It’s February 5th, pitchers and catchers report to spring training in roughly a week, and top free agents Manny Machado and Bryce Harper have yet to find new homes. Neither player appears destined to end up in a Yankees uniform—at least not in 2019.
After Didi Gregorius underwent offseason Tommy John surgery, the Bombers were left with an unexpected infield hole that could have been filled by Machado. Instead, the Yankees opted to sign Troy Tulowitzki and DJ LeMahieu.
Making room for Harper appeared a little bit more difficult. The Yankees obviously aren’t hurting for outfielders. If anything, they have one outfielder they’d love to get rid of. The idea of Harper playing first base was floated, but he has only played just one game there. It’d be easier to just keep him in the outfield, and Aaron Judge is generously willing to give up his spot in right field to make it happen!
Judge said that he’d be willing to move to center if it meant signing Harper. “[Harper has] got more speed than me, man. Wherever he wants to play, we’ll make it work.”
In a hypothetical scenario where the Yankees have three All-Stars in the outfield, it probably makes more sense to send Harper to center. He does have 184 games under his belt there. It’s unlikely that the Bombers will have to figure this out though, since they’ve shown very little interest in Harper. At the very least, it is a fun thought on a cold, boring offseason day.