New York Yankees Claim Russ Canzler
Canzler, 26, is a right-handed hitting outfielder and first baseman who has only played in 29 big-league games over the course of two years. The majority of those 29 games came in 2012 with the Indians, where he posted a .299 batting average with three home runs and 11 RBI over 26 games. Despite such a short amount of time spent playing at the major league level, those numbers prove to be somewhat promising.
Canzler will look to fill the role that Andruw Jones played in the 2011 and 2012 seasons for the Yankees, hoping to make the team as the fourth outfielder right out of Spring Training. As of now, he will most likely have to compete with the likes of recent signee Matt Diaz, as well as the homegrown Zoilo Almonte. One has to wonder if Canzler’s ability to play first base will help him get a leg up on the competition.
In order to make room for Canzler on the 40-man roster, the Yankees designated Chris Dickerson for assignment. This is not very surprising considering Dickerson is 30-years-old and hits left-handed. While a fan favorite, Dickerson would not be what the Yankees are looking for at the current moment.
Will this end the Yankees search for a right-handed hitting utility outfielder? Probably not. It is more than likely that the Yankees go out and find another player or two to add to the Spring Training competition that awaits us when Grapefruit League action gets underway.