The Advantages of the Trade Market

After '12, Yanks' radio rights could be up for grabs
Scouting The Free Agent Market: C.J. Wilson
Pipe dream? I hope not. (Ed Zurga/Getty)

As of 12:01am ET this morning, the free agent market is officially open for business. Free agents can now receive and accept offers from all teams, which means we’re going to see tons of (bonus) rumors and (legitimate) signings in the coming weeks. It’s fun stuff.

We always expect the Yankees to be a major player in free agency because they can outspend everyone else, but the open market is not always the best way to go about plugging a hole in your roster. Sometimes the solution just isn’t out there, and other times the solution presented to you isn’t a good fit. That’s where trades come in, which like free agency, has some advantages of its own…

Money Still Talks

The big advantage in free agency, especially for the Yankees, is that they can just throw their money around and let that do the talking. Yeah, you have to give up an asset in a trade (i.e. one or more players), but the Yankees can still use their financial might to absorb salary that most other teams could not. MLBTR projects John Danks to make somewhere between $8-10M next season (just using him as an example), and how many teams can realistically take that on in a trade? It’s probably less than half the league, maybe even less than a third.

The general rule of thumb is the more money you take on a trade, the less you have to give up in terms of players. That doesn’t mean the Yankees can just buy players they want from other teams, but their superior budget can help keep the player cost down in some cases.

More Options

There are a ton of free agents out there, hundreds of them if you start counting the minor league guys, but that doesn’t always mean the open market will offer what you need. It’s no secret the Nationals are looking for a center fielder that can hit near the top of the order this winter, but they’re completely out of luck in free agency. It’s Coco Crisp or bust in that department. The Yankees want another lefty reliever, but that market is close to barren.

The trade market can offer viable alternatives in many cases. Sometimes it’s a non-contender looking to beef up their prospect pool, other times it’s a contender dealing from a position of depth to shore up another hole. It’s just another pool of players you can mine for talent.

Peak Years

This is the biggest advantage the trade market has over free agency in my book. Because players need at least six years of service time to qualify for free agency, most of them are over 30 by the time they hit the open market. Yeah, there is the occasional Alex Rodriguez or CC Sabathia or Jose Reyes or Prince Fielder, but those guys are the exception and not the rule. If you’re looking to buy peak performance years, those age 26-30 seasons, you’ll have a very tough time finding them on the free agent market. You might have to pay a little extra for them in a trade, but it’s usually worth it.

* * *

The Yankees want need pitching this offseason, but there’s not much available in free agency aside from Edwin Jackson, C.J. Wilson, and potentially Yu Darvish. The trade market may or may not offer some attractive alternatives, but if it does, the Yankees have the big budget and cache of upper level prospects (David Phelps, Adam Warren, Austin Romine, etc.) to get a deal done.

After '12, Yanks' radio rights could be up for grabs
Scouting The Free Agent Market: C.J. Wilson
  • theyankeewarrior

    Give me Danks or give me death!

    • mike

      i mean this respectfully. But whats the big deal with John Danks ? is it because he’s left handed ?

      I like many believe that the Yankees need a strong number 2. ( don’t think Nova is it Yet ) . But can’t Cashman do better than Danks ?

      • Slugger27

        its because mike has always liked him and mentioned him a lot, i dont think theres much more to it than that. mike (deservedly so) has a very respected opinion, so guys he likes will always be loved on this forum.

        ive been saying it for a while, but i dont see the big deal in danks either. career 4.03/4.14/4.12 e/f/x line. yawn. not really any better than nova if you ask me.

        useful piece, but not someone id give up much for, especially since we only have him for 1 year.

        • mike

          i agree Slugger. I think with the depth down below the Yanks can do better.

        • Mike Axisa

          The E/F/x line is inflated a bit because he took a pounding his rookie year, but over the last 2-3 years he’s settled in around ~3.80/3.80/3.90. Left-handed, only 26-years-old, misses bats (the K/9s aren’t great, but the swing-and-miss rates are), limits walks, experience in a hitter’s park … I’m a big fan. Not saying he’s an ace, just that he’d be a really good addition to the rotation.

          • Slugger27

            i get what youre saying. hes certainly a useful piece, but comments like “give me danks or give me death!” raise an eyebrow, even if said a little in jest.

            not sure why swing and miss rates are relevant. he’s been in the league a while now, and its clear he wont be much more than a 7 k/9 guy. if the swing and misses dont amount to getting strikeouts, then who really cares?

            i like him too, dont get me wrong, just dont think hes some great reliable guy in game 2 of the playoffs… and i dont think hed be worth giving up much for in a trade.

