MLB Trade Rumors 2012: New York Yankees Fail In Bid For Ryan Dempster

The New York Yankees made a splash Monday, acquiring 10-time All-Star Ichiro Suzuki from the Seattle Mariners

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Casey McGehee Trade: Pittsburgh Perspective

The New York Yankees acquired right-handed hitting Casey McGehee from the Pittsburgh Pirates at the MLB Trade Deadline, surrendering unwanted reliever Chad Qualls. SB Nation Pittsburgh editor Charlie Wilmoth was kind enough to offer his thoughts on the Yankees' acquisition of McGehee.

Here is what Wilmoth wrote via e-mail:

I'm not sure I totally understand the pair of moves that led McGehee to the Yankees, but here goes.

McGehee can hit lefties. He probably shouldn't be out there against righties. He was a bit of a disappointment with the Pirates this year, but that was mainly because the Pirates' shortage of talent in the outfield (McGehee doesn't play outfield, but Garrett Jones, who shared first base with McGehee, does), along with some strange decisions on Clint Hurdle's part, frequently forced McGehee into duties against righties. If you accept that he's merely a bench player who can play reasonable defense at first or third and hit lefties, he'll probably do well for you.

For some reason, the Pirates decided to acquire Gaby Sanchez, who's also a first baseman and lefty-killer, and between Sanchez at first and Pedro Alvarez at third, it would have been hard to find playing time for McGehee. With the acquisitions of Sanchez and Travis Snider, the Pirates suddenly went from needing to play McGehee most days to having no particular use for him. He seems like a good enough guy, so the best rationale for the Chad Qualls trade I've heard is that the Pirates probably felt McGehee no longer had much of a role with them and decided to send him someplace where he'd have a clearer shot at some playing time.

The Yankees obviously didn't give up much of anything, so I think that probably the best way to look at this, from the Yankees' perspective, is that you're getting a player who's fine as what he does, and you're getting him for virtually nothing. With the Yankees, unlike with the Pirates, he probably won't be asked to do too much, so I think he can be an effective role player down the stretch.

This deal sounds like a nice get for GM Brian Cashman and the Yankees. McGehee has played 375 of his 529 career games at third base, with 75 at first base. He reportedly hits left-handers better than right-handers, though his career numbers -- .260/.313/.416/.729 vs. righties and .259/.327/.427/.754 vs lefties do not show a big disparity.

With Alex Rodriguez down with a broken hand and the Yankees using a combination of the frail Eric Chavez and the light-hitting Jayson Nix at third base, though, this could be a most useful pickup for New York.

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Casey McGehee Trade Reaction: Exactly What The Yankees Needed

The trade deadline acquisition of Casey McGehee from the Pittsburgh Pirates fits a pattern that has been established by New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman this season. Aside from the splashy move for Ichiro Suzuki, Cashman has acquired lots of low-cost role players to supplement his roster of stars.

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Yankees Trade Rumors: Dempster Bid Fails, Yankees Get McGehee For Qualls

Multiple reports indicate the New York Yankees made a last-ditch bid for the prize of the MLB Trade Deadline, pitcher Ryan Dempster, before the Chicago Cubs shipped him to the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers were Dempster's preferred destination all along, so the 35-year-old right-hander ended up where he wanted to go.

According to YES Network, Dempster had indicated he would accept a move to the Bronx. That, however, did not materialize. After acquiring Ichiro Suzuki it is somehow not stunning to see the Yankees make a play for Dempster, even though they appear not to really need starting pitching.

The Yankees did, however, make one smaller move at the deadline. They traded veteran reliver Chad Qualls to the Pittsburgh Pirates for right-handed hitting infielder Casey McGehee. McGehee, 29, is hitting .230 in 92 games this season with eight home runs and 35 RBI. McGehee has played 71 games at first base and nine at third base this season. Last season he appeared in 143 games at third base for the Pirates.

