The Boston Red Sox potential pickup option Troy Tulowitzki has reportedly signed with the Yankees. What does this mean for the Red Sox?
Another potential free agent target for the Boston Red Sox is off the board.
According to Dayn Perry of CBC Sports, 34-year-old MLB shortstop Troy Tulowitzki has reportedly signed with the New York Yankees Yankees. ESPN’s Jeff Passan tweeted that the Yankees are expected to pay a league-minimum, while the Toronto Blue Jays pay the remainder of his $20 million salary. According to baseball reference the Jays will pay $19.45 million.
Career: .290/.361/.495, 224 HRs, 1,389 H
Tulowitzki is a 5x All-Star, 2x Gold Glover, and 2x Silver Slugger.
He was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the first round of the 2005 MLB Amateur Draft. He’s played 12 years in the majors. In June of 2015, he was involved in a trade that brought him and LaTroy Hawkins to Toronto.
In mid-October, MLB’s Bryan Hoch reported that Didi Gregorius underwent Tommy John surgery during the off-season. General Manager, Brian Cashman, expects his return to occur sometime between June and August. One of the initial speculations was that Gleyber Torres would be the main internal option for replacing Gregorius at shortstop. As Perry points out, the Tulowitzski signing allows Torres to play at second base while Tulo covers the shortstop position until Gregorius returns from his injury.
"“I think our position player crew is really strong,” said Cashman. “Obviously, we have to find a way to address the Didi information, so how we react to that is yet to be determined. But the biggest priority will be our pitching.”"
The Yankees could still pursue Manny Machado, although with the signing of Tulo they now have an alternative plan. Given Cashman’s earlier statement, it is a possibility, as they have made a few pitching moves. However, speculations have been flying that the team is still looking to build its pitching corp. The team re-signed J.A. Happ to a two-year deal and re-signed CC Sabathia to a one-year deal. The Yankees participated in a trade with the Mariners to obtain James Paxton. In addition, they lost out on re-signing David Robertson.
As BoSox Injection’s Rudi Richards stated, the Red Sox reportedly showed interest in Tulowitzki. Given his history, he could have potentially offered depth to the lineup and most likely would have taken over for Ian Kinsler as a backup.
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In terms of his salary, it made sense that the Red Sox were interested. Considering the experience and numbers that Tulo produces, the price for him was low. Although given his history with injuries and his age, he would have presented a risk.
Tulo missed the entire 2018 season due to an injury (bilateral heel bone spurs). In 2017, he only played in 66 games.
What does this signing mean for the Red Sox? The Sox have potential internal options to take over for Kinsler as a back-up. However, one of the current areas of question involve health at second base and depth to the lineup. Current speculation is that the team will place an emphasis on strengthening the pitching corp.
While there are alternative options for adding to the infield, Tulo would have been a cheap option.
The bad news? The Sox will have to face Tulo. The good news? The Sox have been able to learn about Tulo’s strengths and weaknesses over the past few years that he’s been in Toronto.