Dec
28

Yanks could look at Dye as a left field caddy

By

Since all we’re going to talk about is left field, how about this rumor from Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune: “Jermaine Dye is drawing interest from the Yankees.” As we’ve discussed, the Yankees could use another outfielder. Even if they want to give Gardner every shot, a solid backup should be in the plans. Since Jamie Hoffman is not that, we could see the Yanks make a move for a lower-tier left fielder.

Dye has name recognition value, but not much beyond that. He’s coming off a horrible year in which he hit .250/.340/.453. To sign him would be to bank on a significant bounce back year. For a younger player it might be worth the gamble, but Dye will turn 36 in a month. It might have been an off-year, or it might be a sign of declining skills. At what point is that a worthy gamble?

In 2009 Dye posted his worst offensive season since an injury riddled 2003. His power faded, as his .203 ISO was his lowest since 2004, and a .044 drop-off from 2008. His BABIP fell to .269, his lowest in a decade, apparently driven by an alarmingly low line drive percentage, 16.9, again his lowest since 2003. Defense has never been a strength, and over the past four seasons he’s posted a lower than -21 UZR/150.

There are some indicators, however, that Dye could bounce back from his poor season. While he hit fewer line drives, they turned almost exclusively into ground balls. His 43.6 fly ball percentage nearly matched his 2008 mark. Also nearly equal was his HR/FB ratio, at 15.6 percent, just a tick down from his 16 percent mark in 2008. Most of his power loss came in the gaps, as he hit just 19 doubles in 2009. Despite the down year he still hit 27 home runs. He also greatly increased his walk percentage, to 11.3 percent. Because of that he posted a .340 OBP, impressive considering his .250 batting average.

Considering the risks attached to Dye, combined with his poor defense, I wonder if the Yankees would also consider Eric Hinske. A much cheaper option, Hinske could probably post numbers similar to Dye in 2010, on offense and defense. UZR likes Hinske a lot more than Dye rating him positive at all but one position, third base, throughout his career. That doesn’t quite pass the eye test — Hinske seemed a butcher in the outfield last season, but I think it’s a safe bet he’s better than Dye.

The biggest difference between the two players is their handedness. Hinske, a lefty, has hit righties far better throughout his career, while Dye, a righty, does most of his damage against left-handed pitching, though his career platoon split isn’t dramatic. Since the Yankees feature a lefty-heavy lineup, perhaps they’d prefer Dye, a righty, to caddy Brett Gardner in left.

The good news is that Dye’s price tag shouldn’t be out of the Yankees’ range. He’s a second-tier corner outfield in a robust market, and will likely settle for a low base salary contract sometime in January. At that point, he might be worth the risk. A righty outfielder with the potential for a big season, especially at a low cost, should certainly interest the Yankees. They might have to wait him out, but his price could drop below what Bobby Abreu signed for last winter.

The Yankees have no reason to rush to seek outfield depth. Many options remain on the market, and likely will remain through January. By taking their time, the Yankees can watch the asking prices for many second-tier outfielders fall. Then they can slide in and sign a player they prefer. Dye is just one of many choices. If he wants a situation where a job is his to lose, he won’t choose New York. But if he wants the chance and is willing to sign for the Yankees’ price, I don’t see why the Yankees wouldn’t give him serious consideration.

Of course, there are plenty of players they should give serious consideration. In the end, they have room for only one. Dye could be as good a choice as any.

Categories : Hot Stove League
  • manimal529

    Didnt we almost trade for Dye? I think it was Abreu for Dye straight up

  • Granderslam

    I thought we were trying to go younger.

    • http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20090810&content_id=6355462&vkey=news_nyy&fext=.jsp&c_id=nyy JobaWockeeZ

      Younger for the sake of being younger isn’t always the best option in this case.

      We’d like to get younger AND better but I’d take better over younger if I can only have one.

      • Mo

        Younger AND more athletic like Curtis Granderson

    • http://threequarters.cementhorizon.com/archives/kool%20aid%20man.bmp The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

      They already are younger.

      Going younger doesn’t mean every single member of the roster has to be young. If this happened, it would be a one-year deal. That doesn’t hurt roster flexibility or lock the Yankees into a deal with an aging and diminishing player.

