Yankees, Hideki Matsui Have Been In Contact

There has been some contact between Hideki Matsui and the Yankees this offseason, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com tweets. The Yankees, who have also been in touch with Johnny Damon, appear to have just $1-2MM to spend on a DH. That would likely be enough to sign the 37-year-old Matsui, who’s coming off a disappointing season in Oakland.  

Matsui posted a .251/.321/.375 line with 12 homers in 583 plate appearances last year. He recovered from a slow start to produce better results in the second half (.753 OPS after July 1st), but the average DH posted a .265/.340/.429 line in 2011, so the positionless Matsui hasn’t drawn much interest. A return to Oakland doesn’t seem likely and no other teams have been publicly linked to the Wasserman Media Group client.

79 Responses to Yankees, Hideki Matsui Have Been In Contact Leave a Reply

  1. Hmm…Damon or Matsui?  I don’t think we will get Pena on 1-2 million especially to be a bench player.  He will want to start.  Don’t make me choose!

    • wickedkevin 3 years ago

      You consider it a close contest between Damon and Matsui?  Really? …Really?

      • letsgogiants 3 years ago

        2011 Stats:

        Matsui: .251/.321/.375/.696, 12 hrs, 72 rbis
        Damon: .261/.326/..418/.743, 16 hrs, 73 rbis

        At this point of their careers, both players aren’t much different. Both Damon and Matui are 38 and 37, respectably. I would say Damon is probably a little better at this point given he has been more productive on a consistent basis and has a higher OPS than Matsui. Both are obviously not the bats they used to be and neither is very good defensively. 

  2. wickedkevin 3 years ago

    Damon? Maybe. Matsui? Maybe. Posada? Who? Is he that much worse than Matsui?

  3. Cosmo3 3 years ago

    Man, didn’t realize Mastui had fallen so far. That slash line + 0 defense = minor league contract

    • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

      Matsui certainly deserves more than a minor lge deal but I hope the Yanks pass.

  4. Pretty sure going from Yankee Stadium to Oakland would ruin any hitters line.

  5. d32123 3 years ago

    I love Matsui but I don’t think he’s a very good option.  About the same as Damon without the defensive ability.

    They should just deal Hughes to free up some money for Pena.

    • Vmmercan 3 years ago

      Would dealing Burnett and eating 20 million or so not be more beneficial?

      • Yeah, if any pitcher gets dealt…..It’s Burnett. Period.

      • Benny 3 years ago

        Yankees can put Bay at DH. Bay for Burnett straight up…

        • d32123 3 years ago

          Burnett has a partial no-trade clause and it’s going to be tough to convince any team to take him.  And hell no on the Bay trade LOL

          • Benny 3 years ago

            Hahahaha…I would love for the Mets to get rid of him. Although I can see Bay doing better at Yankee Stadium.

        • letsgogiants 3 years ago

          At this point, who is going to trade for Burnett? At this point, he looks like someone who will probably be DFA’d/released. That’s not a bad trade proposal though, given that both have failed to live up to expectations and have similar salaries owed to them through 2013. Bay would be a good fit at Yankee Stadium being a DH. However, I’m not quite sure the Mets are going to want Burnett. 

          • Benny 3 years ago

            As sad as this may sound, Burnett would automatically be our ace as soon as he gets here. lol

          • letsgogiants 3 years ago

            I would personally take Santana (given he’s healthy), Dickey, and probably even Gee over Burnett for being their ace haha. However, the Met’s starting rotation isn’t looking too good right now haha.

            P.S. Dickey has been pretty solid for the Mets the last couple of years. I’m surprised no one has had interest in him through trade, even if his numbers may appear deceptive. Maybe that changes at the Trading Deadline if he continues to pitch efficiently though. 

          • Infield Fly 3 years ago

            Sorry chief, but adding AJ Burnett to the Mets’ rotation would be nothing more than adding a second Mike Pelfrey (or is it the other way around?), and we can’t even deal with the one we have. >:(

            [[shudder]] Huy! I’m starting to feel kind of nauseous just thinking about this…

          • Benny 3 years ago

            Haha…me too my friend, me too (barf).

          • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

            I think AJ would do well in the a big NL ballpark. All of his peripherals are still solid, evident by his 3.86 xFIP.

          • Guest 3 years ago

            Way to severe of a reaction to Burnett. He has pitched 185+ innings 4 years straight. While he hasn’t played no where near the actual value of his contract, he still hasn’t been that bad. I love how people think he’s to the point where he’ll be outright released. And then you say you’re not sure the Met’s would want him? Please a hard throwing guy with nasty stuff? The Met’s don’t want his contract, that’s for sure, but more than half the teams with a need for pitching would take Burnett for 2 years if the price was right. 

    • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

      Yeah let’s just toss away a 25 year old pitcher earning $3 mil to sign a $8 to $10 mil DH.

  6. damon will hit more homers than matsui with “damons deck” in right..plus he can still play the feild an use his speed..damon over matz

    • JacksTigers 3 years ago

      His fielding is pretty brutal.

