Jan
17

Brown: Yankees nearing deal with Andruw Jones

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(AP Photo/Gregory Smith)

Update (12:20 p.m. ET): Yahoo’s Tim Brown reports that the two sides are nearing a deal. Ken Rosenthal recently reported that the Yankees were “balking” at Jones’s asking price, though.

No longer the defensive wizard he once was, Jones can handle still handle center or leftfield on occasion and will be a massive upgrade over Marcus Thames in that department. He can also crush lefties (.369 OBP, .229 ISO, .363 wOBA vs. LHP last two years) and isn’t totally useless against righties (.310 OBP, .262 ISO, .340 wOBA). Jones won’t hit for average, but bench players that will take walks and hit for a ton of power with passable defense are a valuable commodity.

Original Post (11:00 a.m. ET): We’re less than a month away from the start of the camp, but the Yankees still have a few items on the to-do list. One of them is acquiring a fourth outfielder. We’ve seen them connected to Andruw Jones before, and this morning ESPN’s Buster Olney reported that the Yankees “are the frontronners” for Jones. He appears to fit the Yankees’ needs well, as he’s a right-handed hitter who can play the outfield corners. He’s probably not fit for full-time duty any more, so the Yankees could provide a good fit for him.

Mike wrote about Jones in December, and Ben then compared him to Marcus Thames. A week and a half ago we learned that the two sides had started talks. Hopefully they get it done this time around. Two years ago Jones opted to sign with the Rangers instead of the Yankees.

Categories : Hot Stove League
  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

    “Hey Scott, it’s Brian. We bailed you out with Soriano, so you’re going to give us Andruw for six-figures, right?”

    …click…

    “Scott? Hello … ?”

    • http://theyankeeu.com Matt Imbrogno

      Heh.

      I wouldn’t mind going into seven figures for Jones.

      • http://danielslifka.wordpress.com Jerome S.

        yeah, maybe for 1/1.5.

    • Chris

      Who cares how much they pay Andrew Jones? It’s not coming out of your pocket, it’s only gonna be for 1 year, it’s not gonna prevent the Yankees from acquiring anyone else they want and it’s not like they’re gonna use the guy as a trade chip where his salary would come into play. Whatever they pay him is irrelevant.

      • The Real JobaWockeeZ

        It’s a joke…

      • Ecology

        that’s what I’ saying.

        i like Andruw, bring em on board. The Yanks can pay him and we will be fans and sit back and watch him hit.

        :)
        If this goes through, can we finally turn our attention to the rotation Cash?

  • Mike HC

    Is it possible Thames success and notoriety last year might be playing a role in Jones decision this off season. Maybe he didn’t think a part time player would get a real chance with the Yanks, or credit. Of course, maybe Thames success has absolutely nothing to do with anything. Just throwing it out there as a possible factor.

    • http://twitter.com/cephster Ross in Jersey

      The fact that Thames himself still doesn’t have a job makes this logic iffy. Thames had a nice year, but I’m not sure anyone outside of New York (other than Papelbon, bwahaha) really noticed.

      • Mike HC

        Yea, maybe. I am clearly in a Yankee centric universe.

      • YankeesJunkie

        I thought he was going to Japan.

        • whozat

          I thought that too, but then I looked around the web and never found any report that he had actually signed, just one saying the Hawks or someone was courting him.

  • Frank

    Never been a big fan of AJ- I’d prefer Scott Hairston.

    • Brock Cohen

      I really don’t get all the Scott Hairston love. I think the best thing you could say about either of the Hairston bros. at this point is that they’re versatile – and, yeah, they hustle a lot. I’d argue for Jones, who is almost and can simply rake left-handed pitching.

      • whozat

        Well, he can legitimately handle CF, which is nice. Better against lefties over the last three years, coming off a down year. No history of conditioning problems. Jones was a better hitter, but kinda bad in 08-09, then really crushed lefties last season. I can see how someone would come down on the other side of the line.

  • Andy in Sunny Daytona

    Jones probably wants the typical Yankee-tax mark-up. So he wants $10 million.

