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Yankees, Troy Tulowitzki Agree Upon Minimum Deal

05 January 2019

The New York Yankees have agreed to terms with free agent infielder Troy Tulowitzki, reports ESPN's Jeff Passan. As mentioned, frontline free agent Manny Machado remains a Yankee target, but the signing of Tulowitzki makes the Yankees a bit less desperate for Machado's services.

Media reports late Tuesday night said the former Blue Jays shortstop had agreed to a $550,000 United States league-minimum deal with the Yankees for the 2019 season, pending a physical.

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Tulowitzki missed the entire 2017 season because of ankle surgery, after playing in just 66 games the previous year while dealing with both hamstring and ankle issues. Tulowitzki is heading into his age 34 season and, despite the rave reviews from his offseason workouts, it remains to be seen if he can play a serviceable Major League shortstop.

That Tulowitzki picked the Yankees without the assurance of 500-plus plate appearances exemplifies just how motivated he is to play for them.

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Tulowitzki did not appear in a single Major League game in 2018. Tulowitzki is expected to fill in at shortstop while Didi Gregorius recovers from Tommy John surgery. He also won his two Gold Gloves in 2010 and '11. Gleyber Torres could easily move over to shortstop, although that would create a vacancy at second base. NY also has been talking with Manny Machado, one of the top available free agents. The Blue Jays will pay the remainder. The Yankees have never been shy about bringing in former stars as reclamation projects (Darryl Strawberry, Eric Chavez, etc.) and Tulowitzki fits the mold. The addition of Tulowitzki does not preclude the Yanks from still doing that, but it gives them a little more leverage not to be concerned if Machado says he wants the largest contract possible. On Instagram, Machado's official account just started following the YES Network, which is the Yankees' flagship station.

John Gibbons did not get to manage Troy Tulowitzki previous year and yet the now-former Blue Jay skipper declared the Yankees took a great gamble for next season.

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In the end, though, Tulowitzki represents a low-risk, high-reward move by a team with strong designs on the World Series.

Yankees, Troy Tulowitzki Agree Upon Minimum Deal