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Jonathan Holder has a realistic shot of making the All-Star team

Middle relievers have only recently started receiving universal recognition for their individual performance in Major League Baseball, due to the new age of numbers in the sport. Saves are no longer the all-telling, ultimate stat about a reliever’s success and WAR, ERA+, and other metrics have opened the eyes of fans on just how valuable it is for a team to have dominant relievers outside of the ninth inning role. Their widely agreed on importance has led to a lot of non-closer relievers making the All-Star team in recent seasons. The American League squad had two of them in 2017 and 2015, and a whopping four in 2016. If this trend continues, the AL should feature at least one or two non-closer relievers, and possibly more, with the scarcity of lockdown closers in the AL in 2018. The Yankees feature a lot of highly talented middle relievers and the pitcher who has surprised everyone the most, Jonathan Holder, has a very realistic shot of cracking the AL All-Star squad.

Yankees trade rumors: Yankees “making progress” on Giancarlo Stanton

Photo Credit: Christian Petersen | Getty Images

Just last night, Giancarlo Stanton narrowed the list of teams in which he would waive his no trade clause to the Dodgers, Astros, Cubs, and Yankees. About 24 hours later, the Marlins and Yankees are making noteworthy progress on a potential trade to bring the reigning NL MVP to the Bronx, according to Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports. Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic was the first to report that the Yankees were serious players for a Stanton trade, even saying that the smoke is real.


Stanton, who just turned 28 last month, had a monster year in 2017 hitting .281/.376/.631 (1.007 OPS) with 59 bombs, 132 RBIs, and 32 doubles. He also appeared in 159 games making his third All-Star appearance, winning his second Silver Slugger and of course, the MVP award.

If Brian Cashman were to get him, Stanton would slot into what would likely become the most intimidating lineup in baseball with fellow power bats Greg Bird, Gary Sanchez and of course, Aaron Judge. The lineup would also include rising star Didi Gregorius and would be chock-full of former all-stars such as Starlin Castro and Brett Gardner.

Derek Jeter and the Marlins are desperately trying to move Stanton and the rest of the $295-million he is owed over the next 10 seasons. While that may seem absurd, it may look like a bargain after next offseason should Bryce Harper get a $400-million deal and a $300-million contract for Manny Machado.

This is a complicated situation due to the Marlins looking to decrease payroll, and the Yankees also looking to decrease payroll to get under the luxury tax. So far, here is what we know.

Initially, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reported that the package would include a mix of prospects plus a 'high priced' veteran or veterans going back to Miami. From there, Heyman then tweeted that due to the depth of the Yankees farm, system, it would not be the Yankees 'very top' prospects in return for Stanton, so that would surely keep Gleyber Torres out, and could keep Clint Frazier, Chance Adams, and others out of a potential package. It was reported a while back that the Marlins are more concerned with getting another club to pay most of Stanton’s contract than they are for receiving prospects in return, so that would further confirm Heyman's report.

We also know that Starlin Castro's name has specifically come up in these discussions, per Jon Morosi of MLB Network. It's worth noting that Jacoby Ellsbury or Chase Headley could also surface in these talks. Finally, Ellsbury does have a no-trade clause, and there have been reports that he does not want to be dealt from New York this winter.


With this rumor, the Stanton sweepstakes to pinstripes went from a fantasy to a possible reality in the matter of a day. A lineup of Judge and Stanton is something that is only created in video games, but now, it looks like Cashman is really going for it. For now, all indications point toward progressing talks that will only heat up during next week’s Winter Meetings. We'll be monitoring this very closely over the coming days, so keep it pinned at BBB for all the details.


Article by: Chad Raines

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