When Josh Donaldson came to the New York Yankees in a March 2022 trade alongside Isiah Kiner-Falefa, fans had reason to be excited. Donaldson, although already 35, had some solid credentials. The 2015 AL MVP winner, and was a three-time All-Star in the mid-2010s.
Although everyone was aware of Donaldson’s steady offensive decline, nobody could have predicted his career’s implosion on the Yankees. Despite hitting a walk-off single on Opening Day 2022 for the club, things quickly began to go pear-shaped.
Josh Donaldson finished the 2022 season with a slashline of .222/.308/.374 with 15 home runs and 62 RBIs. While his stats last year were career lows, nothing could have prepared him for 2023.
In 33 games for the New York Yankees in 2022, Josh Donaldson is batting just .142. While he has demonstrated some power, boasting 10 home runs, his average just is not cutting it for fans. On July 16, the team announced that the would be heading to the Injured List for the second time this season.
“Prior to today’s game, the Yankees made the following roster moves: – Placed INF Josh Donaldson on the 10-day injured list with a right calf strain. – Recalled INF Oswald Peraza (#91) from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.” – Yankees PR Department
According to the team, the injury occured during the seventh inning of the Yankees’ game against the Colorado Rockies on Saturday. Although the ailment pertains to Donaldson’s calf, the third baseman missed more than six weeks earlier this season with hamstring issues.
Normally, the relegation of a former MVP to the IL would be seen as unwelcomed news for a fanbase. However, in the case of Donaldson, Yankees fans seem to be pleased that he will not be around for awhile.
Over the last thirty days, the Yankees have been one of the worst hitting teams in the MLB. With a .228 average during that period of time, the team has seen many of his supposed stars face plate struggles. To further the team’s headache, captain and 2022 home run champ Aaron Judge has been sidelined since early June and has given no possible dates for returning.
Are injuries greasing Josh Donaldson’s path to retirement?
This year, the Minnesota Twins will pay Donaldson a final $21 million of a $92 million deal that he signed four years ago. While Donaldson used to be force in the league, his obviously inflated contracts and lingering injury issues mean that the Yankees look more than more likely to exercise their $6 million retirement buyout come the end of the year.