Alright that’s a bit of an extreme statement, and we really don’t have much time left before the trade deadline, so he would have to be really awful over the next two weeks for this course of action to play out. But, on the chance that Jorge Posada does continue to have a poor July, here are some routes the Yankees could go to fill in the DH spot.
1. A straight platoon of Eric Chavez and Andruw Jones when the former comes back from the disabled list. This would be the most cost-efficient option and probably the most desirable one. It requires no forfeit of assets on the Yankees’ part (except for a roster move; I’m assuming Brandon Laird goes back to AAA), which is what makes it attractive in the first place. The problem is that Chavez is still pretty damn injury prone. If he gets hurt, the Yankees could be stuck with moving Posada back to the vs. RHP DH, which is something they’d want to avoid if the “doomsday” scenario, Jorge edition, happens.
2. A trade could go down. The Yankees say that they’re not in on Carlos Beltran, but I won’t believe that until he absolutely does not end up in the Bronx this year. I don’t necessarily want them to trade for Beltran, given that the Mets are asking for a “top prospect” since they’re willing to eat all the money left on his deal. Even if they were to eat all the money, why would anyone want to give up a top prospect for Beltran? He’s been healthy this year, but that could change rather quickly. Plus, he’s still just a rental player AND he cannot be offered arbitration over the offseason because of his large salary. I think the Mets can keep asking for a big time prospect in return for Beltran, but I don’t think they’re going to get one.
Another trade possibility (and I know Moshe likes this one) is Minnesota’s Jason Kubel. I’ve never been a big Kubel fan, but if he’s going to be available and will only be DHing, he could be a good pick up. He has a career .361 wOBA vs. right handed pitching and has some obvious pop in his bat (.200 IsoP vs. RHP for his career). He’s hurt now, but will be coming off the DL soon. He’s a strict rental as he’s a free agent after this year and that would also help drive his cost down.
There’s one solution that can’t quite happen yet because the player in question is on the disabled list, and will be until after the trade deadline. That solution would be to have Alex Rodriguez taking over the designated hitter’s spot for the rest of the season. That’s not something I’d necessarily like to see because he’s been fielding well this year and even though he’d likely produce well, that’s a lot of money to pay to a guy who’s just a DH. But, there are benefits. It would mean that the Yankees wouldn’t need to platoon a DH and it would, presumably, keep A-Rod healthy going into 2012 and beyond. The big snag, though, which I think would keep it from happening, is the question of who would play third with Rodriguez out. They could rock a platoon of Chavez vs. righties and Eduardo Nunez or Laird against lefties, but that would work only if Chavez is healthy. This is all academic, though, ’cause it’s not going to happen.
Posada really only has June in his favor this month. Despite that, I don’t see the Yankees relegating Posada to bench/PH duties until after the trade deadline, only because that date is so close. If they do wait, though, it could be too late.
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