    • Salty Buggah

      Though this doesn’t really tell the whole story, Yanks current roster average age: 27.8

      In comparison to allegedly young team like the Rays, whose average age is 28.1, the Yanks aren’t that old.

      • http://www.twitter.com/wahbjo01 Jordan – Cashman Has No Equal

        Never realized that. Great info.

  • The Three Amigos

    He’s worse then Vlad in the field and I rather have him, since he seems more likely to have a bounce back year due to the injury he had this year. Put Swisher in LF

    • Bo

      worse than vlad in the field? have u seen vlad play the outfield the past 3 yrs??

      • The Three Amigos

        Look at the stats…

        • Section 39

          What stats are you looking at that leads you to that conclusion that Vlad is better in the field? He hasn’t played in the OF for the past 1.5 seasons. At least Dye can still move without a walker.

      • http://www.teamnerdrage.com dr mrs the yankee

        Have you seen Jermaine Dye play in the outfield the past 3 years?

        Go watch the highlights of Melky’s Dye-assisted Cycle.

        • Mside

          SWISHER IN LEFT ARE YOU KIDDING ME

  • Drew

    Eh. While I do think he will have a better year offensively, his defense, as you mentioned, is abysmal. To his credit, he is consistent…ly horrible. -21.5 UZR/150 in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Slightly worse in 09.

    I don’t see it.

    I mentioned in the previous thread that I wish Uggla could play LF. I’d be more confident in him in right or left than Dye; and the dude’s only played 20 professional games in the OF, all in AA.

    • Granderslam

      I wish Orlando Hudson played LF

    • Drew

      **2008 was -21.4, not 21.5.

    • http://www.i-yankees.com iYankees

      I’m with you on Uggla. I wish, man.

  • Salty Buggah

    Eh, he had a horrible year last year in a hitters park and Yankee Stadium is a righty-killing pitchers park. His defense stinks, as you said, so he’ll lose a lot of value there. We need a solid backup plan and I dont think he’s the best option. Does he have more potential than some other options? Yes, but his defense and declining offensive skills scare me away.

    I think the Yanks can get Reed Johnson at a similar price to Dye. So…no Dye, Reed Johnson please.

    • Bo

      righty killing? a-rod, jeter and all the switch hitters disagree a little

      • J

        I don’t think so. Yankee Stadium is known to diminish right handed power hitters. The spacious left field kills power.

        And Jeter hits most of his opposite field I believe.

      • Pasqua

        I think he’s referring to power, and you cited Jeter and A-Rod, both of whom have power to the opposite field (if you want to call what Jeter does “power”), so they can make do in YSIII quite nicely.

  • Graves

    I’m all for Hinske returning

  • http://www.i-yankees.com iYankees

    Dye’s poor defense basically wipes out any offensive contribution he could provide. Over the past 3 seasons, he’s been worth 0.9 WAR. That’s mind bogglingly bad. For instance, in ’08, he hit .292/.344/.541 with 34 HR yet his -19.4 UZR made him worth only 1.8 WAR. He’s basically a DH or would have to hit at least 40 HRs to provide any real value, if placed in the outfield (like he did in 2006).

    I’d probably sign Nady, Ryan Church, and maybe Reed Johnson before adding Dye.

    • Jeff Levy

      Dye’s defense isn’t the only probelem. In his career he has only made 15 starts in left field. It would make more sense to play Swisher in left field and Dye in right field when Dye plays.

      Another problem with Dye is his bad split against right handers last year. He hit only .236/.323/.434 against right handers. On the other hand, against left handers he hit .292/.387/.508.

      Lets say Dye starts only against left handers and maybe makes 40 starts with Gardner getting the rest of the starts. Is his defense as big of a problem then if he is only a part time player? He would be a good guy to have come off the bench, but as a full time player the outfield defense would suffer.

      • Rob

        This is how I think the Yankees are going about it. Dye could sub for Gardner or NJ or even Swisher depending on who’s the starting pitcher. It all depends on the cost though. Dye would get around 60 to 80 starts then a bunch of pinch hitting appearances for around 250 to 350 ABs. If he’s north of $4M though I don’t see it.

    • http://pendingpinstripes.net Greg F.

      Austin Kearns, too!

      • DP

        Emil Brown!

