Let’s go down the list of chemistry-altering moves for the worse the New York Yankees have made the last few years, shall we? Before we get to the Luke Voit-Anthony Rizzo situation, it’s best we shine a light on what else has transpired.
After the 2019 season, they let Didi Gregorius go, which was understandable, but the manner in which they did it certainly wasn’t respectful and it can be assumed it rubbed his close teammates the wrong way.
After the 2020 season, the Yankees reportedly had little-to-no contact with Masahiro Tanaka, who spent seven years with the franchise before finally making a decision to return to Japan. This is how you repay guys who have gave it their all?
Next came the 2021 trade deadline, when they moved Luis Cessa, who was famously close with a number of big-name Yankees players, in a salary dump trade with the Cincinnati Reds … only to not spend the money they managed to create more flexibility with. Not to mention, Cessa was finally coming into his own. After the 2021 season ended, the Yanks then dumped Aaron Judge’s best bud in Tyler Wade despite not having a shortstop on the roster. Trading Gio Urshela this week likely took its toll, too.
But that same 2021 deadline, they acquired Rizzo with Voit still on the roster. When Rizzo missed two weeks due to COVID diagnosis, Voit won AL Player of the Week and was rewarded by riding the bench when Rizzo returned.
Voit is still on this roster for some reason. He arrived at spring training and has been practicing with the team … only to be met with the Rizzo news AGAIN when the Yankees re-signed the slugging first baseman to a two-year deal. And now Voit has to talk about this to the media in what’s very clearly an awkward situation.
The Yankees made it awkward for Luke Voit after signing Anthony Rizzo.
Yes, perfect, let’s acquire Josh Donaldson so we have to address his beef with Gerrit Cole after a contentious 2021 season despite possessing plenty of other needs that could’ve been addressed with $50 million and then re-sign Rizzo while Voit is still here, only for him to deal with this situation all over again. Why did they not trade Voit if they knew they were bringing in another first baseman to supplant him? Why have this be a talking point before a pivotal 2022 season?
The Kings of PR strike again. The Yankees can’t possibly make any coaching changes during a season that clearly needed them because that would’ve looked bad … but decimating the roster in a manner that affects morale and chemistry? Sure. Putting players in a bad position to address the most ruthless media in the world? Why not!
The Yankees just never get it right nowadays. Yes, they got better this offseason, but once again did it in a confounding manner, with a baffling late Sunday night trade and an even later Tuesday night addition after not making a single move since 2021 concluded.
Trading for Donaldson and signing Rizzo weren’t necessarily bad moves. But when you jettison one fan favorite and put another in an impossible situation, it just speaks to the lack of awareness and understanding of the bigger picture, especially with a roster that already has chemistry/character issues.