Friday, January 4, 2013
The Yankees added an option for their bench Friday, claiming utility man Russ Canzler off waivers from the Indians.
The 26-year-old appeared in 26 games for the Indians as a September callup last year, batting .269 (25-for-93) with three home runs and 11 RBIs.
A right-handed hitter, Canzler could give Yankees manager Joe Girardi some flexibility as a backup first baseman who can also play left field and serve as a designated hitter.
Last season, he made 24 starts—11 in the outfield, seven at first base and six as a DH—and hit safely in 15 of those games.
In order to make room on the 40-man roster, the Yankees designated outfielder Chris Dickerson for assignment.
It is a shame to lose Dickerson, who had some real talent (and did actually quite well in limited duty for the Yanks last season), but the Yankees really needed to add a right handed bat. While it is unlikely, hopefully Dickerson somehow makes it through waivers and accepts a demotion to the minors. Well, hopefully for the Yankees,of course, as obviously for Dickerson’s sake he’s better off getting picked up by a team that will play him, so the odds are extremely limited that he actually sticks with the Yankees (as j correctly notes in the comments, even if he clears waivers he can refuse an assignment to the minors).
One of the best aspects of this pick-up is that Canzler still has an option left, so the Yankees can send him to the minors if they end up picking up another right hand bat. The Yankees appear interested in trying to see if Canzler can play third. If he could play third, he’d almost definitely make the Opening Day roster and this would be a really good pick-up.
It is kind of amusing to see the Indians getting Swisher on a big deal while the Yankees get the Indians’ cast-off. Reversal of fortune!
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