The New York Yankees have reportedly expressed interest in acquiring Kansas City Royals outfielder Andrew Benintendi and trading away outfielder Joey Gallo ahead of the Aug. 2 trade deadline.
According to Dan Martin and Jon Heyman of the New York Post, the Yankees have had talks with the Royals focused on Benintendi and have likely discussed trades for other available outfielders, but they have considered the "price tag too high" for Benintendi thus far.
The Yankees have reportedly spoken with multiple teams about trading Gallo as well, with the Texas Rangers and San Diego Padres emerging as potential landing spots.
Last season, New York acquired Gallo from Texas, but the move has not paid dividends thus far.
In 58 games for the Yankees last season, Gallo hit just .160 with 13 home runs and 22 RBI. He has perhaps been even worse this season, hitting .166 with 10 homers and 21 RBI in 70 games.
Gallo has been solid defensively and on the bases, but the prevailing thought was that his lefty power would play well in Yankee Stadium, and that hasn't been the case.
With Gallo struggling, the Yankees have often deployed an outfield of Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Hicks, while Marwin Gonzalez and Matt Carpenter have seen a bit of time in the outfield as well.
Gallo slugged 40 homers in back-to-back seasons with the Rangers in 2017 and 2018, and he hit 38 bombs combined last season. Given his status as a two-time All-Star and two-time Gold Glove Award winner in Texas, the Rangers' reported interest comes as little surprise.
The Padres also have a link to Gallo since their general manager, A.J. Preller, was previously part of Texas' front office.
As noted by Martin and Heyman, both the Rangers and Padres need outfield help and are in the playoff race, and Gallo would undoubtedly be a cheap addition with upside, as he doesn't have much trade value and the Yankees would likely pay a good portion of the prorated portion of $10.275 million left on his contract this season before becoming a free agent next offseason.
Like Gallo, Benintendi is in the final year of his deal, but he is seemingly a much better fit for the Yankees at this point.
In the midst of his second season with the Royals, the 28-year-old Benintendi is slashing .317/.387/.402 with three home runs, 34 RBI and 34 runs scored. He is also a great defender, having won his first career Gold Glove Award last season.
Benintendi is a left fielder by trade, but he is capable of playing some center field as well, which would take some pressure off Aaron Judge, who has been the Yankees' primary starter in center this season.
While the power hasn't been there for Benintendi this season, he hit 17 home runs this year and a career-high 20 homers in 2017 with the Boston Red Sox, and he could see an uptick in power as a lefty playing the majority of his games in Yankee Stadium.
Benintendi was once a bitter rival of the Yankees, playing for the Red Sox from 2016 to 2020, and helping them win a World Series title in 2018.
The Yanks have a World Series win on their minds this season, as they own the best record in baseball at 61-24, and while they don't have many glaring needs, adding some quality outfield depth would make them even tougher to beat.