Is Cody Ransom an upgrade over Jayson Nix?

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Cody Eppley's Big Chance
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I can’t imagine many Yankees fans look back fondly on the Cody Ransom era. He was a late-season call-up in 2008, hit two homers and two doubles in his first four at-bats in pinstripes, then failed spectacularly in 2009 after getting a chance to replace the injured Alex Rodriguez on an everyday basis. Overall, Ransom posted a 97 wRC+ in 137 plate appearances for New York despite being declared a better fit for the team than A-Rod. It was a crazy time.

The now 36-year-old Ransom is back on the market after being designated for assignment by the Diamondbacks earlier this week. He hit four homers and put together a 148 wRC+ in 58 plate appearances for Arizona before getting the axe in favor of the younger Josh Bell. The Yankees are stuck with Jayson Nix as their utility infielder at the moment because Eduardo Nunez had to be sent to Triple-A for defensive incompetence, but Nix isn’t anything to write home about himself. There’s actually some merit to bringing Ransom back for an encore.

Since both guys are classic Quad-A types, we’re talking about a marginal upgrade at the 24th or 25th roster spot. Ransom has performed better in limited big league time (90 vs. 71 wRC+) and the two guys have nearly identical Triple-A track records, though Cody offers a little more power (.183 vs. 164 ISO) and on-base ability (8.8 vs. 7.6 BB%). The biggest difference between the two probably comes on defense, as Ransom is a true shortstop capable of playing the position for weeks at a time if need be. You can’t say the same about Nix, though he has the advantage of being able to play the corner outfield spots.

Anyway, I don’t want to waste too much time talking about a move that would be largely inconsequential. Ransom is not a guy you want in the lineup on an everyday basis but like Nix, he has a skillset suited for a big league bench. It’s just that Ransom’s skillset might be a better fit for the Yankees even though he’s seven years old than Nix and has already had one forgettable stint in pinstripes. Claiming him off waivers and dumping Nix would be a justifiable move but hardly a season-saver. If they pass, well that’s no big deal either.

Who's the better utility infielder option?
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Cody Eppley's Big Chance
  • Chad Gaudin the Friendly Ghost

    No thanks.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    You forgot the winning third option: My right butt cheek.

    Stick with Nix until Mustellllllier comes up and works his santeria magic.

    • JohnnyC

      Mustelier can’t play shortstop. And he’s a novice outfielder. His best position is third base and he’s maybe adequate at second base. I agree he can hit though.

      • jjyank

        Yeah, I think you’re right. Maybe Mustelier can be next year’s Chavez, but we need somebody who can play SS.

  • Sal

    He should change his name to Cody Rancid!!!!!

  • RCK

    “Prisoners at Guantanamo are forced to watch Cody Ransom at bats,” remains pretty much my favorite RAB quote of all time.

    So that is a no. I’ll keep Nix. Although, actually, I’d rather he were publicly beheaded for hitting the fly ball that took down Mo. Hmmm.

    • the other Steve S.

      Favorite quote, “With Eduardo Nunez at short, you really don’t need a first baseman.”.

  • TheOneWhoKnocks

    maybe a marginal offensive upgrade, but given that Nix is younger and offers more defensive flexibility I’m fine with them not doing anything

  • pat

    You shut your whore mouth, Axisa.

    • JohnnyC

      What an honor, Mike. A quote from a classic Alexander Pope poem. Class.

    • jjyank

      Well technically he doesn’t need to open his mouth to type a blog post.

    • jsbrendog

      i hear if you say his name 3 times he comes to your house in a feather boa and tights and cuts a promo as “handsome” cody ransom

  • Cris Pengiucci

    In a vacuum, if this was purely for a IF backup role, I go with Ransom. However, it’s highly likely whoever fills the role gets released at some point during the season. There doesn’t seem to be much of an advantage except for Ransom’s ability to play SS, so while he’s my choice (again, in a vacuum, not lloking at Nix’s ability to play OF better than Ibanez), the upgrade probably isn’t worth the effort.

  • split-finger

    i think i could go out and play some shotty defense and not hit a lick…sign me up?

