Via Erik Boland-
Brian Cashman acknowledged Wednesday that, as of this moment, there are “gaping holes” on his roster.
Not the least of which, the general manager said, will be in rightfield if, as expected, Nick Swisher rejects the team’s $13.3-million qualifying offer by Friday and hits the market.
At that point, Swisher likely would command a contract the Yankees, trying to get the payroll to $189 million by 2014 to avoid stiff luxury tax penalties, aren’t willing to offer.
“Swisher was awesome for us,” Cashman said.
The outfielder’s postseason struggles stand out in many people’s minds but Swisher, 31, was a player who, over his four years with the Yankees, averaged 26 homers and 87 RBIs per season.
“That’s a beast,” Cashman said of the switch hitter. ” . . . If it’s not him out there, which I can’t say one way or the other, I can’t predict, but it’s going to take a lot of work to replace what he provided.”
Enter Justin Upton, a 25-year-old rightfielder the Diamondbacks are open to moving. Upton, a two-time All-Star, has a club-friendly contract — $9.75 million next season, $14.25 million in 2014 and $14.5 million in 2015 — and while the Yankees were on his no-trade list last season, they no longer are.
But with a handful of teams, including the Red Sox and Phillies, needing outfielders, the Yankees, who have an interest, might not have big enough trade chips in their system to tempt Arizona GM Kevin Towers.
Towers is familiar with the Yankees system, having spent 2010 as a special adviser to Cashman, and will be looking for top of the line, major-league-ready talent in any deal for a player of Upton’s caliber.
“I just don’t see much there,” said one opposing team talent evaluator familiar with the Yankees’ system. “I don’t see any Monteros.”
I just love how history, at least in Yankeeland, likes to paint this picture of Nick Swisher being this great find/trade by Brian Cashman. Oh, how people forget…
At the time the Yankees traded for Swisher, the White Sox were looking to dump him and the Yankees were looking to give him a try at first base in the 2009 season because they had no one else to play there.
Of course, the Yankees had so much confidence in Swisher being able to play first base and hit that they then went out and immediately signed Mark Teixeira to a mega-contract (which they now probably regret). And, Swisher was pushed to the Yankees bench. Yes, the “beast” as Cashman calls him, was a scrub player in the Yankees plans until Xavier Nady got hurt and the Yankees had no one else to turn to, in the outfield. And, then, Swisher started to hit.
Basically, Cashman got lucky with Swisher. Yet, now, history, or should I say “his story,” is that acquiring Swisher was some master plan by him, as Swisher was “awesome” for the Yankees.
Spare me on that whopper, please.