Yankees Claim Red Sox Castoff Darnell McDonald

BOSTON, MA - APRIL 21: Darnell McDonald #54 of the Boston Red Sox gets a hit that allows David Ortiz to score in the third inning against the New York Yankees on April 21, 2012 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

The New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox haven't made a straight-up deal since 1920, when the Yankees stole Babe Ruth from the Red Sox.*

* hyperbole

Wednesday, though, the Yankees did acquire a player who was, until quite recently, a member of the Red Sox in good standing.

Last Saturday, the Red Sox designated 33-year-old outfielder Darnell McDonald for assignment. Wednesday, the Yankees claimed off waivers.

This might be the leader at the All-Star break for Strangest Move of the Season. With the second-best record in the American League, the Yankees have a huge lead in the American League East. There were 11 teams that could have claimed McDonald before the Yankees, but didn't. Signing McDonald means the Yankees have to get rid of someone; according to Pinstripe Alley, the most obvious candidate is DeWayne Wise, who's a better outfielder than McDonald and is having a better year with the bat (though McDonald has been the better hitter, historically).

And it's not clear why the Yankees would want another right-handed hitter, when they've got Andruw Jones.

McDonald is expected to join the Yankees this weekend ... which is extra delicious, since that's when the Yankees open a three-game series with the Red Sox.

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