            • Mike Axisa

              If he’s getting swings and misses, there’s a chance he could improve those K/9 numbers through better execution, game planning, etc. If he was a 5% whiff guy, then yeah, it’s unlikely he’d be able to improve the K/9. That’s not to say he definitely can, but there’s reason to believe he might.

              Remember, he’s just 26, not even in his peak years yet.

            • Ted Nelson

              Swings and misses are valuable outside of Ks. Just like hitters can work the count, so too can pitchers.

              There’s a lot more to pitching than just Ks. Ks are used as a proxy for other things, such as inducing weak contact. If you’re getting guys to swing and miss at a lot of pitches, it’s likely that you’re getting them to barely hit a lot of pitches too. Not definite by any means, but can be a proxy for inducing weak contact. The big flaw with FIP is that it assumes all contact that’s not a HR is the same. That’s clearly not the case. Some balls are more likely to go for hits than others no matter what park you’re in and what defense is behind you. I don’t know of a measure for weak contact, though, outside of looking at opponent SLG maybe which is influenced by defense and park and of course quality of opponent.

              • Slugger27

                Swings and misses are valuable outside of Ks.

                you care to elaborate? im failing to see how. mike mentioned it could to lead to further Ks down the road… my personal opinion is that after 900 innings in the bigs, im skeptical of a spike in Ks. your comment however implies that swing and misses are valuable even if they dont amount to Ks. id love to hear how…

                his career BABIP is pretty much league average. not a perfect measure for inducing weak contact, but its something. honestly, the whole “swing and misses likely mean he’s also getting weak contact” argument is pretty weak to me, especially since theres no objective data backing it up.

                • Ted Nelson

                  Dude, seriously? My whole FUCKING post elaborated on that point.

                  • toad

                    What’s the problem? You said you don’t know of a measure of weak contact. Slugger27 pointed out that if you get a lot of weak contact it might well show up as a low BABIP. That sure seems reasonable to me.

                    • Ted Nelson

                      The problem was “you care to elaborate?”

                      I did elaborate. Slugger is free to disagree, but it’s a huge dick move to just pretend like I did not elaborate on “Swings and misses are valuable outside of Ks.” I clearly had elaborated. Pitching is not all about Ks. Ks do have a lot of value, but they’re also a proxy: guys who tend to get more Ks also tend to miss bats to get guys in “pitchers counts” where they can make the pitches they want and induce weaker contact or K the guy.

            • theyankeewarrior

              The catch phrase was over the top, yes. But the notion still stands:

              If available at a reasonable price, aka not Montero/Banuelos, he could be a great addition and a good fit for a trade from a team looking to cash in on a starter it may lose next year, and another with a lot of upper-level SP talent.

              Obviously, we don’t know exactly what the Yankees know/think about prospects like Romine/Betances/Warren/Phelps/Mitchell etc. but at some point, a few of them have to be cast off. There simply isn;t enough room in NY for them all.

              So depending on who they don’t see in the equation, it could be a great one-year upgrade with the option to extend, or sign him after the season.

            • Rainbow Connection

              comments like “give me danks or give me death!” raise an eyebrow

              Get ahold of yourself.

              • theyankeewarrior

                See above. I have control. Lighten up, Rainbow!

          • theyankeewarrior

            Yes, the last three years he has been a very good top-of-the-rotation type. Essentially, the #2 we are looking for. Last season was not as good as the previous two, but his peripherals were similar, his K/BB rate was very good, and he had the highest BABIP of any of his ~200IP seasons.

            He is also in a contract year, so he has a huge incentive to perform.

            Also: since he only has one year of team control left, the Sox should only be asking for a package of one “stud” plus maybe some supporting B-type prospects. The Yankees have a ton of upper-level SP prospects that they can’t possible have room for in the coming years.

            Could be a great way to capitalize on that talent.

            But obviously it has to start with interest from the White Sox. If he’s not available, he’s not available.

        • Ted Nelson

          So, basically you don’t see the big deal with all but the most elite of the most elite starters?

          Nova has had one good season. Let’s see him repeat it a few times before we crown him a top-of-the-rotation starter. Danks has been doing it for 4 years now and should theoretically only get better at this age.

          • Slugger27

            So, basically you don’t see the big deal with all but the most elite of the most elite starters?

            when it comes to trading our valued prospects, yes, thats exactly what im saying.

            Let’s see him repeat it a few times before we crown him a top-of-the-rotation starter.

            never said he was a top of the rotation starter, and never implied it. you criticize everyone else for their strawmans, so how can you make a comment like that?

