3 teams Yankees can flip Alex Verdugo to after shocking trade

If the Yankees want to continue wheeling and dealing, this is an easy one.
Chicago White Sox v Boston Red Sox
Chicago White Sox v Boston Red Sox / Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages
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Seattle Mariners

This is the clearest fit in MLB, considering where the Mariners sit and what they lack (in self-imposed fashion).

When Seattle cleared huge chunks of payroll in recent weeks by trading Eugenio Suarez, Marco Gonzales, and Evan White -- as well as watching Teoscar Hernandez fly into free agency and clearing Jarred Kelenic off the roster -- they suddenly gained significant flexibility. You know, the type of flexibility that might make you believe they coveted Juan Soto. Or Gleyber Torres? ...Alex Verdugo?

Bottom line, no one knows if Jerry Dipoto intends to operate at the top of the market and replenish anything, or has instead been ordered to lay low and take several steps back, even though the team went "all in" and extended Luis Castillo just last year. At this moment, the Mariners have unfilled outfield holes, as well as Josh Rojas at second base and Luis Urías at third. That is not a contender, and is stunningly far from the caliber of 2023's Opening Day roster.

The M's are flush with young pitching, and while top-tier names like Bryan Woo and Bryce Miller won't be considered here, Emerson Hancock could be a fit. If he made sense in a Torres swap, the ex-sixth overall pick fits even better in a deal for Verdugo's $9 million.

Of course, the Yankees could just be planning to keep the lefty agitator all year long and coax him to free agency in pinstripes. As Aaron Boone said, it is only December, after all.