Andrew Benintendi is among 10 Kansas City Royals players who will be unavailable for the team’s road trip in Toronto when they take on the Blue Jays north of the border. Benintendi’s vaccination status will prevent him from joining his teammates on the road trip and has also presented a rather concerning hurdle in any trade involving the All-Star outfielder.
According to Jon Heyman, despite Benintendi not being vaccinated against COVID-19, there are still various teams interested in trading for him, including, shockingly, the Blue Jays themselves.
Teams pursuing Benintendi were informed by the Royals of the Benintendi vax status awhile back. Many are still in. That includes even the Jays (as of yesterday) as they are apparently hopeful he may agree to get the vax if he’s dealt there.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) July 14, 2022
Heyman indicates that, at least as of Wednesday, the Blue Jays are still among the teams considering making a move for Benintendi. He does note, importantly, that the Jays are “hopeful” he would agree to get the shot if he does end up getting traded to Toronto, though it’s unclear if he the player himself has made any indication that he would do so.
Any American League team considering a trade for Benintendi would likely want some type of confirmation that he’d be willing to get vaccinated, or else they’d risk a potential playoff series against the Blue Jays in which he’d only be available in home games. The Yankees’ interest in Benintendi has reportedly waned as a result of his vaccination status, but despite that, Heyman indicates not every team has been scared off.
This season, Benintendi was selected to his first-ever All-Star Game. On the year, the 28-year-old lefty is slashing .317/.386/.401 with 3 home runs and 37 RBI, while playing top-notch defense for the Royals on an (almost) nightly basis.