1. Salvador Perez
Once again, another talented player we’d take any day! But the situation at this very moment just didn’t call for it.
Perez is arguably the best all-around catcher in the league, but he’s already 32 years old and recently signed a four-year, $82 million contract, which could keep him in KC through 2026 (there’s an option for that year).
Would Yankees fans really have wanted to pay $20+ million per year for a catcher who’s undoubtedly going to regress? What would have this acquisition prevented the Yankees from doing? Does this mean Anthony Rizzo doesn’t get re-signed? Maybe! And fans would sure rather have the hottest hitter on the team (and maybe in MLB?!) over a revolving door at first base and more stability behind the plate.
Truth be told? The platoon of Kyle Higashioka and Jose Trevino is fine. In case we needed to remind you again, the Yankees don’t need the best players at every position on their roster. They just need average production as to not negate what the star sluggers/defenders do. Gary Sánchez, whether you believe it or not, canceled out his own play (at best) and adversely affected the rest of the roster. Trevino and Higgy, at the very least, are elite defenders, and come at a cheap price.
From a talent standpoint, Perez on this roster would’ve been incredible. However, the Yankees are already paying enough money for players on the decline or eventual decline (Aaron Hicks, Gerrit Cole, Giancarlo Stanton, DJ LeMahieu, etc.). Another one in Perez, especially at his price tag, would’ve limited the front office this year and beyond, and we might’ve missed out on the optimism and fast start in the early going of 2022 had things been different.