Carlos Beltran's name being floated as a replacement for Nick Swisher should the Yankees choose not ..."/> Carlos Beltran's name being floated as a replacement for Nick Swisher should the Yankees choose not ..."/>

Rumors and Chatter: Cuddyer in Right Field?

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Yesterday it was Carlos Beltran’s name being floated as a replacement for Nick Swisher should the Yankees choose not to exercise his $10.25M option. Today Michael Cuddyer’s name is being mentioned as a possibility.

Cuddyer is certainly comparable to both Beltran and Swisher in terms of production. His career line (.272/.343/.451) falls comfortably between those of Beltran (.283/.361/.496) and Swisher (.254/.360/.466). Cuddyer’s average yearly power numbers (20 HR, 82 RBI) are lower than Swisher’s (28 HR, 89 RBI) and Beltran’s (28 HR, 105 RBI), but Cuddyer hit 32 homers as recently as the 2009 season and drove in 109 runs in 2006. The odds of him matching these career highs aren’t great, but if Cuddyer is put in the middle of the stacked Yankees lineup he will definitely see his share of good pitches.

Coming off a 4 yr/$33.5M contract which paid him $10.5M for the 2011 season, Cuddyer could likely be picked up for 2-3 years at $10-$11M per year. Given the years and money that it would take to sign Beltran, along with his age and injury history, Cuddyer would be the safer, more economical choice of the two to take over in right field.

Of course, all of this is contingent on whether the Yankees exercise Swisher’s option, and these are just the first two names of what will no doubt be a parade of possibilities mentioned over the next few months.