Report: Yankees were open to trading Gary Sanchez, could it still happen?

New York Yankees, Gary Sanchez

The tree that keeps on giving, Gary Sanchez. Maybe I should rephrase that, the tree that decides to give sometimes and other times disappears for weeks on end. The Yankees have been living in a state of caution at the catcher position, especially during the 2020 season. While Sanchez has proved to be of quality in the past, his continued inconsistencies have made him a liability at the position and one the Yankees must decide on.

While I personally think manager Aaron Boone and general manager Brian Cashman will elect to retain Sanchez and continue rolling with him and Kyle Higashioka, they could make a big decision to sign JT Realmuto this off-season.

However, signing Realmuto almost guarantees the departure of Sanchez, who the Yankees would have to get off the books and gain some capital from.



Reports have indicated that Realmuto is eyeing a record-shattering contract at his position, possibly in the $200 million range. Signing him would require a lengthy deal and a ton of money upfront. The Yankees have the cap space with multiple several players hitting free agency, but is it really worth it to spend that much money when you have a capable tandem with Sanchez and Higashioka?

Again, Higgy looked fantastic this season, becoming Gerrit Cole’s personal catcher. His defense is far more evolved and superior to Sanchez’s, but he lacks the power that the Yankees seek in the hitting order. Nonetheless, the Yankees were potentially looking to move Sanchez at the deadline this year.

According to Mike Rosenstein of NJ.com, the Yankees were shopping catcher Gary Sanchez at the August trade deadline.

According to sources, the Yankees were open to the idea of trading Gary Sánchez in August, though no deal ultimately came to fruition. Could the Yankees move Sánchez — who is arbitration-eligible for two more seasons — and make a play for Realmuto? One catch could be the price tag; the Yankees laid off a number of staffers this season, so it remains to be seen whether they jump back into the deep end of the free-agent pool.

If the Yankees were open to dealing Sanchez just two months ago, what makes you think that they have completely disregarded the idea? They would be selling low on his stock, but if they really want to solidify the position for years to come, they have a chance to do it with Realmuto in free agency.
To give you an idea of how good the Philadelphia Phillies’ catcher is, he finished the 2020 season with a .266 average, 11 homers, and 32 RBIs. Prior to the season, he hadn’t dipped below .275 since 2015. Defensively, he’s one of the best catchers in baseball at throwing runners out on the base paths (47% caught stealing rate in 2019) and only allowed one passed ball in 36 games this year.
Upgrading the Yankees’ specific spot gives them not only an elite catcher but also a contact-oriented hitter with phenomenal power. With the winter hot stove months coming up, we will be watching this connection closely.