Trading Andrew Miller is a necessary move for the Yankees

Andrew Miller has been the definition of dominant during his time with the New York Yankees.

In fact, it’s not crazy to label him as baseball’s best reliever. Since the start of 2014, the left-hander has struck out 277 of the 642 batters he’s faced, allowing just 85 hits in 167 innings pitched, per ESPN’s Buster Olney. So after looking at this ridiculous stat line, the question arises: Why would the Yankees ever trade him?

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Andrew Miller is currently in the midst of the four year $36 million deal he signed in the winter of 2014. Over the next two seasons, he is in line to make a very reasonable $18 million, almost a bargain when you consider how great he’s been. In a trade, Miller would command a bigger haul than that of Aroldis Chapman because teams will be guaranteed his services for two more seasons. As a result, teams will be more willing to part with prized pieces because of Miller's contract.

The main reason that Brian Cashman should be welcoming an Andrew Miller trade is simple, teams will give up a lot to get him. Just take a look at the deal that sent Philadelphia Phillies closer Ken Giles to Houston this past winter. The Astros gave up former number one overall pick Mark Appel, young and promising starter Vincent Velasquez and two other prospects just to land someone who doesn’t even play everyday. Ken Giles is a fine arm, but he is nowhere near the elite level of Andrew Miller. So when considering a potential return for Miller, the Yankees can basically ask for anyone, and that’s where the fun starts.

Picture Credit: Caylor Arnold - USA Today Sports
When Yankee fans are more excited for possible trades than the actual season going on, it says something. But how can they be blamed? The Yankees are virtually guaranteed to receive one if not two A-level prospects in return for Miller. Some possibilities? Well, the Cubs have been scouting the Yanks bullpen trio, and why couldn’t Cashman ask for Kyle Schwarber or Javier Baez? Or what about the Texas Rangers who just left town, Joey Gallo or Lewis Brinson could be on the table. Even the Washington Nationals could offer some tantalizing pieces, like Trea Turner and A.J Cole.

Teams will love to acquire Miller because he’s a team player. He’s accepted every role asked of him, whether it was becoming the team’s closer, or moving back to a setup role to accommodate Aroldis Chapman. When teams attempt to trade for him, they will have to admire his versatility as a relief arm, as he is open to pitching in any situation.

The belief of every other team in baseball, and most Yankees fans, is that the team should become sellers. It’s up to Brian Cashman and ownership to take advantage of a market desperate for pitching.

Relief arms are in demand, and the Yankees will dictate the market and hopefully, help their future.

Article by: Phil Akre
Follow me on twitter: @philakre
Follow the BBB on Twitter @bronxbomberblog

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