The Yankees have a question mark at third base, despite Gio Urshela rising from the ashes like a legendary Pheonix to supplement the injury to Miguel Andujar last season. The former Indian and Blue Jay hit an astounding .314 with 21 homers and 74 RBIs, helping the Bombers reach the ALCS before being knocked out by the cheating-driven Houston Astros.
The rise and establishment of Urshela pose the Yankees with a question — is Miguel Andujar expendable in a potential trade?
Let’s get one thing sorted out:
Can the Yankees trust Urshela as a long-term option? Defensively, he’s far better than the Yankees youth product, but last season was his first as an above-average third baseman. Before coming to the Bronx, Urshela’s career-best batting average was .233, and his highest home run total was six, recorded back in 2015.
However, Andujar hasn’t shown he can be a consistent option either, which has led to teams like the Texas Rangers inquiring about his availability.
MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan explains.
(The Rangers) are definitely intrigued by the possibility of trading for Yankees third baseman Miguel Andújar. He missed most of last season after undergoing right shoulder surgery and has been replaced by Gio Urshela. The Yankees would expect much in the way of a trade, but acquiring Andújar would allow the Rangers to use their financial resources elsewhere. New York needs starting pitching, but it also has an affinity for hard-throwing relievers and Texas has depth in that area.
The Rangers would inevitably get significant value for Andujar on a great deal, as the Yankees have minimal leverage considering he missed all of last season. I believe the Yankees should shoo them away like a stray-dog, as Andujar has too much potential and value to give up for pennies on the dollar.
Giving him one more season to prove his worth and develop should be a priority for manager Aaron Boone. Best case scenario, Andujar’s bat comes alive during the 2020 regular season, and the Yankees can shop him at the deadline to supplant a deficiency.
With the pieces in place to win a World Series, the Yankees must do whatever it takes to bring the trophy home in 2020. They have the money available to sign premium players in free agency, but they also have the luxury of holding onto players like Andujar.