The Yankees haven't signed any free agents this year, but that doesn't mean they didn't acquire any star players. Sure Aroldis Chapman will make a huge impact in 2016, but the Yankees had Stephen Drew at second base throughout the season. His sub .200 average average wasn't a pretty sight, and he had some defensive issues towards the end of the year. The Yankees acquired Dustin Ackley, who filled in very nicely for Drew, batting .288 over 23 games. Rob Refnyder also did a fantastic job at 2nd, batting .302 in 12 games. The Ackley/Refsnyder platoon seemed most logical in 2016, but Brian Cashman went out and acquired 3 time all star Starlin Castro from the Cubs.
Castro lost his job at shortstop after Addison Russell proved to be a better fit at the position. After poor effort, Castro was benched for a few games and started to get more time at 2nd base. After that move, Castro flourished.
2016 will be Castro's 7th full season, and he will have just turned 26 by the time opening day comes around. I'm sure most Yankees fans would rather have Castro at 2nd instead of Drew. Just writing about Stephen Drew brings back bad memories...
Castro had his defensive struggles at shortstop, but he seemed to feel more comfortable at 2nd. The Yankees had to pay a price for Castro though.
Adam Warren was sent to the Cubs, along with Brendan Ryan. Ryan can easily be replaced, but Warren was someone who could fill in for an injured starter and was even effective out of the bullpen. In my opinion, he was the Yankees most consistent starter of 2016; mostly because he wasn't injured and could be used in many situations.
Brendan Ryan wasn't a major loss, and he's someone that can easily be replaced. He could play most infield positions, and was a superb defender.
I'm definitely excited to see Castro in pinstripes this year, and hopefully he can help lead the Yankees to the postseason!
Thank you for reading!