The Yankees announced on Tuesday afternoon that third baseman Josh Donaldson has been released, ending a failed tenure in New York.
The 37-year-old former AL MVP slashed just .142/.225/.434 this season with 10 home runs (15 total hits) and 15 RBI in 33 games. Last season, Donaldson was healthy enough to play in 132 games for New York, but he hit just .222 with 15 homers and 62 RBI.
In all, Donaldson played 165 games for the Yankees, equivalent to just over one full season, slashing .207/.293/.385 with 25 homers and 77 RBI. His time with the club was marred by several injuries that kept him off the field. The veteran was on the 60-day IL due to a calf injury at the time of his release, having not played in a game since July 15.
The third baseman was originally acquired by the Yankees in a March 2022 trade that also brought Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Ben Rortvedt to the Bronx, sending Gary Sanchez and Gio Urshela to the Minnesota Twins. While the hope was Donaldson would bring a spark to the Yankees clubhouse, he also came with some added baggage as a player known to butt heads with teammates and opponents.
The writing was on the wall that Donaldson’s time in New York was coming to an end, though many assumed the Yankees would wait until after the season and let him walk in free agency, as there was a mutual option for him to return in 2024 that the team likely would have declined. Youngster Oswald Peraza had been called up and was seeing most of the time at third base.