Brewers roll the dice on Yankees discard Josh Donaldson as a strategic move

Former Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson was also with Toronto from 2015 to 2018.
Michael Bennington
Friday September 1, 2023

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Third baseman Josh Donaldson finds a new home with the Brewers after the Yankees released him. On Thursday, the Brewers shared that they were signing a 37-year-old third baseman, who was once the NL MVP, on a contract to play in the minor leagues.

Though Josh Donaldson has secured a position on a team actively participating in a pennant race, he is going to start playing for the Triple-A team in Nashville. The Milwaukee team is in the race to top the NL Central and currently has a 74-59 record.

Josh Donaldson got cut from the Yankees this week because he hasn’t been hitting the ball well for the past two seasons. This year, the third baseman had a batting average of .142 while hitting 10 home runs and having a .659 OPS for the Bombers.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone explained to reporters that he felt it was the right decision when the roster move was announced. He mentioned that they wanted to provide the player with the chance to join another team potentially and believed it was better to do it promptly rather than prolong the situation.

Former Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson
NYP

Why did the Brewers take a chance on Josh Donaldson?

The Brewers have won 74 games and lost 59 this season. They are currently ahead of the Cubs by three games in the NL Central division. In Milwaukee, they’ve mostly had Andruw Monastario playing at third base. According to The Athletic, his performance has not been as good lately, with a .590 OPS in August.

Another possible reason the Brewers made this change is because they might think that Josh Donaldson is better than Monastario when it comes to playing defense. The Brewers focus a lot on preventing runs in their game strategy, and that includes having strong starting pitchers, a good bullpen, and skilled fielders.

In baseball, some people believe that players may have a tough time performing well in high-pressure cities like New York, Philadelphia, or Boston due to the intense fan and media attention. However, they think these players might revive their careers if they play in cities with fewer fans and less media scrutiny.

The Yankees are covering the cost of Josh Donaldson’s contract, so the Brewers only need to pay him a smaller amount, which is part of the veteran’s minimum for the remaining part of the season.

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