Dodgers fans loving ex-Yankees prospect Trey Sweeney after potential win-win trade

Los Angeles Dodgers v Los Angeles Angels
Los Angeles Dodgers v Los Angeles Angels / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

In mid-December, to help the Dodgers clear a 40-man spot after dropping $700 million on Shohei Ohtani, the Yankees facilitated a fun swap that put slugging infielder Jorbit Vivas and Victor González on New York's roster in exchange for top prospect Trey Sweeney, who wouldn't need to be protected from the Rule 5 Draft until after the 2024 season. Wiggle room and upside in exchange for different upside and a bullpen stalwart. Made sense in theory and, so far, in practice as well.

Vivas hit the ground slugging at Yankees camp, showing off Rougned Odor-esque power from the left side with (hopefully) a healthy dash of steady defense. González has yet to appear in a game, but that's been par for the course for New York's projected bullpen.

Sweeney? He, too, is impressing Dodgers fans, standing out among a fleet of established stars. According to Dave Roberts, the Dodgers' coaching staff made some swing tweaks with Sweeney (of course they did), and the team envisions him at third base for the time being.

Sweeney's Yankees tenure was marked by inconsistency following his first-round selection in the 2021 draft, but the pure hit tool has always been there. Whether it unveiled itself or not was a different question. While Vivas -- from the left side -- might be able to fill Sweeney's eventual role in the Bronx admirably (ditto Roderick Arias, ditto George Lombard Jr.), that doesn't mean the Yankees didn't also lose something here.

Yankees traded top prospect Trey Sweeney impressing Dodgers fans

Sweeney, at his best, generates hard contact on mostly line drives, but can spray grounders all over the field as well. The power, while often not intentional, still could result in 15-20 home runs based on the quality of contact.

So far, Sweeney "at his best" has been on display in the middle innings of the Dodgers' spring contests, following a year where he hit .252 with a .778 OPS and 13 homers at Double-A Somerset.

When Sweeney was selected by the Yankees, he was believed to be a small-school talent (Eastern Illinois) with an advanced bat, which was responsible for his slight overdraft. New York's crowded shortstop field (and Sweeney's distance from the Rule 5 Draft) sent him across the country, in exchange for a player who might just fit the team's current needs a little bit better.

The Yankees surely aren't bummed to have Vivas in the high minors, as well as González in the bullpen. But that doesn't mean Sweeney is devoid of room to grow, and he's showing his tantalizing ceiling at camp already with the team best equipped to develop him into a monster to all fields.