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WppcSY4SsSk barry

      Perhaps we all overvalue defense a little bit? Scoring runs is always more important than preventing runs. The Yankees don’t even pretend to be a defensive team, if that happened our average payroll figure would be int he seven figure range and not in the eight figure range. Hits are dollars people, not catches. If the dude’s got to be subbed for we have Brett the Jet on the bench waiting to prove he should of been there anyway.

      • Drew

        By “defensive team,” do you mean a team that doesn’t hit and only plays defense? I mean, the way I see it our defense is pretty damn good right now on paper.

        Also, he’s not just a bad defender, he’s a horrible defender coming off a league average offensive season and he’ll be 37 by the end of next season.

      • whozat

        …for every run that you prevent, that’s one less than you have to score. Now, the myriad of other factors that go into run prevention make it hard to take the number of balls in play that a guy converts into outs and translate that directly to “runs prevented”, and I do agree that the fangraphs translations of their UZR numbers into WAR values and stuff seem to over-value defense. However, when guys are really, really terrible on D, let’s not kid ourselves…they’re giving back a big chunk of their value by turning outs into doubles, making pitchers throw extra pitches, getting middle relievers into the game earlier and more often, etc.

        If a guy’s elite, you put up with it, because his bat is so very good that, on balance, he’s still a big plus. Jermaine Dye isn’t elite, not any more. Jason Bay, for that matter, may be enough of a hitter right now that one would take the tradeoff, but 3-5 years from now…yeesh.

  • Charlie

    did he have a horrible year last year? and 803 OPS doesn’t seem that bad to me. That’s probably better than gardner will ever post. i’d personally rather nady than dye, but either one could work

    • Charlie

      then again though, if the defense is really as bad as indicated maybe we should stay away

  • Junior

    If ryan Church is really a free agent, i would go for him.

    • mikebk

      u mean ryan church w a 273/338/384 line?

      those numbers are worse than gardner and he doesnt even add power considering he hit 1 more hr than gritner in 111 more ab’s. pass.

      • Drew

        I don’t want Church but he was coming back from a serious injury with the concussions in 08. He has a career trip slash of 272/345/441.

        • mikebk

          i will grant u that, but basically that is gardner avg and obp w a little more pop but wont match the speed or overall D.

          • http://www.i-yankees.com iYankees

            Church is actually an above average outfielder, so he’d provide a decent amount of value at a corner (assuming he can provide at least league average offense, which is very possible).

            • mikebk

              did i say he was a bad fielder? what i said was he is not an UPGRADE over gardner to make him worth it overall.

              the man hit 270 w 4 hr’s last year. it was so bad he got dealt for frenchie.

              • http://www.i-yankees.com iYankees

                You’re basing your entire evaluation on his one year, where he was awful in the cavernous confines of Citi Field and battled injuries. Context is absent from your view. You said Church wouldn’t match Gardner’s D, yet based on his history, he would still be very good in LF (his UZR in RF in ’09 was 8.4). His bat would be better than Gardner’s, too. One year samples are funny because they’re meaningless.

    • Bo

      Church? you’d be better off letting gardner get 600ab’s

  • http://www.best-glasses.com Best Glasses

    The release of the mens glasses of global brands each year are always attracting mass media’s attention and soon become the hot topic after meals.

    • andrew

      RAB spam? what has this world come to?!

      • http://forums.projectcovo.com/images/smilies/e6omir.gif Omg!Zombies!

        I for one welcome our evil spam overlords

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WppcSY4SsSk barry

          Aye

          • scoopemup

            You mean …Eye.

            • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

              Not Eye. Dye.

  • Evil Empire

    Jermaine Dye? Not interested. He’d be good for a power bat off the bench but I honestly think I’d prefer Gardner in LF due to the extreme discrepancy in defensive value.

    • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WppcSY4SsSk barry

      defense<bat

      • Evil Empire

        Both aspects of the game are valuable and are measured accordingly, but if you really didn’t give a shit about defense at all -which is just plain wrong but whatever-, Johnny Gomes or Jack Cust are superior options to Jermaine Dye.

      • pete

        brett gardner’s defense + brett gardner’s bat > jermaine dye’s bat + jermaine dye’s defense.

