Word surfaced New York Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira would okay a trade out of New York, if the Yankees so desired to move him.
The Los Angeles Angels appear to be at least one of the teams he would prefer, and he enjoyed his time during a brief stay there after a trade in 2008 — he hit .358 with 13 home runs, 43 RBIs. I don’t know how likely a trade could come about this offseason, especially when the Angels already have a logjam with Albert Pujols at first base, as well as the DH slot.
Regardless, if the Yankees can find a suitor for him and the return makes sense, how could they not at least seriously consider it? Greg Bird looks to be the obvious future at first, taking over for Tex last season once he went down with the leg fracture. If Teixeira comes back to New York for 2016, what do you do with Bird?
Teixeira is entering the final year of his eight-year contract, and will be gone following the 2016 season if not before it. For a team seemingly on the cusp of being very good, though with question marks to address namely in the rotation, it might be worth moving him as opposed to letting him walk away as a free agent. He is set to make $22.5 million in 2016, and a trade would free up a significant chunk of salary.
The season of 2015 was his best in some time, as Tex was enjoying a comeback year hitting .255 with 31 home runs and 79 driven in. He was limited to 111 games before the freak injury sidelined him the rest of the year. In 2014 he only played 123 games batting .216, slugging 22 HR and 62 RBIs.
Bird made his MLB debut Aug. 13, and through 46 regular season games he hit .261, 11 HR, 31 RBIs. An impressive small sample-size from a player who split time between Double-A Trenton and Triple A-Scranton in 2015. He slugged 12 home runs between the two in the minors, with 52 RBIs.
There was talk he might be sent down to Scranton for 2016 upon Teixeira’s return. Mark is still an impactful bat and one of the best gloves in the game, however a trade might appear in the interest of both parties. Assuming the Yankees can find a suitor who can offer a worthy return.
Being the last year of Tex’s deal, and the resurgence of Bird amid a team in a bit of a transition, it just makes sense to pursue it.