Nick Swisher heads to the Yankees for Wilson Betemit and minor league pitchers Jeff Marquez and Jhonny Nunez. I've always liked Betemit, but I have no idea what the White Sox are doing here. Marquez struck out 33 batters in 80 innings at AAA this year and isn't a great bet to ever pitch well in the bigs. Nunez, acquired from Washington in a minor deal and, before that, from the Dodgers for Marlon Anderson, is a pretty good relief prospect, but that's it. I've long thought Betemit deserved more playing time than his employers gave him, but he's coming off a season in which he had an 86 OPS+.
Swisher wasn't really any better, posting a 92 OPS+ to go along with his .219 batting average, but he still hit for good power and drew walks. The White Sox are selling low here, which it's usually only wise to do if you think the low are just going to get lower. The Sox must have looked at the $22 million they owed Swisher over the next three years and decided it just wasn't worth it. They may or may not turn out to be right, but I don't feel like $22 million is too high a price for a player of Swisher's upside. I'd worry about his power/walks/no-batting-average skillset if I were his GM too, but I still wouldn't trade him for scraps. The White Sox are big losers here--they're getting a lot less for Swisher than they traded to get him.