The Arizona Diamondbacks are not particularly close to winning in the ultra-competitive National League West division. They currently sit at 43-53 win-loss record at the bottom of their division. It would make sense that they would willingly get rid of some of their older starters to make room for younger players.
Enter David Peralta. He has always been a good, if unspectacular, outfielder for the Diamondbacks. He’s maintained the standard of competence in in left field this year. In his age 34-season, he has a .244 average with a .312 on base percentage and a .452 slugging percentage. Those numbers result in a solid .764 OPS to go along with his 12 home runs. From a platoon standpoint, Peralta throws and hits from the left side.
Peralta deserves credit for his consistency and always managing to be a useful player at the major league level. He’s in the last year of a three-year, $22-million deal he signed with Arizona back in 2020, meaning it wouldn’t cost much in terms of salary to import his brand of reliability.
The question is whether the Yankees should give up prospects for Peralta over someone else. In many ways, he profiles as the type of player that the Yankees love to target. He hits the baseball with authority and whiffs a lot. In average exit velocity, he stands at the 84th percentile with a barrel percentage in the 82nd percentile. In contrast, his chase rate sits in the 17th percentile with a strikeout percentage in the 36th percentile. He is further let down by his mediocre walk numbers and xBA. He sits only a little better than league average in walking percentage at the 54th percentile. Similarly, his expected batting average is just OK at .249.
All this means is that he hits the ball very hard and has a lot of swing and miss in his approach. As a result, he hits for a fair number of home runs and extra-base hits while getting on base at an excellent grip or running a high batting average. On a more positive note, his hits spray chart indicate that Peralta pulls the ball a lot of the time. In fact, a number of his home runs have been hit to the right field. This makes him a natural fit for Yankee Stadium. The short right porch might be calling his name.
In addition, he provides some positive defensive prowess. Baseball Savant puts him in the 89th percentile in outs above average from the left field position, while FanGraphs tabs him as above average at the position as well. Both give him positive defensive value from left field. Likely, Peralta’s defense is not too amazing, but it still provides some value for his team.
How would Peralta fit with the Yankees? Honestly, he profiles like a decent player to have in the outfield rotation. He would probably not supplant Carpenter, Judge, and Stanton in the outfield, but he could be a useful bench piece if they move off of Joey Gallo. Unless the Yankees trade or DFA Joey Gallo, it does not make a lot of sense to trade for Peralta, with Carpenter, Stanton, Judge, Gallo, and Hicks on the 26-man when healthy. On the 40-man, they have Miguel Andújar, Estevan Florial, and Tim Locastro in Triple-A.
With that being said, Peralta could provide some good value as a defensive replacement in later parts of games while still offering some pop with his bat. With an expiring deal and in his age-34 season, Peralta should not be too expensive to get. If the Yankees can get him for a reasonable price, Peralta has a lot to offer in the form of defense and quality power.