The Yankees are without Alex Rodriguez for several weeks due to a broken hand. Qualls was acquired from the Philadelphia Phillies earlier this month and pitched in eight games, compiling a 6.14 ERA. With the rise of rookie David Phelps and the impending return of Joba Chamberlain he was deemed expendable.

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Yankees Trade Rumors: Chase Headley? A Mystery Third Baseman?

New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman insists that he is not actively seeking a third baseman in the trade market to replace injured slugger Alex Rodriguez. Sure, Cash, just like you weren't seeking an outfielder to replace Brett Gardner. it has to be a complete accident that Ichiro Suzuki wound up playing for the Yankees.

Well, obviously I am not buying Cashman's 'Who, me? In the trade market?' routine. It seems like folks around baseball aren't buying it, either.

The Yankees are saying that Eric Chavez and Jayson Nix will handle the third base job, but Chavez is oft-injured himself and no one can believe he could play regularly for two months without breaking down.

Chase Headley of the San Diego Padres, who can also play first base and left field, has been the primary name discussed thus far. Headley is hitting .267 with 12 home runs and 51 RBI for San Diego.

Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that Mark Reynolds (Baltimore) and Chone Figgins (Seattle) are available, but unlikely.

Of course, given Cashman's track record if the Yankees acquire a third baseman before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline it will probably be someone you didn't even know was available. So, stay tuned.

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MLB Trade Rumors 2012: Chase Headley A Possible Replacement For Alex Rodriguez?

After acquiring Ichiro Suzuki via trade, most would have thought the New York Yankees wouldn't need to make another big move at the MLB trade deadline. However, that changed Tuesday when Alex Rodriguez fractured his left hand and will be out 6-8 weeks.

The move now, speculates ESPN's Buster Onley, is to call the San Diego Padres and talk about a trade for third baseman/utility player Chase Headley.

Roster wise, the move wouldn't be a bad one as the switch hitter has 11 home runs and 50 RBI in the pitcher-friendly PETCO Park. However, reports have the Padres wanting solid prospects in return, a price, believes CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman, that is just too high.

The Yankees are unlikely to make a big push for Headley after losing Alex Rodriguez, who's probably out until mid-September with a broken hand, because they don't want to give up the prospects it would take.

As of 2 p.m. on Wednesday, the Yankees and Padres have yet to talk.

See Pinstripe Alley for complete discussion and analysis of the Yankees and stay tuned to SB Nation New York.

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Justin Upton Trade Rumors: Diamondbacks Outfielder Off The Trade Market -- Report

The New York Yankees have likely fulfilled their big-name trade quota for the 2012 season, but one of their rumored trade targets apparently came off the market Tuesday. According to ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick, Arizona Diamondbacks team president Derrick Hall said there's, "close to a 100 percent chance nothing happens' before the trade deadline.

Of course, Hall could be saying this because the Yankees moved on from Upton and acquired future Hall-of-Famer Ichiro Suzuki from the Seattle Mariners Monday; or this could be one of the reasons why New York went after Ichiro in the first place.

"We're in no hurry to move this guy -- nor do we think we need to,'' Hall said. "Everybody in this organization is open for discussion and conversation, including Justin Upton. If people call, we're going to listen. We've had a lot of people call, and we've said, 'No thank you' to all of them. That hasn't changed.''

See Pinstripe Alley for complete discussion and analysis of the Yankees and stay tuned to SB Nation New York.

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Ichiro Trade Reaction: Yankees Get Outfielder They Needed

Jack Curry of YES Network broke the news Monday that the New York Yankees had acquired Ichiro Suzuki from the Seattle Mariners. Curry analyzed the move Monday evening in a post at YESNetwork.com. Here is part of what he wrote:

While Ichiro isn't a top-five type player anymore, he can still be a very effective player for the Yankees as they refine their roster and push toward the post-season. By acquiring Ichiro from the Mariners for right-handers D.J. Mitchell and Danny Farquhar, the Yankees didn't surrender any premier prospects and improved their outfield. In addition, the Yankees will only pay Ichiro $2.25 million for the rest of the season. They believe Ichiro is still worth watching and, of course, still worth having.

