- Manny Machado is unlikely to return to Los Angeles after being dealt to the Dodgers in July
- The Yankees have emerged as favorites after losing Didi Gregorious to an elbow injury
- With money to spend this offseason, Phillies remain in contention to sign Machado
Manny Machado was unable to bring a World Series title to Los Angeles during his brief stint with the Dodgers this past season. But the 26-year-old remains poised to cash in on a huge free agent payday, with the New York Yankees emerging as the favorite to have the slugger in pinstripes for the start of the 2019 MLB campaign, sporting short -150 odds on the MLB specials at BetOnline.
Manny Machado Free Agency Odds
|Which Team will Manny Machado Be With to Start the 2019 MLB Season?||Odds at BetOnline|
|New York Yankees||-150|
|Los Angeles Dodgers||+350|
Machado arrived in Los Angeles amid considerable fanfare as part of a deal that sent five prospects to the Baltimore Orioles, and played a key role in the Dodgers’ march to a sixth straight NL West division crown and a return engagement in the Fall Classic.
“Johnny Hustle” is Leaving LA
However, Machado did little to endear himself with baseball fans in Southern California with his widely publicized and criticized “Johnny Hustle” comments prior to Game 4 of the World Series.
Manny Machado apologizes for now-infamous “Johnny Hustle” commentshttps://t.co/Af2QprSAX9
— Phillies Nation (@philliesnation) November 22, 2018
And with All-Star shortstop Corey Seager expected to return to the Dodgers’ infield next season after missing most of 2018 after undergoing Tommy John surgery, and with team brass reportedly reticent to open the vault on a nine-figure contract, the odds of Machado re-signing in Los Angeles sit at a lengthy +350.
Big Spending Yankees a Good Fit
No such obstacles would prevent Machado from coming to terms with the Yankees.
New York jumped at the chance to add slugger Giancarlo Stanton and his $325 million contract in a trade with the Miami Marlins last November, and was pegged as a +300 bet to land Machado immediately following the World Series.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) October 12, 2018
With shortstop Didi Gregorious now on the shelf indefinitely after also undergoing Tommy John surgery in October, the Yankees find themselves with a gaping hole to fill on the left side of their infield.
Machado a Proven AL East Performer
Machado’s familiarity with AL East opponents would also make him a good fit in the Yankees lineup. In parts of seven seasons with the Orioles, he racked up a .283 batting average while hitting 33 or more home runs on three occasions.
The addition of Machado could complete a formidable Yankees lineup that is already among the World Series favorites.
The Miami native has also posted impressive numbers when playing at Yankee Stadium, where he has racked up a .289 batting average and hit eight home runs, second only to his previous home at Camden Yards. His addition could complete a formidable Yankees lineup that is already among the favorites as a +750 wager on the World Series odds.
Fast Improving Phillies Remain in the Hunt
The Yankees are not alone in their pursuit of Machado. Philadelphia has been repeatedly mentioned as a potential destination for the two-time Gold Glove Award winner, lifting the Phillies to +250 second favorites, well ahead of the Washington Nationals at +700, and the Pittsburgh Pirates at +1200.
— Section 215 (@Sec215) November 29, 2018
After finishing dead last in the NL East in three of the past four season, the Phillies improved to 80-82 in 2018, and appear ready to take the next step nest season. With just under $69 million committed to payroll in 2019, the Phillies have money to spend. And while Scott Kingery put up respectable numbers at shortstop in his rookie season in Philadelphia, Machado would represent an immediate upgrade to the club’s infield.