Yuki Matsui
Yuki Matsui Source: The Japan News

The New York Yankees seek redemption for the next season. In 2023, they have disappointed all the fans. They finished the regular season with an 82-80 record and failed to make the postseason for the first time since 2016. Many experts and fans say this year has been the worst season in the last thirty years of the franchise. Since the offseason started a little too quickly for the Bronx Bombers, they have been planning their free agency activities. But prior to that, it was essential to release certain players who had not performed well or stayed out with injuries in the last few seasons.

This offseason, besides Cody Bellinger and Juan Soto, the Yankees are targeting the biggest name from the Nippon Professional Baseball, Yoshinobu Yamamoto. He’s the best international pitcher any MLB team can hope to find in the market at present. Other than Yamamoto, another Japanese reliever can entice the Yankees. He is Yuki Matsui.


Potential Trade Target For The Yankees: Yuki Matsui

Yuki Matsui
Yuki Matsui Source: Bleacher Nation

The Japanese reliever is 28 years old. Moreover, in the last ten seasons in NPB, Matsui played for the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles. On top of that, in the previous two seasons, Matsui played alongside a former Yankee for the Golden Eagles. Masahiro Tanaka has been teammates with the reliever for the past two years. Matsui began his career as a swingman in 2014. Later, he spent the majority of his seasons in the bullpen. The 28-year-old reliever performed really well in the bullpen in the ten seasons. Moreover, Yuki Matsui, in 501 games over ten seasons, has a 2.40 ERA in 659.2 innings with 236 career saves.

However, he has not been at his best in the past three seasons. Moreover, Yuki Matsui was part of the Japanese team that was victorious in the World Baseball Classic in the past year. In that campaign, he got to make one single appearance where he struck out one with a perfect inning. Anyway, Matsui won’t need to go through the posting process as he’ll soon become a free agent. The Yankees are among the top contenders to land him. However, they will face competition not only from MLB teams. 

Activities And Targets Of The Bronx Bombers So Far This Offseason

Domingo German Yankees
Domingo German Yankees Source: CNN

Earlier in the offseason, the Yankees waived six players including Franchy Cordero and Domingo German. Lately, they let go of one of their best pitchers, Luis Severino. He is a good player but very injury-prone. Now, Severino will get the chance to try his luck with the New York Mets for a year until the next offseason begins. Anyway, with the Mets, Severino stays in New York. On the other hand, the Yankees target primarily lefty outfielders in the current offseason.

They are keeping close eyes on Juan Soto of the San Diego Padres and Cody Bellinger of the Chicago Cubs. However, Bellinger might be a free agent, but not Soto. The Padres might try him out for another year before letting him go. On the other hand, the Yankees would love to sign at least Cody Bellinger. Moreover, he has won a World Series with the Dodgers.