Should the Yankees go after Pedro Feliciano?
Earlier this month, Ken Davidoff of Newsday noted that the Yankees were interested in left-handed reliever, Pedro Feliciano. However, despite interest in his services, it appears Feliciano could accept arbitration from the Mets.
Feliciano, 33, is an effective and durable southpaw, averaging about 60 innings per season over the past 5 years. He owns a career FIP of 3.75 and a career xFIP of 3.81. Since 2006, his K/9 has never dipped below 8.04 — his career mark is 8.27 — and he’s consistently ahead of the pack when it comes to generating ground ball outs (over the past 3 years, his GB% of 55.3% is one of the best in baseball). Feliciano’s BB/9 is a bit high, mainly because he’s susceptible to right-handed hitters — they’ve posted a .288/.386/.424 triple slash against him since 2006 — which forces him to walk them, intentionally and unintentionally, at a higher rate. This is further evidenced by his bloated BB/9 of 5.17 against RHB. With that said, if used solely as a left-handed specialist, he’s an excellent arm.
Also, unlike the more attractive Scott Downs, Feliciano is a Type B free agent, meaning he won’t cost the Yankees a draft pick. If he chooses to buck arbitration in order to obtain some level of long-term stability, perhaps the Yankees would be willing to make an offer (they shouldn’t go beyond a 2-year, $6M deal). Given his track record, I don’t think the move would backfire. Of course, there are other free agent options available to the Yankees that offer similar situational value and that would be cheaper, including lefties Randy Choate, Ron Mahay and Will Ohman.
Considering the above, what do you think the Yankees should do to bolster their bullpen? Should they chase a guy like Feliciano or go with a lesser free agent? Maybe making minor deals is the way to go here?
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