Yankees could scoop veteran utility man for next to nothing

MLB: Detroit Tigers at Oakland Athletics, yankees
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

With Oswald Peraza expected to miss the next 6–8 weeks with a shoulder injury and DJ LeMahieu’s availability for opening day in question, it is safe to say the Yankees could use another infielder to support a unit that lacks depth.

For now, it seems as if the Yankees will allow Oswaldo Cabrera to fill the utility role. However, adding a veteran may be in their best interest, and Tony Kemp, who the Cincinnati Reds recently released, could make sense.

Yankees Could Consider Adding Tony Kemp For Cheap

Kemp is a 32-year-old utility man capable of playing both infield and outfield positions. Last year, he spent 456 innings in the outfield and has over 2,000 innings worth of experience at second base. Last season, Kemp played 124 games with the Oakland Athletics, hitting .209/.303/.304. This spring, camp has been solid over eight games with Cincinnati before his release, hitting .333/.391/.619, including five RBIs and a 164 wRC+.

While he lacks versatility in the infield, stashing him in case of emergency may not be a bad move. He has the qualities to be a decent offensive player and at least offer some value with a bit of athleticism, stealing 15 bags last year. He also has a career 13.3% strikeout rate, showcasing decent plate discipline if the Yankees value that, given his lack of power.

This would be an extremely cheap option for the Yankees, and since Kemp spent the off-season working alongside Spencer Jones at Vanderbilt, there is certainly a tangible connection between him and one of the team’s top prospects.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t hold much value when it comes to his quality supporting the Yankees, and the team may be looking for a player with a bit more diversity in their infield alignments.

Another option could be Donovan Solano, a 36-year-old infielder who has been an above-average hitter for the last five consecutive seasons. He has experience playing every infield position, which is likely more in line with what the Bombers need at this point in time.

Ultimately, it comes down to price tag, and general manager Brian Cashman is clearly resisting spending any more money since it would have a 110% tax alongside any new acquisitions based on their $300 million luxury tax salary.

For now, the Yankees seem committed to giving Cabrera the first crack at everyday reps to help supplement injuries.

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