Thursday, August 8, 2013

It Is Time To Sell: Brett Gardner

Writing this article really hurts me as a fan of not only the Yankees but of Brett Gardner as well. Gardner has never gotten the respect he deserved since breaking in with the Yankees from having to split time with Melky Cabrera to getting booted out of center field for a lesser defender in Curtis Granderson. Now for him to be included in any kind of trade rumor at his age, salary, and performance is a travesty to him but it makes too much sense not to at this point. Again, much like Hiroki Kuroda's post from yesterday, I realize that this is a pipe dream and I realize that Brett Gardner probably gets claimed and does not clear waivers. It's a pipe dream but, again, so are the Yankees playoff hopes these days so bear with me.

Brett Gardner has been one of the few Yankees that has been in the lineup every day (for the most part) and healthy all season long. Gardner leads the teams in stolen bases, on base percentage, is probably our best defender in the outfield, and the catalyst at the top of the order with his gritty and grinding at bats. He is a lead off hitter and a center fielder and would be the perfect fit on almost any team looking for speed and stolen bases. Gardner is arbitration eligible for the final time next season as well so he would not exactly be a rental player either, which never hurts. What contender would be in the market for a Brett Gardner you say? I'm glad you asked...

First off I cannot see us ever trading to anyone within the division, especially for a guy of the caliber of Brett Gardner, so that is off the table automatically. The Cleveland Indians have a plethora of outfielders so they are out, the Washington Nationals got their man finally when they acquired Denard Span, the Diamondbacks were willing to move Jason Kubel which tells me they would not be in the market for Gardner, and the Cardinals once again seem content to stand pat with hat they have in the farm system. That leaves, as much as it pains me to say this, the Nelson Cruz-less Texas Rangers. An Elvis Andrus for Brett Gardner straight up trade makes a ton of sense for both teams because the Rangers get the outfielder they suddenly need while creating room for Jurickson Profar and the Yankees get their current and future short stop to replace Derek Jeter when he finally decided to hang them up.

Again this is probably a dream and extremely unrealistic but these are just for fun anyway so might as well go all out, no? How good would Andrus look in the pinstripes manning short stop on Opening Day in 2014 or 2015?

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