The New York Yankees are on the hunt for a new shortstop after the failed Gleyber Torres experiment. Management desperately wanted Torres to become their long-term solution at SS, but his defense became a liability, posting a dismal .952 fielding percentage in 2021.
However, reports have indicated that the Yankees could address the shortstop spot in a variety of ways. Either they can go after a big-money target like Carlos Correa, settle for a tier-2 option like Trevor Story, or even execute a trade to find a solution.
Rumors stated that the Bombers were interested in speaking with the Oakland Athletics about a potential trade for third baseman Matt Chapman. Chapman would transition to shortstop in this scenario, but that might not be necessary for a prospective deal.
Theoretically, the Yankees could use Gio Urshela at shortstop, having spent 28 games this past season filling in for Torres. Urshela posted a. 970 fielding percentage during that small sample size with just a -1 defensive run saved above average. If the Yankees are confident Gio can hold it down over the short term, they could theoretically DJ LeMahieu to the hot corner permanently and bring in a star first baseman.
The expectation is that the Yankees will retain Anthony Rizzo on an extension, but pursuing Atlanta star Freddie Freeman isn’t out of the question if they have more money left to spend.
The Yankees could save a ton of money by moving Urshela to shortstop and shifting LeMahieu to third base if not trading for Chapman. This financial flexibility would allow the team to extend Aaron Judge, make a run at Freeman, and land a starting pitcher.
Urshela is considered a starting infielder moving forward, whether it be at third or shortstop. He batted .267 this past season with 14 homers and 49 RBIs. He did host a career-high 24.7% strikeout rate, but he’s more than capable of being an above-average hitter who can get on base and hit double-digit homers.
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