Jorge Posada confirms he won’t be back with Yankees

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This will come as no surprise to anyone with a basic knowledge of the Yankees’ roster. But, alas…

According to the AP, via NBCSports.com, free agent Jorge Posada said Wednesday before an annual dinner for his charitable foundation that he will not be back with the Yankees for the 2012 season.

Posada also told reporters that he hasn’t completely ruled out retirement, though he has already drawn free agent interest from “five to six” MLB teams.

“I feel I’m undecided,” said Posada. “I don’t know if I want to play. I don’t know if I want to stay home. I’m having fun with the kids and with the family, but I don’t know what I want to do. I don’t want to make the mistake of telling you that I’m not going to play or telling you that I’m going to play when I don’t know what I want to do. … I will always be a Yankee.”

Posada batted just .235/.315/.398 in 387 plate appearances this season. He is no longer a capable catcher and probably shouldn’t be signed as anything more than a part-time designated hitter. But the 40-year-old could probably find an incentives-based major league contract if he truly wants to continue his career.

The Yanks will turn DH duties over to a combination of Jesus Montero, Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter.

Justin Turner is a postseason monster

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A not-insignificant amount of the Dodgers’ success in recent years has to do with the emergence of Justin Turner. In his first five seasons with the Orioles and Mets, he was a forgettable infielder who had versatility, but no power. The Mets non-tendered him after the 2013 season, a move they now really regret.

In four regular seasons since, as a Dodger, Turner has hit an aggregate .303/.378/.502. His 162-game averages over those four seasons: 23 home runs, 36 doubles, 83 RBI, 80 runs scored. And he’s also a pretty good third baseman, it turns out. The Dodgers have averaged 95 wins per season over the past four years.

Turner, 32, has gotten better and better with each passing year. This year, he drew more walks (59) than strikeouts (56), a club only five other players (min. 300 PA) belonged to, and he trailed only Joey Votto (1.61) in BB/K ratio (1.05). He zoomed past his previous career-high in OPS, finishing at .945. His .415 on-base percentage was fourth-best in baseball. His batting average was fifth-best and only nine points behind NL batting champion Charlie Blackmon.

It doesn’t seem possible, but Turner has been even better in the postseason. He exemplified that with his walk-off home run to win Game 2 of the NLCS against the Cubs. Overall, entering Wednesday night’s action, he was batting .363/.474/.613 in 97 postseason plate appearances. In Game 4, he went 2-for-2 with two walks, a single, and a solo home run. That increases his postseason slash line to .378/.495/.659, now across 101 plate appearances. That’s a 1.154 OPS. The career-high regular season OPS for future first-ballot Hall of Famer Albert Pujols was 1.114 in 2008, when he won his third career MVP Award. Statistically, in the postseason, Turner hits slightly better than Pujols did in the prime of his career. Of course, we should adjust for leagues and parks and all that, but to even be in that neighborhood is incredible.

In the age of stats, the concept of “clutch” has rightfully eroded. We don’t really allow players to ascend to godlike levels anymore like the way we did Derek Jeter, for instance. (Jeter’s career OPS in the playoffs, by the way, was a comparatively pitiful .838.) Turner isn’t clutch; he’s just a damn good hitter whose careful approach at the plate has allowed him to shine in the postseason and the Dodgers can’t imagine life without him.