Sunday, January 16, 2011

Yankees Take Long Look at Jones

According to SI's Jon Heyman, the Yankees have stepped up their pursuit for Andruw Jones.  

Throughout the offseason, the Yankees have been tied to Manny Ramirez and Johnny Damon, among others.  Ramirez never made a lot of sense for the Yankees.  While he still carries a solid bat, Manny is a terrible defensive outfielder that would be limited to playing the expansive Yankee Stadium left field--when he was allowed to play the field.

Johnny Damon didn't make a lot of sense either.  His bat is in decline; his defensive range is virtually non-existent; and he's left-handed.  Considering that all three of the Yankees outfielders hit left-handed, you can see how signing him wouldn't make a lot of sense. 

Signing Jones makes a lot of sense.  He's right handed, hits with power, and still carries a decent glove.  While Jones, 33, is not the feared hitter he was five years ago, he's still a productive player.   Also, he's likely to be a lot cheaper; will require fewer plate appearances than either Damon or Ramirez; and comes without some of the clubhouse baggage that's followed them (primarily Ramirez). 

In 328 plate appearances with the White Sox last season, Jones put up a .364 wOBA with 19 home runs and provided 1.8 wins above the replacement level. 

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