A flood of memories and “what ifs” came to mind when the New York Yankees signed Troy Tulowitzki to a one-year veteran minimum deal last week. The former Blue Jay and Colorado Rockies shortstop was once a prime target for the Yankees with GM Brian Cashman favoring his skill-set. Unfortunately, a Yankees legend in Derek Jeter stood in the way of any potential deal – it was for the best at the end of the day.
But, several years later with Troy going into his 13th season in the MLB, the men in Pinstripes decided it was time to make his dream comes true. Tulo will be coming to the Bronx to fill the shortstop position while Didi Gregorius heals from Tommy John surgery.
Moving forward, the Yanks will hope Tulo has some gas left in the tank to be at least serviceable while Didi recovers. The question is:
What does Troy Tulowitski have left in the tank? And can the Yankees extract value from him?
Tulowitzki missed the entire 2018 season due to injury, which forces us to revert back to 2017 to find his most recent stats. In his most recent campaign, the once illustrious infielder stepped up to the plate 241 times, batting .249 with seven homers and 26 RBIs.
His hitting wasn’t anything to write home about, and to be quite frank, it hasn’t been since 2015. It’s fair to say he’s well past his prime and into grandfather years, but he does provide value for a team trying to fill a hole for the time being.
How was his defense?
His defense has fallen off a bit as well, recording eight errors in just 64 games in 2017. As a comparison to his prime, he only allowed six errors in 140 games in 2011. His numbers are far from what they once were, but the Yankees knew he wouldn’t be the same player at 34 years-old. Nonetheless, he’s always dreamed of playing for the Yankees which might bring the best out of the aging star.
To conclude, it’s to be determined as to how much gas he has left in the tank, but at the end of the day, the Yankees will receive a solid defender with average hitting abilities. Being that he missed the entire 2018 season, he’s a complete wild card heading into 2019.
“There’s some extra motivation, with what I’ve been through,” Tulowitzki said on Monday. “I think a lot of people have written me off and said at times that I was done. I think all this has really made me stronger, made me appreciate the game more than ever. I’ve put in a lot of work to put myself into a position to have this opportunity. There’s a chip on my shoulder.”