    • strikethree 3 years ago

      They are both pretty bad on the field.

      Plus, the question isn’t which one would you prefer; it’s a matter of cost.

      I don’t see Damon signing for 1 mil. I don’t even think they need any of these guys. Just use the DH spot for the veterans and use Jones on any other day. If anything, look in the minors to see if there is anyone that can hit but is getting too old to be a prospect. (Shelley Duncan type)

      • SixAces 3 years ago

        They have Jorge Vasquez, AAAA power masher extraordinaire.

      • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

        Neither Damon nor Matsui belongs in the field. Both would have to play left field and I’d rather see Jones in LF before I see either of them.

  7. JacksTigers 3 years ago

    Enough with the reunion. Either spend for a good DH or go in house with someone like Andruw Jones or something. Don’t spend for the sake of spending. Carlos Pena is a great fit. I think he is the best fit. I say either go for Pena or use Jones and wait for the deadline.

    • MB923 3 years ago

      Pena is looking for $5-$10 million and wants to be a starter. He would only be a part time player for NY.

      • JacksTigers 3 years ago

        He would be the STARTING DH.

        • MB923 3 years ago

          Against LHP, it would be Andruw Jones. If he was starting it would be against RHP. A batter who will only bat in some games and will not field at all and has a batting average around the mendoza line should not get paid $10 million.

          • JacksTigers 3 years ago

            He would be the full time DH and BA is terrible way of telling how good a player is. Look up is OBP and OPS. He walked over 100 times last year.

          • MB923 3 years ago

            I agree OBP is better but BA is not terrible. 

            By the way, .260 OBP (Yes OBP) vs. lefties and a  .594 OPS

            As I said, he would be a part time DH, not full time, with maybe an occasional game at 1B every now and then.

          • Hal Jordan 3 years ago

            He’d start at least 120 games(barring injury).  He’d be getting 75% of the starts at DH as the DH vs RHP plus whatever spot starts he gets at 1B.  That’s more than part time.

          • MB923 3 years ago

            I suppose, but is that worth $10 mil?

  8. Benny 3 years ago

    It’s GODZILLA!!!!!

  9. all i keep reading is about who will be better on defense. neither one will be playing defense as the yankees are looking for a DH. they resigned andrew jones, so they can put him in the OF in case of an injury or someone needs a day off. and although damon would be nice, i believe matsui still has enough pop to put up atleast 20 HR’s as a DH and maybe around 75 RBI’s but best option would be to bring back posada for one more year, or trade hughes to someone like the dodgers for Loney.

    • ARod's Ring 3 years ago

      Posada and his Ego back? no thanks.

      • pennypincher 3 years ago

        One of the better hitting catchers for the late 90s and early 00s, third best catcher to ever play for the Yankees, a guy whose stats last year against RHP is still above average for DH, and a familiar guy who’d fit right in while creating some major PR gain? No thanks!

  10. ARod's Ring 3 years ago

    Wouldn’t it be cool if Kuroda and Matsui would be in the same team? At least they’ll both have someone to communicate with, in their native language.

    Plus some Japanese revenue!

    Matsui is consider a true Yankee, unlike Damon and Pena… and he’ll come cheaper than both, plus a chance to retire with the team he started with.

    Perfect fit Imo.

    • CAD_Monkey 3 years ago

      And if Okajima makes it to the major league roster (how likely is that?  I’m curious), it’ll probably be the first time in major league history a team has 3 players named Hi**ki on their 25 man roster!

    • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

      A “true” Yankee? Wow. So would Darvish be a “true” Ranger if he signs with them? I think Sox fans would cringe if we called Dice-K a “true” Sox. I guess it depends on if you suck or not…haha

  11. Yankees, Bernie Williams Have Been in Contact

  12. ARod's Ring 3 years ago

    Yankees should just sign Barry Bonds :)

    • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

      Honestly speaking…..wouldn’t mind Manny.

  13. redsx968 3 years ago

    Damon, Matsui… Hell get Giambi on the phone

  14. bronxbrain 3 years ago

    Does anybody here know the current condition of Adam Dunn?  I didn’t get to see him much last season, but his numbers fell off a cliff.  What’s up with that?  Did his bat slow down that much?  Did he put ridiculous pressure on himself because of his contract?  It’s hard to imagine that he could possibly have declined that quickly as a hitter.

    • He hit just .159 last season; thankfully (or not) he fell 8 PAs short of qualifying for the batting title. I think that he is finished. It was sad watching that—at least Dunn as allowed to finish out the season, but I think that this is it.

  15. jigokusabre 3 years ago

    Derek Lee is still a free agent. Why not sign him to DH?

  16. Why not just go with Chavez, for 75 games, he would be worth it

  17. Bernaldo 3 years ago

    Matsui is washed up.  His bat speed has really slowed the past two seasons. When that happens, the end is very near.

