The Yankees began the day yesterday by claiming right handed reliever Dan Otero off waivers from the San Francisco Giants.. Then they made the Vernon Wells trade official by sending outfielder Exicardo Cayones and lefty reliever Kramer Sneed to the Angels. They continued to add when they signed Lyle Overbay, released by the Red Sox earlier in the day, to a minor league deal.
Adams, 25, was a second base prospect who dealt with many injuries throughout his minor league career most notably an ankle injury that cost him most of two seasons. He hit at every level though and the Yankees were working with him in a transition to third base which could have been useful considering the useless state of Alex Rodriguez these days.
No word yet on what the other roster move was to make space on the 40-man roster, but it likely could have been moving Cesar Cabral to the 60-day DL.
Before the Yankees traded for Wells it looked like Brennan Boesch was going to start in left field until Curtis Granderson returned. Boesch hit .240/.286/.372 over the last two seasons. The Yankees felt like that wasn’t enough though and got Wells who hit .230/.279/.403 in his last two seasons. That slight month and a half long upgrade cost the Yankees $13 million over two seasons and a solid infield prospect.
Cayones or Sneed were no big loses. Cayones came over in the A.J. Burnett deal and is essentially a nothing prospect. Sneed was taken in the 32nd round of the 2010 draft. Being left handed was pretty much the only thing he had going for him.
Overbay, 36, will compete with Dan Johnson and Juan Rivera for a spot at first base. He has hit .259/.331/.397 over the last two seasons. He’s not much, but hopefully he can hold his own until Mark Teixeira comes back (whenever that will be).
Otero is a 28-year-old righty with just 12.1 innings of major league experience. He is a control artist though with a 7.6 K/9 and a 1.2 BB/9 in the minors which helped him to a 2.12 ERA. Not bad, but at this time it’s hard to tell what the Yankees plans for him are. There is a chance he could beat out Cody Eppley for a bullpen spot, but probably not a huge one.
Now Overbay isn’t great, but with the injuries the Yankees have had he is a necessity. Otero is intriguing at least. Giving up on Adams for Wells pisses me off. There seems to have been little point to it. He’s had injuries, but he works hard and he’s hit at every level in the minors. Why give up on the kid for such a washed up scrub?
The Yankees will try to justify it by saying that (A) they saved roughly $8 million on Teixeira’s injury in the WBC and (B) none of the $13 million paid to Wells will count towards the 2014 luxury tax hit. However, he just isn’t enough of an upgrade over what they had in house to say that is money well spent.
To make matters worse it comes during an offseason when the Yankees claimed they were poor every step of the way. Yes, the Wells deal now puts them ahead of the Dodgers in 2013 salary, but their refusal to give out long-term commitments has severely hampered the long-term viability of the team.
To top off what I considered a bad day for the Yankees organization, Russell Martin told Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports that he approached the Yankees and told them he was willing to accept a one-year deal in the $9-$10 million range. What the hell? So the Yankees let Martin walk with no plan to replace him only to eventually turn around and sign Wells for $13 million to be a month and a half long replacement?
Is this an organization running around with its head cut off or what? But at least they’ll be under the $189 million luxury tax threshold next season because we’ve all come to realize that profits are more important than winning — the Hal Steinbrenner way.
• Mark Teixeira will have his wrist examined on Monday and if it goes well he’ll have his brace removed and begin strength exercises.
• Cesar Cabral faced live batters for the first time this year when he threw batting practice yesterday. He’s on the 60-day DL so he can’t come back until June, but he could be ready slightly before then.