If the Yankees do indeed make a trade for an outfielder this season one strong possibility is the Phillies center fielder Shane Victorino, who is in the final year of his contract, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.
Heyman said that the Yankees are concerned about Brett Gardner, who is currently rehabbing but has already suffered two setbacks. So they have been keeping tabs on both Victorino and Justin Upton, but that a deal for Upton is much more unlikely because of the Diamondback’s high asking price.
Victorino fits the description of the type of player the Yankees are looking for in an outfielder – somebody with some speed and who plays strong defense. Victorino is also in the final year of a three-year, $22 million deal and will likely not fetch the Phillies a compensation pick this offseason so he shouldn’t cost too much.
A deal is possible, but probably shouldn’t be expected. Victorino can play left field for the Yankees in place of Gardner, but if he does come back it will be hard for the Yankees to find playing time for everyone. Nick Swisher and Curtis Granderson could share the DH, but then Raul Ibanez and Andruw Jones become bench players. If the Phillies become motivated dealers though maybe Brian Cashman will swoop in and make a ninja-type deal.
Victorino, 31, is a career .276/.341/.433 hitter who plays a strong center field and can swipe some bags. He is hitting .245/.311/.379 in 89 games so far this season.