BREAKING: Yankees acquire RHP Jameson Taillon in trade with Pittsburgh Pirates


The New York Yankees have seemingly filled out their starting rotation after acquiring Pirates right hander Jameson Taillon in a trade today.  News that the Yankees were first pursuing Taillon broke last night from insider Mark Feinsand.  The Yankees, up against Major League Baseball’s luxury tax line with little room to spare, were looking to add to their starting rotation at a lower AAV than would be available on the free agent market.  Today, per ESPN’s Jeff Passan, the Yankees were able to complete the deal for Taillon, sending minor league prospects Miguel Yajure, Roansy Contreras, Maikel Escotto and Canaan Smith to Pittsburgh to complete the deal.


Jameson Taillon, a former number two overall pick in the 2010 MLB Draft, is coming off his second Tommy John Surgery that cost him most of the 2019 season and all of the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.  The Yankees are banking on Taillon returning to the form he most recently displayed in 2018 when he went 14-10 with a 3.20 ERA across 191.0 innings pitched with 179 strikeouts and a 1.178 WHIP.  Per BaseballReference, that was good for a 122 ERA+.


Photo Credit: Joe Sargent/Getty Images

Taillon figures to slot into the Yankees reshaped starting rotation third, behind staff ace and former Pirates teammate Gerrit Cole and Corey Kluber. The righty is signed for just $2.25 million in 2021 and then will have one more year of control via his final arbitration season in 2022 before he is a free agent.  This move is similar to GM Brian Cashman’s previous starting pitcher acquisitions of Sonny Gray and James Paxton – seeking out a player with more than just a single year of control.


Headed back to the Pirates in the trade are the Yankees’ #15 prospect in Yajure, #19 prospect in Contreras and #21 in Smith.  Escotto is just 18 years old and hasn’t yet cracked the team’s top-30 list per MLB Pipeline. 


With both Yajure and Contreras on the team’s 40-man roster, this trade will allow the Yankees to announce the recent signings of either DJ LeMahieu or Corey Kluber.  The team will still have to make one additional move before the other can be added as the current 40-man, after this trade, sits at 39.

Article by: Andrew Natalizio



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