Trade For…A Bench Player!

The Yankees’ bench is a fluid place. They sometimes only have three guys on it because they decide to carry 13 pitchers. That puts a premium on the flexibility of the guys on the bench, and the Yankees could definitely upgrade that.

As of right now, the Yankees’ bench is made up of John Ryan Murphy, Gregorio Petit, Cole Figueroa, and Garrett Jones. Chris Young is filling in for Beltran in right, otherwise he would be on the bench, so I will include him in the discussion.

Murphy is a 24-year old catcher who has shown flashes of offensive ability while playing good defense. The Yankees don’t need to make a change here.

Young has feasted on LHP and served as a good defensive outfielder in all three spots when needed. He isn’t going anywhere.

Garret Jones has been disappointing, hitting only .238/.285/.410 in limited playing time. He hasn’t hit RHP, usually his calling card, anywhere near enough. He isn’t particularly good at defense, so he could clearly be replaced.

Petit is a guy they got when Brendan Ryan was hurt at the end of camp and isn’t more than a fill-in. Figueroa is on the club because Headley may be hurt, neither has a lock on a roster spot.

What the Yankees could use, what would be an almost-perfect fit for this club, is a guy like Ben Zobrist. The Yankees keep trying to create a Ben Zobrist in the minors, but with Oakland seemingly ready to sell this is their chance to get him. Oakland has used him mostly in left and at second this year, but in the past two years he has played every position except for first and third. He is a switch-hitter, who generally hits LHP better than RHP, though he is strong against both. He is only signed through the end of the year, so his cost should not be prohibitive.

Getting Zobrist would give the Yankees a number of options. They could simply dump Steven Drew and use him as the regular guy at second. (unlikely) They could add Zobrist to the bench and use him all over the place (much more likely). That’s the kind of flexibility the Yankees have been looking for since they traded Prado. The Yankees should figure out a way to make that happen.