      • ColoYank

        Have to disagree there. Defense is still undervalued. Why is it that teams that pitch and defend well are always championship contenders? What was the difference between the ’08 and ’09 Yankees? It was pitching and defense. If you don’t believe me, just ask Derek Jeter. Offense across the league tends to the mean, and really is not that much of a difference-maker.

  • Brandon

    just say no to dye.

  • mikebk

    marlon byrd would be a much better option if he would take 1 yr.

  • yankswin27

    Mark DeRosa… Reed Johnson… Marlon Byrd, even! Anyone over this guy, honestly. Yes the man hit 27 homers with 81 RBI, but when you look at the fact that he produced only a 0.9 WAR, he’s really not good. Defense is atrocious, and he’s 36 years old on top of that. If you’re gonna sign a caddy for Gardner, sign someone who can field and can hit lefties well. Reed Johnson is that guy, a MUCH better fit at a very cheap price. They’d be making a gigantic mistake by signing Jermaine Dye.

  • http://forums.projectcovo.com/images/smilies/e6omir.gif Omg!Zombies!

    So what exactly are the benefits of Dye? Hes hits lefties well but his defense is so bad it negates his offense.

    I rather have gritner twice on sunday

    • DP

      Personally I wouldn’t mind seeing a Dye/Miranda platoon at Scranton.

      • Tom Zig

        fat chance

  • jj

    i think the yankees shold sign dye and johnson he and gardener are good base stealers and they could add pop to the yankees pitch hitters they could also sign nady those nady, gardner, and johnson could be good pitch hitters and nady has really good power so they would have power and speed in the dugout they could also rest swisher,graderson,and dye the yankees need bullpen and to get somebody in their fifth spot of their starting rotation go after ben sheets and trade some minor leaguers for clay bucholz and victor martinez and martinez could be the starting catcher and posada could be the backup since he is getting older and they could put clay in the bullpen as the setup guy or just some other person in the bullpen they also need a closer because rivera is getting older and he is going to retire and the yankees are going to sign somebody, trade for somebody, or use a person from the farm system.

    • DP

      You’re right. That’s exactly what they shold do.

      • Evil Empire

        I am blown away by jj’s wisdom.

        • Brian

          Can we also trade Edwar Ramirez for Cliff Lee and then trade Nick Swisher for Albert Pujols, and 2 peanut guys and a scorecard salesman for Ryan Braun.

    • Drew
    • Salty Buggah

      One loooong run-on sentence FTW!

      This is too stupid to be true. It HAS to be a joke.

      • Drew

        It took me a minute to decide which part to pick on, “gardener” or “pitch hitter.”

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WppcSY4SsSk barry

          GARDENER

        • Salty Buggah

          Heh, he said Gardy could “add pop” as a pinch-hitter.

      • whozat

        He says they should trade with the Red Sox, for Buchholz and vmart. Gotta be a joke.

    • Pasqua

      It’s alex gonzalez. Bank on it.

  • mikebk

    call up omar and give him edwar for pagan.

  • jim p

    We’ve got a pretty powerful lineup with or without a leftfielder who hits great. So, then I go for multi-position on defense. That, I think, is Hinske. During the season if someone else becomes available, multi-position with good defense and better bat then you look at that.

    • Bo

      so why would u welcome a weaker lineup? whats the downside of having productive players at every spot??just because u are strong elsewhere doesnt mean u should not be good in LF which by the way is primarily a power position.

      • ColoYank

        You don’t know the downside until you know the price of upgrading. Very few teams have the offensive production the Yanks have at second, short, catcher, or center field. I think you’d be surprised by how few outfielders out there the Yanks consider an upgrade over Brett Gardner. Besides, he hasn’t had a chance to have a full year of production. I think he’s rather limited offensively, but he’s still a very productive player.

  • Evil Empire

    So long as Reed Johnson is on the market, its hard to discuss any other lower tier candidate for LF, since the conversation will always end with “Reed Johnson is an obviously better choice that can be signed for a comparable price.”

  • Adam B.

    MGL and Tango have basically said that anyone who is -15 as a corner OF should probably be a DH instead. So I say pass on Dye as an LF option.

