With the 2024 MLB season to look forward to after being eliminated from playoff contention on Sunday, New York Yankees management has an opportunity to establish their young infield with 2B Gleyber Torres, SS Oswald Peraza, and SS Anthony Volpe all 26 years old or younger.
Potential and Pricetags Viable for the Yankees
First baseman Anthony Rizzo and second baseman DJ Lemahieu are both under contract until at least 2025, while New York’s young core are all set for arbitration or free agency in 2024.
Torres, 26, has been with the team for six seasons, where he’s mustered up a .267 career batting average and .344 on-base percentage to back up three seasons with 70 or more home runs.
Instrumental in the Yankees’ resurgence since 2017, Torres is set for contract negotiations heading into 2024 and merits a long-term contract. His 574 recorded outs have situated him at No. 4 among all second basemen this season.
Volpe, 23, is one of only 31 players to have stolen 24 or more bases in 2023 and ranks No. 10 among all rookies in OPS at .668 percent.
Having been Baseball America’s top Yankees prospect out of the minor leagues in 2022 and again in 2023, Volpe has shown sound intangibles and an ability to keep pitching staffs on their toes at the plate and between bases, though Yankees head coach Aaron Boone has come under fire yesterday for his recent offensive slump.
Peraza is up for a new contract once the season concludes this winter. The second-year third baseman has been at bat 157 times and has only hit two home runs and produced seven total doubles and triples combined. These metrics are areas for improvement for Peraza, but he’ll be worth the re-up on the books.
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Nipping at Their Heels?
Competition for Volpe and Peraza is still years away, as the Yankees’ two highest-ranked prospects at shortstop per MLB Pipeline — Rick Lombard Jr. and Roderick Arias — aren’t expected to be called up to the majors until 2027.
Further, since Oswald and Peraza are low-cost options whose upside supersedes their price tag at the moment, only Torres’ potential seven-figure extension figures to extend their third-highest existing payroll in 2024 are heading into free agency.
Los Angeles Angels superstar Shohei Ohtani is the prized free agent once the season ends, and the Yankees will have to offer the brinks truck to even have a shot at landing the dual-threat RHP and DH. Where that leaves the three infielders of the future is subject to change once the offseason unfolds, but for now, they’ve done enough to garner spots on the 40-man roster moving forward.