Yes I said it. Josh Beckett cleared waivers on Tuesday, along with many other over-paid Los Angeles Dodgers. We’ve heard the Matt Kemp rumors. People have said Carl Crawford and Andre Ethier make sense for the Yankees. Realistically, Josh Beckett and the Yankees are a perfect fit.
If the Yankees have any interest in the 34-year-old former ace, all they would have to due is pay the remainder of his salary this year. They would not have to give up prospects or mortgage the future.
Do Yankees fans (myself included) dislike Beckett? Yes. It’s for good reason. Beckett was the MVP of the 2003 World Series when the Marlins defeated the Yankees. He pitched to a 1.10 ERA in that series. He was as important as any Red Sox pitcher when they won the World Series in 2007. His ERA that post-season was 1.33.
Beckett is one of the best post season pitchers of the last twelve years. With that being said, everyone knows he’s not the same guy he was with the Marlins or Red Sox. That’s not the question Brian Cashman needs to ask. The real question is whether or not he is better than at least one of David Phelps, Shane Greene, Brandon McCarthy, Chris Capuano or any other spot-starter the Yankees will roll out for the rest of the season, hoping they can win a few games with smoke and mirrors.
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Beckett is 6-6 with a 2.88 ERA. I’ll admit he has been flat out lousy of late. He hasn’t pitched more than 4 1/3 innings since July 6th. He still boasts a 107/39 K/BB ratio. June 26th was not that long ago. On that day, Beckett shut out the Cardinals through 7 innings. The game before that, he also threw 7 shutout innings.
His last few playoff starts with Boston were lousy. (18 earned runs in 21 innings)
Maybe a change of scenery will do him some good. Like him or hate him, Josh Beckett is a big-time competitor. Am I saying he’s 2003-2007 Josh Beckett? I would be a fool to tell you that. What I am saying is that he is an upgrade over a good portion of The Yankees’ rotation. If you’re going to take a chance on Capuano, why not Beckett? Because he played for the arch-rival Red Sox? If anything, that should be motivation for a guy looking to resurrect his career. At 34, and in a contract year, this might be something that lights a fire under his butt. And if it doesn’t, what’s the harm? I don’t think anyone reading this is paying his salary for the next few months.