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The New York Yankees are no longer pursuing Kansas City Royals outfielder Andrew Benintendi, as his unvaccinated status clashes with Blue Jays schedule.
Andrew Benintendi, the All-Star Kansas City Royals outfielder who graced the top of many hypothetical MLB trade lists, has seen his stock plummet in a matter of hours due to a singular fact: he is not vaccinated against COVID-19.
While there is much to desire in the 28-year-old’s stat line, the fact that Benintendi remains unvaccinated inadvertently rules him out of several clubhouses immediately. The Toronto Blue Jays, the only MLB team subject to Canadian law regarding COVID-19 travel, can immediately be ruled out — and so can their AL East foes.
That includes the New York Yankees, who have reportedly dropped out of the Andrew Benintendi sweepstakes upon hearing the news of his vaccination status.
As Heyman notes, the Yankees still have six games to play in Toronto and could likely see the Blue Jays in the postseason, all of which fans can expect to be critical games as New York hopes for another Subway Series.
The Yankees would have to offer significant value to trade for a talent like Benintendi, and if they can’t even employ him in those critical games — plus the fact that New York always sends their full roster to Toronto — a Benintendi trade no longer makes sense for the Yankees.
Yankees trade for Andrew Benintendi ruled out by vaccination status and Blue Jays schedule
Although Yankees fans could have relished in exacting revenge in heated Boston Red Sox series by trading for Benintendi, it looks like Benintendi will have trouble finding a home with any AL East team at this point — especially when they are all clawing for a Wild Card spot in October.
But just because the AL East doesn’t have a place for him doesn’t mean a Benintendi trade is off the books. Funnily enough, the Yankees’ National League counterpart, the NL East, actually has a few teams where Benintendi’s talents could be on full display. MLB scheduling and local COVID-19 policies would be fine in places like Atlanta or Philadelphia, who could really use the outfielder as the Braves and Phillies compete within their own division.
Andrew Benintendi’s vaccination status doesn’t make every cross-league trade impossible, but it does make it impossible for the New York Yankees.