When General Manager Brian Cashman surveyed the trade for possible outfield help, he didn't like the hefty pricetags for players like Shane Victorino and Denard Span. Although Justin Upton is a very attractive 24-year old, the Yankees weren't thrilled with the type of package it would take to acquire him, either. Ichiro was available at a modest price so the Yankees were smart to pounce. The acquisition of Ichiro makes them a better team.

By obtaining Ichiro, the Yankees have added a reasonable facsimile of Brett Gardner. Ichiro still plays superb defense and still has excellent speed, traits that the Yankees have lacked in Gardner's absence.

The staff writers at SB Nation's Pinstripe Alley are also reacting to the trade. To let us know what you think of the trade, vote in the poll on the SB Nation New York Facebook page.

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VIDEO: Ichiro Suzuki, Joe Girardi Discuss Yankees Trade At Press Conference

Monday's trade sending Ichiro Suzuki to the New York Yankees from the Seattle Mariners has shocked the baseball world. While the 38-year-old outfielder may not be the player he once was, 10-time All-Stars don't grow on trees and the Yankees could use the extra body.

Ichiro spoke Monday at his press conference to thank fans in Seattle but also to discuss his need to move on from a Mariners club looking to rebuild itself through youth. Note: The first 4:18 is in Japanese, so unless you're fluent you might want to skip ahead a bit.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi also spoke briefly at the presser, expressing his excitement. Girardi believes that Ichiro will provide an element of speed missing from the team with Brett Gardner out for the season.

As you might expecxt, SB Nation YouTube had its own unique take on the deal.

Ichiro Suzuki Traded to New York Yankees -- The Internet Reacts (via sbnation)

See Pinstripe Alley for complete discussion and analysis of the Yankees and stay tuned to SB Nation New York.

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Ichiro Suzuki Batting 8th For Yankees Monday Night Against Mariners

Ichiro Suzuki, fresh from being traded from the Seattle Mariners to the New York Yankees, will bat eighth against his former team Monday night for the start of a four-game series at Safeco Field. Ichiro will man right field with Nick Swisher out. Once Swisher returns, Ichiro should spend most of his time in left field for New York. You can check out the Yankees full lineup below:

Derek Jeter, SS
Curtis Granderson, CF
Alex Rodriguez, 3B
Robinson Cano, 2B
Mark Teixeira, 1B
Raul Ibanez, DH
Andruw Jones, LF
Ichiro Suzuki, RF
Russell Martin, C

Hiroki Kuroda, RHP

Ichiro was acquired Monday in a trade that sent pitching prospects D.J. Mitchell and Danny Fahrquar to Seattle. With Brett Gardner out for the season the Yankees needed immediate help in the outfield and in a quick turn of events acquired a 38-year-old, 10-time All-Star.

See Pinstripe Alley for complete discussion and analysis of the Yankees and stay tuned to SB Nation New York.

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Ichiro Suzuki Trade: New York Yankees Acquire Aging Star

Ichiro Suzuki is a member or the New York Yankees, having been acquired by the Yankees from the Seattle Mariners Monday afternoon in exchange for two minor-league pitchers. Jack Curry of YES Network was the first to report the deal, via Twitter:

This is why you never believe Yankees general manager Brian Cashman when he says he isn't looking to make any moves at the trade deadline, which has been Cashman's stance for several weeks.

With left fielder Brett Gardner out for the season due to elbow surgery rumors had been circulating that the Yankees were in the market for an outfielder. The fact that they ended up with the 38-year-old 10-time All-Star is stunning.

[Yankees In Seattle To Face Mariners | Freddy Garcia Or David Phelps For Fifth Starter?]

Ichiro is in decline, hitting .261 in 95 games this season after managing only a .272 average a season ago. He has a .322 career batting average. Ichiro's OPS and on-base percentage have also been in decline the past couple of seasons. Yet, Ichiro has 10 Gold glove awards, remains a top-tier defensive player, brings speed to the Yankees lineup that they miss without Gardner and is in the final year of a five-year, $90 million contract.

