Time to trade Matsui?

matsui_250_030409.jpgBy Glenn Giangrande
Let me start by saying Hideki Matsui has been the consummate professional in pinstripes and I believe he has given the Yankees everything he possibly could during his tenure, which goes far beyond what he’s done solely on the ball field.
Now that I’ve said that, I’m saying it’s time to cut the cord with him.
Matsui appears to be a major albatross on this roster. It is pretty well known that he will be little more than a DH this season given his knee problems and he’ll turn 35 in June. I’m not going to say his power is officially in decline just yet because he turned in a very solid .285-25-103-100 season the last time he was healthy in ’07, but at his age and with his health problems, Godzilla might be at the tipping point.
My main concerns actually have more to do with players around Matsui than Matsui himself. Jorge Posada has already had one setback this spring in his return from shoulder surgery, and given his age\health issue, he will probably need more than a few at-bats as the DH to keep him fresh for his time behind the plate. Johnny Damon will need the occasional day off from left field as well. Joe Girardi is said to be a huge fan of Nick Swisher, so if he happens to lose the right field battle with Xavier Nady, he and his positive clubhouse presence can slot right into the DH position. It just seems like a number of players offer more to the Yankees than Matsui does right now.
Baseball is a business though, and maybe the Yankees think that dealing Matsui would hurt their brand in Japan. I say their flag has already been planted firmly enough there. They’d probably have to eat a fair amount of his remaining $13 million salary, maybe half of it. At this time though, dealing Matsui might be addition by subtraction when talking solely about roster makeup, and isn’t that what matters when a World Championship is the main goal? 


  1. yankee7777

    Matsui is the best clutch hitter on the team.
    Damon and his non-arm should go.
    Swisher is a fun guy but the game is won or lost on the field.
    Again- Matsui is the best clutch hitter on the team.

  2. agbrina53@hotmail.com

    Totally agree with yankees7777 above!

    It really is a numbers game. Matsui has better numbers than Swisher and Damon. Besides, Damon and Matsui have history with the Yankees. Swisher has not.

  3. lara731@gmail.com

    Baseball is not as much of a numbers game as the fans make it out to be….if it was than the Yankees, who have put up crazy numbers since 2001 would have 3 championships. Just the opposite the teams of the late 90’s didn’t put up big numbers and they have 4 championships. If it was a numbers game Alex Rodriguez would have led a team to a championship by now.

    Matsui is a bum. He is not what he was billed when they got him. He’s not a defensive player anymore because he has bad knees and has always been a mediocre at best hitter. If he’s so clutch why other than 2004 are his postseason numbers nothing to be thrilled about. Speaking of 2004 he was part of the team that couldn’t buy a hit in the last four games of the biggest meltdown in the history of baseball.

    He is not going to be a Yankee next season and if the Yankees can actually get some value for this guy…get rid of him. There is a reason why in the offseason, there were only rumors surrounding Nady and Swisher via trade….no one else wants Matsui either…No arm, no legs, streaky bat.

  4. nynyny24

    I would Trade Matsui and Nady for Ichiro Suzuki, that way the Japan sponsor’s will still be there. If the Mariners are hesitant then add some arms with Ian Kennedy and Kei Igawa, four players for Suzuki. No brainer, eat some money and sign Manny befor the Dodgers jump on him.

  5. nynyny24

    Cashman needs to get trade bait now!! No better time to trade old players then now. He will regret having to dispose of some qaulity farm arms later on. Remember this, heard it from me. Get rid of Matsui, Igawa, kennedy, and plug Shelley Duncan into LF for now till the July trade deadline. I would all together trade Damon and Matsui now and sign Manny. DH and LF is crowded. Do something Brian!!! George Steinbrenner would have jumped on this is he were 100% in charge. ex-GM Watson layed down the blueprint of these Yankees, it’s time that Brian Cashman does something bold. Signing CC, AJ and Teix was only the beginning, make your legacy worth it Brian. It’s time to get your hands wet!! Now is the time to show that you are not a pawn, that you actually are the VP of Operations and GM of the 2009 Yankees. Be bold Brian!! Legacy matters now.

  6. letsgoyankees

    It’s a thought, but I’d deal Damon first. He has no arm and Gardner is waiting in the wings as a leadoff hitter. Forget Swisher. He was a bad trade to begin with, like replacing Giambi with a younger Giambi. And now there’s nowhere to put him. To replace Damon in outfield, get Holliday from the Rockies. And to replace Pettite at pitcher, get Halladay from the Blue Jays. The Yanks would be nearly unbeatable…

  7. hateslibs

    Reading these comments show how little most of the bloggers know about the game. I really like the Numby who writes that Matsui has history with the team and Swisher does not!!! What the hell does that mean?????????? Is the blogger saying that CC, AJ, and TEX shouldn’t be on the Yanks because they have no history with the Yanks??? DUH! By the way ITCHY is washed up, leave him in Seattle.. Iwould trade Matsui and Damon, play Swisher in LF, Gardner in CF and Nady in RF, Posada as DH and away we got to the AL East title….By the way I agree with Giangrande about Matsui, send him to another club, maybe the Giants…. Hey nyny24 did you think that Cashman was a pawn when he signed CC,AJ, and TEX??????????????????????

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