The New York Yankees pulled off a no-brainer trade Monday when they sent reliever Aroldis Chapman to the Chicago Cubs. For a two month rental, the Yankees received a four-player package that included the No. 26 MLB prospect, two minor leaguers with considerable upside and a major league pitcher. Imagine what "new" closer Andrew Miller, who has two years left on his reasonably priced contract, would fetch in this market where elite relievers are clearly coveted?
Before the All-Star break, the New York Yankees had been on a path toward a hard sell-off despite ownership's contention a few weeks back that they would not quit on the season. Monday, the Yankees traded free agent to be Aroldis Chapman because the deal presented them was too hard to ignore.
However, at four games over .500 and four games back of the second wild card slot, previously all but certain trade candidate Carlos Beltran might stay put in the Bronx. What are the ramifications of holding the 39-year-old, who will also be a free agent at season's end?
The Yankees trading Aroldis Chapman to the Cubs on Monday in exchange for SS Gleyber Torres, OF/DH Billy McKinney, RHP Adam Warren, and OF Rashad Crawford was a no-brainer baseball decision. And acquiring him during the offseason was also a solid move.
The notion of a three-headed lockdown relief crew at the back-end of games made sense in this new age where elite baseball relievers are coveted. Unfortunately, the rest of the Yankees roster was unable to do their part on a regular basis, rendering "No Runs DMC" to a little-used luxury.
The New York Yankees have yet to decide whether they will be buyers or sellers as the non-waiver trade deadline quickly approaches. Meanwhile, their minor league system is in better shape than in years past, but there is always room for improvement.
If the Yankees become sellers, they should look to stock up on close to MLB-ready starting pitching as well as pitchers who might break into the big leagues as relievers no later than next season. Yes, the Yankees have Luis Severino waiting in the wings, but trading for a hurler who has the chance to produce at an elite level would certainly aid the organization.
Neither Nathan Eovaldi nor Michael Pineda have been able to completely covert their natural talents into consistently positive performances for the New York Yankees since being traded to the club. Each pitcher has potential - no one denies that - but has their time ended in New York?
With the Yankees considering a sell-off at the non-waiver trade deadline, Eovaldi and Pineda's names have come up in the rumor mill. Both pitchers have one more year of control, becoming free agents before the 2018 season, and if there is a team out there that believes they can aid either pitcher to maximize their potential, they might take a chance.
The New York Yankees have been the model of inconsistency in 2016, putting them in limbo with regard to how they will handle the trade deadline and adversely affecting their chances of reaching the postseason.
I have described this Yankees team as resembling Jekyll & Hyde and a yo-yo. The second half of the season can change that, but it will require a convincing turnaround within the first few weeks of returning to the diamond. If not, an overhaul of the roster would be in order.
The New York Yankees hoped they found a stopgap shortstop to hold down the fort when they traded for Didi Gregorius in the offseason prior to the 2015 season. At worst, Gregorius was under team control long enough for prospects Jorge Mateo and Tyler Wade to prove one of them was capable of being the shortstop of the future. Now, the Yankees might wonder if they are watching the shortstop of the future mature before their eyes.
As the New York Yankees head toward the All-Star break, so too are some of their farm teams while others are just beginning their seasons. This week we have added some brief notes from the lower levels of the Yankees' organization to the more in-depth reporting on the happenings in the upper levels.
The New York Yankees made some offseason decisions concerning the pitching staff that have not panned out. Those choices require rectification, which can be handled during the trade deadline period.
The first area that needs some work is middle relief. The Yankees traded their two best middle relievers from the 2015 season in the winter, Adam Warren and Justin Wilson. The thought was that Bryan Mitchell and Chasen Shreve could slide into those spots; and the addition of Aroldis Chapman would lighten the load on the middle relief crew.
The writing is on the wall; despite two straight walk-off wins, the New York Yankees are 39-39 and seemingly going nowhere in the standings as they persistently hover around the .500 mark. The Yankees performance this season should push them to make some changes to their roster and the best way to do that is by selling off soon to be free agents and other appealing players in an effort to bring in some fresh bodies for the future.
If the Yankees go into sell mode, I suggest manager Joe Girardi should not have to write Mark Teixeira or Alex Rodriguez's name on a lineup card after the trade deadline.