The New York Yankees win in Chris Carter signing

While it appeared that the New York Yankees offseason was done, they made one last move before spring training started.

Despite some backlash on the ol’ intra web, it’s an absolutely brilliant move, with not a thing to lose.

Chris Carter is not necessarily good at baseball. He is below average in the field, whether it be at first base or the outfield. The 30 year old right-handed slugger has struck out 33.5 percent of the time in his career, leading the league in two of the last four seasons. He struck out a mind-boggling 418 times in those two seasons. And yes, he owns a .218 career batting average.

What Carter does well is produce runs. And he does it by the boat load.

Last season, Carter tied for first in the National League with a career-best 41 home runs. That number was sixth best in all of baseball. He hit 147 home runs over the past five seasons — the only five full seasons of his career — which is just under 30 home runs per year.

Carter didn’t come to the Yankees to start at designated hitter or first base. He didn’t even come to the Yankees to platoon. Carter may not even see regular at bats come May when everyone is — hopefully — healthy and gelling.

He came to the Yankees as an insurance policy. And in today’s MLB, $3.5-million for that kind of home run potential is small change.

We’ve had to endure yet another offseason of Yankees fans blabbering about how it’s time for Aaron Judge to take over in right field. It’s not. He’s not ready yet. That’s why he has been working very hard to revamp his swing this offseason.

Should Judge not be comfortable with his new swing mechanics come Opening Day, why rush him? Rushing him will likely make him the next Chris Carter (i.e. Kevin Maas), but patience could make him the next Darryl Strawberry (the young one, not the older Yankees version). This whole argument that he’s already 24 is silly. Age does not determine one’s baseball readiness. Just ask R.A. Dickey and Jacob deGrom.

That leaves Tyler Austin and Aaron Hicks likely roaming right field to start things off, with Greg Bird returning to first and Matt Holliday and his $13-million contract at DH. Nothing in that sentence is certain. Austin and Hicks both have nice attributes but have not yet put them all together at the big league level. Holliday is no sure bet to stay healthy. Bird is also working his way back from shoulder injury.

A few weeks back, I admittedly wrote a piece on Fox Sports saying the Marlins were silly in pursuing Carter. That was because they were considering platooning him with Justin Bour, who needs to be let loose and be the full-time first baseman.

That’s not the case here. Carter is coming in as a safety net to several question marks. Should everything go as planned, Carter becomes a piece for Brian Cashman to play with at the trade deadline. Sure, the Brewers dangled him out there last year and had no bites, but each year is different.

The big picture is the price tag. Holliday cost four times as much to bring in on a one-year deal. 43 year old Bartolo Colon commanded almost the same. Should Carter not work out, they could even cut him loose at no real cost to themselves.

I never understand the backlash on social media to Yankees doings. But it does fuel much of what I write here, so if you can’t beat them join them!

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