As the trade deadline looms, much has been written about Brian Cashman’s options for stabilizing the Yankees rotation while not mortgaging the future of the organization. Sitting a few games back from their division rivals certainly puts them well within striking distance. However, one more devastating losing streak could put a stake in any playoff aspirations aside from hedging their bets on a one-game Wildcard opportunity.
With names like Yu Darvish & Sonny Gray being floated around in the trade market, I’ve been hearing Yankee fans asking which one should be the primary target. Cashman has made it known that the Yankees will be “careful buyers” this year and many have focused on controllable years. Darvish, who would be a rental, seems like a good fit for the organization, but again, a rental. The asking price will be the key here. If the Rangers are reasonable in their demands, one could see Cashman pulling the trigger on this dynamic arm.
Then there’s Gray. His controllability for the next couple of years makes him an enticing target, but will also necessitate giving up a pretty decent prospect package. Names like Mateo, Andujar, McKinney, Sheffield, etc. have been thrown around.
It is well known that pitching wins championships. The most potent offenses can be completely neutralized when going up against the likes of Sale/Price or Keuchel/McCullers twice in a series. The Yankees certainly appear to have a young ace in Luis Severino but will need another dominant starter to pair up with him in order to match up with other strong rotations. Masahiro Tanaka was that guy but his inconsistency and tendency to give up big innings doesn’t exactly instill confidence.
But what if you could have your cake & eat it too Yankees fans? Brian Cashman has certainly shown his ability to think outside of the box and be creative when it comes to creating deals. It is not entirely crazy to think that he could score both Gray & Darvish to potentially create a “super rotation” for the foreseeable future while not totally depleting the farm. One would assume that Gray is going to take at least 2 strong and 2 mid-level prospects because of his controllability going forward. It still remains to be seen what it would take to land Darvish and if the Yankees can sign him to a reasonable contract going forward. But the question is, with most positions at the MLB level’s being blocked for the next few years, would you give up 3 strong prospects and possibly 3-4 middle prospects in order to have a rotation of Severino, Darvish, Gray, Tanaka, and then a #5 of CC, Adams, Green, Montgomery or Kaprelian for the foreseeable future?