Thus, Ichiro is really a rental for the Yankees and they will bank on him being motivated by the big stage and the playoff opportunity over the next few months. According to Curry, the Yankees will pay slightly more than $2 million of whatever is left on the $17 million Ichiro is being paid this season.

[That is a bargain for a future Hall of Famer who, will not what he used to be, brings to the table a skillset no one else on the Yankees roster possesses.

According to a statement released by the Mariners, Ichiro had requested a trade several weeks ago.

"Ichiro will be missed. He owns a long list of Major League Baseball and Mariners club records, has earned many prestigious awards, and in my opinion, he will someday be a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame," said Mariners CEO Howard Lincoln.

The trade will make for an interesting dynamic Monday night since the Yankees are currently in Seattle to open a three-game series at Safeco Field against the Mariners. (10:10 p.m. ET/YES). The Yankees announced that DeWayne Wise has been designated for assignment to make room on the roster for Ichiro, making it likely Ichiro will be in the Yankees' lineup Monday.


G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB K SB CS AVG OBP SLG
2012 - Ichiro Suzuki 95 402 49 105 15 5 4 28 17 40 15 2 .261 .288 .353

-- See Pinstripe Alley for complete discussion and analysis of the Yankees.

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Yankees Trade Rumors: Coco Crisp?

Most baseball analysts think the New York Yankees are likely in the market for an outfielder as the MLB non-waiver trade deadline of July 31 approaches. That would, of course, make sense with the recent news that left fielder Brett Gardner will have elbow surgery and likely be lost for the season.

Recent reports indicate that the Yankees are not interested in available outfielders Rick Ankiel and Juan Pierre. So, let's throw another name into the hopper. How about a guy the Yankees are currently playing against -- Oakland Athletics outfielder Coco Crisp?

The Yankees have reportedly scouted Crisp, a veteran outfielder with a skill set similar to the speedy, defensively-superb Gardner.

Crisp, 32, is in his 11th season and is not having a particularly good year. He is hitting just .243, with a .306 on-base percentage and .328 slugging percentage. His career averages are .273/.328/.401. Crisp, though, has speed that the Yankees currently lack without Gardner. Crisp stole 49 bases last season and has 18 this season in 64 games. Gardner also stole 49 bases a season ago.

Crisp has approximately $10 million remaining on a contract that runs through the 2013 season.

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Yankees Trade Rumors: Cross Off Rick Ankiel, Juan Pierre, Wandy Rodriguez

Traditionally, the New York Yankees make a lot of news around the MLB Trade Deadline for all of the various high-priced players they are rumored to be kicking the tires on acquiring. This year, however, most of the news seems to be about players the Yankees are not interested in as the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline approaches.

The Yankees do not appear to be one of the players in the Ryan Dempster trade saga, as speculation abounds concerning where the Chicago Cubs will send the hotly-sought after 35-year-old right-handed starting pitcher.

Peter Gammons speculated Thursday, and we at SB Nation New York agreed, that veteran outfielder Rick Ankiel might be an excellent fit for the Yankees with left fielder Brett Gardner probably done for the season due to upcoming elbow surgery. The Yankees, though, are apparently uninterested in Ankiel, designated for assignment by the Washington Nationals. They are also reportedly not interested in Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Juan Pierre, a player with a skill set similar to Gardner's, or left-handed starting pitcher Wandy Rodriguez of the Houston Astros.

In terms of the starting rotation, maybe the Yankees will just settle for trying to find out if rookie David Phelps can be a big-league starting pitcher and wait for Andy Pettitte to return from his broken leg. For the bullpen, the eventual return of Joba Chamberlain from Tommy John surgery and a fractured ankle should be a boost, almost like making a late-season trade.

When it comes to outfielders, that is anybody's guess. The Yankees have reportedly talked to the Philadelphia Phillies about Shane Victorino, but don't seem to be targeting anyone specific.

