Kyle Higashioka pinstripe tenure has come to an end, at least for the near-future. Higashioka was part of the blockbuster trade package that the New York Yankees sent to the San Diego Padres for Juan Soto and Trent Grisham.
The west coast trade ends a 15-year Yankee career for the catcher.
The New York Yankees selected Higashioka in the 7th round of the 2008 MLB Draft out of high school. Higgy was a career minor leaguer, who spent 9-straight years in the minors up until 2017, when he was promoted to the Majors following an injury to Gary Sanchez.
Despite Kyle Higashioka being a .210 career hitter, he has made offensive history and we all know how Higgy’s ‘welcome to the Bigs’ moment went; He went 0-for-22, the longest hitless streak to start a Yankee career of any position player in franchise history, to then getting his first 3 hits all via the long ball, making him the 9th player since 1920 to have their first 3 hits of their career be home runs.
On September 16, 2020, Kyle Higashioka hit three home runs against the Blue Jays, becoming the 24th Yankee to have a three home run game and the first to do it while batting ninth. On June 12th, 2022, Higashioka hit the slowest home home of the Statcast era at 35.1 mph.
Overall, Kyle Higashioka is one of the best defensive catchers in all of the league and is undoubtedly one of the best in Yankees’ history. From catching Corey Kluber’s no-hitter against the Rangers in May of 2021, to then catching perfection and conquering the Coliseum with Domingo German in June of 2023.
Higashioka going to San Diego, a team in need of a catcher, could be named starter for 2024.