Since Emilio Bonifacio was designated for assignment by the Royals six days ago, we have been waiting to see where he ends up. There are a number of teams that could use help, either with a utility infielder or at third base, and Bonifacio may well be a better option than any players that are currently available. Add in his relatively affordable $3.5 Million salary for this year, and Bonifacio should be a hot commodity for the Royals to trade.
Here are a few of the teams that could potentially use a player such as Bonifacio:
Boston Red Sox: The Red Sox are heading into this year with two rookies at shortstop and in center field in Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley, respectively. They also have a young third baseman in Will Middlebrooks. While Bogaerts is expected to be the Red Sox future at short, there are questions elsewhere. Bradley did not exactly set the world ablaze with his debut in Boston, striking out 31 times in 95 at bats and posting a .189/.280/.337 batting line before being sent back to the minors. Middlebrooks has been able to hit for power, but there may be questions about his ability to hit for average and get on base at the major league level. Having a player like Bonifacio could certainly help the Sox feel better about having three young players in their everyday lineup.
New York Yankees: Quick – who is the Yankees third baseman? Kelly Johnson? Eduardo Nunez? Brendan Ryan? While Emilio Bonifacio may not be able to replace even the lessened production of Alex Rodriguez, but he may well be a better option than what the Yankees presently have. Bonifacio can also serve as solid depth at second base, which is now being manned by Brian Roberts, who may be more fragile than the emotions of a 14 year old girl. Add in the age of Carlos Beltran and the fragility of Jacoby Ellsbury, and Bonifacio is a player that could make sense.
Baltimore Orioles: According to reports, the Orioles are interested in acquiring Bonifacio – very interested. They do have a need for a utility infielder even after signing Alexi Castilla, and since Bonifacio can play in the outfield as well, that could give him an edge. The Orioles are also extremely intrigued by Bonifacio’s speed, and his stellar success rate stealing bases.
Los Angeles Dodgers: The Dodgers have been looking for a player that can play second, third and short. Well, it just so happens that Bonifacio is available. Even though they signed Justin Turner to a minor league contract, the Dodgers front office has proven that they are willing to throw money at any perceived problems they have in the lineup. Turner is not nearly the same type of player that Bonifacio is, and given the injury issues that both Matt Kemp and Carl Crawford have faced over the past couple of seasons, a player like Bonifacio could prove to be valuable to the Dodgers.
There are other teams that could use a player such as Emilio Bonifacio, but the four above may be the most interested. The Kansas City Royals have a valuable trade piece in Bonifacio, and may be able to get a solid piece back in return. Likewise, the Royals may be able to package Bonifacio with another player or two to get back a player that could help the team win this season and into the future.