New York Yankees: Bombers Add Dan Johnson as Infield Depth for 2013

Doug Rush@Doug_RushSenior Analyst IJanuary 25, 2013

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 3: Dan Johnson #29 of the Chicago White Sox hits his second two run home run of the game during the fifth inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on October 3, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jason Miller/Getty Images

One of the losses the Yankees had to deal with was the departure of Eric Chavez.

After spending two years with the team, Chavez signed a one-year deal with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Chavez was brought on to be the backup third basemen to spell Alex Rodriguez for defense, but also played some time at first base when Mark Teixeira dealt with injuries.

On Thursday, the Yankees took a potential step in finding Chavez's replacement by adding long-time utility infielder Dan Johnson, according to Sweeny Murti of WFAN.

Yankees sign 1B/3B/DH Dan Johnson to a minor league deal, invite to spring training. You remember his game-tying HR for TB in Gm 162, 2011.

— Sweeny Murti (@YankeesWFAN) January 24, 2013

Johnson's deal is a minor-league one with an invitation to spring training.

In 2012, Johnson was primarily with the Chicago White Sox, but was only in the majors for 14 games, while hitting .364 with three home runs and six RBI.

Johnson spent most of his time in 2012 at Class-AAA, and hit 28 home runs for their minor league team.

Some Yankee fans will remember Johnson when he was with the Tampa Bay Rays back in 2011, as he hit a home run in the regular-season finale against the Bombers in the game that got the Rays the wild-card spot and ended the Boston Red Sox season.

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Johnson's best season was back in 2007 with the Oakland A's, where he hit .236 with 18 home runs and 62 RBI while playing in 117 games.

Johnson can play first base, third base and be a designated hitter. With the Yankees not having a permanent DH with Raul Ibanez's departure, Johnson could potentially try to win that spot as well during the spring.

It's a nice, under-the-radar type signing for the Yankees, similar to when they landed Eric Chavez two years ago as a free agent and he worked out well for the team.

Johnson now has a chance to win a spot and earn some playing time for himself in 2013.

Another signing that fans won't go crazy over, but I could see it working out well for the Bombers this season.

Stay tuned, Yankees Universe.


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