The New York Yankees require some outfield depth after potentially losing veteran Aaron Hicks for the remainder of the season due to a wrist injury. The Detroit Tigers will be sellers and have plenty of outfielders for the taking.
It’s been suggested that the New York Yankees have been eyeing the recently demoted JaCoby Jones. In an article published by NJ.com, author Mike Rosenstein indicates the Yankees are in the market for outfield help and could come calling the Detroit Tigers.
My question is, why?
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Jones is hitting a whopping .170 in 2021 while owning a WAR of -0.6. Jones has launched two home runs this season while driving in nine. He’s also swiped a pair of bags. To go along with that dreadful batting, average Jones is stashing an on-base percentage of .210 and slugging at a .250 clip. His OPS in 2021 is just .460, but he has maintained a career .646 OPS to date in his career.
So again, I ask, why?
I’ve always thought Jones displayed the raw talent and athleticism to excel at the MLB level, but he’s failed to put it all together despite showing flashes, hence his recent demotion. When Jones broke into Detroit’s lineup, I thought he had the makings of a five-tool player but just never lived up to the hype.
Now at 29-years old, time is running out. If the Yankees come calling, it’s a no-brainer for Detroit Tigers general manager Al Avila, pull the trigger on a deal and hope to land a mid-level young prospect from the Yankees system and hope he blossoms.
The New York Yankees are in need of an outfielder and the Detroit Tigers have a couple to offer.
The draw here is that Jones is a true centerfielder, and although Brett Gardner has the ability to play centerfield and will be filling in at that position in the meantime, he’s better suited in left field at this juncture of his career.
That being said, if Yankees GM Brian Cashman feels Gardner can secure the CF position, New York should shift their focus to someone like Robbie Grossman rather than Jones. Jones earns $2.6 million in ’21 and is under team control until 2024.
Grossman, just two years older than Jones, is a far more established professional and is owed just $10-million total over the next two seasons could have much more of an impact atop the Yankees lineup.
Grossman has been a rare bright spot within a very lifeless Detroit Tigers everyday lineup on most nights. The 31-year old is stashing a line of .256/.384/.427 with a very respectable .811 OPS in 2021. Grossman carries a WAR of 1.3 this season.
After enduring a slow start to the season, New York currently sits with an overall record of 28-19, just one game back of the division-leading Tampa Bay Rays.