Yankees Rumors: Joe Girardi Wants One More Bat, So Who Should It Be?

As if he doesn't have enough toys to play with, New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Friday that he would like another bat to add to the Yankees lineup, preferable a left-handed hitting one who can spend be at least a part-time designated hitter.

"I think it will be helpful; I do," Girardi said at Modell's Sporting Goods in Times Square. "I think we've had a good offseason; I think Brian has done a really good job this offseason in what he's done. But I think it's important to our club that you add that other bat. The American League is going to be tough."

There are really three choices -- Raul Ibanez and a pair of former Yankees -- Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui. Let's break down all three quickly.

Raul Ibanez -- The 39-year-old outfielder seems to be Girardi's personal favorite, despite hitting only .245 a season ago. He had 20 home runs and 84 RBI. A Sabermetric look at Ibanez shows all of his numbers a season ago were well off his career marks. You have to wonder if he can rebound, or if he is done as a consistently effective offensive player.

Johnny Damon -- Bringing Damon back to the Bronx would probably be the most popular move with the fan base. At 38, he is still an offensive presence -- having batted .261 with 16 home runs, 73 RBI and 19 stolen bases a season ago. The question with the Yankees and Damon is really playing time. Though primarily a DH now Damon is still a guy who would likely want to play every day. With Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Andruw Jones and maybe Mark Teixeira requiring some DH appearances that isn't going to happen.

Hideki Matsui -- The 37-year-old has knee issues and his power numbers were the worst of his big-league career a season ago as he hit just 12 home runs, drove in 72 runs and had a .375 slugging percentage, well off his career .467 mark. Matsui seems likely to be willing to accept part-time duty, but does he have enough in the tank to warrant being brought back?

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