    • ethan

      Don’t assume Yankees players pay NY taxes on all their income… First off, all players on all teams pay NY taxes on games played in NY; the vast majority of Yankees live outside of NY so they don’t pay NY taxes on the other 81 games (assuming they succeed in spending 6 months + 1 day outside of NY–not hard as a baseball player). The tax reality is far more complicated than it appears. The tax forms for these guys are literally 500+ pages long…

      • Andy in Sunny Daytona

        I meant the tax players charge the Yankees to come here.

  • PaulF

    When I saw the “Yankees in the lead” post I was going to write that being in the lead didn’t mean anything. I guess “nearing a deal” is more meaningful. I hope this gets done. Jones is a good fit for this team and is much more capable of filling in for a few weeks if one of our outfielders goes down than Thames or Winn was.

  • http://kierstenschmidt.com Kiersten

    Maybe Jones is thinking to himself, “hey, last time I didn’t pick the Yankees and they won the World Series, maybe this time I should pick them so that doesn’t happen again.”

  • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

    He’s a very good fit (for a 4th OF), hope it does happen. He’s still young, can still play the corners and hit LHP. Also, I’d love to see Kevin Long get a crack at working with him.

  • dalelama

    Yawn…………

    • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

      You were expecting what for a 4th OF?

      • ultimate913

        TBH, I wanted JHJ back. He could still come back though. Maybe.

        • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

          Yeah, I don’t think the Jones signing precludes Jerry Hairston from signing. And my guess it that dalelama would be yawning at a JHJ or Scott Hairston signing too. Filling out the bench is never too exciting, but this is just a good signing.

        • http://theyankeeu.com Matt Imbrogno

          Jones > JHJ in terms of being an OF. He’s an actual outfielder and his offensive upside is definitely higher than Hairston’s.

  • YankeesJunkie

    Can’t wait till the Yankees FO intervenes to give Jones a 4/44 million contract with a player option after every year.

  • Tank the Frank

    The deal will get done but first the Yankees have to work out the $10 million Jones can earn in incentives and the opt-out clauses after every season.

    Oh… Heard this: They’re working in a new creative player option where Jones has the “option” of earning an extra $2 million at any point in the season. Nothing has to happen. He just has to want to. Stay tuned.

    • Wil Nieves #1 Fan

      Nice.

  • Granderslam

    With Jones ( if a deal gets done), Martin, and Soriano, our team is already greatly improved. Once we get that legitimate SP in the rotation…we’ll be set. All we have to hope is that Cash either makes a moves and soon…or that he sticks Joba in the rotation which is unlikely, but something I would totally support. As soon as that void is (hopefully) filled, our team will be pretty awesome.

    • YankeesJunkie

      Jones definitely gives the Yankees a viable bench bat against left handers so that is a good thing and he can still somewhat play defense even though not nearly as well as he did when he was younger.

    • Accent Shallow

      Once we get that legitimate SP in the rotation…we’ll be set

      Unless it’s Pettitte, where is this player coming from?

      • Granderslam

        Ummmm…..good question. I don’t know. But it’s a pretty obvious need.

      • http://kierstenschmidt.com Kiersten

        The bullpen.

        • http://danielslifka.wordpress.com Jerome S.

          Gaudin?

      • MannyGee

        ummmm, he just signed for 3/$35 with 12 player options…. duh

  • Poopy Pants

    I think the deal is held up until the Yanks work out a way to lose Montero in the deal.

    • Poopy Pants

      I’m an awful redundant fool.

  • Brock Cohen

    I love this move, though he is starting to resemble the Panda.

    • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

      You don’t foresee any “Andruw Jones is in the best shape of his life” articles this spring?

      • Chris

        Of course he will be. Unfortunately, that shape is round.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      Have you see Sandoval recently? He’s lost a ton of weight:

      http://a3.twimg.com/profile_im.....blito2.jpg

      • http://theyankeeu.com Matt Imbrogno

        That picture you posted of Prince last night was fucking CREEPY.

      • Chris

        Maybe CC should visit his nutritionist.

  • Monteroisdinero

    For those who don’t like the money being spent or fear the money that could be spent, Golson is in place for 475K. A great perpetual 5th OFer for some.

    now we can get on to the big argument over who has the better 4th outfielder? Cameron vs Jones?

    Some folks here lobbied hard for Cameron last year. Remember? That would have been a bust.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      Some folks here lobbied hard for Cameron last year.

