The New York Yankees are in a peculiar position this off-season, having to add talent at shortstop and the starting pitching rotation. However, another spot they will likely have to address at some point is catcher, with Gary Sanchez having just one year remaining on his contract.
Sanchez has one year left of arbitration before he becomes a free agent in 2023, with an estimated pay scale of about $7.5 million. However, Sanchez had yet another disappointing season at the plate, despite more consistent defensive play. He finished with a .204 batting average, including 23 homers and 54 RBIs.
Sanchez recorded a 27.5% strikeout rate, hitting 41 singles and 13 doubles over 383 at-bats. Yet again, the veteran catcher is striking out too much and not hitting for contact; instead, going for the home run on every occasion.
Whether that is a philosophical decision from the front office and management or Sanchez trying to do too much, his production simply hasnâ€™t benefited the team enough to consider retaining him on a long-term contract. The reality of him leaving would be devastating, given the Yankees developing him for years and hoping he would be their long-term solution.
Most would agree, Sanchez is simply an average catcher that goes on lengthy cold streaks, failing to contribute offensively. Nonetheless, there arenâ€™t many free-agent options for the Yankees to consider this off-season, with the best being Yan Gomes of the Oakland Athletics.
Gomes is 34-years-old but hit .252 this past season with 14 homers and 52 RBIs. He was far more productive at the plate in fewer opportunities than Sanchez while adding better defensive qualities behind the plate. The veteran recorded a 20.8% strikeout rate this past season, logging a 7.3 defensive WAR while contributing 58 singles and 15 doubles over 349 at-bats.
However, Gomes is six years older than Sanchez, which could be a problematic factor for the Bombers. He played in 103 games this past season as Sanchez performed in 117, indicating similar health bills.
Other free agents on the market include Martin Maldonado and Stephen Vogt, neither of which are considered better players than Gary.
Considering what the Yankees have to work with, do you think they should still replace Sanchez this upcoming off-season? Comment here! [wpdiscuz-feedback id=”bg4h6602uz” question=”Please leave a feedback on this” opened=”0″][/wpdiscuz-feedback]