What Jon Berti brings to the Yankees in trade with Marlins

The New York Yankees acquired utility man Jon Berti in a trade with the Miami Marlins ahead of Opening Day, according to multiple reports Wednesday.

Looking to cut the roster down to 26 players before Thursday’s opener, the Yankees made a much-anticipated move. Acquiring Berti gives the Yankees a true bench player for the infield, which is significant considering the fact that starting third baseman D.J. LeMahieu is expected to start the season on the injured list.

The news was first reported by Craig Mish of The Miami Herald.

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What the Yankees are getting in Berti

Berti, 34, has spent the last five seasons with the Marlins working as a true utility player. He has vast experience playing the entire infield (excluding first base) and all three outfield positions. 

In 2023, Berti appeared in 133 games for the Marlins. He slashed .294/.344/.405 with seven home runs, 33 RBI and 29 walks in 424 plate appearances. His OPS+ was right around league average at 103. Berti also has a knack for stealing bases. Despite playing in 102 games during the 2022 season, he led MLB with 41 stolen bases.

In all, this appears to be a strong move by the Yankees. Berti will provide an upgrade over Jahmai Jones as a bench player, and there’s a real possibility he starts over Oswaldo Cabrera at third base while LeMahieu recovers from a foot injury.

What the Yankees are giving up

The Yankees will be sending 18-year-old outfield prospect John Cruz to the Marlins. He was listed as the team’s No. 28 prospect entering the 2024 season.

This turned out to be a three-team trade between the Yankees, Marlins and Tampa Bay Rays. The Yankees are also sending catcher Ben Rotverdt to the Rays, per Jon Heyman of MLB Network.

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