      Raises hand. Though in my defense, that was before the Granderson trade.

      • http://twitter.com/steveh_mandaura Steve H

        Gets in line behind Mike.

        • http://theyankeeu.com Matt Imbrogno

          /rank and file’d

  • YankeesJunkie

    Yeah, but he had a good track record until last year.

  • http://danielslifka.wordpress.com Jerome S.

    What are we in line for, 1/1.5?

    I can def. see Jones asking for 2/3 right now, they’ll bring that down.

    • http://theyankeeu.com Matt Imbrogno

      1/1.5 would be great.

  • Andrew

    I didn’t realize Andruw Jones was a starting pitcher….

    okay move but i think pitching should be the priority, and i really hate how he spells his name with a U in it, it really gives the Andrew’s of the world zero credibility. It could be worse though, there is a guy on the 76ers named Jrue Holliday, yes he spells Drew Jrue.

    • http://theyankeeu.com Matt Imbrogno

      Wasn’t a guy just like Jones–a righty hitting outfielder who isn’t a statue–on the check list for this offseason? I’d say he’s definitely more of a need than a want. Obviously, we want to see the Yankees signing starters or making moves for them, but they’re not there right now.

    • Mike M

      So until they can get a starter the Yanks should abandon filling any other holes on the team? Got it.

    • Joba’s slider

      Andruw Jones is not a starting pitcher, he is the new pitching coach.

  • MikeD

    If the Yankees signed him, be nice if he actually showed up in shape. I know he’s not as heavy as he was a few years ago, but I still question his work ethic.

    He’ll certainly be an updgrade over Thames defensively, simply because Thames was so bad with the glove, but I’m not sold on the hitting side. He hit lefties hard last year, but in 2009, his triple slash against portsiders was .218/.367.395; in 2008 it was .178/.302/.329; and in 2007 it was .225/.339/.445.

    Everyone fears a regression by Thames. I fear a regression by Jones. I doubt he makes it to June.

  • Chris

    Jones is a good signing. He’ll be at least average in left and right and could man center in a pinch, he’s a power threat off the bench late in games against LOOGYs and he could spell Granderson or Gardner against though leftys. Thames was just an abomination in the field and chances are he’ll never repeat his hitting from last year again.

  • LarryM.,Fl.

    Jones is an improvement on Thames and Damon defensively in the OF at all three positions. We need a right hand bat to spell Gardner and Granderson against tough lefties.

    I believe 1.5 gets it done.

  • theyankeewarrior

    I’m thinking he gets 2+ M

    • http://twitter.com/themanchine Bruno (The Manchine)

      as long as he doesn’t get an opt-out after the ASB i’m ok with $2m+

  • J Scott

    One of the things with Jones is his weight. After a number of years of being way [weigh?] too heavy, he got his weight under control last season. I think some weight incentives could be beneficial to both sides here.

    • http://ww.twitter.com/deanezag Zack

      I’m in favor of: You’re a professional athlete, stay in shape or your contract should be voided.

  • Avi

    This perception that he murders lefties comes from a total of 86 AB’s he had last year against them. He’s just as likely to perform at replacement level or worse as he his to repeat his performance from last year.

    • MikeD

      I agree. There’s too much Andruw love going around based on a few ABs from last year.

  • http://riveraveblues stu phillips

    that rich levine should be fired for giving a contract like that!!!!

  • http://riveraveblues stu phillips

    sorino

  • Preston

    He’s an above average corner outfielder, serviceable center fielder, right handed bat with pop. It’s exactly what we’re looking for off the bench. I’m fine overpaying for him a little bit since it’s a one year deal.

    • MannyGee

      wow, how long have you two been dating?

      I would call him an average COF and meh CF… AT BEST. His true value is with lumber, but can still handle a pop-up or 2, should he show up to camp under 300lbs next month.

  • Preston

    We just had our three month anniversary thanks for asking. Fangraphs says his UZR/150 over the last two seasons was +15 in LF and +12 in RF, small sample size, but seeing as he was a ten time gold glover in center it doesn’t seem unlikely that even his pudgy older self is well above average at the corners.

  • Mike

    I’m glad to see Cashman is finally balking at something. Even if it’s just a fourth outfielder.