The New York Yankees are being linked to Baltimore Orioles shortstop Manny Machado, who will become a free agent after the 2018 MLB season. However, the Yankees also have to address the future of their own shortstop, Didi Gregorius, who is showing early this season that he deserves a new deal from New York.
Gregorius could become a free agent after the 2019 MLB season. There will be questions about his role and future in New York if the Yankees manage to sign Machado in the off-season. However, an MLB scout told NJ Advance Media that the Yankees should prioritize Gregorius because he is a better option for them money-wise.
“Didi’s a budding superstar and he’s not like Machado, who will try to get every dollar that he can get,” the scout said. “If the Yankees are smart, they’ll lock him up in the offseason. Give Didi $20 million a year for six years and I think he’ll be very happy and keep doing his thing.”
The 28-year-old shortstop, who succeeded Yankees legend Derek Jeter, is off to a strong start this season. He averaged 0.367 with three home runs and ten RBIs in his first nine games this season. His strong performance is fueling speculation that the Yankees will eventually decide to lock him up to a long-term contract.
Gregorius revealed that the Yankees have yet to talk to him about a potential contract extension, but he clarified that he is ready to sit down with the front office about extending his stay in New York. He also revealed that money is unlikely to become an issue because he is not looking to break the bank.
It is the reason why the scout said that Gregorius is the better choice money-wise in the event the Yankees need to decide between him and Machado. Machado is expected to ask for a lucrative deal in the off-season. The Yankees can actually afford to offer a huge deal, but it could create a conflict down the road.
Machado returned to playing short stop for the Orioles after spending his first six seasons in the majors at third base. The 25-year-old has hinted that he wants to play for the Yankees in the future. But while he is open to moving to New York, the Florida native insisted that he wants to continue playing shortstop, according to North Jersey.
This means that if the Yankees are really ready to make a run at Machado, they might eventually pick between him and Gregorius for the shortstop position. With the way Gregorius is playing this season, he could be the logical choice in the offseason, but the Yankees are still hoping that they can find a solution by convincing either Gregorius or Machado to change position in the next several years.