  • AJ

    Jermaine Dye in 2008 had the Yankees on a list of six teams he would VETO a trade to, with his no-trade clause. According to the NY Post…

    Dye has the Yankees among the six teams for which he can veto a trade, and it’s not likely the Yankees would give him an extension (or pick up a $12 million option for 2010) to waive the no-trade clause. – December 2008

    http://www.nypost.com/p/sports.....n6wLzMU8nO

    Doesn’t look like he wants to come here. And if that’s the case, the hell with him.

    • Salty Buggah

      Well, I’m sure, now being a FA, he’ll come here if the Yanks give him the money.

      Also, I couldn’t care less if he doesn’t want to be here, since there are better options anyway, not many in Yankeeland (well, at the fans) want him.

      • Sleepy Carl

        I still feel Connor Jackson seems like an ideal caddy. He has a career .866 OPS vs LHP, -0.5 UZR in LF (not great, not bad) and plays a good 1st for flexibility if needed. He is cheap and should not take a ton to trade for.

        • Sleepy Carl

          Sorry for it being a reply here, I had no clue I clicked it. *facepalm

  • MikeD

    He’s coming off a horrible year in which he hit .250/.340/.453
    ————————————-

    Your definition of horrible and my definition of horrible are not the same. I can show you truly horrible numbers, and those aren’t them! He also hit 27 HRs and considering he’d be sharing time with the lefty swinging Gardner (who would also serve as a defensive replacement late in games), Dye’s slash stats against south paws were .292/.387/.508/.894. He accomplised that with depressed numbers on BABIP, suggesting a rebound. On the offensive side they can do a lot worse. Defensively, well that is an issue.

    Gomes?

    • Salty Buggah

      Ok, maybe that’s not horrible (but relative to his career, those are kinda horrible numbers). However, that’s a 103 OPS+, which is about average and even worse considering his atrocious defense.

      Also, just because he had a low BABIP doesn’t mean he got unlucky. His line drive rate was his worst in recent years, meaning he wasn’t hitting the ball that well. That doesn’t really suggest he’ll rebound to norms.

      It is true they can do worse offensively. But they can also do better overall.

      Gomes does provide a good bat against lefties but again, his defense is utterly terrible. He has career -25.7 UZR/150, which is even worse than Dye’s!

      I’d still recommend Reed Johnson, who hit .324/.403/.500/.903 vs. lefties (he’s a career .841 hitter against LHP though) last year and plays good defense. He is definitely one of the better overall players available who will come at a decently cheap price.

  • JMK THE OVERSHARE’s Glenn Beck Complex
  • Brent

    If there’s anything consistent with Brett Gardner’s career, it’s that he’s improved in his second season at each level.

    In his first year of AA ball he hit .272, and in his second, he hit .294.

    In his first year of AAA ball he hit .260, and in his second, he hit .296.

    Give the guy a chance before signing some veteran who is clearly over the hill.

    • http://Youcan'tincreaseyourrange TLVP

      I agree, however I also think it is fair to expect him to fail in his second year in the majors. His number are helped by a high walk ratio, but that seems illogical for a player with close to no power, so pitchers will probably challenge him more in the zone next year and his walks will be down.

      I think he’ll start in LF for the first few months and then move to the bench where he is a very good weapon who can pinch run and be a defensive substitute.

    • Bo

      A no power stick? What makes you think pitchers would walk him and that OBP would go up?

  • gargoyle

    Brett Gardner is not a good baseball player.

    • Rob

      In Boston he’s the starting CF.

      • Charlie

        no, ellsbury>gardner

    • http://www.twitter.com/wahbjo01 Jordan – Cashman Has No Equal

      False. You are not a good baseball player.

  • Yazman

    In 2009, Brett Gardner had a reverse split, hitting .291/.381/.400 vs. lefties, for a tOPS+ of 126.

    It’s a small sample size, but not sure platooning Gardie with a mediocre player helps.

    I think the best options (in order) are:
    1) Start Gardie and be super pleasantly surprised (can always sign a stud next year)
    2) Sign Nady or another high-upside back up
    3) Sign Holliday

    http://www.baseball-reference......;t=b#plato

  • LF isn’t a huge priority. It never really was either.

    Anyone else remember guys like Chad Curtis, Shane Spencer, Rickey Ledee, Gerald Williams, Timmy Raines, Reuben Rivera, etc. These guys manned LF during the 1996-2000 run. No name should jump off the page as we never had one guy lock the position down during that run. Remember?

