Yankees Acquire Berkman and Kearns
In the event you don’t follow the “other” league, the New York Yankees have acquired Lance Berkman from the Astros and Austin Kearns from the Indians.
The Yankees sent prospects Mark Melancon and Jimmy Paredes to Houston, who also sent $4M back to the Bronx to help defray Berkman’s $14.5M contract. The Yankees will NOT be required to pick up Berkman’s option for 2011.
As for Kearns — who was one of the Indians’ top hitters this year — he was acquired for a player to be named later or “cash considerations”.
Meanwhile, the Mets did nothing, fully confident with the personnel in their organization.
Why do I bring this up? Because the crosstown rival Yankees have the best record in baseball — in fact, they have 5 more wins than anyone else — and are at the top of the toughest division in MLB. Yet, even the Yankees saw a few spots on their roster that could’ve been improved, and did what they had to do to address them. Considering what they gave up and what they brought in, on the surface it looks like they did OK. Berkman is having a down year but is still an on-base machine, has good pop, and is a pure hitter with plenty of experience in pennant races. Kearns has rebounded after several subpar seasons and will fit in very nicely as a backup outfielder.
These are not earth-shattering acquisitions, but the Yankees didn’t need to bring in superstars, either — and there is little risk on the part of the Yanks with both deals. The point is that no matter how strong a team is, there is always room for improvement.
Maybe I’m being too hard on the Mets. After all, there are still a few hours before the trading deadline.