say about .268 all the way up to .300. Now, the question is; who is right? My answer is, none of the above…the simple fact is nobody knows for sure, therefore my opinion (or yours) is just as valid as anyone else’s. I see where he could get in the .270 range…I also see he may not. Honestly, I really don’t know, this game is worse then golf…in the frustration factor.

  • touchtoneterriost

    Trade Swisher who cares.Nomar and many other free agents for less then Swisher contract are out there.

    Swisher isn’t a platoon or bench guy.It’s a waste of a guy who can hit 25 homeruns and 90 rbi’s playing everyother day.

    • steve (different one)


      Swisher isn’t going to platoon.

      and Nomar? really?

  • Manimal

    Sign Ken Griffey Jr.

    • Old Ranger


      • Manimal
        • Artist formerly known as ‘The’ Steve

          He’s shot.

          • Old Ranger

            Thank you!

        • whozat

          No, he won’t. He’ll add a defensively poor player that can’t really hit anymore. The only metric by which he is better than Swisher or Nady is in the number of fathers named “Ken Griffey”

  • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

    Frank Wren: Hey, Brian, Frank Wren.
    CashMoney: Whatup, Frankie.
    Frank Wren: It’s Frank.
    CashMoney: Yeah. Whatup?
    Frank Wren: You got a second to talk personnel?
    CashMoney: Go.
    Frank Wren: I’m looking to add an outfielder, somebody to play in the corners; you seem to have a few of those.
    CashMoney: Listening.
    Frank Wren: Any interest in moving Swisher? I know he’s got a rather large contract, but I may be able to give you something of value.
    CashMoney: You can have Nady.
    Frank Wren: Yeah, we kinda prefer Swisher. I was thinking maybe, if we could work something out salarywise to lessen the impact, we might be–
    CashMoney: Nady. That’s it.
    Frank Wren: Huh. What if I gave you like a Jordan Schafer or something along those lines, could we talk Swisher then?
    CashMoney: Here’s my offer: Nady for Schafer.
    Frank Wren: No, I’m really looking more Swisher. Swisher for Schafer, that’s where I was going.
    CashMoney: I know where you were going, Frankie. Here’s where I’m going. Nady for Schafer.
    Frank Wren: So Swisher is totally out of the question, huh?
    CashMoney: NADY… FOR… SCHAFER.
    Frank Wren: I don’t know if we can do that right now. Maybe we–
    Frank Wren: What? I–
    Frank Wren: Look, Brian, there’s no need to–
    CashMoney: –Lemme ask you a question, Frankie.
    Frank Wren: It’s Fra–
    CashMoney: –What kind of animal has a little dick and hangs upside down?
    Frank Wren: Umm, where ar–
    CashMoney: –A bat. A bat has a little dick and hangs upside down. Now here’s another question: What kind of animal has a huge dick and hangs up?
    Frank Wren: Hello? Are you there? Hello?

    … aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand, SCENE!

    • Old Ranger

      Very much the way it should go!

    • pat

      Heh, youve been waiting to use that bat line for a while haven’t you?

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        An oldie but a goodie.

    • Mike A.

      CashMoney: –A bat. A bat has a little dick and hangs upside down. Now here’s another question: What kind of animal has a huge dick and hangs up?

      I laughed.

  • yankeefan91 Arod fan (sign manny now)

    if anyone interested melky not playin in the world baseball classic

    • Old Ranger

      To much competition?

      • barry

        Doesn’t want to be embarrassed for free?

    • Ben K.

      You mean the Dominican Republic can find six outfielders better than Melky to fill their roster? I’m shocked. SHOCKED.

  • barry

    RAB, Keep Our Outfielders shirts?

  • mustang

    ‘”Manny Ramirez, Bobby Abreu, Adam Dunn, Orlando Hudson, Juan Cruz — remained unsigned, and the excuse that any or all of these players hurt team chemistry doesn’t really fly”

    That excuse only fly with one of these players.

    Ask the Red Sox.

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Doesn’t even really fly with that one.

      • Matt

        But ESPN said so!

  • Artist formerly known as ‘The’ Steve

    Were really all just changing the subject with the Swisher/Nady debate. The square peg on this team is Matsui. It’s just that his value is so low right now, you can’t get anything for him.

    But Matsui’s value can change. Go into the season with the current roster, and see if you can get something good for Hideki either after ST or at the mid-season trade deadline.

  • Matt

    We all know how I feel about Nick Swisher. That is all.

  • Aram

    Matsui is not going to be traded…no one wants him.

    No one is going to give anything of signifcance for Nady bc he’s a Boras client in the last year of his deal.

    Swisher is going to get traded. You can’t keep a guy like that happy playing only 120 games a year. Of course the Yanks aren’t going to eat any contract…that’s a stupid request by the Braves. But it’s not like the Yanks are going to get Schaefer or Hanson or anything great for him. Prado + Gorkys + an arm for Swisher. That’s fair. Solid 2B for the bench, very nice CF prospect and a wild card arm. That’s a pretty good haul.

    • Matt

      You can’t keep a guy like that happy playing only 120 games a year.

      Which is why he should–and I think will–be the starter. :)

      • Old Ranger

        Of course he will be starting in RF, at least that is the plan.

    • steve (different one)

      so the Yankees should trade him b/c he might not be happy playing 5 days a week?

      that doesn’t make any sense.

  • Rich

    Unless they are seeking payroll flexibility to make room for Dunn or Manny, do not trade Swisher.

  • Lanny

    Why trade Swisher?

    Why not actually have one player on the bench who has some talent?

    Not like we got a team of 30 yr olds or anything.

  • NC Saint

    the excuse that any or all of these players hurt team chemistry doesn’t really fly.

    Manny’s downside can’t be written off that easily. Personally, I would put up an argument for ruling him out on the basis of an ‘intangible’ – namely, the effect on our ability to instill discipline in young talent – but even if you leave that aside, Manny has proven willing to stop playing baseball if his every whim is not humored. There’s nothing flakey like ‘chemistry’ involved in the downside of a great hitter watching three strikes go by to prove a point to management. Even if we wanted to humor him, the fact is that we have at least three or four high paid players who’s happiness would be more important to the organization. If he couldn’t get along with A-Rod, say, there’s nothing we could do. And then the man-child hitting-savant would be a liability. Given the outfield talent still unsigned, it’s really no mystery that Manny doesn’t have a job. No sensible GM would risk that clown for anything near the money he wants in this market.

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      No sensible GM would risk that clown for anything near the money he wants in this market.

      I’m sure if they worked for owners who were willing to add 25M to the payroll in the mist of this economic downturn, virtually every GM would LOVE the opportunity to “risk that clown”.

      Manny’s not unsigned because he’s a clubhouse cancer. He’s unsigned because A) he’s expensive and everyone’s broke and B) he’s a MEDIA cancer. It’s not that MLB players don’t want to play with him (they do), it’s that hack journalists like to write stories about him being an evil guy and idiot fanbases read and buy into that hackneyed bullshit.

      Owners bow to the court of public opinion, even when it’s not rooted in reality.

  • YankFanDave

    Finally, someone who gets it. Brilliant as obvious as it should be.

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