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Yankees Trade Rumors: Rick Ankiel A 'Great Fit?'

The Washington Nationals have designated outfielder Rick Ankiel for assignment, and Peter Gammons of MLB Network suggests that Ankiel would be a "great fit" for the New York Yankees?

Is that the case?

The Yankees have reportedly been looking for an outfielder with speedy left fielder Brett Gardner possibly done for the season due to an elbow injury. The Yankees have reportedly talked to the Philadelphia Phillies about veteran outfielder Shane Victorino. The 31-year-old Victorino is in the final year of a three-year deal worth $22 million and might be too expensive for the suddenly budget-conscious Yankees, both financially and in terms of prospects New York would have to surrender.

Picking up a player like the 33-year-old Ankiel, making $1.25 million this season, seems to be more in line with the way general manager Brian Cashman is conducting business for the Yankees these days. The Yankees, who have the best record in baseball, have had success this season with a number veteran players they have hauled off the baseball scrap heap. Outfielder DeWayne Wise, utility man Jayson Nix and relief pitchers Cody Eppley and Clay Rapada have all contributed for New York.

Veterans Raul Ibanez (.242, 12 home runs, 40 RBI) and Andruw Jones (.241, 12 homers, 26 RBI) have gotten most of the playing time in left field (helped by Nix and Wise) and have done well. New York, though, would seemingly like an additional piece to allow Ibanez and Jones to DH more.

Ankiel's offensive output has declined quite a bit since 2008, when he hit .264 for the St. Louis Cardinals and set career-highs with 25 homers and 71 RBI. Last season he hit only .239 with 9 home runs and 37 RBI in 122 games. He was hitting just .228 with 5 home runs and 15 RBI in 68 games this season when he was designated for assignment.

Ankiel, however, remains an above average defensive outfielder with a terrific throwing arm. He has experience in all three outfield spots.

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Shane Victorino Trade Rumors: Yankees, Phillies Talking About Outfielder

The New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies have talked about a trade involving outfielder Shane Victorino, CBS Sports baseball insider Jon Heyman is reporting.

They've talked to the Phillies about Shane Victorino and the Diamondbacks about Justin Upton, but Upton is a major long shot for them and right now they see the price tag as too high on either. Victorino may be slightly more realistic eventually, though.

GM Brian Cashman said on Sunday asking prices are generally too high, and that the deals available weren't worth it to make "marginal'' improvements.

So far, the Yankees have dealt with the loss of left fielder Brett Gardner by platooning veteran outfielder Raul Ibanez and Andruw Jones, but its hard to tell if those two will have too much "wear and tear" come October, says Heyman.

-- See Pinstripe Alley for complete discussion and analysis of the Yankees. See MLB Daily Dish for baseball rumors.

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Ryan Dempster Trade Rumors: New York Yankees In The Mix?

Ryan Dempster has pitched 33 scoreless innings for the Chicago Cubs this season. Baseball insiders believe that when the 35-year-old right-hander tries to extend that streak he will be doing it in another uniform. Could that uniform be the pinstripes of the New York Yankees?

The Yankees are reportedly one of 10 teams in contact with the Cubs regarding Dempster, 5-3 with a 1.86 ERA this season.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman has consistently said, however, that he is not looking to make a splash at the trade deadline. With the Yankees eight games in front in the American League East and seemingly in little danger right now that is a stance Cashman can afford to take. Writes ESPN's Buster Olney:

"Dempster could fit, but there's really no pressing need for New York. It's hard to imagine the Yankees extending themselves significantly at a time when they're beginning to run away with the AL East."

Should the Yankees trade top-level prospects for Dempster, Yankees fans?

-- See Pinstripe Alley for complete discussion and analysis of the Yankees. See MLB Daily Dish for baseball rumors.

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MLB Trade Rumors: Cliff Lee To The New York Yankees?

During his weekly Thursday spot for Sports Radio WIP in Philadelphia, MLB Network’s Peter Gammons suggested that the Phillies, due to their last-place standing and the changes in compensation for free agents, may explore getting into an area where they can sign pending FA Cole Hamels and trade Cliff Lee, who turns 34 next month and signed through 2015 with an option for 2016.

