With the Nationals falling out of playoff contention, could infielder Daniel Murphy be a fit for the Yankees?
ESPN's Buster Olney suggested early Thursday that Murphy could be a good fit for AL teams in need of a DH and a fit at first base for the Yanks.
The 33-year-old Murphy is hitting .310/.354/.466 with six homers and nine doubles in 52 games with the Nats this season after missing the first few months while recovering from knee surgery.
If Murphy is traded, a deal would have to be consummated through waivers.
Murphy, who is eligible for free agency after the season, is making $17.5 million this year.
Assuming Murphy could get to the Yankees' waiver position, making a move for him would make a lot of sense for New York.
This isn't about ragging on Greg Bird or suggesting he has no future with the Yankees as much as it has to do with the first baseman's season-long struggles. When excitement forms over very scattered hard-hit balls and excuses abound for the lack of actual results (90 OPS+ over 256 plate appearances coming into today), then a playoff club has to ask the question, "Can we get better in this spot?"
Murphy would provide the Yankees an experienced and successful left-handed bat, one that could fit well hitting anywhere from fifth to seventh in the lineup. Murphy has excelled in the postseason and has played in New York, potentially leading to a seemingly simple transition. Murphy hitting in Yankee Stadium could be a tremendous boost for the offense, which has not been nearly as potent of late.
Murphy would also make some sense if the Yankees are unable or unwilling to make a move on an outfielder depending on the timetable for right-fielder Aaron Judge's return to the lineup and Giancarlo Stanton's ability to get back to the field.