Before I write about LF, I just wanted to apologize for the relative infrequency of my posting. This week is proving to be a horribly stressful week. I need to get through this week and then its smooth sailing... ANYWAY:
Starters: Johnny Damon will be the starting LF when the season starts. The 34 year old Damon is entering the final year of the 4 year 52 mil contract he signed in 2005. Damon has been very consistent for the Yankees. Last season, Damon hit .303/.375/.461, which was one of his best hitting seasons with the Yankees. Damon had an injured shoulder last season which caused him to miss some time. Damon also has a lot of speed, which is great for our lineup. Last year, Damon stole 29 bases, his high with the Yankees. He has been a great leadoff hitter in his time with the Yankees, and I have no doubt that he will continue doing well in that role. As for his fielding, Damon was the CF for the first 2.5 years with the Yanks. His lack of range has forced him to move to LF, which is no issue because he is one of the best defensive LF the game has to offer. Not only is he a solid player, he is great in the clubhouse and seems to be a fan favorite. I'm very confident that Damon will have another good season with the Yankees.
Backups- Nick Swisher. I'm saving him for RF. You could also throw in Melky Cabrera or Brett Gardner as potential backups.
Prospects- The two Yankee LF prospects are John Rodriguez and Colin Curtis. According to RAB, "Rodriguez is the best pure hitter on the team (AAA) and has had at least a .363 OPB and .500 SLG in 4 of the last 5 seasons". Curtis had a bit of a rough showing in AA last season, hitting .255/.329/.368.