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New York Yankees Roster Report 2008-12-17


New York Yankees Roster Report 2008-12-17
The Yankees finished a disappointing year in which they snapped a string of 13 straight playoff appearances. To return to the playoffs next year, they will need to walk a delicate line of continuing their youth movement while adding key veterans.

BIGGEST NEEDS: Now that they have filled two rotation spots with LHP CC Sabathia and RHP A.J. Burnett, the Yankees still need help at first base and possibly the corner-outfield spots.

ARRIVALS: LHP CC Sabathia (free agent from Brewers), RHP A.J. Burnett (free agent from Blue Jays), OF/1B Nick Swisher (trade with White Sox).

DEPARTURES: RHP Darrell Rasner (contract sold to Japanese team), INF Wilson Betemit (traded to White Sox), RHP Mike Mussina (retired).

FREE AGENTS: RF Bobby Abreu, LHP Andy Pettitte, 1B Jason Giambi, C Chad Moeller, RHP Carl Pavano, RHP Sidney Ponson, C Ivan Rodriguez.

The Yankees likely will let Giambi go as they attempt to get younger and more athletic. They would like to bring back Pettitte to help fill the rotation. Abreu will be a tough decision; the Yankees need to clear an outfield crowded with veterans.

ARBITRATION-ELIGIBLE: RHP Brian Bruney, RHP Chien-Ming Wang, CF Melky Cabrera, RF Xavier Nady.

Bruney proved himself valuable in the bullpen, Nady provided needed pop and Wang will need to play a pivotal role again. Cabrera could be the odd man out -- his status dropped dramatically this year.

IN LIMBO: CF Melky Cabrera could be trade bait, though his value would be low. RHP Ian Kennedy was someone the Yankees wouldn't part with last season, but they might be more willing to deal him this year, though his value has dropped as well.

MEDICAL WATCH:

RHP Mariano Rivera had minor arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder in October, but he is expected to be all right by spring training.

C Jorge Posada had surgery on his right shoulder on July 30, and he expects to be 100 percent by the start of spring training.

DH Hideki Matsui had surgery on his left knee in September. He is expected to be ready to go by the spring.

LHP Andy Pettitte missed his last start of the season because of a sore left shoulder, and he will have to decide whether he wants to pitch next year or retire.

RHP Chien-Ming Wang missed the last 2 1/2 months of the season because of a ligament sprain in his right foot. He had his cast removed on July 29. On Oct. 17, he threw off a mound for the first time since the injury.


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: December 17, 2008

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