            Danks has been doing it for 4 years now

            doing what? his 3.90/3.90/3.90 type lines? yeah, i know hes been doing that. 1 year of that slash line doesnt have much trade value to me.

            and should theoretically only get better at this age

            theoretically, yes, these are his prime years. i could say the same exact sentence about nova. hes been in the league for 5 seasons now, i think we know what we’re getting here… a solid innings eater whos better than league average on a 1 year deal.

            • Ted Nelson

              “when it comes to trading our valued prospects, yes”

              Very few prospects actually succeed. Often the best way to use prospects (especially for a rich team) is to trade them for surer bets.

              “never said he was a top of the rotation starter, and never implied it.”

              Danks is a top of the rotation starter and you said Nova is as good, therefore you absolutely did imply Nova is a top of the rotation starter. No strawman there. Your words.

              “doing what?”

              Averaging 3.9 fWAR.

              “a solid innings eater”

              17th best pitcher in baseball the past four years is not an “innings eater.”

              “i could say the same exact sentence about nova.”

              It’s difference because Nova has done it once. He hasn’t shown that he can repeat it. Might well have been a fluke.

              • Slugger27

                theres a lot of this post that doesnt make sense, but ill start with this: “Danks is a top of the rotation starter and you said Nova is as good, therefore you absolutely did imply Nova is a top of the rotation starter. No strawman there. Your words.”

                because you start your sentence saying “danks is a top of the rotation starter” doesnt make it true. it makes it your opinion. my opinion is that he isnt. how you can read that sentence and come up with any conclusion other than it being a strawman is beyond me, but lets just move on.

                also, youve commented about where he stands on fWAR totals the past few years about 65 times already in this thread. i get it, the dude eats innings year in and year out while pitching better than league average. thats great. on a 1 year deal though, the innings hes accumulated in 2008 and 2009 dont mean all that much to me, and thats where i believe a lot of his value comes from.

                im interested in his rate stats, and they dont impress me. youre interested in his fWAR totals, and they impress you.

                we agree to disagree. deal?

                • Ted Nelson

                  How about actually stating why you don’t like Danks instead of just using a “because I say so” and “it’s my opinion” argument? Any scouting report you have done on him? Any statistical analysis relative to the league? I am trying to use fangraphs as an objective source to compare him to the league. I don’t particularly care about Danks, I am trying to look at it objectively.

                  “because you start your sentence saying “danks is a top of the rotation starter” doesnt make it true.”

                  Because he’s been the 17th best pitcher in baseball the last 4 years according to fWAR is what makes it true. Nothing to do with my opinion at all.

                  “im interested in his rate stats, and they dont impress me. youre interested in his fWAR totals, and they impress you.”

                  What is fWAR based on? Again, the guy has not been a real workhorse the last 4 years. He’s stayed healthy, but his IP totals are relatively low for his fWAR. Only 3 guys ahead of him are better. Only 1 of the next 5 guys behind him are lower.

                  Relative to the rest of the league, he’s been very good. I don’t know what else you want to compare him to besides the rest of the league. He’s not CC or Halladay. I agree. Not everyone who is not AMAZING is the same, though.

                  “i get it, the dude eats innings year in and year out”

                  Again… that’s only part of the story. That’s not the whole story.

                  “the innings hes accumulated in 2008 and 2009 dont mean all that much to me, and thats where i believe a lot of his value comes from.”

                  PLEASE actually look at the stats. You clearly have not. 2009 was his LOWEST fWAR besides his rookie year. That’s not where most of his value came from at all. Get a clue.

                  • Jesse

                    Haha, Scott Proctor has a lower fWAR in that time period than any other pitcher.

            • Mike M

              How many of our prospects do you see turning into someone as good as Danks? Most prospects bust, getting too nuthuggy on them is not a good thing

            • theyankeewarrior

              IMO, the “elite” kids (Monteo/Banuelos) would never be involved in a deal for Danks. He’s not that kind of pitcher. However, outside of those two, I think any prospect should/could be the headliner for one year of a guy of his caliber.

              Just MHO

      • Ted Nelson

        Since 2008 Danks is 17th in fWAR among SPs (Wainwright would have almost definitely been ahead too without TJS), and at 27 (next season) Danks should be on the rise. He’s averaged 3.9 fWAR per season over that span.

