For the second time in as many seasons, Joey Gallo could be on the move ahead of Major League Baseball’s trade deadline.
It hasn’t even been a year since they acquired Gallo from the Texas Rangers on July 29, 2021, yet Jon Heyman of the New York Post reports that the American League East-leading New York Yankees are “conducting discussions” about the 28-year-old corner outfielder with other teams as the Aug. 2 trade deadline looms.
Whereas Gallo came to New York with a .497 career slugging percentage, he’s slugged only .372 while batting an unseemly .163 through 128 contests in pinstripes. He also hasn’t lived up to his reputation as a two-time Gold Glover, posting zero defensive runs saved in 2022.
Because Gallo is set to become a free agent at the end of the year, the Yankees won’t be able to recoup anything like the four-prospect package they paid for him last year. If anything, they might have to cover some of the money remaining on his $10.3 million salary just to get a low-level prospect.
From the perspective of rival teams, this could make Gallo the ultimate buy-low candidate. He could be a major difference-maker for a team’s playoff hopes if a change of scenery were to revive his defense and power, the latter of which remains prodigious.
Heyman mentioned two teams that might be “willing to consider” a Gallo trade. With consideration paid to how much sense they make for him and as a trading partner for the Yankees, let’s rank those two and other speculative landing spots for the slugger.
10-6: AL East Foes, Mariners, Giants, Brewers, Cardinals
10. Toronto Blue Jays, Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays
Though each of these three clubs could use help in right field and/or some power from the left side of the plate, it’s not so easy to imagine the Yankees letting one of their AL East competitors be the one to roll the dice on Gallo.
9. Seattle Mariners
This is only in the event that Mitch Haniger’s pending return from a high ankle sprain is short-lived, in which case the Mariners could possibly turn to Gallo as a stopgap solution for their quest to snap their 21-year playoff drought.
8. San Francisco Giants
Both offensively and especially defensively, the ’22 Giants hardly resemble the juggernaut that won 107 games in 2021. Gallo could boost them on both sides of the ball, though the catch is that their everyday lineup already leans left-handed.
7. Milwaukee Brewers
With Lorenzo Cain having been designated for assignment and Hunter Renfroe out with a strained calf, the Brewers are short-handed in the outfield. They could also just plain use another hitter. Ideally, though, said hitter would be more of a true center fielder.
6. St. Louis Cardinals
The Cardinals might simply wait for outfielders Tyler O’Neill (wrist contusion) and Harrison Bader (plantar fasciitis) to recover from injuries. But with the club having hit only three home runs in its last eight games, its need for Gallo’s sort of power is indeed immediate.