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, all the time

I'll have to respectfully disagree, and I was pissed when I saw how little the Yanks got him for while the Phils sat on their hands.

Swisher's crappy year last year was almost entirely fueled by his batting average on balls in play -- a measly .251, which is a statistical fluke. He'll hit far higher than .219 next year, and don't forget that he's a switch hitter too.

I understand your frustration at probably not going after Teixeira, and I do agree that Swisher is somewhat wasted at 1B; he can play a pretty decent RF, so he provides far more value there. But his versatility lets Cashman move him around -- either this year or in future years -- and he's a bargain at 3 years, $21 million, especially for a team with the Yankees payroll. And believe me: there's no way he's a poorer defender than Giambi at 1B.

Looking at his career numbers, I think the .301 BABIP in 2007 was more of a fluke than .250 last year. He'll probably be between .260 and .270, which moves his average up to what, .230-.240? His OBP up to .340-.350?

He is a switch hitter, and his splits are evenly putrid (.745 OPS vs. righties, .740 OPS vs. lefties). You're right, his defense can't possibly be worse than Giambi's.

Here's my main problem, though. Swisher doesn't upgrade this team. He's a step down from what they had last year. Yes, he's cheap. I suppose it's possible that he could revert back to the levels of his one fluke year of productivity, but I highly doubt it. I want this team to make moves that make the team better in some way.

If you can't get Teixeira, fine. Then get a solid defender. Or a guy who can really hit. One or the other. Instead they got a guy who can't hit and can't field. There's a reason the A's moved him a year after signing him to that contract and there's also a reason the ChiSox moved a year after trading their best pitching prospect for him. He's not very good.

This move is going to be the end of the search for a first baseman and that's a very bad thing for Yankee fans. If I'm wrong, and they do go out and get Teixeira, or another real first baseman, then we have Swisher in the outfield which would make the Yanks officially the worst defensive outfield in the league. Any way you slice it, I'm not a fan of this move.

I guess my argument is this: no, Swisher isn't a measurably better hitter than anyone he'd be replacing, but he's not nearly as mediocre as the perception of him is. And he's had more than one year of productivity; before last year, he put up the following seasons...

Swisher's 2006: 125 OPS+
Swisher's 2007: 127 OPS+

To put that in perspective, here are the recent seasons for the hitters he'd (potentially) be replacing...

Abreu's 2007: 114 OPS+
Abreu's 2008: 120 OPS+

Matsui's 2007: 123 OPS+
Matsui's 2008: 108 OPS+

Giambi's 2007: 108 OPS+
Giambi's 2008: 128 OPS+

Furthermore, while those players are declining, Swisher's entering his prime. And while I can't personally attest to his defense, all the reports point to him being a damn sight better at any position than any of the above.

Here's the bottom line... if you think Swisher's 2008 was a fluke -- and I do -- then the $21 million you pay for his 2006/07 production is a bargain (I mean, Abreu allegedly wants $45 million over 3 years). It's not a glamorous move, but it saves money for the Yanks to use it where they really need it: the rotation.

Hey, at least Geoff Jenkins isn't penciled in as your starting LF, right?

Swisher has 4 seasons w/ 500+ at bats, 2 of them were average for a first baseman, not great, 2 were piss poor for a first baseman. Cashman said earlier today that Swisher was acquired to play first base, not the outfield, so let's see how his OPS numbers measure up at the position over those four seasons.

2005: .768 OPS, 20th among 1B in majors.
2006: .864 OPS, 13th among 1B in majors.
2007: .836 OPS, 14th among 1B in majors.
2008: .743 OPS, 20th among 1B in majors.

Take a look at those numbers, in his best seasons, he was a middle of the pack first baseman offensively. Last year, only Kevin Millar and Daric Barton were worse than him at the position.

Swisher is undoubtedly a downgrade at first from Giambi, offensively, unless he not only bounces back from his 2008 campaign, but surpasses even his best year.

Basically, the Yanks made a trade that will give them below-average offensive production at first base, which they cannot afford, and they'll also have a below average glove at first. I'm glad he's a good clubhouse guy and all, but honestly I don't care about that as much as production from a corner infield spot.

Do you think they'll have Swisher play RF in place of Abreu? That doesn't rule out a run for Texiera then.

I guess they could, but then they don't have a spot for Nady. If they went out and got Teixeira too, that would probably mean Damon or Swisher will be in center. Like I said in the comment above, that would make for the worst defensive outfield in baseball.

Swisher is coming off a terrible year, but at the same time, would you want to play for Ozzie? He flat out said that he didn't think Swisher was good.

The potential for a 27 year old to turn a bad year around is huge. He's supposedly a great clubhouse guy, which to be honest, is what the yanks need. I would take 3 years of Swisher and his potential, over 9 years and $200mil of Tex and a possible "I got my money, let me dog it" attitude that always seems to come with players the Yankees sign.

The Phillies need to bring back Pat the Bat.

I can't help wondering what Ozzie plans to do with Betemit.
And what I want is "the Flyin' Hawaiian", Cash, not any random boy who happens to be Hawaiian.

nick blasioli on Nov 13 at 22:02

boy this trade let the air out of my baloon...i really was excited about the upcoming fa signings..but swisher at first base makes me sick..i guess i thought tex was going to be there.....they better go out and get manny and cc and aj if we are going to contend next year...i just dont get the idea behind such a stupid trade....

The one thing I remember about Nick Swisher is that his bat snapped at the handle when Wang struck out in U.S. Cellular Field this season.
That's about the weirdest thing I've ever seen.


I liked him in Oakland, but I think because of his grit and the way that he embraced being one of the guys. He will be a great locker room presence at least for this team.

Otherwise, have fun with the frustrating end of the game strikeouts!!!

At least he can whiff from both sides of the plate. That's awesome.

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