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January 10, 2008

Mike Cameron

Via Ken Rosenthal -

The Brewers face strong competition for free-agent center fielder Mike Cameron, perhaps stronger than they even imagined.

The Yankees are showing serious interest in Cameron, major-league sources say, figuring that they could trade center fielder Melky Cabrera even if they do not send him to the Twins for left-hander Johan Santana.

Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez is a supporter of Cameron's; the two were teammates with the Mariners in 2000. Cameron also has recent experience playing in New York; he was with the Mets in '04 and '05.

Cabrera, 23, is part of the Yankees' offer for Santana, but could fit for several teams that are in the market for a young, affordable, switch-hitting center fielder.

Those teams include the Cubs, Reds, Braves, Royals and Pirates. The Yankees likely would seek prospects for Cabrera, replace him with Cameron in center and keep Johnny Damon in left.

Damon would remain in center for the start of the season while Cameron serves a 25-game suspension for testing positive for a banned stimulant.

Cameron is a human air-conditioner - as he strikes out so much. Granted, he's still a good (but not awesome) defender and an excellent baserunner. But, he's also going to be 35-years old this season.

Man, the Yankees must really be down on Melky, for some reason, if they're looking to get Cameron. Either that, or, the Santanna deal is right around the corner and Cabrera is part of it.

Posted by Steve Lombardi at January 10, 2008 08:15 PM

Comments

I think they want to use Melky to get bullpen help.

Posted by: Rich [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 10, 2008 08:38 PM

agreed. you're telling me that Melky and a minor league pitcher couldnt get Damaso Marte?

Posted by: TurnTwo [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 10, 2008 09:04 PM

I've watched Cammy the last 2 years in San Diego - he's still an elite defender, one of the game's very best; much better than Melky. He doesn't have the arm Melk does, but he'll run down way more balls in the gaps. And yes, he does K a ton, but he's still better offensively than the Melkman. Replacing Melky with Cameron would be a clear and indisputable upgrade. The only downside is that Cameron would cost way more.

Posted by: Mike A. [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 10, 2008 09:39 PM

~~I've watched Cammy the last 2 years in San Diego - he's still an elite defender, one of the game's very best;~~

FWIW, the BIS +/- system, featured in the Fielding Bible, does not agree.

Posted by: Steve Lombardi [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 10, 2008 10:52 PM

I hope the Yanks sign Cam to a 2 year deal and trade Melky in a small package to the Pirates for Marte. Marte has been my #1 target all offseason and if they could pull that off I think we’d me much stronger.

Posted by: gianthinker [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2008 01:24 AM

I hope the Yanks sign Cam to a 2 year deal and trade Melky in a small package to the Pirates for Marte. Marte has been my #1 target all offseason and if they could pull that off I think we’d me much stronger.

Posted by: gianthinker [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2008 01:24 AM

Yeah let's go get that Mike Gonzalez dude while we're at it! :P

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I'm not oppose to sniffing around. but really, if we sign Cameron to more than 1 year it wouldn't really be a upgrade. not really because of just cost. but the potential for decline is very scary. and the difference between him and Melky isn't large enough . if Cameron decline even a little more while the Melky improve just a little they would virtually be exactly the same player with Melky much younger and costing nothing.

Posted by: Yu Hsing Chen [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2008 06:28 AM

Signing Cameron would be a quick fix and I don't think you are going to get an 8th inning caliber reliever for Melky, which is really what they need.

I think they have enough arms to handle the 6th or 7th inning in the pen. They actually do have options for the 8th, I just don't think they will be consistent enough.

Posted by: antone [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2008 08:29 AM

Agree with the sentiments above. Anything more than a one-year deal (with a team option for a second year) would be overkill for a 35 year old centerfielder.

The Yanks should've signed Mike Cameron a half-decade ago, when Bernie was clearly on his last legs and Cameron was still relatively young. The Mets got him instead and the Yankees took their shot with Kenny Lofton. It's been downhill ever since...

Posted by: MJ [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2008 08:56 AM

Wait...I just thought of something. Isn't Cameron a Type A free agent? Why would the Yanks want to drop a 1st round draft pick on a 35 year old CF? Seems like an uneven swap in my mind.

Posted by: MJ [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 11, 2008 08:57 AM