Yankees could make run at superstar third baseman next offseason

manny machado, yankees

The Yankees have had their fair share of big contracts and superstars come through the Bronx. In the past, they’ve signed massive players to massive deals, and this upcoming offseason could continue that trend. Though it may not be entirely likely or plausible, Manny Machado to New York makes more sense than people would like to admit. Especially considering the Padres just handed out another $108 million to Yu Darvish, keeping him with the organization for the next six years. According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, there could be interest from the Yankees next off-season.

But if the Dodgers or some other team lands Ohtani, Machado will be quite an enticing alternative.

Ditto for the Yankees, who likely will say farewell to Josh Donaldson.

The Yankees should do everything in their power to land more star power:

Machado is almost certainly going to opt out of his contract, thus allowing him to hit free agency and get another massive deal. The Yankees make all-too-much sense for Manny, and given the fact that the most open position in the infield is third base, it could be a match made in heaven. For starters, Machado is a superstar, and if not for Paul Goldschmidt, he likely would’ve taken home the 2022 NL MVP award. Last season he posted a .898 OPS, to go with a 152 wRC+ and a 7.4 fWAR. Both the fWAR and wRC+ were career highs, and Manny will want to capitalize on his all-time high value. 

The Padres could make a splash on Machado, though I truly don’t know how much more money they have to spend. Assuming the organization will want to keep Soto in the brown and gold for the rest of his career potentially, that means some pieces will have to go. Machado is easily going to be the second biggest name on the market next offseason, as the Ohtani sweepstakes will take center stage for all to see. The Yanks have been in on Manny for some time now, and why not imagine what the future could look like with the superstar manning the hot corner? 

The financial side could line up — Aaron Judge & Manny Machado together would be kismet:

First of all, the Yankees would have to shell out a few hundred million for his signature. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if he signed a 10/11-year deal for upwards of $320 million. He’s got the pedigree to match the talent, and it’s clear that he is able to make any investment on him pay off in the long run. A few years ago, Machado was being courted by the Yanks, and they believed they had a shot to get him. He then decided to sign with the Padres on a 10/$300M deal that began in the 2019 season, and thanks to the opt-outs, should see another bag head his way. The Yanks will have tons of money coming off the books in the coming seasons and could easily ink Machado to be Judge’s running mate for the better part of the next decade or so. 

Machado does everything exceptionally well and has been one of the league’s perennial third basemen for practically his entire career. Last season he belted 32 HR, walked 9.8% of the time (and struck out a manageable 20.7%), and posted the best BABIP (.337) with the second-best wOBA (.382) of his stellar career. He continues to hit the baseball hard and barrel it up with the best of them, and also posts very solid batted-ball peripherals that indicate he could do just fine at Yankee Stadium. 

Everyone would like to mention that he’s not a lefty and that the Yanks need more lefties, but with a superstar like Machado, it really doesn’t matter. In ‘22, he was actually better vs righties on the bump, as he posted a .915 OPS and a 158 wRC+ to boot as well. Against opposite-handed pitching, he was no slouch, as he still shined bright with a .855 OPS and 138 wRC+. He is truly the definition of a star, and bringing him to the Bronx would be an exceptional get by Hal and co. 

Machado is still other-worldly with his glove and isn’t a fan of the Beantown boys either:

His defense continues to be top of the league, as last year he finished with 8 OAA, despite a down year with -3 DRS. The year prior, he had 6 DRS, and ‘22 remains the outlier year as that is the only year in his entire career that he finished with negative DRS. Back when he was with the Orioles, he accumulated a monstrous 71 DRS from 2012-17. Simply put, he’s as good defensively as he is with a bat in his hands. 

Adding Machado would certainly be an upgrade over both Donaldson and LeMahieu at the hot corner, and he would provide some extremely exciting moments as well. Manny is the definition of a competitor, and his fire and energy would make for a perfect match with the Yankees’ fanbase and their expectation for greatness. Not to mention, he’s not a fan of Boston in the slightest, as some incidents during his time with the O’s have led to him being very outspoken about what he thinks of that franchise. 

Manny Machado is a superstar, and anyone that tries to say anything different is doing a terrible job at coping. If Manny is to join the Bronx Bombers, the Yankees team would immediately become the team to beat. Imagine a lineup with Judge, Manny, Rizzo, and Stanton as the 2 through 5; that would be a modern reincarnation of Murderer’s Row. He is built for the spotlight, and if the Padres don’t want to fork over another few hundred million, he should be priority number one. 

The Mets are certainly going to be in on Manny, though the Yanks and Mets have been going at it for some time now, especially with Cohen’s arrival as the owner back in ‘21. Yankees fans alike would all woo over Manny donning the pinstripes, and it would be one of the biggest signings — if not the biggest — in franchise history. The Padres could certainly offer him an extension prior to Opening Day, but I wouldn’t be shocked if Manny elects for FA and doesn’t look to sign a team-friendly-ish deal to stay with the team. 

San Diego already has a whopping payroll, and with both Xander and Darvish making nearly $400 million between them and Tatis’s massive deal, perhaps they’ll look elsewhere for a third baseman down the road.

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