The first rumblings of Manny Machado signing with the Yankees began to stir on Friday, Dec. 28 on Twitter. Dan Clark dropped this bomb on baseball fans…

Clark is a verified “tweeter” with a blue check mark and writes for the Internet Baseball Writers of America, but his claim appears baseless. He failed to cite a source, and later replied to his own tweet saying a former teammate and close friend of Machado informed him the 26-year old plans to sign with the Yankees.

Clark technically has a 33.3% chance of being right and could clamor for credit when news officially breaks in January of Machado’s true destination.

Fans of other teams have other ways of predicting Machado’s destination.

This tweet has as much mileage as Clark’s tweet. At this point, for fans and writers out of Machado’s inner circle, Machado’s landing spot is a shot in the dark.

If the Yankees do end up signing Machado, the Opening Day lineup could look like this:

CF Hicks

RF Judge

SS Machado

DH Stanton

C Sanchez

3B  Andujar

2B Torres

1B Voit

LF Gardner

When Didi Gregorious returns as early as June, the lineup morphs a bit, putting Stanton in the outfield and sending Andujar to the DH role while Didi fills back in at short and Machado returns to third base.

Depending on how Voit plays up to that point, Andujar also could move to first if Voit struggles.

Another option is to put Andujar up on the trade market and try to land extra pitching, new prospects, some versatile infield talent with a platoon player, or a combination of the three. With Andujar under team control until next year and not up for free agency until 2024, he could bring in a hefty haul if the Yankees trade him.

Andujar finished second in the ROY voting behind Shohei Ohtani, a phenomenal two way player. Andujar earned that recognition with his bat. His defense left much to be desired.

According to Andujar’s Baseball Reference page, the 23 year old from the Dominican Republic slashed .297/.328/.527 with 47 doubles and 27 home runs. Defensively, he made 15 errors and -25 defensive runs saved (Rdrs). Just so we are clear, that means he gave up 25 runs statistically on defense. Any negative numbers for Rdrs are BAD.

Andujar provided the fourth-most errors by a third baseman, and the WORST Rdrs among third basemen last year. The second worst Rdrs was -13 from Boston’s Rafael Devers. 

Clearly, Machado has to play third if he ends up in pinstripes. Machado’s return to third may come at the expense of Andujar’s career with the Bronx Bombers.

Yankees fans need to wait for a trusted source to announce Machado’s decision like Ken Rosenthal or Buster Olney. Also, just because the Yankees are the most talented team in the running for Manny, that does not mean he will sign in New York. Philadelphia was in a playoff spot for a good chunk of last season until they lost steam in August and September, falling to a 80-82 record.  The Chicago White Sox struggled mightily last season going 62-100.

Machado could be the #1 guy in either city instead of competing for the spotlight with Judge and Stanton. Machado’s ego could steer him in that direction instead of going to the most talented team out of the three.

Unfortunately, Yankees fans, Phillies fans, and White Sox fans will have to wait until Machado’s destination is officially announced, not guessed about on Twitter.

Featured Image: AP; Getty Images
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