Yankees don’t have the best offer on the table for veteran free agent infielder

MLB: Los Angeles Angels at New York Yankees
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

While the Yankees have shown interest in Gio Urshela, other teams may be more driven to acquire the veteran infielder on the free-agent market. Bryan Hoch of MLB.com reports that while the Yankees and Mets have both shown interest in Urshela, the Marlins and Angels have better offers on the table for him. This makes sense given the careful approach the Yankees have taken with their payroll since exceeding the $300 million mark for the first time in franchise history. Tony Kemp is another infielder that the team has shown interest in, and perhaps his lower cost could be more likely.

As New York suits up for Spring Training, they’ll look to shore up their roster and see what opportunities become available with a stagnant market.

Updates on the Yankees’ Interest in Gio Urshela

mlb: miami marlins at los angeles angels, gio urshela, mets, yankees
May 28, 2023; Anaheim, California, USA; Los Angeles Angels third baseman Gio Urshela (10) runs after hitting a triple against the Miami Marlins during the second inning at Angel Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Gio Urshela spent last season with the Los Angeles Angels, the third team he’s been on in the last three seasons. The Yankees originally acquired Urshela in a small deal with the Toronto Blue Jays before the 2019 season, where he’d emerge as the team’s starting third baseman in a breakout season. An excellent run from 2019-2020 made him one of the key contributors in their lineup, but a harsh dropoff in production in a woeful Yankees’ offense in 2021 would spell the end of his tenure in the Bronx.

He’d be traded to the Minnesota Twins in a controversial deal alongside Gary Sanchez, as the Yankees acquired Isiah Kiner-Falefa to play shortstop and Josh Donaldson to serve as his replacement at third base. Unfortunately for the Yankees, not only would both players in the deal struggle to perform, but they’d also see Urshela net more value in 2022 than Donaldson by a notable margin. It was a disaster of a trade for the Yankees, as the Twins were then able to sign All-Star shortstop Carlos Correa as a result of clearing Donaldson’s money off of the payroll.

MLB: Chicago Cubs at New York Yankees, josh donaldson
Jul 7, 2023; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson (28) react after striking out during the fifth inning against the Chicago Cubs at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels were hoping to get a season similar to the one Gio Urshela had in 2022 where he had a 119 wRC+ and 2.4 fWAR, but instead, injuries and underperformance would plague the 32-year-old’s season. He’d played just 62 games before suffering a season-ending pelvis injury, but there is hope that he can return to form in 2024. The Yankees do have some question marks at third base, as DJ LeMahieu is only getting older and Oswald Peraza is extremely unproven and could start the season in Triple-A.

It would be wise to keep Oswald Peraza in Scranton if he isn’t going to start as he could get consistent at-bats and start every day, working on the skills necessary to have his physical tools translate at the Major League level. He’ll try and win a job out of Spring Training, and injuries could always open up a spot for him, but having a utility infielder with MLB experience could certainly help them stay afloat in dire circumstances. It wasn’t too long until Jake Bauers and Franchy Cordero were regulars in the starting lineup, and the team needs to be prepared for the worst-case scenario.

While not impossible for the Yankees to up their offer and land Gio Urshela, the Miami Marlins and Los Angeles Angels might be able to provide not just more money, but more playing time as well.

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