Rounding Up The Trade Rumors

Yankees win tie game 4-3 over Cubs
Food for thought: Cano's on-base skills
(Photo Credit: Flickr user terren in Virginia via Creative Commons license)

A bunch of small, rumor-style reports surfaced this weekend about the Yankees and some pitchers they may or may not target in midseason trades, so let’s round them up chronologically …

Top Advisors Scouted The Cubs

Bruce Levine reported on Friday that the Yankees had some scouts watch Carlos Zambrano last weekend, and it wasn’t just a routine check-up. Levine said it was some of Brian Cashman‘s top advisors, and a number of them unsurprisingly prefer Ryan Dempster. Zambrano is willing to waive his no-trade clause, by the way.

Preference: Lefties And Rentals

George King reported yesterday that in a perfect world, the Yankees would like to acquire a left-handed starter that is not under contract beyond this season. That’s a limited (and unappealing) demographic since the only southpaws scheduled to become free agents after the season are Bruce Chen, Zach Duke, Jeff Francis, Paul Maholm, and C.J. Wilson. I can’t imagine Texas would be willing to trade their ace while in contention, and the others … yuck. Mark Buehrle has a clause in his contract that automatically locks in a $15M salary for next season if traded, so we can’t consider him a rental has a full no-trade clause but fits the bill as well.

I do suppose, however, that we could include players in their arbitration-eligible years (since they could be non-tendered, the same thing as a rental), in which case guys like Francisco Liriano, Clayton Kershaw, John Danks, Jonathan Sanchez, and Joe Saunders come into play. That’s better, but how many are realistically available? I can see Liriano, Saunders, and maybe Danks. Maybe. How sold are you on Liriano’s turn around?

Oh, Wait … Yankees Have “Zero Interest” In Zambrano

Wally Matthews reported late yesterday that despite the recent scouting trip, the Yankees have “no interest” in Zambrano. Perhaps they were turned off by his 6 IP, 9 H, 5 R stinker against the Brewers last week or his 6.1 IP, 7 H, 7 R, 7 BB gem against the Phillies nine days ago. This latest report makes me happy because I wasn’t a Zambrano fan even before his velocity dropped (again) or his ground ball rate declined (again).

I don’t know where a high-end pitcher is supposed to come from, but it’s pretty obvious the Yankees need someone like that. They can’t assume Bartolo Colon will come back from the disabled list throwing grenades like he was before, and with one more injury we could be looking at Ivan Nova, Brian Gordon, and David Phelps in the rotation all at the same time. Now that is scary.

Yankees win tie game 4-3 over Cubs
Food for thought: Cano's on-base skills
  • Mike HC

    John Danks seems like the perfect trade target right now. The Sox have a lot of starting pitching right now, they do not seem to be the smartest run franchise, and the Yanks have a ton of attractive minor league prospects to possibly pry him loose.

    Zambrano I would stay far, far away from.

    • Stoneburner

      Plus – Kenny Williams and Brian Cashman have a good history of working out deals together.

  • Jon

    I don’t think this would be a good idea to bring a guy like Zambrano to New York. He is not mentally strong and that is something you need to be in order to play for the Yankees in this huge market.

    • Mike HC

      Forget mentally strong. His stats in the NL have been pretty weak for years and years now.

  • ZZ

    Mark Buehrle has a clause in his contract that automatically locks in a $15M salary for next season if traded, so we can’t consider him a rental.


    • Pants Lendleton


    • The BIG 3
      • ZZ
        • The BIG 3

          No-trade protection

          2008: full no-trade clause

          2009 – July 15, 2010: limited no-trade protection allowing Buehrle to block trades to certain unspecified clubs. A trade triggers an escalator paying $1M raise to $15M annually, plus a guaranteed fifth year paying $15M for 2012.

          July 16, 2010-2011: Buehrle may not be traded without his permission, under right as 10-and-5 player

          • ZZ
          • Mike HC

            Right. So from july 16, 2010, through 2011, which is the current time period, Buehrle can simply veto any trade he wants.

            According to this source, the other clause has already expired.

            Unless it is just poorly worded, deceiving, or flat out mis informed, which is also possible.

            • The BIG 3

              I think it’s just poorly worded by Cots. Look at this one: July 16, 2010-2011: Buehrle may not be traded without his permission, under right as 10-and-5 player

              Buerhle eared 10/5 rights in 2009, and those rights will not expire on July 16, 2011.

              • ZZ

                Buerhle eared 10/5 rights in 2009


                • The BIG 3

                  True, but those rights also don’t expire on July 16, 2011, which Cot’s is implying.

                  It’s poorly written.

                  • ZZ

                    It doesn’t say they expire on July 16th 2011.

                    July 16, 2010-2011.

                    There is not specific date in 2011. That clause just relates to the fact that his contract with the White Sox expires at the conclusion of 2011.

                    • Mike HC

                      Not giving a specific date actually makes sense, because if he does get traded, he no longer has the 10-5 rights. So there is no set in stone date when the 10-5 rights expire.

