The winter meetings heated up significantly on Tuesday, with the New York Yankees executing a trade with the Red Sox for outfielder Alex Verdugo. Verdugo is meant to be a supplement for the short term while Jasson Dominguez recovers from Tommy John surgery, but that is assuming the team manages to land Juan Soto over the next few days.
Without Dominguez, Verdugo is capable of playing both left field and center field. However, upon the return of Dominguez, manager Aaron Boone indicated that he could make a position change away from center.
On Tuesday, Boone stated that he loves the makeup of Dominguez’s talent but referenced the idea of potentially moving to left field down the road in Yankee Stadium.
“I love the makeup. I love the talent, and I’m excited about his future as a center fielder [or] as a left fielder potentially down the road in our yard, depending on what our roster makeup is.”
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The Yankees Could Move Jason Dominguez to LF
Recovering from a significant elbow injury may cause some minor fluctuations in arm strength, and Dominguez always profiled a bit better for left field, anyway. It is possible that Aaron Judge will transition over to center, where he can use his massive frame, solid athleticism, and elite arm to make plays defensively. Of course, Judge exuding more effort running could increase the probability of injury, but that is a reality the Yankees will likely have to live with if they go in that direction.
Nonetheless, the team is most excited about Dominguez’s offensive upside at just 20 years old. He played only eight games for the Yankees this past season, hitting .258 with a .303 OBP, .677 slugging rate, including four homers, seven RBIs, and a 162 wRC+. He put together some phenomenal at-bats and showcased his power regularly.