Oh wait, they do! Brett Gardner.
Gardner has pretty much been an afterthought since coming off the DL. He’s a very good player when healthy, but the Yankees have decided against using him since he sat out the entire season and Ichiro Suzuki was playing so well. But he’s been healthy and at a certain point you have to wonder when it’s better to go with the rusty Gardner than the struggling Granderson or Swisher.
At least that’s what Yankees GM Brian Cashman is considering.
“He still might play a role in this thing,” Cashman said on ESPN New York 98.7 FM’s “The Michael Kay Show. “You could very well see Gardner in this big outfield that Detroit has. The way our offense is, it is a possibility. He deserves consideration considering what is going on right now.”
“Does it mean we will make a change? It doesn’t mean we will make a change,” Cashman said. “Gardy is a tremendous, talented player, who can get on base, wreak havoc and play great defense. We’ll see.”
The problem is which player gets benched in favor of Gardner? Swisher has struggled in the playoffs not just this year, but every year. While Granderson has historically always done well in October, but is struggling this year. On top of that, he finished the season hitting .212 with a .758 OPS over the last 75 games. Realistically it seems like both suck right now and Joe Girardi can’t go wrong benching either one of them.
It is possible that the Yankees could go with a Gardner-Ichiro Suzuki-Raul Ibanez alignment, but that would mean starting Ibanez in the outfield. It would also mean that both Alex Rodriguez and Eric Chavez would have to start which eliminates the possibility of pinch hitting for A-Rod late in the game. That’s a bit of a tougher call.
So what do you think? What should the Yankees lineup look like on Tuesday against Verlander?