Brian Roberts Does Not Solve Problem at Second Base for New York Yankees

By Thomas Butto
Brian Roberts
Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees signed Brian Roberts on Tuesday to a one-year, $2 million contract to play second base during the 2014 season. In theory, anyway, Roberts will be in the lineup as the starting second baseman for the Yankees, but it is really anyone’s guess for how long he will actually be at second base next year. It isn’t like the Yankees gave up big money to bring in Roberts, but his signing does not improve the team one bit.

If we hopped into a hot tub time machine and the Yankees went back to sign the 2009 version of Roberts this would have been a great move. However, the laws of the universe do not allow that to happen, leaving the team stuck with the 36-year-old version of Roberts who is extremely injury-prone and has no guarantee of giving the Yankees the 500 to 600 at bats they would need out of him to help the team. The Yankees had an incredible amount of injuries last year with a second baseman named Robinson Cano, you may have heard of him, who played in 160 games. If anything, Roberts is the opposite of Cano when it comes to being able to stay out on the field considering he has not been able to for the last four years.

Since that 2009 season when Roberts hit .283/.356/.451 with 56 doubles, 110 runs scored and 30 steals, he has not played in more than 77 games in a season, a mark Roberts managed to reach last year. In fact, it took him from 2010 to 2012 to play over 100 total games for the Baltimore Orioles. With the second base situation seemingly now set for the Yankees with the addition of Roberts, you can’t tell me Yankees fans, even with the small contract the team gave Roberts, would rather have him over Omar Infante. Infante got a four-year, $30 million contract from the Kansas City Royals, but he is far more durable than Roberts has been the last few years. Roberts was a more dynamic player in his prime, but those days are long gone. Second base has the potential to be a nightmare for the Yankees in 2014 and the foreseeable future.

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