The Yankees called up Cuban 1st baseman Juan Miranda today. I think that merits a prospect profile.
Age: 26 [image title="miranda" size="full" id="2716" align="right" ]
Weight: 220 lbs
Position: 1st Base
2008 Team: Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees
Current Team: New York Yankees
The Good: Miranda is a strong hitter against right-handed pitchers. He has hit .301/.396/.517 against right-handed hitters throughout his minor league career. He has 122 strikeouts and 98 walks over 700 plate appearances.
The Bad: His splits are dramatic. Against left-handed pitchers, Miranda hits .217/.290/.350. I can’t remember a reasonable major league prospect with that kind of platoon split. If Girardi ever lets him get a single at bat against a lefty, he is making a mistake. Miranda is a terrible defensive 1st baseman, and cannot handle any other position even in a pinch.
Projection: What you see is what you get. He’s a 26-year old Cuban defector with a lot of Triple-A experience. He’s not learning to hit lefties any time soon.
Reasons to be optimistic: On a team that pinch hits a lot, or does not have a regular first baseman, players like Miranda are very valuable. With an appropriate platoon pair, the Yankees could get average or better 1st base coverage out of him. This is less of a concern when you have Mark Teixeira.
Reasons to be pessimistic: Really, is there a place for him on the Yankees? He’s not going to replace Mark Teixeira in any lineup or defensive alignment in any situation in any game that matters. While he could pinch hit for Brett Gardner or Cody Ransom, he couldn’t stay in the game after that. Maybe there is a role for him as a designated hitter if Matsui continues to flounder, but Matsui’s paychecks will keep him in the lineup.
Bottom Line: He’ll be useful for the time being, but Miranda needs a trade.
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