The minute it was known Didi Gregorius would need Tommy John surgery and miss at least part of the 2019 season, the New York Yankees became the clear favorites to sign Manny Machado this winter.
While that could very well still happen, it seems New York isn't as high on committing that kind of money to Machado and making him a Yankee long term. Of course, when you consider the dirty play and absolute nonsense he pulled during the postseason, you can understand why.
Instead of handing out a series of checks for $300 million, however, the Bronx Bombers should preserve that money for next winter when a different superstar shortstop is on the market. That would be Boston's Xander Bogaerts.
You want a psycho take from me? A truly psychotic take? The Yankees will pass on Manny Machado to sign Xander Bogaerts next offseason.— Adam Weinrib (@AdamWeinrib) November 2, 2018
Before the Red Sox faithful dismiss this entirely with extreme anger, think it through. The biggest reason why this is a real possibility is because of the money Boston has to spend elsewhere-- you know who else is a free agent next offseason? Your ace pitcher, Chris Sale. Do you really want Bogaerts over Sale if forced to choose?
On top of having to pay Sale, the Sox have to begin negotiating with Mookie Betts about a long-term extension. Betts is a the single highest priority for this team, after all.
10 years? Yankees have a far better farm according to all experts, better bullpen and next year Martinez’s BABIP will go back to normal. What happens if you don’t resign the declining Kimbrel? There’s no better closer available. Betts is a free agent in 2 years, Bogaerts next— Neil R (@NeilfromNYC) October 30, 2018
Oh, and we can't forget about potentially re-signing Craig Kimbrel and Nathan Eovaldi this winter, and J.D. Martinez having the ability to opt out of his current contract each of the next three offseasons.
Bogaerts is an underrated player, and for any other team would be a top priority to keep around. But there is a tipping point for every franchise when it comes to spending money, and you could see the X-Man getting the short end of the stick when the time finally comes.
Right now, it sounds crazy to think Bogaerts would sign with the Yankees, but anyone would sign if the money is right. Hell, Johnny Damon shaved off his caveman beard and moved to the Bronx. Jacoby Ellsbury waved goodbye to Fenway, too. Don't rule this one out.