If that were the case, Gammons said a big-market team would go for Lee in a hurry, and one of those teams could be the Yankees. Ironically, the Yankees were this-close to trading for Lee in 2010 before the Mariners chose to do business with the Rangers. That winter, Lee turned down the Yankees’ seven-year, $148 million offer for five and $120M in Philadelphia, a place he claimed he never wanted to leave. (Lee was traded from the Phillies to the M’s in December 2009).

[Complete Story At YesNetwork.com]

The Phillies are 37-50, losers of four straight and 10 of 11, and are closer to the last-place Astros in the National League than the East-leading Nationals. The Yankees have professed fiscal responsibility and are aiming for a payroll under $189 million by 2014. Lee will cost a contender top prospects and the acceptance of the left-hander’s contract. That along with Brian Cashman’s insistence he’s not looking to do anything big by the July 31 trade deadline would put the Yankees out of play.

Or would it?

"The Yankees can say all they want that they won't trade," Gammons said (LISTEN HERE). "I do think it's not exactly in Brian Cashman’s DNA to trade young players, but it's different when you're Cliff Lee. I think there's a possibility. I really do. I think (the Phillies) can get more for Cliff Lee than for Cole Hamels."

-- See Pinstripe Alley for complete discussion and analysis of the Yankees

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Yankees Trade Rumors: Justin Upton Can Block Deal To Yankees

Well, New York Yankees fans it looks like you can pretty much forget the team adding Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Justin Upton via trade. The Diamondbacks have said the 24-year-old star outfielder is available for the right offer, and Upton might well be a fit for Yankee pinstripes. He can, however, block a deal to the Yankees tweets ESPN's Buster Olney. [via MLBTradeRumors]

As previously reported, the Yankees are expected to let right fielder Nick Swisher leave as a free agent at the end of this season. New York also faces the need to sign center fielder Curtis Granderson to a new deal following next season. Upton would provide the Yankees with a young, athletic outfielder who could help fill the void by the departures of one, or both, of those players.

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Yankees Trade Rumors: Shane Victorino? Matt Garza? Wandy Rodriguez? Ryan Dempster?

ESPN's Jim Bowden, a former big-league general manager, recently posted his list of the 10 players he sees as most likely to be traded before the July 31st non-waiver trade deadline.

Bowden's list? Zack Greinke, SP; Matt Garza, SP; Shane Victorino, OF; Ryan Dempster, SP; Wandy Rodriguez, SP; Carlos Quentin, OF; Francisco Liriano, SP; Huston Street, RP; Brett Myers, RP; Marco Scutaro, INF.

Would any of those players be a fit for the New York Yankees? At various times the Yankees have been connected, or at least rumored to be interested in, Garza and Dempster, both of the Chicago Cubs, and Wandy Rodriguez of the Houston Astros. Some of that speculation makes sense with Yankees starting pitchers CC Sabathia and Andy Pettitte on the disabled list.

The name that jumps out at me, however, is Victorino, the 31-year-old Philadelphia Phillies outfielder. The Phillies, struggling at 37-46 and last in the National League East, seem to be in the mood to dump pieces. Jim Thome was moved to the Baltimore Orioles. Reliever Chad Qualls is a Yankee now. There is speculation that starting pitcher Cole Hamels could be on the trading block, as well.

Victorino is intriguing to the Yankees for several reasons. First, Brett Gardner has been out since early April with an elbow injury and there is no guarantee he is going to play again this year. The Yankees have gotten by with DeWayne Wise, Raul Ibanez, Andruw Jones and Jayson Nix splitting time in left field, but they need an upgrade for the long haul.

Victorino is having a down year, with just a .248 batting average and a .314 on-base percentage, both well below his career averages (.276/.342). He can fill two roles for the Yankees that usually belong to Gardner. He can run, having stolen 19 bases already this season. He can also play center field, allowing the Yankees to give the overworked Curtis Granderson a breather occasionally.

