The New York Yankees made one of the biggest splashes this offseason by acquiring four-time Silver Slugger winner and 2019 World Series Champion Juan Soto via trade with the San Diego Padres.


Pairing a top-five player in the league in Soto with another top-five player in star outfielder and 2022 AL MVP Aaron Judge, should make for a devastating batting combo. 

Judge Willing To Play More Centerfield 

The challenge for teams with an abundance of talent is convincing individual stars to make sacrifices in order to achieve the ultimate goal of winning a World Series ring. It seems Judge is willing to do just that as he’s made it known this offseason that he’s open to switching over to centerfield to give the team more depth at the position, with recently-acquired Trent Grisham being the only natural centerfielder on the roster.


Judge, 31, has predominantly played right field throughout his seven years with the Yankees, while blossoming into a five-time All-Star selection, three-time All-MLB selection, three-time Silver Slugger award winner (2017, 2021, 2022), 2017 AL Rookie of the Year winner and single-season AL home run leader. 



Juan Soto Is A Defensive Liability

Yankees general manager Aaron Boone stated that Judge playing centerfield more frequently will allow the Yankees to rest their superstar more by also utilizing him as a designated hitter.   The Yankees can also get creative and slot Grisham at center while returning Judge to right field when Soto takes the day off. Giancarlo Stanton and his 402 career bro bombs will be worked into the DH position somewhere. 


Despite Soto’s hitting prowess, he is one of the worst defensive outfielders in the league. That calls for the former MVP in Judge to have to excel in his role as centerfielder for a team that was one of MLB’s worst fielding teams in 2023. The Bronx Bombers committed the sixth most errors in baseball (96). 


With Soto projected to be mostly slated as the right fielder (Judge’s natural position), Judge will be heavily slotted at center or even left field this upcoming season alongside Grisham and former Red Sox outfielder Alex Verdugo, who will probably get most of the reps in leftfield. Can Verdugo finally secure a position that has been an unstable one for the Yankees?  Playing left field at Yankee Stadium is harder than his previous Fenway Park stomping grounds where he has a +21 DRS in left field. It’s much easier to hide poor range in Fenway. 


Trent Grisham is The BX-Factor In Juan Soto Trade To Yankees

Yankees World Series Drought Continues

The Yankees have not won a World Series since 2009. A drought the legendary organization hasn’t experienced since a brief low point in the 1980s. 


If the Yankees want a chance to contend, they will have to severely improve defensively in the outfield as a unit. Adding MLBbro Marcus Stroman to the rotation definitely makes it more formidable. 


Can the new-look Yankees put it all together and make a postseason run? Getting the outfield situated is the first step towards finding out that answer.

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