Joel Sherman threw another name into the free agent hat yesterday when he reported that the Yankees had "expressed interest" in utility man Jeff Baker. They've been linked to him before but never made any serious moves and he actually makes a ton of sense for them right now. They're also still linked to Mark Reynolds but it's highly unlikely they have room for both on next year's roster. So who would you rather have?
Reynolds Career Averages: .233/.329/.464, .344 wOBA, 28.86 HR*
Baker Career Averages: .267/.321/.440, .330 wOBA, 5.33 HR*
Reynolds Career vs. LHP: .238/.359/.475, .361 wOBA
Baker Career vs. LHP: .298/.353/.522, .375 wOBA
Reynolds Career BB/K Rates: 11.6% BB/32.3% K
Baker Career BB/K Rates: 7.1% BB/24.0% K
Reynolds Defensively: Well below-average at the infield corners; hasn't played the outfield since '07
Baker Defensively: Below-average at the infield corners, well below-average at second, below-average in the outfield but capable of playing it.
Closer than you thought, right? Reynolds provides the power and patience that fits well with the Yankee offensive model, but he's a big time hacker and a butcher in the field. Baker is a more balanced hitter with tremendous power potential against lefties and he can play more positions, although none of them particularly well. Take your pick, Cash. Just don't lose out on both of them.
*- Baker has never played more than 104 games in a season. Reynolds has never played less than 111.
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