Yankees acquire Reid Brignac

(Mike McGinnis/Getty)
(Mike McGinnis/Getty)

12:39: Gonzalez has indeed been designated for assignment, the team announced. Brignac will join the team tomorrow, so they’ll be a player short this afternoon.

11:37: Another day, another infielder. The Yankees have acquired Reid Brignac from the Rockies for just $75k in cash, reports Jon Heyman. He’s basically free, at least in baseball terms. No word on the corresponding roster move(s), but I assume he’ll replace Alberto Gonzalez. The team has not yet officially announced anything.

Brignac, 27, was designated for assignment by the Rockies a few days ago. He’s the second infielder New York has acquired from Colorado this month, joining Chris Nelson. Brignac hit .250/.294/.375 (65 wRC+) before being cut, and his career line is .228/.270/.321 (60 wRC+) in 769 plate appearances. He won’t steal any bases or draw walks (career 4.9 BB%). You surely remember him from his time with the Rays from 2008-2012.

As a left-handed bat who grades out as an average or better defender at the three non-first infield positions, Brignac is a marginal upgrade over Gonzalez. He’s probably better suited to play shortstop everyday than Jayson Nix and the currently injured Eduardo Nunez as well, at least against right-handers. The Yankees should be all about marginal upgrades at this point, every little bit of help counts. No word on when he’ll join the team.

Yankees place Eduardo Nunez on the DL, call up Alberto Gonzalez

The Yankees have placed Eduardo Nunez on the 15-day DL due to his left ribcage issue, the team announced. Infielder Alberto Gonzalez will be recalled from Triple-A to take his roster spot. Mark Teixeira has been transferred to the 60-day DL to clear a 40-man roster spot.

Nunez, 25, has not played since leaving last Sunday’s game with soreness. The Yankees have played without a backup infielder for six games since then, but that couldn’t go on any longer. Nunez has hit a weak .200/.290/.275 (56 wRC+) in 95 plate appearances as the starting shortstop during Derek Jeter‘s absence. The 30-year-old Gonzalez was acquired from the Cubs in a minor trade a few days ago. The 33-year-old Teixeira (wrist) has just started taking full batting practice and is weeks away from a return.

Yankees acquire Alberto Gonzalez

(Scott Cunningham/Getty)
(Scott Cunningham/Getty)

The Yankees have acquired infielder Alberto Gonzalez from the Cubs for cash or a player to be named later, the team announced. Yes, this is the same Alberto Gonzalez who spent some time with New York from 2007-2008. They originally acquired him in the Randy Johnson trade, then traded him to the Nationals for reliever Jhonny Nunez. Nunez then went to the White Sox as part of the package for Nick Swisher.

Anyway, the 30-year-old Gonzalez is not on the 40-man roster and will report to Triple-A Scranton. He’s a right-handed bat and a career .241/.279/.319 (59 wRC+) hitter in 989 big league plate appearances, but he also plays average or better defense at the three non-first base infield positions. In 873 career plate appearances at the Triple-A level, Gonzalez has hit .263/.312/.369. He isn’t much of a threat to steal bases either.

The Yankees need infield help following Derek Jeter‘s setback and Eduardo Nunez sudden proclivity for day-to-day injuries, plus there’s a chance David Adams will be called up to replace Ben Francisco when eligible next week. Gonzalez is nothing special, pretty much replacement level, but adding another legitimate middle infield to the Triple-A team was something the Yankees needed to do.

Yanks exile Shelley to AAA

Shelley Duncan, the once and former wunderkind, has been sent back to AAA. Alberto Gonzalez has been recalled to provide more flexibility off the bench over the next few weeks. As the Yanks are planning on holding on to both Chad Moeller and Jose Molina until they get to Pittsburgh, the timing on this move seems to suggest that Duncan will come up again when a third catcher goes down. Brett Gardner is, of coures, the wild card there.

And as an administrative note, if you’ve been trying to e-mail the three of us over the last two days, try again now. We were having some problems with our e-mail server that have since been fixed.

The end of Ensberg nears

A note from Chad Jennings: Jason Lane has an out in his contract that he can exercise on May 31. So the Yankees have a decision to make. Do you give Lane, who sports a .827 OPS at Scranton, a shot? Or do you let him walk? For what it’s worth, Jennings also notes that Lane was doing footwork at first base this week.

I’m personally of the mind that while the Ensberg experiment was a worthy one, it’s got to come to an end. Might as well plug in Lane and see what you’ve got there. Lane would take Ensberg’s 40- and 25-man roster spot, so there’s really no harm in this one. One experiment ends, another begins.

Wilson Betemit should be back soon, too. We could actually see the designation of Ensberg upon his return, with Lane taking the spot of Alberto Gonzalez. I actually like this a bit better. But in any case, there’s little chance Ensberg remains with the team past this week.

Former Attorney General in KC

Mark Feinsand is reporting that Alberto Gonzalez is with the team in Kansas City. This suggests one of two things. 1) Jeter is headed for the DL. 2) Shelley Duncan is headed down temporarily. Feinsand notes, and I can’t argue with his logic, that if Posada was the one hitting the DL, we’d also be seeing Chad Moeller in KC. Still, the possibility exists that both Jetes and Po hit the DL.

So much for that super-utility guy idea

If you don’t already know, Alberto Gonzalez – one of the guys picked up in the Big Unit deal – is basically the shortstop version of Marcos Vechionacci, meaning he’s frickin’ awesome with the glove. Since he plays a position occupied by someone whose name I forget at the big league level, there’s been thought of using Gonzalez as a utility guy.

Well, Gonzalez make an error in today’s game that ultimately cost the Yanks the win. Why is this signifcant? Because he was playing third at the time. This is Gonzalez’s second error of the spring, with the other error coming as he manned second. Granted this falls into the “small sample size” category, but still, he doesn’t seem as comfortable at non-natural positions.

He’s got some serious value as a trade chip, too bad Yankee fans most likely won’t ever get to see him pull a Rey Ordonez (with the glove, not the bat) impression in the Bronx.