ESPN’s Buster Olney and Peter Gammons are reporting that the Red Sox are closing in on Mark Teixeira, the best bat in this year’s free agent class. Teixeira, who hit .308-33-121 in 2008 for Atlanta and Anaheim, a 151 OPS+, has a OPS+ of 134 for his career, will be just 29 next year, and has two Gold Gloves. .290 BA and switch-hits. Basically, everything to love, nothing to hate.
Except, for Yankee fans, the likelihood of his going to Boston.
Teix would play 1B for Boston, with Kevin Youkulis going to 3B should this deal go through. Apparently it would be $22M/yr for 8 years. The Red Sox would then look to deal Mike Lowell, who had hip problems late last year and who will be 35 next year. Lowell only played in 113 games in 2008 due to his problems, hitting .274-17-73, OPS+ 103. Lowell has a 110 OPS+ for his career, BA .279 and a Gold Glove. The 2007 WS MVP (and 5th in reg. season MVP), Lowell’s health is the issue.
The team affected the most of course, is “Uncle Joe’s” least favorite team (or one of his least favorites), the Angels. Having already lost K-Rod to the Mets, the Angels need to find a closer to replace him. Now in losing Teixeira, the Angels need to find a bat to go along with Bad Vlad. Could it be Manny?
As for the Yanks, they never were really in the bidding for Teix, concentrating their efforts on pitching. As for the bats, the Yanks are looking for rebounds. Whether Posada (37) or Matsui (35 next June) can come back from injuries remains to be seen. Cano, at 26, is being counted on heavily by the Yanks to bounce back. Robbie had an OPS+ of just 86 last year, after two seasons of 126 and 120. The Yanks need that 120 back.
As of now, with the Cameron deal dead for now, CF looks like a spring training battle between Melky and Gardner. I read where the Yanks have mixed opinions on David DeJesus of KC. Here is a comparison:
Melky 2008: 129 g. .249-8-37-9 SB OPS+ 68, 414 AB age 24
Gardner: 42 games .228-0-16 13 SB OPS+ 53, 127 AB age 25
DeJesus: 135 games .307-12-73 11 SB OPS+ 119, 518 AB age 29 (29th b/day sat.)
I’ve always liked DeJesus. I don’t know why the mixed opinions, but if I can do Melky for DeJesus (as opposed to Melky for Cameron) I go for it.
DeJesus career numbers? .287, OPS+ 105. Lefty hitter. Yankee Stadium would suit the lefty hitter better than Kauffman Stadium. 162 ga. ave. .287-11-71. Hometown boy, from Brooklyn and Rutgers. What are your thoughts on DeJesus? I don’t know if KC would want a second, but I’d do Melky and Igawa for DeJesus in a heartbeat (then again, I’d give away Igawa for a pizza and a six-pack of beer).
I have to leave at present to get to sleep. There is a big storm, mostly sleet and ice (yuk) due for the East on Friday and my shift hours have been changed to compensate. Catch you soon.
BTW, check out Sam Borden’s comments on Pete Abe’s blog (Abraham link at right). Nice comments on how various people persuaded CC and A.J. to come to the Bronx. Also nice to see how NOT going after Santana influenced the CC deal. A selling point to CC was that the Yanks targeted CC last offseason, waited him out and kept their prospects like Kennedy and Hughes. The Yanks gambled that they could get CC as a free agent for only money and therefore turned down Santana, which would have cost them as much money AND the prospects. Yes, the Yanks “sacrificed” 2008 by doing so, but hopefully by winning the gamble, getting CC and keeping the prospects, the payoff will come…soon and not just for one year but for several.