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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 10/10/21

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Yankees almost traded for Andrelton Simmons; Aaron Boone’s future still undecided; Broadcast blunders overshadowing play on field; Yankees no longer AL juggernaut; DJ LeMahieu’s regression was predictable

MLB: New York Yankees at Oakland Athletics Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Trade Rumors | TC Zencka: It’s no secret that Gleyber Torres struggled at shortstop — enough that the Yankees moved him to second base in mid-September. Over a month before that decision, however, things were so dire that the Yankees attempted to pry glove-first shortstop Andrelton Simmons from the Twins at the trade deadline. One thing is clear: shortstop is high atop the priority list heading into the winter. There’s a bonanza of options available — including Corey Seager, Carlos Correa, Trevor Story, and Marcus Semien — however, the Yankees will be up against stiff competition, with no fewer than six other teams in the market for a shortstop this offseason.

New York Post | Dan Martin: The Yankees once again fell short of their goal in the postseason, and with manager Aaron Boone’s contract expiring, this winter feels like a natural point for both parties to part ways. However, it is by no means a foregone conclusion that Boone has managed his last game in pinstripes. Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner and GM Brian Cashman value stability, and have repeatedly cited the winning seasons under Boone’s tenure. The coming weeks will provide more clarity as to how the Yankees will address their soon-to-be-vacant managerial position.

New York Daily News | Bob Raissman: One of the unfortunate early trends of the 2021 postseason has seen various broadcasters steal attention away from the play on the field. John Sterling launched into one of his famous premature home run calls on a Giancarlo Stanton single that hit halfway up the Green Monster, and he and Suzyn Waldman performed an autopsy on the season in the middle of the seventh inning. Alex Rodriguez was still harping on Phil Nevin’s debatable send of Aaron Judge an hour after the incident. And most recently, Jim Kaat made controversial remarks in the first inning of Game 2 of the ALDS between the White Sox and Astros while talking about Yoan Moncada — remarks for which he later apologized on-air.

Boston Globe | Peter Abraham: Following their Wild Card Game loss to the Red Sox, Aaron Boone cited, among other things, how the rest of the league has caught up to the Yankees. Brett Gardner and Gerrit Cole echoed this sentiment, with Gardner claiming there are more competitive teams in the American League than when the Yankees last won the World Series in 2009. It is fair to question how true this statement is. Have the Yankees done enough to adapt and keep up with the competition, or have they stagnated? In a similar vein, has the competition caught up, or have the Yankees fallen back to the pack?

SNY | Ryan Morik: DJ LeMahieu was arguably the biggest disappointment of the Yankees season. After posting two top-five MVP finishes, the Yankees second baseman — inked to a six year, $90 million extension last winter — has regressed to his previous career norms with the Rockies, an exactly league-average hitter. This regression should have come as no surprise, considering he was one of the luckiest players in MLB by several Statcast metrics. His batted ball metrics remained relatively stable to last season, so it is likely 2021 is representative of the player he is going forward.