Utility infielders proved to play an important role for the Bombers in 2012, and with their aging roster not getting any younger, it's apparent the same will happen in 2013. As both Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter get older, it will be necessary to play the two stars at designated hitter more.
Eric Chavez proved to be more than a servicable backup for he Yankees last season. The Yanks' backup third baseman hit 16 homers and 37 RBI with a .287 average. More importantly, Chavez sported a .362 average during the month of August, and that stint just so happened to be during the biggest chunk of A-Rod's absence.
However, Chavez is a free agent this offseason, and there is a possibility that the 34-year-old takes his talents someplace else. If that were to happen, the Bombers would be left with Eduardo Nunez and Jayson Nix as backup infielders.
According to Jack Moore and Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com, the Bombers might not think that's enough to get by with, as the team has shown interest in Stephen Drew and Jeff Keppinger. Both are solid choices to get the job done, but the Yanks might be able to look in-house to find the solution.
Nunez is certainly the best candidate to be a primary bench player for the Yanks. The 25-year-old has proven to be a talented hitter with surprising pop in his bat and speed to be a menace on the bases. If you want to talk about upside, Nunez has it.
Fielding has been, and will continue to be, a concern for Nunez, but if he can get it together, New York would have a huge asset on its bench.
Nix isn't the flashy name that some might be thinking of, but he is a solid fielder who can move to third base and hold his own at the plate.
To add more depth, the Bombers can't go wrong bringing Chavez back for another season. He can provide a left-handed bat off the bench with the ability to carry the team should a key hitter go down to injury.
If anything, the Bombers would be better off with Drew to give manager Joe Girardi more flexibility with his lineup. We all know how much Girardi loves his options, but neither Drew nor Keppinger are absolutely needed to meet the demand.