Big Donkey, revisited

So the Yankees didn’t offer Bobby Abreu arbitration.  The more you start to read you can see why.  Buster Olney says Abreu might not get more than $8 million a year for 2 – 3 years.  So of course Abreu would consider taking arbitration and a $17 million, 1 year deal.  The Yankees have correctly assessed the market, it would seem.

So silver lining here, as noted by noMaas.org and RAB, is that Adam Dunn was also not offered arbitration due to similar concerns. 

As I’ve written about before, I think Dunn is a good fit for the Yankees.  He’s younger than Abreu and has more power.  He’s an equally bad outfielder (with a worse arm) but is a little more flexible in that he can play first base in a pinch, although he doesn’t do that particularly well either.  Let’s look at his numbers from the past 2 years:

.264/.386/.554
.236/.386/.513

And Abreu:

.283/.369/.445
.296/.371/.471

Dunn clearly doesn’t put the ball in play as much as Abreu, but he more than makes up for that by drawing more walks (which is saying something – Abreu is very patient) and hitting for considerably more power.  Dunn will never have Abreu’s number of steals, but Bobby was caught stealing in a third of his attempts last year and that part of his game is unquestionably declining.

Sure, playing Dunn everyday could require moving Damon to center or displacing one of their current “set in stone” starters, but it is good to have depth.  What if Nady turns out to be a bust in right?  What if Damon or Matsui get hurt?  It’s naive to think the Yankees will get through the entire year without incident and I’m sure Dunn would get his 550+ ABs.

Even if it’s not Dunn, I am confident that the Yankees will add one more bat this offseason.  But I think Dunn is a likely bet, because it’s obvious Cashman and the Yanks understand how the market is going and therefore it makes no sense to throw $150 million at Teixiera when Dunn could be had for perhaps less than 30.

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