On Tuesday morning, fans of Gary Sánchez got a bit of a scare. His name has been on Yankees fans' lips since ... well, since long before he was ultimately traded to the Minnesota Twins in a cursed five-player swap last March.
He represented hope during the down times. He was a lightning rod, post-2017. And, most astoundingly, he was kind of, sort of an option for the Yankees in recent weeks after Jose Trevino's wrist issue thinned their catching depth to near-nil.
Hell, he even fueled the fire himself, working out in Yankees gear, which resulted in a few hands-on-chin emojis.
At this point, it seems unlikely Sánchez would command more than a minor-league deal, and an offense-first catcher (and DH) probably wouldn't be the Yankees' ideal backup plan in case of Trevino/Higashioka emergency. But the latest update won't preclude him from joining the Bombers if they have a change of heart.
Briefly on Tuesday, it looked like he'd fallen even further down the ladder and out of professional baseball. In reality, though, Sánchez signing with the Leones del Escogido of the Dominican Professional Baseball League is really a winter maneuver; he's still on the table for any MLB team that wants him.
Yankees Catcher Gary Sánchez Update: Still a Free Agent
Immediately after the news drop -- and partially because they were cued to expect Sánchez's downfall because of his recent silent market -- fans jumped to the conclusion that he'd be bolting MLB for the Caribbean.
As of now, no major league team has inked Sánchez, and it could be the case that he just takes a season off after the conclusion of the World Baseball Classic and plays his next organized ball in the Dominican Winter League.
That remains unlikely, though. Someone's going to sign him. Right?
In 2022, Sánchez hit .205 with 16 homers and an 89 OPS+ while splitting time between catcher and DH.
He saved his longest home run of the year for the Yankees, of course.