The Cleveland Indians have designated third baseman Mark Reynolds for assignment. The Indians will now have 10 days to trade or release Reynolds who has been struggling since getting off to a hot start in April. The New York Yankees have Alex Rodriguez back but the PED cloud is looming over his head and the Yankees could be looking for a third baseman once again.
Reynolds looked like he had found his niche this April when he hit .301 and eight homers. However, he has managed just .187 with seven home runs, including six in May, since then and hit just .098 in the month of July. The Yankees looked at Reynolds briefly this past off-season before Reynolds signed with the Indians for one year for $6 million. The Yankees then spent $12 million on Kevin Youkilis on a one-year deal but Youkilis has had back issues almost all season long and recently had surgery to repair a herniated disc.
The Yankees have used what seems like an entire roster of third basemen this season and have even used Vernon Wells there for a moment. Others who have played at least one game at third include Youkilis, Jayson Nix, Chris Nelson, David Adams, Luis Cruz, Eduardo Nunez, Alberto Gonzalez and Brent Lillibridge. Reynolds, despite his struggles, is an upgrade over almost every single one of the aforementioned players.
As bad as the Yankees have been this season they are not out of the playoffs right now. However, they face a huge uphill climb if they want to get there, a journey that will get harder when Rodriguez starts serving his suspension.
Rodriguez’s suspension looms over the Yankees for next season as well. Even if the Yankees don’t make the playoffs adding Reynolds through signing or trade from the Indians makes sense. It makes sense because the Yankees would be able to see what Reynolds can do up close and personal and see if he might be able to contribute to the team next season. Given that the Yankees have tried everyone else available at third it only makes sense to see if Reynolds has anything left.
It isn’t like Reynolds is far removed from a typical season for him. He did hit .221 with 23 homers for the Baltimore Orioles in 135 games last season and hit .221 with 37 home runs in 155 games in 2011. Yes, he strikes out a ton but he at least offers something none of the other third basemen the Yankees have run out to the hot corner have and that is power. Power has been lacking all over the Yankee roster and Reynolds still has some in his bat.
The Yankees could see some competition for Reynolds who could see some interest from the Orioles. However, he should be relatively cheap and at the rate the Yankees are going this season what could it hurt? The answer is nothing and they should pursue the 30-year-old third baseman.