Yankees News: Clint Frazier Released After Being DFA'd; Becomes Free Agent

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVNovember 23, 2021

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JUNE 20: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT)  Clint Frazier #77 of the New York Yankees in action against the Oakland Athletics at Yankee Stadium on June 20, 2021 in New York City. The Yankees defeated the Athletics 2-1. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Clint Frazier is officially a free agent after the New York Yankees released the 27-year-old outfielder.

New York designated Frazier for assignment last week, which effectively signaled the end of his run in the Bronx. Manager Aaron Boone said his public goodbye Monday.

Frazier arrived in July 2016 as a centerpiece of the Andrew Miller trade. He ended that season as the 27th-best prospect on MLB.com after finishing with 16 home runs and 55 RBI across Double-A and Triple-A.

David O'Brien @DOBrienATL

Here’s Clint Frazier’s prospect-rankings page at Baseball Reference. Former first-rounder from Loganville High outside Atlanta was DFA’d by the Yankees Friday. Frazier turned 27 in September. <a href="https://t.co/9RRmLsJiKk">pic.twitter.com/9RRmLsJiKk</a>

But the Georgia native has since become an example of how top prospects are never a guarantee in terms of achieving stardom in the majors.

In 228 MLB games, Frazier has a .239/.327/.434 slash line. He had double digits in homers just once, finishing with 12 in 2019.

It looked like the 2013 first-round pick turned a corner in 2020, when he slugged .511 and had a .394 on-base percentage over the pandemic-shortened campaign. Instead, the Yankees placed him on the injured list with vertigo on July 2, and he never returned to the field for the remainder of 2021.

Frazier suffered a concussion during spring training in 2018, and he experienced lingering effects across that season. He later admitted his depth perception had been affected when he was playing in the outfield.

Looking ahead to 2022, Frazier's health is an obvious question mark. Still, his minor league profile and 2020 performance make him a clear target for a rebuilding team or one looking to contend on the cheap.

D.J. Short @djshort

Really hope Clint Frazier is healthy. That's the most important thing. But now that he's a free agent, he makes a ton of sense for a bunch of teams. The Guardians and Pirates come to mind right now.

Matt Weyrich @ByMattWeyrich

Clint Frazier went unclaimed on waivers, which is surprising considering he wasn't due to make a ton in arbitration next year. Should be a candidate to sign with the Nationals, who have an opening in LF. <a href="https://t.co/5bEUuHsX4K">https://t.co/5bEUuHsX4K</a>

And a fresh start—away from the pressure that comes with playing in New York—might be what he needs to rediscover his stride in MLB.