    • JohnnyC

      I mourn the state of higher education in this country.

      • FIPster Doofus

        I morning it two.

        • Genghis

          You guys are wrong; “shotty” is obviously a clever new portmanteau word coinage.

  • LK

    I just voted for the Yankees to re-acquire Cody Ransom. I am now fully convinced the Mayans were right about 2012.

  • DJ4K&Monterowasdinero

    Nunez is better than both of them. Bring him back. He is awful on D but he does alot of good things too and since he left we have TRULY been lifeless.

    Nobody runs out from under their helmet anymore.

    • Jose M. Vazquez..

      Second the motion to bring back Nunez. At least he’s not an automatic out. That’s why I did not vote on this because none of these two are desirable.

      • 28 this year

        I wish he were an automatic out… in the field…

      • viridiana

        Third the motion (can I do that?) to bring back Nunez. Value in his bat and legs. And I think if they just played him at short he might even settle down defensively.

        • Jose M. Vazquez..

          Hurrah to that!

        • Need Pitching

          if he only played short, how often would he actually play?
          probably no more than once a week

  • Johnny O

    the only place i want to see cody ransom is jumping on boxes on youtube. NOT in pinstripes on a baseball field.

    • infernoscurse

      I disagree, hes the type of player this team needs, someone who thinks outside and over the box, this team right looks helpless and we never know when during a game a stack of boxes just happen to fall inbetween 3b and home and we have a runner at second, I would like to be a fan of the team that brought Cody ransom onboard when something like that happens, you think joe maddon gets credit? just think about ESPN and MLB network giving Girardi praise for this move!

      I could see them now, no other manager thought about the possibility of boxes falling in the way but Girardi brought in his pinch running boxer jumper, an asset no other team other than oakland has.

      Do it!

  • jjyank

    But if we get Ransom back, we can have somebody to combat Cespedes in the annual box jumping competition!

    • Strat

      Nothing wrong with a little River Avenue Blue’s Clues.

  • CS Yankee

    Not worth the paperwork.

    Ronnie or Nunie will likely be better choices come July.

    They should just nix this idea and avoid paying any ransom in the meantime.

    • jjyank

      “They should just nix this idea and avoid paying any ransom in the meantime.”

      Please tell me the pun was intended. Because I chuckled.

  • vin

    I don’t see he Yanks casting aside one mediocre veteran for another. Especially since Nix’s play at SS hasn’t been abhorable.

  • mike_h

    the only advantage is Ransom can play the entire infeild (1B, 2B, 3B, SS) where Nix can only play SS, 3B, 2B, LF

    Seriously why not call up Mustelier, the kid is absolutely raking in AAA

    • vin

      Because they need someone who can play SS… something Ronnier hasn’t done at least since he’s been states-side.

      In that bizarro scenario, ARod would be Jeter’s backup.

    • Cris Pengiucci

      Dewayne Wise was hitting well at AAA too, perhaps not to the extent that Mistelier is, but certainly well. No guarantee Mustelier continues his hot hitting continues if he’s brought up.

      More importantly, they need someone that can fill in at SS.

      • Cris Pengiucci

        Reply fail. This was in response to mike_h

      • Mr. Sparkle

        Wise has already proven without a doubt, over a long enough career, that he’s not a major league hitter. Mustelier has not yet gotten that chance, so the “Wise was hitting well at AAA, too” argument doesn’t really work. For all we know, Mustelier could be a solid major league hitter. We won’t know until he’s called up.

        • infernoscurse

          also to add , cano wasnt tearing AAA on fire when called up, we just called him up cause our offense looked putrid, like this year

          Bring him up!

        • Cris Pengiucci

          “No guarantee Mustelier continues his hot hitting continues if he’s brought up.” This doesn’t mean he won’t hit, it’s just that we can’t guarantee that he will be any better than what they have and,

          “More importantly, they need someone that can fill in at SS.”

  • Manny’s BanWagon

    Is Cody Ransom better than Jayson Nix?

    It’s like saying is Whoopi Goldberg hotter than Rosie O’Donnell.

