The Red Sox, it seems, learned their lesson when Darnell McDonald became an everyday outfielder last season. Depth matters, and the Red Sox apparently have no plans of trading Mike Cameron now that Carl Crawford is in the outfield mix. He’s a bit of injury insurance, and a legitimate starting option against left-handed starters.
He’s the kind of outfielder the Yankees could use.
The Russell Martin saga is the most interesting position player question hanging over the Yankees right now, but when Martin makes his decision, the Yankees most important non-pitcher acquisition will be their fourth outfielder. They don’t need a name — or a contract — like Cameron’s, but they need someone who can fill the corners and hit left-handed pitching.
Curtis Granderson, Brett Gardner and Nick Swisher will be the regulars, but all three were hurt at some point last season. Randy Winn didn’t get it done, and Marcus Thames proved vital, even though he was an adventure in the field. Colin Curtis, Greg Golson and Kevin Russo — and maybe Brandon Laird — give the Yankees some young depth that can fill in from time to time, but they’ll want a proven presence.
The emergence of Thames as an offensive force was crucial for the Yankees last season. They’ll need someone else to step into that spot in 2011.
Associated Press photo of Thames