The Yankees and JT Realmuto? Well, it might make sense, considering they almost traded Gary Sanchez in August…
As the 2020 season progressed, a solid amount of cold water was thrown on the idea that Gary Sanchez was the Yankees’ catcher of the future — or present, considering Kyle Higashioka was stationed behind the plate every time Gerrit Cole strode to the mound.
But could they really go about cutting ties, when push came to shove? After all, Sanchez is a multi-time All-Star and a 35-homer power bat; how are you upgrading that, based on a shortened-season small sample size?
According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, though, not only might the Yankees pursue JT Realmuto this offseason in Sanchez’s place, but they even went so far as to entertain trades for their veteran backstop in August.
Like, very much during the 2020 season. Whew.
The full Feinsand quote is as follows (and yes, he’s more than reliable, having spent a number of years focusing entirely on the Yankees):
"“According to sources, the Yankees were open to the idea of trading Gary Sánchez in August, though no deal ultimately came to fruition. Could the Yankees move Sánchez — who is arbitration-eligible for two more seasons — and make a play for Realmuto? One catch could be the price tag; the Yankees laid off a number of staffers this season, so it remains to be seen whether they jump back into the deep end of the free-agent pool.”"
Not for nothing, but it’s also nice to see their chances of luring Realmuto (No. 2 on the list) ranked ahead of Steve Cohen and the Mets (No. 3), who desperately need him.
If Brian Cashman’s quotes in his post-season media session didn’t add fuel to the “ditch Sanchez” fire, then this revelation certainly should.
This is a far cry from the “Sanchez for Noah Syndergaard” three-way rumors that cropped up in early 2019; it’s hardcore evidence of the team not only shopping Sanchez, but shopping him midseason in a shortened campaign.
We’re not sure if El Gary’s bags are already packed, but there’s more than enough smoke here to indicate a fire. You don’t leak such trade talks during the stretch run of a pennant chase if you’re not deadly serious about the maneuver.