Originally written on Sliding Into Home  |  Last updated 7/21/12
Mlb_may_17_6a4b

From Kevin Kernan:
The easy route would be to do nothing and hope the old guys, Raul Ibanez and Andruw Jones, continue to produce loud hits for the Yankees.

The Yankees, though, need to make a deal for an outfielder. Send a limo down the New Jersey Turnpike to pick up speedy Shane Victorino from the Phillies.
Victorino would put the Yankees that much closer to victory. The Athletics beat them for the second straight night, 3-2 at O.co Coliseum.

Rent Victorino for the rest of the season. The Yankees have done a fantastic job overcoming all their injuries to forge the best record in baseball, but sooner or later, all those injuries will catch up to them. Speed is a most valuable component the Yankees lost when they lost Brett Gardner to an elbow injury.

To make matters worse, Nick Swisher had to leave Friday night’s game with a strained left hip flexor in the seventh inning.

...

The Yankees need Victorino’s speed. A change of scenery is needed by Victorino, who is a free agent after the season. The Phillies need bullpen help, so surely Yankees general manager Brian Cashman can come up with a deal that is reasonable for both sides. The Phillies are dead in the water, the Yankees are riding the wave, but they need more to get where they need to be to try to win World Series No. 28.

Victorino is brash enough to be a short-term success. A move north would re-energize the Flyin’ Hawaiian, who would be a perfect fit in manager Joe Girardi’s offense. Girardi loves to put pressure on opposing defenses, but he does not have that speed component with Gardner out and undergoing elbow surgery next week.

...

The price for a Victorino rental would be much less than trying to acquire the Diamondbacks’ Justin Upton. It would be difficult for the Yankees to put together such a package for Upton. Arizona general manager Kevin Towers knows the Yankees system well because he worked for them in 2010.

The answer to the Yankees’ lack of speed and outfield shortfall is close at hand, just a short drive down the Turnpike, in Shane Victorino.
Victorino is making $9.5 million this year and is also having one of, if not his worst season at the plate, hitting just .254/.317/.392 with 8 HR, 38 RBI, and 21 stolen bases.

The money shouldn't be an issue, and his poor season could just be a biproduct of being on an underachieving train-wreck of a team. Kernan could be right and a change of scenery may be all the 31-year-old needs.

The bottom line is that Victorino would be a nice fit with this team, especially with Gardner gone for the year. Beyond that, there isn't much to consider for a rental. I don't know what you guys think, but to me, this is an easy one for the Yanks. If Victorino is available and wouldn't cost too much, you've got to make the move.
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