I know it’s stupid to play the “what if?” game, but I feel the need to stress the affect Roy Halladay would have on the 2010 Yankees.
1. Halladay will most likely be moved this off-season, and almost certainly before the All-Star break because he no longer believes in the Blue Jays chances of winning. Last All-Star break, Blue Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi was adamantly against trading within the division, but now he is gone and Alex Anthopoulos is in. Halladay’s on the market, and the Yankees are interested.
2. Halladay is going to come at a price, a huge one, that is. Well, I’ve thought about this, and I’ve come up with a rule. As long as the deal does not include premier catching prospect Jesus Montero, I will approve. Montero’s bat and on-the-rise catching ability will eventually be replacing Jorge Posada, and it’s extremely hard to find franchise catchers like Posada (just ask the Mets). I know the Yankees have catching prospect Austin Romine as well, but he doesn’t have the raw power that Montero has.
As for the other young guys that would most likely be involved, Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes & Austin Jackson, I don’t mind the loss. Yes, we’re looking at two pitchers with great potential and and outfielder who hits line drives all night long. But I have lost all of my faith in Chamberlain becoming a starter, so now I believe he has the potential to be a mediocre closer. Hughes could be decent, but Jackson struck out way too many times with few home runs last season in AAA – and that’s a big problem. Halladay is a sure thing, and I believe is the best in the game.
3. “Pairing aces” is the key phrase here. If Halladay joined a team with CC Sabathia already in the rotation, the rest of the league might forfeit, seriously. The 2001 Diamondbacks were a great team because of Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling, but they didn’t have close to the same lineup the Yankees will have in 2010. Halladay and Sabathia are in the prime of their careers and would make for one of the nastiest one-two punches in the history of baseball. For me, if Halladay joined the Yankees this off-season, I’m already chalking up #28. (Also, the same goes for the Phillies. Cliff Lee and Halladay is near a World Series guarantee.)
For the other side of this argument, check out Pinstripe Alley.