                    • The BIG 3

                      Agreed; that’s possible. It’s also possible that he isn’t guaranteed $15m next year, if traded.

                      Likely, even:
                      “Buehrle said he didn’t get a complete no-trade clause but there are provisions to compensate for that. His contract calls for $14 million in each of the four years. He has a no-trade provision in the first season. If he is traded during a window in the second or third seasons, the annual salary goes to $15 million that year and a fifth season is added, also at $15 million”


                      I’m sold. You’re right, ZZ.

                      This would be an excellent pickup for NY, and I thought that when I thought he’d be paid $15m next year.

              • Mike HC

                I took July 16, 2010-2011 to mean from July 16th 1010, to the duration of his contract which runs out in 2011.

                And because the Sox and Buehrle contracted their own trade protection into the contract, the 10-and-5 rights to veto any trade might not have applied to him. But right when that trade protection expired, the 10-5 rights kicked back in.

                Just my reading of it, but agreed that it is anything but crystal clear.

                • Mike HC

                  And ZZ is probably right again that it didn’t kick in until later.

        • Mike HC

          Battle of the sources. Since Cot’s was a bit more detailed, I tend to believe ZZ’s source.

          The 1M escalator and the extra fifth year trade protection seemed to expire last year on July 15th. Now Buehrle only has the ability to block any trade he wants.

          • The BIG 3

            I was thinking the same, but of what relevance is July 15th? If Buehrle doesn’t want to be traded, why wouldn’t it be July 31st instead?

            • Mike HC

              Why would they trade Nick Swisher for Wilson Betemit?

              I don’t know.

              • Mike HC

                And like I said above, maybe the information is flat out wrong.

            • ZZ
            • Mike HC

              According to ZZ’s investigation, ha, seems like Buehrle 10-5 rights kicked in on July 16, 2010. So Buehrle wanted certain trade protection until then. In 2008, he had a full no trade clause and in 2009-2010, until the 10-5 rights kicked in on July 16, he had the 1M escalator and extra fifth year protection.

              This does seem to make sense. It would have been easier if ZZ just explained this right off the bat, but I guess giving it in cryptic drips and drabs was kind of fun too, ha.

              • ZZ

                Cryptic drips and drabs. lol. I like that. It was fun.

    • jonnypodres

      If I’m reading Cot’s right, that clause expired last year:

      *2009 – July 15, 2010: limited no-trade protection allowing Buehrle to block trades to certain unspecified clubs. A trade triggers an escalator paying $1M raise to $15M annually, plus a guaranteed fifth year paying $15M for 2012.

      *July 16, 2010-2011: Buehrle may not be traded without his permission, under right as 10-and-5 player

    • Mike Axisa

      Hmmm, interesting. The Cot’s page must have been updated at some point because I don’t remember the detailed breakdown like that.

  • Xstar7
  • Bryan L

    Please no to Zambrano. Dempster wouldn’t be a bad option though, for the right price.

  • Kosmo

    When and if Hughes and Colon are fit to pitch , Nova or Garcia would more than likely get bumped. Where do you put a LHSP ?
    Wandy, Liriano, and Maholm could be available . Minnesota looks like they´ve reawakened and Pittsburgh is over .500 . In MO Wandy is the more likely trade target.
    Also E-Jax has pitched well in all but 2 or 3 games this season, if you subtract these games his ERA hovers around 3.00
    Interesting note-IPK has a 2.9 WAR 4th or 5th best in MLB .

    • CP

      You think Arizona would be willing to trade IPK?

      • Reggie C.

        Haha … Beat me to it.

        No. KT has zero interest in doing that. IPK is under team control for the immediate future, and since SP is expensive, i imagine the D’Backs wouldnt mind trading bats for arms. IPK is going nowhere.

      • Stoneburner

        I guess you could reacquire IPK – just as long as he does not talk to any reporters after he starts a game in Anaheim.

        I guess you could reacquire IPK – if you also still think reacquiring Javy Vazquez was a good idea.

  • Guy Montag

    We don’t want no Zambrano or Edwin Jackson. They aren’t an improvement over AJ. If they can’t get an established #2 starter then they shouldn’t get anyone at all. Playoff rotation will be CC-Colon-Hughes-AJ. You need to get someone better than them to justify a trade.

    And everyone keeps saying the White Sox are just gonna hand over one of their better starters for nothing. The Sox have climbed back into the race, it’s a weak division they can win, and if anyone goes it will be Edwin Jackson. Peavy is always injured so maybe they’ll wanna keep depth.

    • The Fallen Phoenix

      Jackson may not be an improvement over AJ, but he’d be an improvement over Garcia/Nova/Gordon/Phelps, and that’s not an insignificant marginal upgrade.

  • stunna4885

    hey mike axisa what do u think about anibal sanchez?

  • Wooderson

    can we please stop sucking hughes’ dick?

    • Stoneburner

      Hughes symbolizes too much for certain fans. Though – they have started the transition to Banuelos – though the obsession has not been as great for Betances.

      • YanksFanInBeantown

        I am proud to say that I am obsessed with Betances

  • Reggie C.

