A-Rod’s surgery went ok, but a big bat the Yanks could have used—Michael Morse—went to Seattle.
Morse had no place in Washington after their recent moves. Morse could DH (which the Yanks are looking for) as well as play 1B and corner OF vs. lefties (which is also a Yanks’ need—a righty bat in the OF vs. lefties and a backup for Teix).
Morse hit .291-18-62 last year, OPS+ 112 and he went .303-31-95, OPS+ 147 in 2011 for the Nats.
Instead he goes to Seattle in a 3-team deal, the A’s and Nats also involved.
Morse is a free agent after 2013. So you had to watch what you gave up. The M’s now have added Jason Bay (hoping for a comeback), Kendrys Morales and Jason Bay to go with the developing Montero as they look to improve their offense. Apparently Justin Smoak (who they got for Cliff Lee) is out of their plans (as he should be after posting a .217-19-51 OPS+ 87 mark last year). … and to think that Seattle took Smoak instead of a package deal for Montero (who they got for Pineda a year later) for Lee. They might still have Pineda today. Of course, the Yanks don’t expect Pineda until mid-summer and hope he’s the same after his shoulder surgery. It’s funny how the dominoes fell.
Speaking of surgery, A-Rod had his hip surgery today and all reports are that it went as expected. If everything goes well, he may rejoin the Yanks shortly after the All-Star break.
Rafael Soriano saved the Yanks’ bacon last year by saving 42 games after Mo went down. He has now gone to Washington for a $28 MM, 2 yr deal. No way the Yanks were giving him that, esp. since they are giving Mo $10 MM to close in what will probably be his final season.
Having written that, I really like the Nationals chances to win the WS this year. Heck, they don’t have any room for Michael Morse (who would look nice as the Yanks’ DH this year). Harper gains another year’s experience, the kid gloves are off Strasburg, you have Gio Gonzalez, LaRoche is back, as is Ryan Zimmerman, Werth moves back to RF, they picked up Span, and have a closing trio of Clippard, Storen and Soriano.
Could Washington see its first WS since 1933?
With the Nationals re-signing of Adam LaRoche to a deal today, there appears to be no place for Michael Morse to play. LaRoche would play 1B, and the Nats have an OF of Harper, Werth and Span in place.
Morse could fit the Yankees’ needs very well.
Morse is a righty bat who has played LF (134), RF (124) and 1B (123) in his career. At 6’5″, 245 you’d be surprised to learn that he’s actually played 57 MLB games at SS! He has also played 9 games at 3B.
No offense to Scott Hairston (who the Yanks are pursuing), Matt Diaz or Russ Canzler (already on board), but if they can swing a deal for the soon to be 31-year-old Morse, you do it.
Morse is a .295 career hitter who had 31 HR and 95 RBI in 2011. In 2012 he hit .291-18-62 with an OPS+ of 112. His 162 g. average is .295-23-82, OPS+ 126. I wish he’d walk more (33 BB/123K) but he is versatile, young enough, has a solid OPS+ and is a better righty-hitting OF option than the players already acquired in Diaz and Canzler.
The Nats don’t have a place for him. He will make $6.75 MM in 2013 which, believe it or not, may be too much for the Yankees. But he fits. In the past three years, his average (115 g/yr) is .296-21-66, OPS+ 132.
That’s damned good and a better righty-hitting option than Diaz and/or Canzler.
Could the Yanks make it happen? Who would you give up to make it happen?