Kevin Youkilis is going over the dark side. The former Boston Red Sox third/first baseman has signed a one-year contract with arch rival New York Yankees, a.k.a. the Evil Empire.
Provided he passes a physical, the deal will pay Youkilis $12 million for the 2013 season. Youkilis was assumed to be heading to Cleveland, but the Indians signing of Mark Reynolds seemed to put an end to that possibility.
AP points out that it is interesting that Youkilis is heading to the Bronx because “[f]or years, Youkilis was one of the more prominent faces in the Red Sox-Yankees rivalry, and his intensity made him among the more popular players at Fenway Park.” The New York Times similarly notes that “[a]lthough Youkilis is not the first notable Boston player to join the Yankees, his move is notable because his hard-nosed style personified the enmity between the teams.”
The Yankees became interested in Youkilis, who was a free agent, once it became clear that starting third baseman Alex Rodriguez would be on the shelf for at least half the season owing to hip surgery.
According to MLB Trade Rumors,
“The 33-year-old is expected to see significant time at third base as Alex Rodriguez recovers from surgery on his left hip. A-Rod will be out until at least May and could even be sidelined until July. When Rodriguez returns to action, Youkilis could help support him at third while also seeing time at first base and DH.”
A fan favorite, Youkilis spent his entire nine-year MLB career with the Red Sox up until he was traded to the White Sox on June 24, 2012. Batting right handed, he has a career .283 average with 1,030 hits, 610 RBI, and 148 home runs.
The Yankees are also in the process of finalizing a one-year deal with Ichiro Suzuki.
[Image credit: Googie man]