Andrew Benintendi is officially a member of the New York Yankees.
Less than an hour after the New York Mets defeated the Yankees, they pulled the trigger on a deal that brought the Kansas City Royals outfielder to the Bronx in exchange for minor league pitchers Chandler Champlain, T.J. Sikkema and Beck Way. News of the deal first broke in a report from ESPN’s Jeff Passan as members of the media were still in the Yankees clubhouse.
The Bombers had been in talks with the Royals for the past few weeks, but it appeared that things had cooled off after Benintendi had been one of the 10 Kansas City players that weren’t able to travel to Toronto recently because of their vaccine status. However, it appears that those concerns have dissipated and the New York Post’s Jon Heyman reported Wednesday night that Benintendi has told people that he will get vaccinated.
The Yankees have one final trip to Toronto scheduled for the final week in September.
With the issue appearing to be alleviated, the Yankees add a player that has hit .320/.387/.398 this season for the Royals and has 39 RBIs to his name. Benintendi ranked second in the majors in multi-hit games fifth in batting average and was tied for seventh in hits.
“He’s a really good player,” Yankees slugger Aaron Judge said when asked about the reports. “I had the chance to play against him for quite a few years when he was playing over in Boston. Seen him do a lot of impressive things, so if that’s true he’ll definitely be a big piece to what we got going on here.”
Benintendi may not be known for his home run hitting, but he certainly can be an offensive weapon for the Bombers, who went 0-for-15 with runners in scoring position during their back-to-back losses to the New York Mets the past two nights. The 28-year-old has been known to find his way on base, especially recently.
He has reached base in 31 of his last 33 games with an at-bat dating back to June 14. His on-base percentage this year is also eighth in all of baseball.
Yankees skipper Aaron Boone agreed that Benintendi would be a good fit for the Yankees but pushed back on the notion that New York had too many power hitters in its lineup.
For more coverage of the New York Yankees, head to amNY.com.
“That’s another great hitter,” Boone said. “It’s fake news that we have too many power hitters, too many sluggers. That’s fake. We’ve got savages in the lineup and really good hitters. Benintendi is a great hitter. He gets on base at a really high level. He hits from the left side, so yeah, he gives you some balance. If we get him that’s another really big league hitter to add to the mix. … Potentially gives you that balance you look for. If we get him I’ll be excited.”
Benintendi will have a short trip to the Bronx with the Royals slated to face the Yankees in a four-game series starting on Thursday at Yankee Stadium.