No, you’re not dreaming. The New York Yankees are acquiring Toronto Blue Jays great Vernon Wells. The man that’s 2nd in Blue Jays history in hits, doubles, homeruns, RBI’s and runs scored is going to be playing for the Evil Empire.
With all their injuries and lack of offseason activity Yankee fans seem to be turning on the Yankees for the same reason Dr. Evil was hostile towards his son Scott. They’re not quite evil enough.
The Yankees seem to be using Dr. Evil logic in their latest move. Why trade for a productive player when we can trade for Vernon Wells? (Yankees GM Brian Cashman puts pinky at the end of lip).
It’s safe to say paying 13 million of the 42 million on Vernon Wells contract doesn’t have that typical evil Yankee feel to it as signing the top 2 or 3 free agents would but it could still be something.
Yes the LA Angels are still crazy for taking Vernon Wells contract. They’re just not as crazy as most people like to think.
EVERYONE seems to forget how good Wells was in his last season with the Blue Jays and how that increased his trade value and was a part of the Angels decision.
In 2010 Wells put up a 3.8 WAR, hit 31 homeruns, had a 331 on base percentage, slugged 515 and had an OPS of 847! He even made the All-Star team that year! Wells was also only 32 at the time.
For a big market team like the Angels that are always in win now mode and seem to have endless amounts of money having an overpaid Wells seemed to make some sense if he could be more 2010 for the rest of his contract and less 2007 – 2009. The Angels were also desperate for offense after not being able to sign Carl Crawford or Adrian Beltre.
Unfortunately for the Angels Wells went back to being the Vernon Wells Blue Jays fans remember the last 2 seasons.
So why would the Yankees want him now?
Partly for the same reason the Angels wanted him, desperation.
Wells can still play a mean outfield. He still has some power as he hit 25 homeruns in 2011 and 11 in just 77 games in 2012. Now he’ll be playing half his games at hitter friendly Yankee Stadium as opposed to pitcher friendly Angel Stadium which will only help his power numbers. The Angels aren’t desperate for any fire power they can get right now and the Yankees are so it makes some sense for them.
Most importantly the Blue Jays host the Yankees at Rogers Centre September 17-19. The Blue Jays hopeful first playoff race games against the Yankees in 20 years just got a lot more fun and interesting to watch with Wells in a Yankees uniform.