The other reason Victorino is intriguing? Nick Swisher is a free agent at the end of the season and it is widely expected that the suddenly budget-conscious Yankees will allow Swisher, making $10.25 million this season, to move on. Victorino is also a free agent, making $9.5 million this season.

Thus, perhaps the Yankees could look at Victorino as a rental to fill in for Gardner. Perhaps they could look at him as a Gardner fill-in and a long-term replacement for Swisher, if they believe his price tag would be somewhat cheaper than Swisher's.

Victorino to the Yankees via trade seems unlikely right now. It is, however, worthy of thinking about.

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Yankees Rumors: Nick Swisher In Final Year With Yankees?

The New York Yankees have been steadfast in saying that they will be lowering their payroll from its current $197.9 million to less than $189 by 2014 to get below the luxury tax threshold. Joel Sherman of the New York Post is reporting that the first casualty of that effort to reduce payroll is likely to be outfielder Nick Swisher. [via MLBTradeRumors]

Swisher can be a free agent after this season and Sherman wrote that there is "pretty much zero possibility" the Yankees will re-sign him if they really want to get below the threshold. Swisher currently makes $10.25 million.

Sherman also reported that general manager Brian Cashman said that the Yankees do not currently have an outfielder in their minor-league system ready to step in next season. Mason Williams, their best outfield prospect, turns 21 in August. He is playing at Single A Charleston. Slade Heathcott, drafted in the first round in 2009 (29th overall) is at Tampa (A+) in the Florida State League and is hitting only .250.

There has been some speculation that the Yankees might move defensive-challenged infielder Eduardo Nunez to the outfield. The Yankees sent Nunez down to AAA earlier this season because of his defense. That, however, does not appear to be in the plan.

Swisher has been a productive player for the Yankees, hitting at least 23 home runs and driving in more than 80 runs three consecutive seasons since being acquired from the Chicago White Sox. He is also a fan favorite. In the economic reality of the new Yankees regime, however, those things appear unlikely to be enough to keep Swisher in pinstripes.

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Chad Qualls Traded To Yankees: New York Acquires Veteran Reliever From Phillies

The New York Yankees made a move Sunday to improve their pitching depth, as they acquired veteran reliever Chad Qualls from the Philadelphia Phillies for either cash or a player to be named later. The news was first reported by New York Post writer Mark Hale.

Qualls, 33, is a former closer for the Arizona Diamondbacks and served as a setup man for Phillies' closer Jonathan Papelbon. The nine-year veteran spent last season with the San Diego Padres where he finished the season with a 3.35 ERA and a 6-8 record.

There's speculation that Qualls will replace Cory Wade in the Yankees bullpen, which has needed to carry a heavy load as New York's starting rotation has been beaten up by the injury bug.


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2012 - Chad Qualls 1-1 34 0 0 0 0 5 31.1 39 18 16 7 9 19 4.60 1.53

-- For more on the Yankees, visit the SB Nation blog Pinstripe Alley.

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Wandy Rodriguez Trade Rumors: New York Yankees Among Interested Teams?

It seems like every year at the MLB Trade Deadline discussion of the Houston Astros trading left-handed starting pitcher Wandy Rodriguez surfaces. And every year one of the interest parties is said to be the New York Yankees.

Well, let the merry-go-round of rumors begin again. The Astros are reportedly willing to listen to offers for the 33-year-old Rodriguez, and the Yankees are said to be among the teams scouting Rodriguez' starts.

Rodriguez is 6-5 with a 3.29 ERA for the Astros this season and 79-80 with a 4.01 ERA for his career. His WHIP of 1.265 is his best since 2009. Rodriguez has spent his entire eight-year career with the Astros, who are 28-40, 10.5 games out of first place in the NL Central Division.

The Yankees starting rotation has been performing well for the past month, but had struggled prior to that. Starting pitching does not seem to be an overwhelming need currently. Injuries, of course, could change that.

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