Wow, with New York Yankee fans complaining all offseason that the front office had done nothing to improve the team, they woke up this morning to a blockbuster trade, bringing a shortstop, new third baseman, and a new catcher to the Yankees. In the earth-shaking trade with the Minnesota Twins, Gio Urshela and Gary Sanchez will go to the Twins.
In the trade, the Yankees got their new shortstop in Isiah Kiner-Falefa, third baseman Josh Donaldson, and backstop Ben Rortvedt.
Not to be overlooked, a less key move was to acquire an old friend in outfielder Tim Locastro to provide insurance in the outfield.
Per the Yankees PR team:
“The New York Yankees announced today that they have signed OF Tim Locastro to a one-year Major League contract.”
Locastro, 29, has batted .231 (100-for-432) with 74R, 21 doubles, 3 triples, 5HR, 31RBI, 31BB and 31SB in 209 games over parts of five Major League seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers (2017-18), Arizona Diamondbacks (2019-21) and Yankees (2021). The right-handed hitter has appeared at all three outfield positions in his career, playing 65 games in center field, 58 games in left field and 40 games in right field.
It is no secret that center fielder Aaron Hicks has not been a dependable player in the middle of Yankee Stadium, He can be a great player when healthy but can’t seem to stay healthy, requiring Brett Gardner and even Aaron Judge to fill in for him. Last season the Yankees brought in Locastro when Hicks was injured again.
Unfortunately, his time with the Yankees was cut short when he slammed into the wall trying to make a catch on July 18, 2021. He caught the ball but landed badly, causing a torn ACL. In his nine-game stint with the Yankees, he hit .190 with 9 home runs. At the end of the season, the Yankees let him go into free agency.
In a burst of team-changing moves, some fans may not be approved of the loss of Gio Urshela as team sweetheart and great third baseman. But that is not all, for Brett Gardner fans, the Locastro acquisition of Locastro probably means the end of Gardner’s 14 year Yankee career.