What exactly is Peraza, entering 2024? Is he a backup utility infielder at the big-league level? That doesn't feel befitting of a recent Top 100 prospect, especially after getting so few chances to define himself with regular reps. Is he a Triple-A starter? That feels wildly unnecessary, given how much time he's spent at the level. Will he be stashed on the bench in Oswaldo Cabrera's place, replacing a player better suited to embody that role and float around the diamond? Regardless, Peraza's season seems fated to represent another oddball turn in a long line of 'em.
Let's face facts. If Peraza were still being valued at a top-100 level, he would've been moved already. He might've been a Marlin in 2022, and Pablo López might've extended in New York instead of Minnesota. He might've been the centerpiece of a Corbin Burnes trade, which could've worked sans-Spencer Jones if Milwaukee believed in him as much as they believed in ex-Oriole Joey Ortiz.
The Yankees are firmly entrenched in "win now" mode and can't afford to trade Gleyber Torres, weaken the lineup, and turn the keys over to Peraza. If New York keeps the 23-year-old, he could absorb that role in 2025, or even replace Anthony Volpe at shortstop and shift the incumbent over to Torres' old position.
Will the Yankees (and Peraza) be willing to waste another year on the bench together in the process of waiting for next winter's resolution, though? Brian Cashman would be better off moving Peraza, but might've already missed his window (when have we heard that before?). The slick-fielding infielder might not be getting many bites, but he belongs comfortably on the block while the Yankees sort out this mess of their own creation.