The New York Yankees might not be concentrating all of their efforts and wealth on the free-agent market yet, but they certainly are making plenty of noise on the trade market.
Monday night saw reports emerge of the Yankees talking with the crosstown-rival Mets and Miami Marlins for a three-team blockbuster deal that could possibly include Noah Syndergaard heading to the Bronx and JT Realmuto making his way to Citi Field.
While there are plenty of moving parts that would likely see the Mets asking for a lot more than Realmuto in order to give up a top starter like Syndergaard, the Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal revealed that the Yankees “are open to moving,” young third baseman Miguel Andujar.
The 23-year-old finished second in the American League Rookie of the Year voting after slashing .297/.328/.504 with 27 home runs, 47 doubles, and 92 RBI in 2018, forming a youthful cornerstone for the Yankees organization that also includes second baseman Gleyber Torres.
The Yankees are still in need of pitching though if they want to keep up with the defending World Series-winning Boston Red Sox, who eliminated them in the ALDS back in October. James Paxton’s acquisition from the Seattle Mariners was a big pick-up by general manager Brian Cashman, but adding an arm like Syndergaard’s would immediately make the Yankees’ rotation one of the best in baseball.
It would likely take quite a lot for the Mets to give up Syndergaard other than Realmuto, but the Yankees’ reported willingness to give up Andujar shows just how serious they are in bolstering the rotation.
Trading Andujar would only further stress a need for the Yankees to pick up another infielder, which could see the pursuit of All-Star Manny Machado heat up. New York is already without starting shortstop Didi Gregorius for a majority of the 2019 season and dealing Andujar would leave the left side of its infield empty looking ahead to Opening Day.
Machado would give the Yankees another powerful bat in a lineup that already set a major-league record with 267 home runs last year while Rosenthal noted that Torres could move to shortstop.
To fill the void at second base, there are some cheaper options available on the free-agent market, including former Met Daniel Murphy.
The Yankees are not willing to break the bank on Machado, though. It was reported earlier this week that Cashman is unwilling to meet the $300 million price tag Machado and his representation are looking for. That might change if Andujar is dealt, though.