This past offseason the Minnesota Twins established that they did not want to extend the contract of Francisco Liriano. That lead to all sorts of trade rumors and speculation which the Yankees were right in the middle of.
They didn’t make their move though and went into this season without significantly improving their rotation. It has hurt them and they are probably as desperate as ever to add a front end starter.
And with the Twins currently in possession of baseball’s worst record at 12-26 it has lead Hardball Talk blogger and Twins fan Aaron Gleeman to speculate that the Twins could be sellers at this year’s trade deadline. One of the players he thinks would be available is Liriano and with the Yankees still in need of pitching it makes sense to think that they would be interested in the Twins ace who recently threw a no-hitter.
The only problem is, would the Yankees even want Liriano at this point?
He’s young, he throws hard, and he’s a lefty. The problem is that the no-hitter he tossed a little while ago was probably his only good start this season. His velocity on his fastball is down, from 94.2 last season to 92.1 so far this year. Perhaps most alarming is that his K/9 of 5.30 is no where near his career mark of 9.05 and his BB/9 is also bloated at 6.81 (his career mark is 3.40).
So on one hand the Yankees may be buying low on a young lefty, but on the other hand they might be signing a player who could potentially be on the verge of another serious arm injury.
It’s hard to say at this point what they would do, but chances seem good that unless he turns his season around the Yankees would be taking a huge risk unless the Twins practically gave him away in a trade.
So Liriano may indeed be traded at some point this season, but as of right now it is hard to see the Yankees having a lot of interest in him. As of now, it’s impossible to see them giving up one of their big weapons in a deal for him.