NEW YORK -- Aaron Guiel's season took a turn for the better last July, when the Yankees claimed him off waivers from the Royals.
On Tuesday, Guiel's tenure with the Yankees came to an end, as New York non-tendered the outfielder/first baseman.
General manager Brian Cashman called Guiel late in the afternoon to inform him of the club's decision.
"I'm not really surprised," Guiel said. "I was made aware that they're a strong left-handed-hitting team right now. I wanted to be a part of it, but with the way things were, the arbitration process wasn't attractive for them."
The Yankees have plenty of left-handed pop in their lineup, with Jason Giambi, Hideki Matsui, Johnny Damon and Robinson Cano among their regulars.
"There might be a team out there with a stronger need for a player like me," Guiel said. "For once in my career, being left-handed worked against me here."
Guiel hit .242 with seven home runs and 18 RBIs last season with the Yankees and Royals, batting .256 with four homers and 11 RBIs coming after his move to the Bronx.
The Yankees are planning to have Andy Phillips and Josh Phelps battle for the first-base job this spring, while Melky Cabrera will fill the fourth outfielder spot. That left no room for Guiel, who will now test the free-agent market.
"In a way, I thank the Yankees; they could have dragged things out, but they didn't," Guiel said. "Now I can look at my options," Guiel said. "I loved playing in New York. It was a great experience."
Mark Feinsand is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.