New York Yankees star Gary Sanchez rebounded after a tumultuous 2018 season once again, regaining his confidence as a top catcher in baseball.
The New York Yankees enter the winter offseason with the usual free agent questions to address before next year. The big difference from the winter prior is the stronghold on All-Star catcher Gary Sanchez in potential trade talks.
Sanchez was a complete mess on both sides of the ball in 2018 and struggled through nagging injuries. He batted .186 and led all catchers in MLB in passed balls, making the possibility of him being dealt before his breakout 2019 season highly likely according to rumors around that time.
This past season saw Sanchez regain his All-Star form with impressive power numbers and awareness behind the plate. He was a very consistent contributor in the lineup, while a majority of the team spent long stints on the injured list. Sanchez is a priority this offseason as opposed to last is further confirmed by longtime Yankees general manager Brian Cashman.
Cashman, during an interview with reporters, was quoted by the New York Post regarding the team’s interest in keeping Sanchez.
“I think we have a distinct advantage by having Gary Sanchez as our everyday catcher,” Cashman said at the GM meetings. “And I know many in the industry feel the same way by their attempts last year, these extremely smart teams trying to see if they can get their hands on him. They’re not going to ask this year because everybody saw the numbers behind the numbers from last year and they know what he’s capable of. They know he’s a huge difference-maker being able to run him out there behind the plate.”
Cashman could’ve looked bad as an executive if Sanchez had flourished elsewhere this past season. The interesting situation could’ve been catastrophic without his bat in the lineup and reliability daily. Sanchez underperformed in the postseason this year, which was another source of concern for critics, but in comparison, so did much of the lineup in the Houston Astros series.
The Yankees should actively look into securing their young catcher for the longterm as he develops on both sides of the diamond.