    Liriano has had a great four game stretch bringing down the ERA from a 7.00 to 4.67. I’m not going to sneeze at a 8 IP, 9K, 0 BB performance , and since Liriano’s missed something like 4 starts, he might just be hitting his stride now.

    I wouldn’t make available Montero or Banuelos, but I could part with Betances.

  • Matt Imbrogno

    As long as it’s not Zambrano, I’m happy.

  • monteroisdinero

    Carlos Silva pitching at Scranton this afternoon. Have we given up on him?

    Also, Millwood pitching well for Pawtucket. It would stink to have him get called up and pitch well against us. Timing is everything.

  • Jobawockeez

    Ken rosenthal kindA backs up the rental theory. Cash told him that he is no reuben amaro when asked if he will trade for an ace

    • Mike HC

      hahah … that is a great, great line by Cash. He just moved up a notch in my book.

      • Mike HC

        and then back down a notch because he reminded me that he has not been able to land an ace while Amaro has stock piled like 3 of them by trade of signing in the past couple of years.

        So that leaves him at the original notch.

        • Kosmo

          “Original notch“ .Sehr gut, sehr gut !Instant classic ! LOL.

        • CP

          What exactly is CC?

  • Nick

    I know he’s not a rental but I Wandy

  • nycsportzfan

    I wish the yanks would heavily get involved with Wandy Rodriguez, and maybe add Jeff Keppinger as well.. Those 2 could really help, and Wandy is one nice pitcher, who will only be like 34when his contract ends.. We could use a guy with number 2 type stuff going forward, and with CC being able to opt out after this yr, if he gets to crazy with his demands at least we’ll have Wandy, and AJ going into next yr, with COlon, Hughes, Nova, Phelps, Garcia as candites to fill out the rest of the rotation, and betances and banuelos also closer to the ML’s… I’d be really looking into a Wandy/Keppinger deal.

  • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside the Elder

    I’m offended that you didn’t mention Felix Hernandez, who is totally and utterly available. Jack Z literally calls the Yankees every day and begs Cashman to make him an offer.

    Motivated seller. Make it happen, Cash.

    • Pat D

      I heard Jack Z would be willing to package Felix and Pineda…BUT…there’s a catch.

      The Yankees would have to take Ichiro and Figgins, too.

      • nycsportzfan

        uhhh, i doubt the M’s would be willing to get rid of both Pineda and King Felix, thats ridiculous…

  • EndlessMikeJr

    What about Jared Weaver or Dan Haren.Yes the Angles can easily come back in that divison where they are 4 games back but with Jared Weaver losing he’s arbitration case last offseason and we all know the Angles will never pay Jared when he hits free agency can make Jared a tradeable pitcher since he won’t sign an extension now or later and if they continue to do bad.

    Maybe it’s crazy but even Dan Haren might available if the Angles do worse.

  • Charles

    Anyone notice that the Yanks are unusually defensive about not wanting Zambrano? I have heard they don’t want him more times than people have asked about him, after Tex a few years ago I don’t count them out of any major player.

  • cranky

    As far as anyone knows, there aren’t going to be any “ace” starters available. And, as far as I’m concerned, you don’t trade your very top prospects for anything other than an ace.
    Montero/Banuelos/Betances…all should be untouchable except for a Hernandez/Halladay kinda guy. And how many of them are there at even the best of times?
    Liriano would be intriguing. But you can’t be sure what you’re getting. Like Jonathan Sanchez, he’s a guy who is sometimes terrific, other times not so good. He still has all kinds of potential to be a #1 type, and looked it last year. But, if it isn’t a matter of durability with Liriano, it’s a matter of consistency. If the Twins were to put him on the block, they’d want Banuelos, for sure, plus plus plus. And I wouldn’t do that. Banuelos could turn out to be as good as Liriano in two years. And Liriano could just continue to be inconsistent.
    Buerhle (or however ‘ya spell it), is a good pitcher, but he’d be an awfully expensive acquisition at $15m for 2012. And he’s not quite the pitcher he used to be.
    I got slammed for proposing this a few months ago on this board, but I’ll propose it again: Wandy Rodriguez would be a great acquisition.
    He’s a solid lefty. A Ted Lilly-type. Not overpowering, but solid, durable, and can pitch. He wouldn’t be a one-year rental, but his contract isn’t onerous. He wouldn’t be a #1 starter for the Yanks, but he’d be a great get to slot in after AJ in the rotation. And I think the Yanks and Astros would match up well in a trade. Romine, Warren, Joseph, for example, are all players I’m sure the Astros would find intriguing–and they’re all expendable in the right deal.

  • CMP

    I think Dempster would be the best option. His velocity and K/9 has been holding steady, his xFIP is solid and you can see yesterday even when he doesn’t have his best stuff, he can grind it out.

    With a player option for $14 million next year that I would think he’s gonna pick up and the Cubs out of the race and in bad financial shape, they should be motivated to move him for less than an exorbitant price. If he doesn’t pick up the option, the Yankees could always offer him arbitration and get a pick back.

  • Juke Early

    Zambra-NO. Please and Danks you. . ..