Could the Yankees bring back former All-Star catcher to compete for backup spot?

yankees, gary sanchez
Sep 16, 2020; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez (24) hits a single during the fourth inning against the Toronto Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The Yankees now have a somewhat precarious situation at the catcher position. With Rortvedt needing to undergo surgery to fix an aneurysm in his left shoulder, that could potentially mean we see an old face reunited with the organization. While I don’t think it’ll happen, Gary Sanchez remains a free agent, and who doesn’t love to see a good ol’ reunion? 

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Sanchez looks to use the WBC as leverage to sign with a team on an MLB deal:

The Yankees certainly have a few guys that can easily fill the slot at AAA for the time being, the most likely of which is the talented Austin Wells. However, Gary Sanchez could be a potential option if he is to have a great WBC. Sanchez remains unsigned up to this moment, and I wouldn’t be shocked if a great showing at the World Baseball Classic might win some franchises over. 

The other catcher that will likely be in AAA is Josh Breaux, known for his exceptional 70-grade power. He reminds me a bit of Mike Zunino in that he has a similar all-or-nothing mentality at the plate. Adding Gary could bring a bit more depth to the organization, as well as bringing back a familiar face. Gary hasn’t been a great player these past few seasons but has improved across the board defensively, especially. 

The Yankees could bring back Gary Sanchez for his power:

With a bat in his hands, he still finds himself near the top of the leaderboards in various categories like HH%, Exit Velo, and Barrel Rate, but that hasn’t translated to any success in the box. He posted a 90 wRC+ last season, though there certainly is more left in the tank, given his batted-ball profile. I don’t imagine Gary would get a ton of fire behind him signing with anyone. 

Adding Sanchez would allow the Yankees to run with three MLB-ready catchers in their system and could be some nice veteran leadership to run alongside Wells down in Scranton for the time being. I can see Sanchez making an impact regardless of where he goes, but a reunion makes more sense now than it did a month ago. 

I don’t believe the Yankees will bring him back but now seems as good a time as ever. I think he would be a better get than a lot of people give credit for, though it certainly wouldn’t be a game-changer. He’s not the same player he was during his heydays in the Bronx, but it would be nice to see a familiar face return for some redemption.