  18. PhillyT 3 years ago

    My boy Manny Ramirez will take the job

  19. What about making another trade?? Now that the yanks seem to have a plethora of young arms, maybe flipping a guy like Betances makes sense. The yanks need help with the infield depth, a guy who can be relied upon to come in and produce when AROD and Jeter need a day off or end up on the DL. I’m curious as to how available David Wright is, he would shore up the D on the left side, and would slide AROD over to a full time DH job thus keeping his bat off the DL. Maybe Betances + Sanchez + Waren/Williams gets that done?????

    C Martin
    1b Tex
    2b Cano
    3b Wright
    SS Jeter
    LF Gardner
    CF Granderson
    RF Swisher
    Jeter Granderson Wright Cano Arod Tex Swisher Martin Gardner

  20. d32123 3 years ago

    You know who would be an interesting option?  Nick Johnson.  Bring him in on a minimum or minor league deal.

  21. bronxbrain 3 years ago

    Larry–I absolutely agree.  Matsui remains one of my favorite all-time Yankees.  Get him out of Oakland, and his power numbers will return, at least somewhat.

  22. d32123 3 years ago

    Absolute no on Connor Jackson.  Bad hitter.  Johnson, when healthy, is among the best hitters in MLB.  A minor league deal would not be too risky and he would be receptive because he’d have a high chance of playing.

  23. JacksTigers 3 years ago

    As long as everyone is thinking about ex-Yankees, what about if they could swing a deal to get Alfonso Soriano? They would need the Cubs to eat a lot of salary and might have to throw in something to help the money situation.

  24. letsgogiants 3 years ago

    I dunno. I’ve seen Jackson bat the last couple years with the A’s, and while he was still recovering from injuries, at this point he looks more like a bench player, especially on a team like the Yankees. I think Guerrero or Ordonez would be good fits for the DH role, that is if they’re willing to accept a huge pay cut, which they might have to if they still want to play.

  25. Too Many Idiots 3 years ago

    No way.  Johnson would break his wrist trying to sign the contract.

  26. Too Many Idiots 3 years ago

    If “best hitter” is strictly defined by OBP and absolutely nothing else.

  27. Too Many Idiots 3 years ago

    No.  Why watch him swing through sliders again.  They would be better bring Jorge Vasquez up from AAA. Also. why would the Cubs want Burnett?  A trade has to make sense for BOTH teams, and this one does nothing for either.

  28. JacksTigers 3 years ago

    Where did I say Burnett? Did you reply to the wrong person?

  29. Snoochies8 3 years ago

    Difference is, Matsui started playing  in the outfield when the a’s knew that they were totally out of it and had no chance of winning

  30. SixAces 3 years ago

    more like…. if “best hitter” is strictly defined by standing there with the bat on your shoulder taking your walks.

  31. PhillyT 3 years ago

    so the entire season??

  32. Snoochies8 3 years ago

    very close, but about a month into the season haha

  33. PhillyT 3 years ago


  34. YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

    Wow..by cannon, I hope that’s slang for his package. If not then clearly you’ve never seen the “Looks like Jesus, acts like Judas and looks like Mary” t-shirts”.

  35. letsgogiants 3 years ago

    Yeah my bad. I should have clarified that. Valley fever is what has caused him to miss playing time since 2009. Before then, he looked like a pretty good player who had good gap-to-gap power and could get on base.

  36. YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

    I think the idea is to find a lefty since we already have Andru Jones as a RH DH and part time OF.  

  37. noah perry 3 years ago


  38. Too Many Idiots 3 years ago

    Yes. Sorry. I’ve seen that Soriano for Burnett senario so many times today, my brain has melted. Ha!

  39. YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

    i’ll sell you a couple.

  40. YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

    They can rest on the bench.

  41. Even Eduardo Nunez could be in the mix; he isn’t exactly an automatic out. He could play the field when A-Rod or Jeter gets at-bats at DH, and he could DH when A-Rod and Jeter are in the field.

    On the flip side, it does deprive the bench if Nunez is the DH, and so that is why I think that it is wise to at least kick the tires on two guys who have handled this media cauldron in the past. But Andruw Jones could also be in the DH mix as well.

    There are a lot of options at DH.

  42. pennypincher 3 years ago

    Chavez isn’t a good hitter anymore.  He is maybe a league-average hitter with above average defense at this point.  It’s a virtual lock that Damon, Matsui and whoever you want to throw in here will have a better year than Chavez, hitting wise.

  43. The Yankees have too many starters though as it is…unless the Yankees can move A.J. Burnett, he may be the one headed out of town.

  44. pennypincher 3 years ago

    Nunez is horrible in the field, and barely above average as a hitter.  The value he brings with his bat has been easily negated by his 20+ errors while playing only part time.  He may not be as atrocious as he was this year, but he’s a menace in the field and there would be so many better options than to let him DH.  Laird and El Gato, with all their deficiencies, would probably do better than Nunez.  Nunez’s value is primarily a guy who can hit a bit for someone who primarily starts in the middle infield.  That’s it.  His defense is too horrible to be anything of value anywhere else on the diamond.

  45. But why not Shelly Duncan?

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