2008 was an interesting year for the Yankees.
It was Joe Girardi's first year as manager, replacing Joe Torre.
It was the final year in the old Yankee Stadium.
They spent the majority of the season in third place.
Trying to get a jolt and compete with the Red Sox and surprise Tampa Bay Rays, the Yankees made a few moves.
On July 26, the Yankees got Xavier Nady and Damaso Marte from the Pittsburgh Pirates for Jeff Karstens, Ross Ohlendorf, Jose Tabata and Daniel McCutchen.
Marte was 1-3 with a 5.40 ERA in 25 appearances. Not his best stuff. His best stuff was the following year in the World Series when he was striking out Chase Utley and Ryan Howard in crucial spots.
Nady normally played right field, but with Bobby Abreu on the team, Nady mostly played in left.
Before being traded, Nady was hitting .330 with 13 home runs and 57 RBI.
With the Yankees, Nady hit .268 with 12 home runs and 40 RBI, ending his season with 25 home runs and 97 RBI and a .305 average, a solid season.
Because the Yankees had Nady signed for 2009, the Yankees let Bobby Abreu walk. Seven games into the season, Nady injured his shoulder and was out for the season.
Jorge Posada suffered a shoulder injury which required season-ending surgery, so the Yankees needed a catcher.
So on July 30, the Yankees sent erratic reliever Kyle Farnsworth to the Detroit Tigers in exchange for All-Star catcher Ivan Rodriguez.
Pudge had been known as one of the best overall catchers in the game, being a 13-time gold glove winner and a former A.L. MVP.
But at age 36, his best years were behind him. He was an absolute bust for the Yankees.
On offense, he hit .219 with two home runs and three RBI in 33 games. Yuck.
On defense, Andy Pettitte and Mike Mussina didn't want to pitch to him because he was considered stubborn and a pain in the butt to deal with and preferred Jose Molina behind the plate because Molina was easier to work with behind the plate. Pudge wasn't brought back after 2008 and rightfully so.
Overall: the Yankees won 89 games, but for the first time since 1994, they missed the playoffs, while the Red Sox and Rays competed against each other in the ALCS. The Yankees never tried to trade for a starter because they thought transitioning Joba Chamberlain from reliever to starter was the answer until early August when he was put on the DL with a shoulder injury.