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Yankees or not, Jorge Posada plans to play next season

Aug 15, 2011, 11:51 AM EDT

Jorge Posada Getty Images

Jorge Posada is 39 years old and having the worst season of his career, getting benched as the Yankees’ designated hitter last week, but the five-time All-Star indicated yesterday that he plans to play in 2012.

And that seemingly means putting on a different uniform for the first time in 20 years, because it’s tough to imagine the Yankees bringing him back once his four-year, $52 contract runs out.

Posada was full of praise for Yankees fans after returning to the lineup Saturday with a grand slam and six RBIs, saying: “I play for them” and “the fans are a big reason why I love playing the game and especially here.”

However, he also told Mark Hale of the New York Post that he “could” consider playing elsewhere next season because “I don’t know what’s going to happen after this year … we’ll see.”

Of course, finding another team willing to give him a job could be problematic unless he finishes this season on a very strong note and that will be tough to do if manager Joe Girardi sticks with plans to keep Posada mostly on the bench. Hale notes that Posada nearly left the Yankees for the Mets as a free agent in 2008, but the deterioration of his catching skills may limit him to AL suitors at this point and teams aren’t exactly lining up to sign 40-year-old, .700 OPS designated hitters.

  1. stoutfiles - Aug 15, 2011 at 11:57 AM

    Well see how much he loves the game when he’s wearing a minor league uniform next year.

  2. entersandman42ny - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:00 PM

    He should just retire after this season and finish his career as a yankee. No team is going to sign him to catch and since he can’t hit no team will sign him to dh. No Yankee fan wants to see Jorge Posada in another team’s uniform, but i think most Yankee fans don’t want him back next year either. Even though the fans root for him, he doesn’t have much to offer anymore besides an occasional start at first base/dh.

    • kellyb9 - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:43 PM

      I disagree with signing a player out of sentiment. I think the Yankees organization and fanbase needs to know when to cut ties with some of these players. For a team that so often seems like the Microsoft of baseball, it seems strange that they don’t always operate in the cold calculating way that most teams are required to do because of their payroll limitations. Thats just my opinion, but I can see it being a larger issue as player like Jeter, Posada, Rivera, etc age.

      • FC - Aug 15, 2011 at 1:21 PM

        it seems strange that they don’t always operate in the cold calculating way that most teams are required to do because of their payroll limitations

        Probably because the Yankees don’t really have payroll limitations. Let’s face it, that 3 year $51 MM contract Jeter signed was at least as much him being an icon and hitting #3000 in a Yankees Uniform as it was his everyday performance.

      • boston992 - Aug 15, 2011 at 5:32 PM

        I agree Kellyb, but they have done it with Jeter, and to a certain extent, with A-Rod too. What are they going to do with both of them over the next 3 years, when Jeter’s contract is up? Jeter is an adequate ss, but he’s not gold-glove worthy, and if they bring up another ss, they’ll have to dh him. So that leaves A-Rod to play 3rd until he’s what, 39? They’ll have too many dh’s on the roster, and you know they are going after either Fielder or Pujols this winter, with the intention of having them dh, and to occasionally play 1st or 3rd. It’s surprising to see the Tankees make some of these moves, but George isn’t there anymore to rule the roost.

  3. bravesman1983 - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:09 PM

    It’s not easy to accept when you simply can’t play the game at a high level anymore. I don’t wish the guy ill just because he’s having trouble coming to terms with the harsh reality of professional sports, but I do hope he doesn’t end up looking foolish.

    • aceshigh11 - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:57 PM

      That was my thought as well.

      It’s never easy for anyone to accept that Father Time has taken its toll and that things they could do when they were younger are no longer automatic or easy.

      It’s a potent combination of pride and denial that keeps players hanging around longer than they ideally should.

      However, I have a hard time finding TOO much sympathy for a guy who’s got five World Series rings, millions of dollars in the bank, and a smokin’ hot wife.

      My guess is Jorge will be just fine.

    • natstowngreg - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:58 PM

      Agreed, but some guys have to look foolish before they realize it’s time to go. And often, they have to do it with another team. Willie Mays as a Met has always been my #1 example.

      • Utley's Hair - Aug 15, 2011 at 2:52 PM

        Steve Carlton’s image lost a bit of luster at the end—four teams and three years later than it should have.

  4. trevorb06 - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:10 PM

    Looks like the Giants found their back-up catcher for next year.

  5. uyf1950 - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:12 PM

    I was going to respond to the possibility of Posada “moving on” with another another team. But being old school I was taught if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing. On that note I wish Jorge luck in finding some other team to offer him a contract in 2012.

    • jimbo1949 - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:35 PM

      Maybe he should talk to Bernie and Andy.

      • bigyankeemike - Aug 15, 2011 at 7:38 PM

        Andy? Why?

        The Yankees were dying to have Pettitte return. He went out like Mussina did, while he was on top.

  6. wlschneider09 - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:13 PM

    Let’s get Gator going:

    Buck/Posada platoon!!!!

  7. Charles Gates - Aug 15, 2011 at 12:39 PM

    Funny, I have plans to play next year too.

  8. humanexcrement - Aug 15, 2011 at 1:01 PM

    DH for the Oakland A’s.

    • aceshigh11 - Aug 15, 2011 at 1:03 PM

      Haven’t they suffered enough?

      Setting aside Jorge’s abysmal defense, he can’t really hit well anymore. And isn’t that the whole point of a DH?

      Of course, being that this is the A’s we’re talking about, perhaps Jorge is actually a good fit for them.

      • humanexcrement - Aug 15, 2011 at 1:20 PM

        My point was that the A’s always seem to think they can squeeze one more productive year out of a guy any idiot could tell you is washed up, and they think they can do it in one of the worst parks in baseball for a hitter. They got lucky with Frank Thomas a few years ago and since then they’ve brought in this endless train of washed-up creaky-boned old former sluggers, one failure after another, and they never learn. I’d put money on it. They’ll sign Posada to be their DH. Or Bobby Abreu maybe.

  9. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Aug 15, 2011 at 2:44 PM

    The thing is, Posada has always stunk at DH. He is not a good defensive catcher, but he is not worse than a lot of guys with full-time jobs. I think a backup up catcher/backup 1B/ pinch hitter for an NL team could be a decent gig for him. Especially if it was a young team that needed a veteran around to keep kids in line. I would love to see Logan Morrison and Posada on the same team! Hilarious.

  10. pisano - Aug 15, 2011 at 5:06 PM

    All I can add is, adios Jorge!

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