The New York Yankees didn’t end up with any of the top free agent shortstops this offseason and saw some rivals beat them in the race.
The New York Yankees were supposed to sign one of the big name free agent shortstops. That’s what they do. They go out into free agency and pick whoever it is they want. Money doesn’t matter. The number of years on the contract doesn’t either.
That’s what the script said. But this is an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm. There is a basic structure to what is supposed to happen but the transactions are improvised.
The Yankees not only missed out on all four of the biggest free agent shortstops. They lost in other ways, too.
Hal Steinbrenner doesn’t have his father’s wallet.
The first Yankees loss came when they didn’t sign someone before the MLB lockout began
Only Javier Baez and Corey Seager signed before the MLB lockout began. Baez never really seemed feasibly for the Yankees while Seager was someone many were hoping would come to New York. Baez ended up going to the Detroit Tigers with Seager signing his mega-deal with the Texas Rangers. There wasn’t much concern. The Yankees still had options.
Throughout the MLB lockout, fans did grow antsy. What was regarded as a class of four top-tier free agent shortstops was now done to only two — Carlos Correa and Trevor Story remained available. With other lesser players also out there in free agency for the Yankees to choose from as well, they had places to pivot.
Maybe a one-year deal with defensive guru Andrelton Simmons would be good enough. Whatever it was the Yankees would do, it had to be big.
Instead, the team ended up settling for a trade fans began to question immediately.