Is Chris Archer worth pursuing for the Yankees?

With less than 24 hours until the trade deadline, the Yankees find themselves still in the midst of a number of high profile trade rumors, with some more enticing than others. The Yanks have been linked with two different groups at this point: pitchers and rumblings about a bat to help reduce the suffering of Gary and Judge being on the DL. However, for this article we will focus on the Yanks possible need for pitching, being in the mix for both starters and relievers. Big names such as Cole Hamels and Brad Hand are off the market, and with the Nationals and Dodgers both extremely unlikely to deal their aces, focus must be shifted elsewhere, as the clock is quickly ticking. Brian Cashman has been up to his usual chats he has with executives round the league to gauge interest in his players, and despite recently acquiring J.A Happ from Toronto, you can never put it past him to make yet another move if he hears a package to his pleasing.

A name that has appeared quite frequently as of late is none other than A.L East foe Chris Archer, the 29-year-old starting pitcher for the Tampa Bay Rays. The Rays are a team that despite exceeding expectations so far this season, are most likely out of a playoff spot and will be sellers at the trade deadline, and it is thought around the league that All-Star Blake Snell is not available, and it would take a lot to get him even if he was. With J.A Happ already on the squad and having a solid first appearance, a trade for Archer could be viewed as a possible move to a six-man rotation for the rest of the season, or simply a possible replacement for Sonny Gray if he gets moved before the deadline.  
Photo Credit: AP Gail Burton

So, Chris Archer; what is his current value right now? Well, the two-time All-Star has not exactly been lights out over the past few seasons, in fact he has been quite middle of the road, as his ERA has been above four each of the past two seasons. In 2018, he is 3-5, with a 4.31 ERA, with his strikeout numbers being a bit lower than usual. Not what you exactly want to hear if you are a Yankees fan and trying to convince yourself that an Archer move is the way to go. Despite very mediocre numbers, it must be said that he did have a terrible April and has a 3.14 ERA since the beginning of May, including a very solid start against Boston.

Yet, Archer has been downright dreadful against the Red Sox in his career, saving those good starts for when he faces off against the Yanks, (Archer has a 5.27 career ERA versus Boston, and a 3.14 against the Yankees.) I am not the type of person who gets a player/ doesn’t get a player due to his performances when that player faces off against a certain team. Getting Archer solely due to his dominance against you; well that’s another story. Something to love about Archer is his stuff, as he sits in the mid 90’s and is constantly circulating around Twitter with some of his sliders and had a K/9 rate above 10 from 2015-2017. The risk with him however is that much like Tanaka, he’s susceptible to the long ball and having very bad starts, a bit inconsistent to say the least. That leaves us with the qwuestion:
Is Chris Archer Worth Pursuing?

I think it would be foolish to not at least float an offer out to the Rays, and not an offer like Jessica Mendoza made on Fox Sports today, suggesting Gleyber should be involved in a Chris Archer deal, (Sad!) Getting Archer may require one high level prospect to be included, but the Yanks sure have a lot available, especially when you consider only McKinney and Drury were given up getting Happ; neither being a high-level prospect. If the Rays ask for either Frazier, Florial, Sheffield or Andujar, Cashman should hang up the phone, (and if they ask for Gleyber he should laugh and then hang up the phone.)  Yet I can see a prospect such as Chance Adams headlining a package for Archer, along with a few other lower level prospects.

The Rays may not budge due to their disbelief that Archer is not exactly a highly touted trade target. If they do realize his value, a deal may be made before tomorrows deadline, and the Yanks according to CBS Sports are the current front-runner. Archer is under team control for the next few seasons, and is a reasonably low price, making a possible move even more likely. 

Article By: Matt Luzzi


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