    Just trying to provide some perspective to the debate. We all know what Brett Gardner can’t do, everyone’s covered that pretty well thus far. But, really, all we need is a few reliable guys looking to prove their value(Gardner, Hoffman) and a player with more experience (Dye, Byrd, DeRosa etc.) to balance it out and in case the young guys suck or don’t break camp. Yesterday’s Hairston article kinda hit the nail right on the head as he can play anywhere on the field and is the perfect player-type to round out a LF platoon.

    • http://www.theyankeeuniverse.com/ Matt Imbrogno

      Dye, Byrd, and DeRosa aren’t good fits, though. There are a few reasons why:

      Dye: Old; probable declining bat; cannot play defense at all
      Byrd: Big time H/A splits; general lack of power
      DeRosa: Coming off of a wrist injury; takes a big hit value wise if he plays just left field.

      Just as getting younger for the sake of getting younger isn’t a good strategy, neither is bringing in guys with “experience” just because of that w/o looking at what value they’d truly add.

  • YankFanDave

    Last year Jermaine Dye hit 27 hrs and drove in 81 rbi, the year before it was 34/96. Hell yeah sign him.

    He would fill the slot behind ARod and add some run production. As far as his defense goes, we lived with Damon’s defense last year, I’d take the trade off for Dye’s offense, even last years, with his defense.

    • http://www.theyankeeuniverse.com/ Matt Imbrogno

      Damon’s bad defense >>>>>>>>> Jermaine Dye’s atrocious defense.

  • sleepykarl

    The answer to getting younger and getting a RH bat for LF is in ARZ as Connor Jackson…

    • http://www.theyankeeuniverse.com/ Matt Imbrogno

      Yeah, but that’s really unlikely. The fact that Arizona tendered him a contract means that they think he’s ready to play full time again probably aren’t going to trade him.

  • steve s

    Whatever the Yanks plan was for this off-season seems to have suddenly gone awry. Can’t bring back Matsui because he’s fragile and too expensive (gets replaced by the fragile and just as expensive Johnson). Let Damon walk over a few $$$ because he can’t field and is getting too old (but will consider taking on Dye who is all of the above and slow to boot). Don’t trade prospects when you can sign free agents (so they trade prospects for Vazquez and pass on Lackey). Everything broke right for the Yanks in 09; Cashman should have taken his bows on the Granderson trade, gone after Lackey, brought back Damon and Matsui and let it ride. The hardest thing to do in pro sports is to repeat as champion. Why make it harder by messing with the winning chemistry?

    • Raf

      or why give yourself a chance to win by making the team equal if not better than the previous year?

    • Rob

      Lackey sucks for the price. I much rather they got Javy for one year (and two draft picks) then Lee for most of that same money.

      Johnson is an upgrade over Matsui.

      The only question that remains is LF…if you don’t see Granderson as that upgrade. I do. Now whatever they do with Gardner/Hoffman etc is a bonus.

      Let’s see: They got better, younger, and cheaper. What’s the problem again? That they didn’t drop $100 million on Lackey, Damon and Matsui?

      • steve s

        Johnson is an upgrade over Matsui only if he isn’t hurt and Matsui is (what are the chances of that happening and what does “younger” get you when the 31 year old is more fragile than the 36 year old)). Getting Lee in 2011 and draft picks doesn’t help you win 2010. Matsui and Damon would have cost $16M for 2010 (saving $10M over 2009 that could have been applied to Lackey’s 2010 price). I’m all for the Granderson move so don’t understand your point there. If Matsui and Damon are 80% of what they were in 09 then keeping them (and adding Granderson and Lackey) was a better plan for repeating than what the Yanks have done so far this off-season.

        • Section 39

          Your entire arguement right there was crazy.

          Johnson vs Matsui — With Johnson being a DH instead of playing the field, he has a much better chance of staying healthy the whole season. Look how well it worked for Matsui last year. At the same time, the Yanks, and I agree, believe that Matsui will not enjoy the same fate as he did last year and will probably get hurt this season. Overall, they are very similar so not enough to really argue about.

