As exciting as acquiring Manny Machado would be it seems to be unrealistic at this point. The Yankees real search right now is for starting pitching. Here’s the NY Post for more on that:
According to a person with knowledge of the situation, the Yankees and Pirates are discussing a deal that would bring right-hander Gerrit Cole from Pittsburgh and possibly would include outfielder Clint Frazier leaving The Bronx.
Reporter George A. King III adds that the Pirates are looking for a pitcher ready to step into the big leagues and suggests Chance Adams could be involved for this reason as well.
Frazier and Adams (plus probably a couple other prospects) for Cole? As much as I want to hate the deal it does seem hard. The Yankees would be dealing Clint Frazier, who, let’s face it, is blocked at the MLB level unless he learns how to play third base (which isn’t happening). And the two pitchers would be an even swap.
I suppose it would depend on who the other prospects were, but it’s hard to turn down two years of Cole, a guy who still throws in the upper 90s, still occasionally hitting 100 mph, who threw 200+ innings in two of the last three years. MLBTradeRumors.com estimates that Cole will earn $7.5 million through arbitration next season which would give them plenty of money left over to add CC Sabathia on a one-year-deal, and perhaps even a bat like Todd Frazier (or might I suggest Howie Kendrick?).
Ultimately, I trust Brian Cashman to be smart about the other prospects involved in the deal, and about checking out what else is available. Frazier+Adams is expensive, after all, and if they could get Michael Fulmer from the Tigers instead of Cole then that may be the way to go. These are just rumors after all…Cashman may already be working on something different.
The Yankees had four players taken in the Major League phase of today’s Rule 5 Draft: RHP Anyelo Gomez (1st rd, ATL), LHP Nestor Cortes (1st rd, BAL), 1B Mike Ford (1st rd, SEA) & RHP Jose Mesa (3rd rd, BAL).
The Yankees made one selection in today’s Rule 5 Draft, selecting OF Junior Soto from Cleveland’s Triple-A roster in the first round of the Triple-A phase. Soto, 20, hit .172 (30-for-174) with 19R, 14 doubles, 9HR and 17RBI in 52 games with Single-A Lake County in 2017.
Anyelo Gomez, Nestor Cortes, Mike Ford and Jose Mesa all have to remain on their new teams’ respective 25-man roster all season or they will be offered back to the Yankees. Most Rule 5 picks are returned before spring training is over, although it is becoming more common for teams to stash players like this. The Yankees lost Luis Torrens to the Padres last year this way.
The players taken in the minor league phase, like Junior Soto, don’t have to be offered back to their original teams if they don’t make the active roster. Those players are gone for good.
White Sox are very interested in trading for Manny Machado, and would then potentially trade him to the Yankees in return for prospects. Yankees don’t like their chances of trading directly with Orioles. Phillies are also interested, with Cardinals and Giants the others in talks.
It’s hard to imagine this trade actually going through, but this is a clear sign that the Yankees see themselves as strong World Series contenders and they themselves are getting aggressive.
It just seems like the need for a starting pitcher is more pressing at the moment than the need for Machado, especially considering the fact that he’ll be a free agent a year from now. Brian Cashman has always been the type to prefer to hold on to prospects rather than give them up for rentals.
The Yankees do technically need a third baseman and a second baseman which is why these rumors aren’t completely ridiculous (the fact that they have Giancarlo Stanton at all makes it hard to discount too). While Gleyber Torres and Miguel Andujar are available to step in, the Yankees may not want to commit to two rookies in the lineup on Opening Day even if they are both apart of the team’s longterm plans.
This move was a straight salary dump to get rid of the $13 million the Yankees owed third baseman Chase Headley. The Yankees now have the flexibility to add a starting pitcher, maybe two, and a bat.
Jabari Blash is a 28-year-old AAAA player who has hit .200/.323/.336 in 279 plate appearances in the MLB. He’s technically the Yankees 7th outfielder at this point so don’t expect him in the Bronx. He’s probably just around in case they trade Clint Frazier and the Triple-A team needs another outfielder.