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Andrelton Simmons Is a Great Fit for the 2021 Yankees

Andrelton Simmons and the Yankees are rumored to be in close contact. For a franchise that has been known to gather big stars and talent, they’ve never really had good defense at shortstop.

Derek Jeter had -162 DRS, Didi Gregorius had -6 DRS as a Yankee with -26 outs above average since the stat was tracked for infielders (2017), and now Gleyber Torres. While bad defense doesn’t make a player unusable, the Yankees might just be better going with an amazing glove at SS like Andrelton Simmons. He’s exactly what the Yankees need for that position, and he could be a great fit for the Bombers.

A Top-10 Shortstop in Baseball

Since 2017, Andrelton Simmons ranks 7th in fWAR among shortstops, with a 12.7 fWAR despite having injury-riddled years in 2019 and 2020. He isn’t known for his offense, as a 99 wRC+ is essentially average. What makes Andrelton Simmons valuable is his elite glove, with a 35 OAA in 3 seasons + 1 COVID season. His elite defense has him squarely in the top 10 for shortstops in baseball, and there’s no doubting it. Coming off of a COVID season the Yankees may be able to snag the defensive wizard for cheap

Andrelton Simmons Is What the Yankees Need

The Yankees offense, quite frankly, is perfectly fine. They have elite bats everywhere in the lineup. They need to address the bad defense that hurts our pitching staff.

In 2020 the Yankees were 28th in OAA at -15, in 2019 they were 27th at -21, and in 2018 they were 28th at -31. This team defensively reeks, and it makes their pitching worse. Every year the pitching staff consistently underperforms because when you boast horrific defenses, you have even worse pitching. In 2020 the Yankees only had one starter who had a positive OAA? That was Clint Frazier at 1 OAA. Everyone else was at 0 or worse. That’s a recipe for failure, and Simmons helps fix those issues.

Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons tosses the ball to second to get the Seattle runner in the 7th inning in Anaheim on Friday, April 7, 2017. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Orange County Register/SCNG)

Andrelton Simmons For Cheap Helps the Payroll For the Yankees

If the Yankees want to improve themselves pitching-wise they’ll need to set aside quite a bit of cash for it. Having Simmons plug and play at SS for a year could allow the Yankees to rake in some better pitching.

Simmons on an $8 million deal could be the missing piece for a Yankees team whose defense is just deplorable. They desperately need pitching help to shore up their losses in the rotation and upgrades in the bullpen. Ask yourself honestly, as much as DJ is great, how many titles have they won with him since he’s been here? Simmons is the key to better defense and better pitching, so why not think about him as an option?

Sets the Yankees Up For the 2022 Free Agent Class

Carlos Correa, Francisco Lindor, Corey Seager, Trevor Story, and Javier Baez all hit free agency next offseason. Literally, every single shortstop in that list is a good defensive shortstop with good offense and is under age 30. So why would the Yanks spend the money now? They know they need better defense at short, so go out and give Simmons the one-year deal, and set yourself up to land a megastar.

With the Yankees having a ton of key moves to make, this could be one FA they target that opens up the playbook for them.

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