          Pitching — Lackey is a terrible option really. He is heralded as a #1 starter when he is not. He is at best a #2. And it’s not just about this year’s salary, locking us in on Lackey for 5 years is a bad option. Not being able to pursue Webb/Lee in 2011 because we signed Lackey is stupid. Vasquez has been excellent and will end up being our 2nd best SP this season. Watch and see. I am not sure how Lee even got discussed since his asking price from the Yanks would have been much more than Melky and Vizcaino. Sure, Lee would have been better, but he would have cost a lot more. With Vasquez, we can either resign him or let him go for 2 draft picks next year. If we let him go, we get Webb or Lee, giving us another #1 pitcher and still giving us 1 extra first round pick.

        • Rob

          How has Matsui’s health been the last four years? NJ’s health is a push. His offense is a push. Add in that he’s younger and cheaper and it’s an upgrade.

          Granderson was the upgrade over Damon. He made Damon expendable.

          80% of Damon and Matsui is pretty terrible for the price you indicate. I’m very glad they didn’t go that route.

          All of Vazquez, NJ, and Granderson are younger and cheaper upgrades over 2009.

          Signing Lackey would have made one of Lee/Beckett/Webb impossible. Unless you’re okay with a $80 on four pitchers? That’s insane.

          The plan this off-season looks excellent considering the costs of upgrades and leaving them big money for the season and next. I have exactly zero complaints and that’s with Gardner as a starter.

  • zs190

    Maybe I missed it but the post didn’t seem to mention that Dye was terrific for the first half of the season. .302/375/.567 over first 328 PA, then he had some back issues and hit terribly(.173/293/297). If his back issues check out ok, I think I would be willing to sign him despite the defensive limitations. If we sign Dye, we would have Gardner and Hoffman on the bench and both are very good defenders, so we can limit the defensive innings that Dye logs to reduce that part of damage.

    For what we are looking to pay for a starting LF, we could do a lot worse than Jermaine Dye I think.

  • Mo

    Trade proposal Juan Miranda for Rajai Davis. Gardner/Davis in LF. A’s just signed Coco Crisp and they need some 1B/DH pop that Miranda can give them now.

    • zs190

      Jake Fox, Daric Barton, Chris Carter, they have enough guys to play 1B/DH, they are all comparable to Miranda anyways. There is no trade value for a 1B/DH guy like Miranda.

    • Bo

      No one wants Miranda. There is a reason he has been in AAA this long.

    • Andy in Sunny Daytona

      If you picked up Rajai Davis, why would you have him splitting time with Gardner? He would probably be the full time starter.

  • Bo

    Why are they nickel and diming LF? The obvious answer is Damon. This “budget” is a fallacy. You mean to tell me they would go for lesser players and in turn a lesser team over a few million?? I don’t buy it. The only true candidates should be Damon or Holliday with Gardner competing for the 4th OF spot with Hoffman. They’d be better off getting the better player in there or risk trading one of the better prospects for OF help in July.

    • Rob

      Who says Damon will sign with the Yanks for anything less than two years at 18 million? And why should they give him that when no other team will?

      As for Holliday, I’d much rather they keep the number of high-$$$ DHs going forward as low as possible with Jeter, A-Rod, and Jorge all looking like DHs going forward.

      Spend the money next year on one of Lee/Beckett/Webb. LF is a very minor worry especially with Granderson aboard.

    • zs190

      Depends on how much a couple million is here. If you can get Dye for 1 year, 3 million and you can’t get Damon unless it’s 2 year, 19 million like Abreu, I take Dye for sure. If it’s 1/4 vs 1/7 then yeah, I would probably take Damon.

  • Mac1

    Dye on the cheap would be a nice insurance policy for the brittle Nick Johnson. He’s a horrible fielder though – can’t see him as an option for an of spot – especially LF.

    Like Dye’s RH bat alot, his glove makes it a no go.

  • pete

    No on Jermaine Dye. The guy is 36 years old, had a (non-speed-adjusted) wRC+ of 107 last year (probably goes down to around 103 with baserunning and stealing in consideration). And that’s just his offense. Even a solid year from Dye would be more than negated by his defense, which is about as bad as it gets in the outfield. Like, worse than Damon-bad.

