The New York Yankees may have added some power potential to their injury-depleted line-up.
According to multiple online reports, the Yankees are on the verge of acquiring outfielder Vernon Wells from the Los Angeles Angels. The two sides are reportedly in the process of finalizing the financial details of the transaction.
The former Toronto Blue Jay hit .230 with 11 home runs and 29 runs batted-in in just 77 games played with the Angles in 2012.
Wells is still owed $42 million on a seven-year, $126 million deal he signed with Toronto following the 2006 season. The Blue Jays dealt him to the Angels prior to the 2011 season in exchange for Mike Napoli and Juan Rivera.
The Shreveport, Louisiana-native has been unable to replicate his former All-Star form since moving to California. Despite hitting 25 home runs in 2011, he still matched a career-low by driving in just 66 runs. Last season's totals were by far his lowest since becoming an everyday Major Leaguer.
The Yankees head into the 2013 season battling a rising tide of injuries. The team will be without Curtis Granderson (broken forearm), Marx Teixeira (strained wrist), Alex Rodriguez (hip surgery) and Michael Pineda (shoukder surgery) to start the season and general manager Brian Cashman has also stated that captain Derek Jeter could also miss Opening Day.
The Bronx Bombers have minimized their off-season additions by comparison to previous seasons in an attempt to stay below Major League Baseball's $180-million luxury tax threshold. Consequqently, the team allowed depth players like Nick Swisher, Russell Martin, Rafael Soriano and Eric Chavez find new teams via free agency and has relied on internal options or cheaper free agent replacement players to fill the void.
Wells was originally drafted fifth overall by the Blue Jays at the 1997 MLB Amateur Draft. In 1,601 career games with the Blue Jays and Angels he has posted a .273 batting average with 259 home runs and 908 runs batted-in.
He was selected to three All-Star Games, has won three Gold Glove Awards and one Silver Slugger Award, all while a member of the Jays. He ranks second on Toronto's all-time home run list with 223, second in RBIs with 813 and third in games played with 1,393.