Although on paper it might seem like the New York Yankees are set for outfielders, physically they are not. They are in need of an outfielder who is young, can hit well, and play defense well also. The Yankees currently have veterans Alfonso Soriano, Vernon Wells, Brett Gardner, and Ichiro Suzuki in the outfield. They are all great but have a few problems as well. With the addition of Shin-Soo Choo, the Yankees outfield can get much younger and better.
There are many problems with the current outfield. Although the Yankees just acquired Soriano this past summer, he isn’t getting any younger. Coming back to the Bronx was the best thing for his career at this point as he was struggling with the Chicago Cubs beforehand. He didn’t have the best season either, ending with a .255 batting average but having 34 home runs. At 37 years old the Yankees should start wondering how much longer he can go.
Vernon Wells was acquired to help out the outfield who were plagued by injuries. At first he made a huge impact, but it didn’t last long. He ended the season with a .233 batting average. He went from starter to backup, and from the looks of it he won’t go back. He is 34 years old currently, which isn’t that old, but his play looks like a 40 year old. If he wants to stay in the game of baseball and with the Yankees he will really need to step up his play.
Ichiro Suzuki, the hit machine, had just a decent season. Although he hit for a .262 average, he only ended up with 136 hits. He used to be able to have 200 hits each season and many people thought he would do so until he retired, but this season was too much for him to handle. Suzuki is now 40 years old and really doesn’t have many seasons to go. I think he will have at most two more seasons until he retires.
Brett Gardner had the best season out of the veterans in the group. He was a dynamic defensive threat and hit for a .273 batting average. He is only 30 years old and has plenty more years to play. The Yankees will keep him for a long time, maybe even the rest of his career. He well deserves it and is only going to get better.
This offseason includes many All-Stars who are free agents. One of these is Cincinnati Reds outfielder Shin-Soo Choo. At 31 years old he helped the Reds by hitting .285 with 21 home runs. He was crucial to their defense located on the clean-cut grass outside of the diamond. He is young, quick, and will only get better within the next couple of seasons. The Yankees should take a look at him and see why he would be a great addition to the storied franchise.