The New York Yankees signed veteran shortstop Troy Tulowitzki to provide depth in the infield due to the absence of Didi Gregorius. The Yankees’ usual SS suffered serious damage to his throwing arm and was forced to undergo Tommy John surgery.
Signing the former Toronto Blue Jay offers value, especially considering he’s on the veteran minimum deal. After missing the 2018 season with injury, Troy will return with the hopes of bouncing back at the age of 34. In 2017, he earned a batting average of .249 – nothing note-worthy, but good enough to consider bringing on as a stop-gap until Didi returns or the Yankees sign superstar free agent Manny Machado.
How does the Tulowitzki signing affect the Manny Machado deal for the New York Yankees?
With reports indicating the Yankees will win the race for Machado, the signing of Troy certainly questions their motives. Do they want to retain Gregorius for the long-hall, allowing Manny to walk, or do they want to provide reserve depth/rotational piece, in addition to two-time Gold Glove winner?
It seems as if the Yankees are keen on bolstering the team with high-quality defensive players, as both Machado and Tulowitzki have two Gold-Gloves to their name.
I wouldn’t expect this signing to affect the pursuance of Machado in any way, primarily due to the veteran minimum deal the Yankees offered the shortstop.
What kind of potential does Tulowitzki have?
We all know the type of quality Troy offered earlier in his career, and he’s five years removed from an All-Star caliber season – he hit .340 over 315 at-bats with 21 home runs and 50 walks. He only struck out 57 times. Those days seem long behind him, but extracting whatever value is left is surely what the Yankees are focusing on. Good defense and leadership is his contribution to the team.
Signing Machado on the other hand would provide the hitting quality, as he’s in his prime and recorded a batting average of .297 in 2018. By signing a veteran for a low cap-hit and rising star, they can piece together a balanced lineup that can withstand injury and cold-streaks. In baseball, it’s all about how you deal with the adversity, and the Yankees are putting together the right pieces to weather the storm.