When the Yankees acquired Brandon Drury from the Diamondbacks as part of a three-team trade in February, it’s fair to say no one saw his tenure in The Bronx ending like this.
Drury was traded again Thursday, this time to the Blue Jays, in part of a package for left-hander J.A. Happ.
The 25-year-old Drury was expected to provide insurance if Miguel Andujar or Gleyber Torres weren’t ready to start the season. As he reminded reporters after his move to the Blue Jays became official, Drury opened the season as the Yankees’ starting third baseman.
But after a four-game hitless streak in April, Drury told the Yankees he was dealing with blurred vision and migraines — and had been for years.
While the Yankees tried to figure out the cause of Drury’s health issues, Andujar arrived and brought with him what general manager Brian Cashman called Thursday “a new world order.”
Drury ended up playing in just 18 games with the Yankees — and 61 in the minors — which led to conversations between the two sides about a potential move. He went just 9-for-57 with three extra-base hits with the Yankees, while Andujar emerged as one of the top rookies in the game.
“It’s a small sample size,” Drury said. “It’s not who I am.”
“He was not acquired to be a depth piece,’’ Cashman said. “[Andujar] changed the landscape of what we were looking for.”
Asked if he believed he got a fair shot from the Yankees, Drury was diplomatic.
“I had bad breaks along the way,’’ Drury said. “I just had some stuff happen that wasn’t planned. … Baseball is a crazy game. It just didn’t work out.”
Drury said he was told by the Blue Jays that he would be in the starting lineup Friday at thw White Sox, a promise Aaron Boone couldn’t often make.
“The reason we got him was we really feel like he’s a big league third baseman,’’ Boone said. “We still feel that way. It was a unique set of circumstances that made this a trying year for him and in a lot of ways, unfair for him. Hopefully he gets a fresh opportunity [with Toronto].’’
Cashman said he was motivated to move Drury, who he said repeatedly was a major league player playing at Triple-A. But he added he would have traded Drury “only in the right circumstance” and that several teams inquired about him.
“It definitely was not what I expected this season to be like as a Yankee, but it happened,’’ Drury said.
And he had no regrets about speaking up about his health woes.
“I’ve got a long career ahead of me,’’ Drury said. “I’m happy to have figured some answers out rather than keep playing through it.”