  • Lord Tywin

    LOL! We sure are desparate aren’t we? Cody Ransom? And I thought the argument was always that these fringe players don’t really matter. I guess now they do and Cody Ransom is the answer to all of our woes.

    • Jim Is Bored

      …and clearly someone ignored the article.

    • Jim Is Bored

      “Anyway, I don’t want to waste too much time talking about a move that would be largely inconsequential.”

      Yup. Sounds like Mike thinks Ransom is the answer to all of our woes.

  • Billon$Bullpen

    I would rather have Nix, and Nix is already here. The greater question to me is do the Yanks become sellers at the dealine if we are in last or second to last place? If so who do we trade? I know its hard to give up on a season and I have not and I am sure the front office has not but even with expanded playoffs and the oppurtunity that presents, this team looks horrible.

  • A.D.

    Are we not evaluating jumping ability???? Ransom has my vote based on that alone

  • Mr. Sparkle

    Am I missing something about Ramiro Pena? He’s been playing, so I assume he’s healthy again. Why isn’t he filling this role? He’s a better defender than both Nix and Ransom and probably a better hitter as well. Is he out of options or something?

    • Mike Axisa

      Ramiro isn’t a better hitter than anyone on the Yankees, including the pitchers.

      • Fernando

        Actually, Ramiro does have a better career BA than either Nix or Ransom. It’s an empty BA as the other two have more power, but so what? Ramiro can definitely fill in at short.

        • Thomas

          Ramiro Pena had the bat knocked out of his hand, while hitting off a tee.

  • Morneau After Pill

    Too bad Nunez is on the DL in the Minors

  • Bavarian Yankee

    “Is Cody Ransom an upgrade over Jayson Nix?”

    anybody is an upgrade over Jayson Nix, dude is just terrible. I always wonder how guys like him (or his brother Laynce) get a job every year, hard to believe that there aren’t a billion guys in the minors that couldn’t do the same job.

    You know the Jayson/Laynce Nix joke? The extra “Y” stands for yikes. That should be your reaction if he ever appears on your team’s roster.

    Cody Ransom is just as bad, so meh. I wonder why they don’t just call up Russo or even Adams/Joseph.

    • Joe

      I agree I am a big Russo fan and watching him all this year he looks a lot better then last year and his 49AB year. He is making consistent contact walking a lot (20/23) BB/K right now I believe his line is .298/.379/.384 right now not a power hitter with 0HR but 11doubles 1 triple and 9SB guy has played 2B,3B,LF,RF,CF this year and SS in the past. He will be up this year if this contiunes

  • eephus_pitch

    Bring back Cody Ransom!
    John Sterling needs another completely useless player he can jizz over, and Enrique Wilson is retired.

  • LarryM.,Fl.

    I voted for Nix. Unless you have a crystal ball and the future shows a couple week stint at shortstop. The problem with AAAA guys as I see it,overuse. This will bring out the warts in their skin. But, if you can control the playing time in a perfect world. I go with youth of Nix. Ransom could end up on the DL faster than you could say “Ramiro Pena, now playing SS for the NY Yankees.”

    I like Ramiro as a fielder over Nunez, Nix and Ransom. But his bat is his wart.

  • ThatstheMelkyMesaWaysa

    He’s already 36? I thought he was much younger.. If he’s an option then I guess Shane Spencer is too? Spencer is only four years older..

  • ThatstheMelkyMesaWaysa

    Brewers just claimed Ransom.

  • Ryan Kelley

    Eduardo Nunez wasn’t sent to triple-A for defensive incompetence. First of all, he was one of the team’s leading hitters, and defenisvely speaking, he was still comparable to Jeter after the throwing errors because of his tremendous range.

    Nunez was sent to Triple-A because he’s not a utility player in the long-term. You don’t take a shortstop who’s capable of producing at an above-average rate at the plate, on the bases and in the field and turn him in to a left fielder/third baseman/utility guy. He’s a prospect, and you can’t develop a prospect at a position like shortstop with such sporadic play, including time at completely new positions. Nix has power off the bench and can play multiple positions on the cheap. He’s better than Ransom.