• Mustelier To Replace Swisher Next Year?

    Posted by on October 10th, 2012 · Comments (6)

    Via George King

    In two seasons at four levels of the Yankees organization, Ronnier Mustelier has proven he can hit. Now the Yankees are in the process of finding a position for the Cuban utility man.

    “He has a very short stroke and pretty good balance,” Yankees vice president Mark Newman said of the 27-year-old native of Santiago de Cuba, who signed with the Yankees for $50,000 on June 7, 2011. “He strikes out once in every seven at-bats. His walks are below-average but he puts the ball in play.”

    Mustelier batted .314/.371/.488 with 15 home runs and 69 RBIs in 114 games between Double-A Trenton and Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

    “He played third, second, left and right,” Newman said. “We are trying to find out where his best defensive position is and what our needs are.”

    Newman tends to think it’s left field.

    “He can run and cover ground,” Newman said of the 5-foot-10, 210 pounder. “He can also play right. He improved defensively over the course of the season.”

    Mustelier, who is playing in the Mexican League, isn’t on the Yankees’ 40-man roster. He could be added this offseason, but there is still a lot of road to cover before he can be considered a serious threat to make the major league club.

    If Nick Swisher leaves via free agency the Yankees will have a need for an outfielder.

    Zoilo Almonte and Melky Mesa, who was a September callup, are ahead of Mustelier within the system and neither are expected to be in the big leagues next season.

    Yet, in two years Mustelier has proven at four levels he can hit and that will get anybody noticed.

    Ronnier Mustelier has hit in the minors. But, then again, he’s 28-years old. So, you would expect that he could handle minor league pitching. At the least, the Yankees could give him Andruw Jones’ job next year.

    Comments on Mustelier To Replace Swisher Next Year?

    1. Raf
      October 10th, 2012 | 6:12 pm

      If he plays all those positions, I’d give him the supersub gig instead of trying to shoehorn Nunez into the role.

    2. LMJ229
      October 10th, 2012 | 6:33 pm

      I think the Yankees made a mistake in not trying to convert Nunez to an outfielder this year. He hits and runs well. And an outfield of Gardner, Granderson and Nunez would be a good defensive outfield.

    3. October 10th, 2012 | 6:51 pm

      True, and, if they’re worried about SS after Jeter, why, they still have the great Cito Culver almost ready to step in…

      Oh, wait, never mind…

    4. Raf
      October 10th, 2012 | 6:57 pm

      Steve L. wrote:

      True, and, if they’re worried about SS after Jeter, why, they still have the great Cito Culver almost ready to step in…
      Oh, wait, never mind…

      If not Culver, then someone else either by trade, FA or someone on the current roster. Realistically, you need someone for maybe 1/2 a season, if they go bust, it’s only a matter of time before someone becomes available on the trade market.

    5. LMJ229
      October 10th, 2012 | 7:06 pm

      I think Jeter will be playing SS for two more years. Next year definitely and I’m guessing the year after that. I think he has a (reasonably priced) player option in his contract. I was hoping Nunez would be next up but that doesn’t seem to be working out too well. The Yankees should just accept that and move Nunez to the outfield. We can pick up a replacement for Jeter down the road.

    6. Raf
      October 10th, 2012 | 7:48 pm

      @ LMJ229:
      Also, a lot can happen between now and then. Overall, I wouldn’t sweat it.

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