Posted By Jeff Fletcher on January 15, 2009 3:05 pm
Apparently Fred Lewis said on KNBR this morning that he was told even if the Giants got another left fielder (Manny), that he’d move to right. That’s got my friends over at McCovey Chronicles wondering about trading Aaron Rowand or Randy Winn to the Yankees for Nick Swisher.
That’s a nice thought, but there are a few reasons why I don’t think that works very well.
1. If the Giants get Manny, it means they are going full-bore short term. I don’t think you do that and then get rid of another one of your established players. Like them or not, Aaron Rowand and Randy Winn are both solid major leaguers who are likely to outperform Fred Lewis in 2009.
2. The Yankees would like to upgrade in center field, but they already have Swisher to play center, if all else fails. No, he’s not as good as Rowand or Winn. But he’s adequate defensively, and he’s likely to be more productive offensively than either one of Giants vets, so why would the Yankees prefer Rowand at $8 million (plus $36 million to come) or Winn at $8.25 million over Swisher at $5.3 million?
3. If the Giants get rid of Rowand, they don’t have a center fielder for 2010. Unless they want to put Swisher out there, but then that leaves them with the same problem of production at the corner infield spots.
4. Rowand wasn’t as good defensively in San Francisco as he was in Philadelphia, but he’s still better than Winn or Lewis in center. If Manny is going to be plodding around in left, you need to be as strong as you can in the other two spots.
5. Finally, and this is an admittedly difficult thing to quantify, but if I’m introducing Manny into my clubhouse, I want to keep Rowand there too, as a balance. If there’s anyone who would get in Manny’s face for dogging it, it’s Rowand.
Of course, all this makes for nothing more than good January debate, since I doubt the Giants are getting Manny anyway.