Yankees: Why third baseman Anthony Rendon should be targeted this offseason
By Derek McAdam
With Miguel Andujar set to return next season from surgery to repair a torn labrum, the Yankees starting third base job will likely be up for grabs between him and Gio Urshela. But what if they decide to go a different route and pursue free agent superstar Anthony Rendon?
The Yankees and every other team in baseball would love to acquire a player of Rendon’s caliber. The 29-year-old is coming off a World Series win with the Nationals and will be looking for a huge payday this winter. The 29-year-old has hit over .300 in each of the past three seasons and driven in over 100 runs in two out of the past three campaigns.
In addition to posting excellent regular season statistics, Rendon was a major contributor to helping the Nationals win their first World Series in franchise history. He hit .328 in the postseason with three home runs, 15 RBI and 11 runs scored.
Signing Rendon means two things for the Yankees. First, they’d find themselves an established third baseman with success in both the regular season and the postseason. Second, they have two valuable pieces in Urshela and Andujar who could help them land a top starter via trade.
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The Yanks have not had a long-term third baseman since Alex Rodriguez. Chase Headley was initially believed to be his replacement but struggled throughout his four years with the club. New York then traded for Brandon Drury, who went down with an injury and was ultimately replaced by Andujar. He was then involved in the trade for J.A. Happ. After Andujar tore his labrum and was out for the remainder of the 2019 season, Urshela found himself at third.
Both Andujar and Urshela had great success in each of their first years in pinstripes. The biggest question for Andujar is if he can improve his defense at third. As for Urshela, can he maintain his offensive productivity and even improve upon his defense?
If the Yankees do not believe they can land Gerrit Cole, Stephen Strasburg, or any other marque starting pitcher on the market, Rendon could be a fallback option. Even though this is extremely unlikely to happen, it is an extremely intriguing option.