Andrew Benintendi has been traded to the New York Yankees. In return, the Kansas City Royals will receive right-hander Chandler Champlain, lefty T.J. Sikkema and righty Beck Way. The team was a serious contender for acquiring the 28-year-old outfielder. Benintendi is the best defensive left fielder in the trade market, as he’s been hitting over .300 all season. He’s putting up a respectable season with three home runs, 14 doubles, two triples, 37 runs and 37 RBI in 87 games for Kansas City. He will be a free agent after this season. Benintendi, a cornerstone of the 2018 World Series champion Boston Red Sox, made his debut in 2017.
Benintendi finished second in the AL Rookie of the Year award voting that same season. Then, he had his best season to date, hitting .290/.366/.465 with 16 home runs, 87 RBI, and 21 steals. However, he declined in 2019, hitting .266/.343/.431. He went in a 4-for-39 slump before an injury shut down his 2020 season. He made the game-ending catch in Game 4 of the ALCS against the Houston Astros to put Boston up 3-1 in that series.
Andrew Benintendi is Headed to the Bronx
The seventh pick of the 2015 MLB Draft eventually became a Royal as part of a three-team trade. Benintendi rebounded nicely in two seasons with Kansas City. Last season, he hit .276 with 17 home runs, 73 RBI and 63 runs scored, along with winning his first Gold Glove award. This season, he became an All-Star for the first time his career.
Multiple teams were eyeing the All-Star outfielder, including some in the AL East. Altogether, Benintendi will make a great addition to the team. They now have the best left-handed hitting outfielder as they’ll feel more comfortable facing this team again in the fall. While he doesn’t have strong power numbers, he rarely strikes outs. Plus, he doesn’t chase pitches too often as well. Besides the chatter about Benintendi, his vaccination status did not impact his trade market. He was one of ten Royals players ineligible to play in Toronto against the Blue Jays due to being unvaccinated.