The question for the Yankees has been whether right field would be a position of need at least down the road. However, are they setting up for a change at that position earlier than we think? There have been numerous rumors surrounding Nick Swisher in potential trade. Just a few weeks ago, a team that asked the Yankees about Swisher was the Cleveland Indians. The Tribe re-signed center fielder Grady Sizemore earlier in the offseason, but could use a bat at the corner outfield position.
This week, I came across a tweet from MLB insider Jon Heyman. He said that Scott Boras approached the Yankees about giving Carlos Beltran a two year, $26 million. New York turned it down and it ends up that the St. Louis Cardinals gave him that exact same deal.
When healthy, Beltran has a good power bat and we know from his past postseasons that he can come up with the big hit. People thought the former Met would get more money than $13 million a year, so the contract would have been affordable. However, I think Brian Cashman was scared from the knee issues he has had and playing in right field at Yankee Stadium is no easy task.
I’ll give Nick Swisher this: He is an above average defensive player at the position, but it has to frustrate Yankee fans that in three years with the team, he has not been a great hitter in clutch situations which we have clarified on this site time and time again. Maybe, the trade rumors from the offseason and a new 1-year deal will spark Swisher to an improved 2012 season in the middle of the order. I wouldn’t rule out that the Yankees would trade him to add another piece, but with Michael Cuddyer and Josh Willingham off the market, I don’t expect that to happen.