Yesterday we learned that the Yankees have strong interest in free agent outfielder Andruw Jones. GM Brian Cashman is in search of a backup outfielder who hits right-handed and Jones is one of the better options available at this point in the offseason.
Jones' ability to hit left-handed pitching is well-known. The five-time All-Star has a career .863 OPS against lefties and even topped that mark with a .931 posting in 2010. And as Ben Shpigel of the New York Times points out, Jones' defense is still preferable to that of Marcus Thames, even if he has lost a step or three over the years. The soon-to-be 34-year-old registered a 2.2 UZR/150 in the outfield last season which easily bested Thames' -33.0.
Thames and Johnny Damon are still available and still backup options for the Yanks, but they prefer Jones. However, the two sides are still far apart on money and the veteran has other suitors, including the Rockies, according to Troy Renck of The Denver Post (via Twitter). When all is said and done, do you envision Jones being in pinstripes in 2011?