The New York Yankees and free-agent second baseman Brian Roberts have agreed to terms on a one-year deal worth around $2 million, plus incentives, sources told Ken Rosenthal and Jon Morosi of FoxSports.com.
Roberts, 36, is a player that the Yanks hope will stay healthy, after missing a lot of time over the past few seasons because of various injuries, beginning with concussion problems in 2010. Since 2010, Roberts has played in only 192 of a possible 648 games because of injury. In all, he hasn’t played in more than 80 game since 2009.
It would seem likely that he’ll be the top candidate to play second base on a regular basis next season, possibly platooning with Kelly Johnson, who the Yanks might not see as the perfect option to play the field every day. Johnson is a much better hitter than a fielder, but at the moment, he and Roberts would be able to split time between playing second and third base when you-know-who is suspended for most or all of next season.
Signing Roberts doesn’t mean that they’re done adding infielders with Spring Training a couple months away. They’ve had their eye on Mark Reynolds all offseason, and they would like to bring him back to play third base — and even first base if Mark Teixeira‘s wrist done respond well — and he would provide some useful power from the right side of the plate.
The Yankees have been looking for someone to replace Robinson Cano at second base, who signed with the Seattle Mariners last week. Omar Infante had been their top candidate to fill the need, but he recently signed a four-year deal with the Kansas City Royals. Mark Ellis was another target, but he signed with the St. Louis Cardinals this past weekend.