Yankees Trade Rumors: Scouting Lance Berkman

According to George King of the NY Post, the Yankees have scouts following the Houston Astros in hopes that they will be interested in trading their first baseman Lance Berkman.

The Astros are currently in last place in their division and Berkman is owed $14.5 million this year plus a $2 million buyout on an option. Making things interesting is that Berkman has been with the same team his entire career and he has a full no-trade clause so he would have to approve of any deal to the Yankees.

The Yankees would be interested in Berkman, 34, as a DH. After a very slow start to the season he has upped his average to .253 with a .356 OPS, .420 SLG, and .776 OPS overall. However in the last 28 games those numbers jump to .295/.393/.467/.860.

With Nick Johnson on the DL possibly for the remainder of the season the Yankees have been on the lookout for a bat, but there is no work yet that Houston is definitely interested in trading the veteran Berkman. If they did prospects would need to be sent to Texas, but considering the amount he is still owed, the Yankees will resist sending any of their bigger prospects over. Instead this might involve one upper level guy and a few lower level players a few years away from the major leagues.

The Yankees financial advantage could easily come into play when acquiring Berkman and the fact that they should contend for a World Series may help them get him to waive his NTC.

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3 Responses to Yankees Trade Rumors: Scouting Lance Berkman

  1. Matt says:

    Unless there are injuries, or Tex continues to muddle on the positive side of .200, I think the Yankees should leave the DH spot open. This gives them the room to DH Posada, A-Rod if he's banged up, and so forth. The Yankees have some aging players that can use days off, and what would happen if Johnson comes back (notice I said "if" and not "when")? That would be a slow, limited bench with Johnson and Thames.

    That said it would be fun to see if he could hit at the Stadium.

  2. Jeffrey says:

    Stay away! They could have had Damon at a fraction of the cost. With that salary and his mediocre results so far in the weaker NL I just don't see it unless Houston was willing to eat most of his salary.

    • Lance Berkman was actually injured early in the year. He seems mostly healthy now. Over his last 29 games he has a .296 AVG, .402 OBP, .463 SLG, .865 OPS.

      Also, if you haven't noticed both Johnny Damon and Brett Gardner play left field and Gardner is having a better season than Damon.