News out of Yankees camp is that the Yanks have inked Erubiel Durazo, Richard Hidalgo and Jason Romano to minor league deals. In addition, Shawn Chacon has been put on the DL with a bruised shin, leading to the promotion of world-beater Terrence Long to the big club. What to make of all these moves?
Terrence Long’s promotion reminds me a lot of the decision to move Scott Erickson up to the majors. Both players are veterans; both are below-average; and both are blocking younger, more capable players from contributing to the Yankees. In other words, thank you Joe Torre and Brian Cashman for teaching me in the ways of the metaphysical. Your decisions to look beyond reason, to act regardless of the facts of the physical world (eg. Erickson is awful, Long has never been good) are an important piece of my continuing education.
The signing of Richard Hidalgo is another matter. The scouting report on him is that he’s an above average corner outfielder, with potential at the bat. The injured Yanks could obviously use him.
Erubiel Durazo makes David Ortiz look like Keith Hernandez at first base, so I’m not quite sure how he’d fit on a roster in which Jason Giambi is the first baseman. I guess he’s decent insurance in case Giambi goes down, and his offensive contributions might make the issue of first base defense irrelevant.
Finally, I don’t know who Jason Romano is, but according to Steve at Was Watching "he’s a super-sub (who can play the infield and the outfield) with a great attitude. I think Yankees fans are going to love this guy."
All told, with the glaring exception of the Long move, these seem to be decent moves for a team in New York’s position. At least, none of the farm was sacrificed, and all of these players arrive at a cheap price.