The New York Yankees may or may not make the postseason this year. Regardless, here are three players that general manager Brian Cashman should cut, but likely can’t.
The New York Yankees have put their fans through all of the emotions throughout the 2021 season. Whether it was the numerous heartbreaking losses or the 13-game winning streak this summer, Yankee games had more drama than an Oscar-nominated film.
Regardless of how the season ends (postseason-berth or not), the Yankees will have to find a way to ensure the team lives up to its lofty goals next year and beyond. Specifically, which players general manager Brian Cashman needs to move on from, but can’t. Think of this through a fantasy baseball perspective, where there are no salary implications.
3. Brett Gardner, OF
Brett Gardner hit free agency this past winter, and waited for quite some time, even though the expectation was that he would return to the Yankees. That is exactly what Cashman did, signing him to a one-year contract with a player option for the 2022 season.
The Yankees planned on having Gardner fill in as a bench option in the outfield. But given the variety of injuries that occurred in the beginning of the season, Gardner was starting every game and was not producing at the plate. But, Gardner was thrown back into his backup role following the trade deadline, where New York got Joey Gallo from the Texas Rangers.
As of Thursday night, Gardner is slashing .220/.329/.355 while recording nine home runs, 36 RBI and 78 hits through 131 games.
Given that Gardner has a $2.3 million player option for the 2022 season, it is highly likely that he will return.