- However, his price both in dollars and/or prospects has fallen so low that the Yankees moved to acquire the switch-hitter.
When it comes to position players, the Yankees actually preferred either a supplemental type who either plays the corner infield (to rest Alex Rodriguez on occasion) or bats righty and plays the corner outfield (to put Curtis Granderson on the bench against most lefties). Berkman is neither of these.
Berkman would essentially fill the role the Yankees had envisioned for Nick Johnson, regular DH and occasional fill-in first baseman for Mark Teixeira. He is a veteran bat with plenty of playoff experience and is pals with Andy Pettitte.
Berkman is having his worst season at .240 with 13 homers and 49 RBIs. But in his past 18 games, Berkman has hit .274 with six homers in 64 at-bats. He also is the kind of patient hitter the Yankees always like, and they would be hoping that the intensity of a championship hunt would energize him for a strong finish.This is purely a "because we can" move. The Yankees already lead the American League in scoring, Marcus Thames has been solid as their righty-hitting DH, and there's no shortage of veterans who can use the occasional rest. Particularly with a playoff spot almost locked up already.
But the Yankees have more loose money than a Saudi prince, and a Berkman/Thames platoon will look pretty good in October (the switch-hitting Berkman's been significantly better in his career against righties than lefties). So why not?