With a pending option on the table for 2024 and top shortstop prospect Masyn Winn and his ridiculous arm breathing down the nape of his neck, Yankees killer Paul DeJong leaving St. Louis was nearly a guarantee entering Tuesday morning.
Now that he's been moved, the Cardinals can take a look at Winn for the remainder of the season, while also helping out a repeated trade partner in -- oh, come on, Toronto again?!
After linking up for a Jordan Hicks trade over the weekend, the Jays sent their fan-favorite incumbent shortstop to Toronto for a limited return. DeJong turns 30 years old tomorrow, on Aug. 2, and is in the midst of a mini-ssaince, posting a .710 OPS and pairing it with excellent defense. If Bo Bichette is out a while (and it seems like he is), he could certainly help hold down the fort in the Wild Card race.
Yankee fans are probably most familiar with DeJong from last summer's interleague series with the Cardinals, midway through New York's summer spiral. You remember that, right? Frankie Montas debuted, didn't go well? In that three-game Cardinal sweep, DeJong -- midway through a 53 OPS+ season -- went 3-for-9 with a homer, a double, three walks, and six RBI.
Perhaps that was due to a little extra motivation? He hates the Yankees, has since at least 2011, and will now get a chance to eliminate them from the postseason from within the walls of the AL East. Cool.
Yankees have to watch out for Paul DeJong in Toronto, who hates them
The Jays had a shortstop hole for approximately 12 minutes. The Yankees have had a left field hole for two years. So it goes.
The Yankees don't have to counter this move with a virulent Blue Jays hater, but it would've been nice for them to pick some sort of lane well ahead of the 2023 trade deadline.
When DeJong fired off that tweet back in 2011, he was a freshman matriculating at Illinois State University. He'll have a chance to prove his tweet prescient by hating the Yankees in person from Sept. 19-21 in the Bronx, then again Sept. 26-28 in Toronto.