An Early Review of the Yankees Trade Needs

It may be early but with 2 months of the season already gone teams have an idea of whether they’ll be buyers or sellers at the trade deadline. There is still time for teams to go on a hot or cold streak but teams like the Brewers, Athletics and Phillies are firmly in sell mode.

Last year Brian Cashman came away a winner by acquiring Brandon McCarthy, Martin Prado, Chase Headley for inconsequential pieces they aren’t likely to miss. The Yankees didn’t make the playoffs and McCarthy departed in free agency but trading Vidal Nuño for him was a stroke of genius.
The Yankees are likely to be buyers at the deadline and we can probably expect more of the same incremental upgrades this season. Let’s explore the Yankees areas of needs as they continue the march towards the trade deadline.
  • Second Base: By far the biggest need of the Yankees as Stephen Drew has been a black hole offensively. The most viable option internally is Rob Refsnyder at Triple-A. There are some older veterans who might be available for the right price but I’m an advocate for giving Refsnyder a shot.
  • Starting Pitcher(s): Tanaka made a brilliant return to the starting rotation and Michael Pineda has been an Ace all season. Despite their dominance Tanaka is currently pitching through a UCL tear and just came off a lengthy stint on the DL and Pineda has been healthy this year but has been fragile the rest of his career. The rest of the rotation has been extremely mediocre. C.C. Sabathia always seems to give up one big inning. Nathan Eovaldi struggles to go five innings and generate strikeouts despite a 98 MPH fastball. Adam Warren has slowly started to adjust to being a starter but is sill Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde. There aren’t many rental pitchers I’d see as upgrades. Let’s hope Ivan Nova comes back strong.
  • Right Handed Relief Pitcher: With David Carpenter designated for assignment the Yankees are currently sporting 5 Left Handers in their bullpen (Jacob Lindgren, Justin Wilson, Chasen Shreve, Chris Capuano and Andrew Miller). At some point Esmil Rogers is likely to get the boot for someone who isn’t guaranteed to give up a run every appearance and Capuano’s spot is far from guaranteed should Nova come back strong. Nova’s return will likely shift Warren to the bullpen.
  • Outfield Depth: The injury to Jacoby Ellsbury has tested the Yankees so far with Slade Heathcott (until his injury) and Ramon Flores stepping up to platoon with Chris Young. Young has looked closer to the player he was with the Mets than his first few months with the Yankees. Since the Yankees are looking for a backup an incremental upgrade should be readily available.

Article by: Eliot Podgorsky
Follow me on twitter @EliotRants
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