    In my opinion, Reed Johnson is the best LF option. Not advocating a strict platoon with gardner (whose splits are reverse anyway, though SSS), but rather a “play the hot hand” approach that Girardi used with melky/gardner in ’09. It’s never fun to accept that LF will be your worst offensive position, but considering the offense from our other 8 hitters, and our pitching, defense should be the priority in the #9 hole. People are also forgetting that Gardner has improved at every level his second year. Is he going to OPS over .750 this year? Probably not. Could he be over .700, though? It’s certainly possible. Throw in the speed and there’s a mild chance that his overall offensive contributions are positive.

  • jsbrendog

    whats ruben sierra up to these days?

  • Neil

    Why havent I heard any Rick Ankiel for LF rumors?

  • cheddar

    The author of the story got some bad info. Dye is actually drawing interest from a savings account at the Money Store.

  • Steve

    Its simple people….we dont need Dye…..Randy Winn would be a better fit….He hits well, runs better and plays much better defense then Dye. He shouldnt be expensive either.

    • Zack

      How is it simple or even a better option? Winn went .262/.318/.353 OPS of .671 and OPS+ of 75 last year. He had a career of just being league average and now he’s 36, so i dont think it’s fair to have a ‘bounce back season’ as a fair expectation

      • Steve

        Isn’t Dye 36 too?

  • yankeefanindc

    I think it’s relevant to note that Dye had a HORRIBLE second half last year but a very good first half.

    Before the All-Star Break: .942 OPS

    After the break: .590 OPS

    If this is a situation in which he was somehow hurt in the second half, and he’s willing to sign a low base salary to be in a LF-RF-DH rotation, then you’re looking at a low risk/high reward gamble that he can recapture his first half swing from last year. If not, then the Yanks wasted $2mil on a worthwhile gamble and can rectify it with a mid-season trade. Really not a terrible idea to get Dye.

    Having said that, I like Reed Johnson’s ability to play all OF positions, do a LH/RH platoon with Gardner, and think he’s a better fit. But Jermaine Dye also makes a great deal of sense.

  • http://jukeofurl.wordpress.com Juke Early

    Doesn’t Hoffmann need to be on the 25man roster or get lost? if he has a great ST what then? Give the dude a shot or go get Holliday Cash-poor.

    • Pasqua

      Yes, he does have to be on the 25-man roster in order to stick around, but the Yankees are not exactly hurting for money, so giving him a look-see in ST and then deciding to sell him back the Dodgers wouldn’t qualify as a heartbreaking experience for Cashman. All he did with Hoffmann is provide himself an additional option for the outfield.

  • theyankeewarrior

    John-ny… Da-mon (clap, clap, clap-clap-clap)

    Cash-Money is lurking in the weeds again. He will pounce when the time is right, but he has too many options right now to make a quick decision. He has 2 choices.

    1) Sign a platoon player to compliment Gritner (Byrd, Dye, Nady, Johnson etc.) but wait to make sure you don’t overpay.

    OR

    2) Sign a bigger bat, ’09 Abreu-style, by waiting out the big fish and calling the bluffs of guys like Holliday/Bay/Damon/DeRosa.

    I can see Johnny getting no love on the market. I hope DeRosa goes to the Giants and Uggla to the Bravos sooner than later so 2 more openings are filled. Mets are all over Bay and will turn to Holliday if it doesn’t work out. That leaves one of them and JD…

    The dude will be a DH within a year or so… no NL team wants any part of that. He loves NY. I’m thinkin 1/7-8. trade Gaudin for some salary relief and shut it down for the winter.

    • johnny

      I think that may be exactly what is going on. The yanks definitely aren’t spending big on left field, and their not gonna spend 3 to 5 million on a backup any time soon, especially if there’s a chance a legit starter falls into a slightly higher price range. the condition attached to whoever ends up signing with us, I believe, is a one year deal. As we see with vasquez I think the yanks are willing to spend a little more to avoid commitments long term.

  • http://jukeofurl.wordpress.com Juke Early

    @Pasqua – tyvm BTW we could use a Danny Pasqua right about now lol

    @theyankeewarrior – maybe I don’t get around enough but – I like that nickname for Gardner – good one!

    Boy that Scott Borat (sic) is a scourge – can’t believe the Cards haven’t signed M Holliday by now