It’s no secret that the Yankees are plugging in parts of their infield all season. Mark Teixeira is a question mark everyday even when he starts the game. Brian Roberts is not an everyday second baseman. Derek Jeter is on his way out and is also not playing every day. Yangervis Solarte is a bright spot that can play anywhere he’s needed. The result is an infield that has daily questions this year, and will have even more holes next year. Trading for one of the most intimidating third basemen in the majors will go a long way to solve those problems. Enter, Mr. Adrian Beltre.
Beltre is 35 this year, and is signed through 2015 with a vesting option for 2016. He’s being paid $17 million this season, $18 million in 2015, and $16 million in 2016. The option in 2016 can be voided if he has fewer than 1200 plate appearances between ’14-’15 OR if he has less than 600 in 2015. As far as the Yankees are considered, those are pennies for a guy who hits for average and power in a position the Yankees are lacking in. Getting Beltre in pinstripes would be worth the price of admission.
Why would the Texas Rangers be willing to get rid of Beltre? Well, have they made some mistakes in the last season. They traded away one of the best second basemen in the game, Ian Kinsler, for a fat first baseman that is owed nearly $150 million and is now out for the season after having successful neck surgery. Their best prospect, and formerly one of baseball’s best, Jurickson Profar has not panned out either.
The Rangers are currently half a game from being in fourth place in the AL West. The Athletics are surging and the Angels are trying to get their pieces together. Unloading one of their largest contracts would help them load back up for the coming seasons.
Despite his age, Beltre is not slacking. Since 2010, he has hit .321, .296, .321, .315, and is hitting .288 this season. Power-wise, he’s hit 28, 32, 36, 30, and 5 home runs this season. He’s a rare player with a lot left in the tank. Coming to New York would benefit Beltre, but would really benefit the Yankees.
They would be able to move Solarte to second full-time, and would almost have an entire infield. The Yankees would have to eat a large chunk of his salary because they do not have the trade pieces right now to offset it. Luckily for the team, they can afford it and should make the move immediately.