MLB Rumors: Yankees Wise to Keep Infectious Nick Swisher

Michael DixonAnalyst IIIDecember 23, 2011

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 06:  Nick Swisher #33 of the New York Yankees steps up to the plate to bat against the Detroit Tigers during Game Five of the American League Championship Series at Yankee Stadium on October 6, 2011 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

While the Indians are certainly in need of acquiring a bat, the Yankees are making the right decision by not making Nick Swisher available to them.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports is reporting that the Indians have talked to the Yankees about Swisher. According to Rosenthal, the Indians saw him as a reasonable alternative to Carlos Beltran, assuming he didn't sign with them.

The Indians didn't sign Beltran, but that can't influence the Yankees' decision. New York is the biggest of the big-market teams and they are competing for a World Series title every year. For them, the decision to keep Swisher or not comes down to one thing.

Can they get a better overall player than him?

The answer to that is a definitive "no." Swisher is far and away better than any outfielder on the free agent market. With the exception of Prince Fielder, he's a better hitter than anyone on the free agent market. Moving him would make no sense. 

In addition to all of that, Swisher is a good guy. He's popular with fans and players alike, and has been everywhere he's gone.

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But this boils down to one thing: numbers. Look at what he's done in his three years in pinstripes.

Season HR's RBI AVG.
2009 29 82 .249
2010 29 89 .288
2011 23 85 .260

In addition to that, Swisher also plays good defense. At this point, the Yankees can do no better than Swisher in right field. Logically, the Indians know that the options don't exist on the free agent market. 

According to Rosenthal, "Club (Indians) officials say they are pursuing every hitter on the market who is not named Prince Fielder."

Any free agent that the Indians could pursue could also be pursued by the Yankees. If the Yankees felt that they could improve on Swisher, they would have gone after someone. 

It's not that easy to put up the kind of numbers that Swisher has produced, and find it from a switch hitter that plays good defense, let alone someone who's good in the clubhouse.

The Indians may need another bat, but that's not New York's problem. They're better off keeping Swisher in the Bronx and working to add depth to their pitching rotation.