2. Javier Baez to the Yankees
Javier Baez could be a flashy just-before-free-agency fit for the Yankees at shortstop.
Yeah, we’re taking stars and giving back prospects across the board. It’s what we do here. Don’t question it.
Remember when the Yankees made Gleyber Torres their official shortstop of the future prior to the 2020 season, instead of simply using him at shortstop without the official designation? 60 games later, the questions about his long-term fit at the extremely important position are reverberating loudly.
With just one year left before he hits free agency among a cloud of star shortstops, Javier Baez’s future is uncertain in Chicago (join the club!). While more likely to be extended than Kris Bryant (LOL), Baez is also coming off a poor 60-game sample that may have clouded his future value. But the 28-year-old free-swinger is an elite defender and arguably the best power-hitting shortstop in the game.
An extension will likely be attached to Baez no matter which team deals for him, and such a move would result in the Yankees disavowing DJ LeMahieu in order to permanently roll forward with a middle infield of their new acquisition in the hole and Torres at the position he held down through 2019. Though there’s only one year of control here, Baez’s current contract would exist in name only — rest assured, there’d be a handshake involved here that would pump up his trade value immensely.
This is an instance where either Deivi Garcia or Clarke Schmidt would lead the package, followed likely by a bonafide big-league bat in Miguel Andujar. Throw in Gil and outfield prospect Canaan Smith (No. 21, per MLB Pipeline), and you just might have a deal here.