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Yankees GM Brian Cashman says Chase Headley or any acquired third baseman would start over Alex Rodriguez

Finally, someone is talking some sense about third base.

Rich Schultz

Although Alex Rodriguez and his monster contract are set to return to the Yankees in 2015, at least one member of the front office is aware of the large chance that, nearly two years removed from playing baseball at a regular level, A-Rod probably won't be any good at third base. At the GM meetings on Tuesday, GM Brian Cashman told media that Chase Headley or any third baseman they might acquire in a trade would be named the starter over Rodriguez. That would leave A-Rod delegated to designated hitter and backup duties at third and first base.

Manager Joe Girardi has already said that he was preparing as if Rodriguez would play third base upon his return. Sounds like Cashman, smartly, has other ideas. The team has been fairly vocal so far in their desire to bring Headley back for another season in the Bronx. It doesn't take a great leap to understand why that might be, considering that Rodriguez would be attempting to play a demanding defensive position on two surgically-repaired hips. Headley was brilliant defensively in his stint with the Yankees last season. He wasn't bad with the bat either, which always helps.

Cashman saying that any acquired third baseman would be the starter is pretty necessary to do if he hopes to convince Headley or anyone else to sign on with the Yankees. There's approximately no chance that Headley would re-sign if he thought he was going to be relegated to a part-time role. Certainly not when he's probably the second most desirable third baseman on the free agent market. Guaranteeing him a starting job might be enough to convince him to give it another go in New York. It's nice to see that the front office isn't deluding themselves into thinking that Rodriguez is going to be able to play at the levels he did before his body started to pretty rapidly break down. Going into 2015 with A-Rod as Plan A at third base would have been incredibly foolish. Luckily the Yankees seem to have come to the same conclusion.