There's been noise this week that the Yankees are less aggressively after Manny Machado than anticipated.
On Friday afternoon, they agreed to a two-year deal with former Rockies second baseman DJ LeMahieu, according to Ken Rosenthal.
This does not definitively close the book on Machado going to New York, which has long been viewed as his ideal landing spot. But it does change the equation.
If they make no other infield moves, the Yankees would enter 2019 with LeMahieu at second base, Gleyber Torres or Troy Tulowitzki at shortstop and Miguel Andujar at third. Didi Gregorius is expected back in mid-July before becoming a free agent at the end of 2019.
The Yankees don't have a glaring need for Machado, so many will jump to the conclusion that they've moved on from Machado. All we're saying is never say never. Signing Machado would be about more than this year for the Yankees, who don't seem sold on the defensively-challenged Andujar at third base, and again, have a soon-to-be free agent in Gregorius.
The Yankees have been considered the Phillies' biggest obstacle to landing Machado because of the idea that he's wanted for years to play in the Bronx. If the Phils don't have to worry as much about the Yankees, their odds of landing Machado increase dramatically.
The White Sox are also after Machado but it has been reported by separate outlets that their offer has been for around $200 million and that they haven't yet shown a willingness to go beyond seven years.
If offers from the Phillies and White Sox are similar, the Phillies would give Machado a better chance to win immediately, if that is indeed what matters most to him.
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