Thursday, May 2, 2013

Yanks Acquire IF Chris Nelson From Colorado

(Courtesy of Getty Images)

This story came out yesterday, but in case you missed it and AB4AR is your number one source of Yankee news, here's the deal.  The Yankees acquired utility infielder Chris Nelson from the Colorado Rockies in exchange for either cash or a PTBNL yesterday.  Nelson, 28, is a former top prospect who had been on the Yankees' radar before.  The present situation in the infield made another righty utility guy a necessity, and that's what Nelson will be brought in to be for at least the next couple weeks.

Mike Eder of IIATMS/TYA broke down Nelson's game in great detail on Monday, but the long and short of it is Nelson is an OK hitter at best (.279/.322/.416 career slash in 664 PA) and a below-average fielder at best.  As is the standard with most former Rockies, Nelson has a pretty big home/road split and defensive metrics have never rated him positively as a shortstop, second, or third baseman.  It is that positional versatility and right-handedness that made this trade happen more than anything Nelson has actually done.  With Youkilis on the DL and Nix and Nunez not doing much, the Yankees are painfully thin on the infield right now and even thinner at right-handed bench bats.  They called up Corban Joseph initially to replace Youkilis, but his lack of skill at third forced the Yanks to look elsewhere.

As far as roster moves go, Francisco Cervelli was put on the 60-day DL to open up a 40-man roster spot, and it would make sense for CoJo to get sent back down to SWB so he can continue to play every day and get ABs.  It's not a flashy move, or one that will return too many dividends.  It's simply the Yanks putting a bandage on their infield wound for the time being.

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