        If you look at that list, there aren’t many better options who might be available this off-season. Hamels, Cain, and Greinke are coming up on free agency, but might never reach it or get more money than the Yankees want to pay or pull a Cliff Lee. Could sign Buehrle, but he should be trending the opposite way as Danks. Darvish or CJ Wilson are certainly options. Other guys are just very unlikely to be made available at even a half-way reasonable price: Halladay, Lee (with either of those maybe the Phillies ditch them for Hamels… but I sort of doubt it), Verlander, Lincecum, Felix, Lester, Kershaw, Weaver, Beckett, Johnson… Maybe Haren, but it’s not like the Angels are poor. Indians just gave up two top prospects for Ubaldo and he stunk for them, so who knows there but I would at least wait to see if he starts out well and picks up the trade value.

        The idea with Danks is also that the White Sox might look at his inconsistency and weaker traditional stats (like W-L), and therefore undervalue him both in a trade and as a guy they want to re-sign. Someone like Hamels or Cain doesn’t have those problems necessarily. Cain especially might be buying high after a career season with an impossible to repeat HR rate.

  • http://none Favrest

    Cashman needs to find a way to his “Josh Beckett” type of trade. I don’t want to deal Montero, but we recognize that we need to, we must get a bonafide ace in return. You gotta give to get, and Cashman simply doesn’t want to give up anything of value.

    • Matt Imbrogno

      I think you’re overstating the idea that the Yankees “need” to trade Montero.

    • Ted Nelson

      Who is this “we” that recognizes that the Yankees “need” to trade Montero? And who is this “bonafide ace” that they’re getting in return for Montero?

      You are aware that Cashman did try to trade Montero for two “bonafide aces” in Halladay and Lee, right? That he seemed to at least entertain the idea of trading him for Ubaldo Jimenez? There’s a difference between not giving up anything of value and not making a trade where you give up more value than you get.

    • Slugger27

      i gotta imagine if any “bonafide ace” came up in a trade and was under contract for more than 1 season, that cashman would gladly give up montero.

      i think the problem is those guys just arent available.

      • Ted Nelson

        In large part because hardly any of them exist. If you don’t consider Danks an ace, there are only a dozen or so in the world.

        • Slugger27

          we’ll just have to agree to disagree here, ted. i believe there are more than a dozen pitchers better than danks in the world. citing 4 year fWAR totals isnt gonna change my mind, because i know he’s built up a lot of value with his innings. thats definitely a plus for him, i get that.

          if he was under team control for more than 1 year, id probably like him as a trade target a lot more. but no, i dont consider danks an ace.

          • Ted Nelson

            You’re not convinced by facts, but you’re not willing to offer any reason you don’t like him? Just “because I say so?” Honestly not trying to be a jerk here, but you’ve offered nothing as evidence besides your opinion.

            He is not an innings eater. You are wrong there. His innings total is lower than those around him in fWAR. Only three guys ahead of him have fewer innings. Of the five guys behind him only one (Carpenter) has fewer innings. If you bothered to look into this, I think your opinion would change. That you keep insisting he’s a workhorse when he’s not suggests to me you know little about him.

            If you’re worried about the 1 year… do the trade contingent on him signing an extension. That’s a non-factor.

            • Slugger27

              ted, youve stated hes averaged 3.9 fWAR for 4 seasons a dozen times now. i get that. heres what im trying to say, and its the last time ill address it:

              WE ARE ONLY CONCERNED WITH DANKS FOR 2012. hes under control for 1 more year, thats it. i dont care if his durability and effectiveness allowed him to build up a lot of fWAR over the past several years. im more concerned with peak performance for a 1 year guy, since 2012 is all that would matter for the yankees.

              if we assume 3.9 fWAR for 2012 (his 4 year average that you cited), i dont think thats worth all that much in a trade. 1 year for a 4 win pitcher at $10M? very nice asset and useful piece for a playoff contender. absoultely agree. someone id give up any prospect better than romine for? no, i wouldnt. its just my position, and its clear yours is different.

              i dont care about his fWAR totals over the years, i just care about what we can expect in 2012. thats it.

              • Ted Nelson

                As I’ve said, if you don’t think you can re-sign him on the open market (and I don’t see why the Yankees couldn’t)… get an extension before the trade. I am ABSOLUTELY NOT looking at one year only.

                “if we assume 3.9 fWAR for 2012 (his 4 year average that you cited), i dont think thats worth all that much in a trade.”

                Your standards are impossibly high. 3.9 fWAR would have put him at 25th in MLB for 2011, tied with Greinke. If you don’t see value in having one of the 25 best pitchers in baseball for $10 mill… I don’t know what to tell you.

                “someone id give up any prospect better than romine for? no, i wouldnt.”

                As someone above says, how good do you expect the Yankees’ prospects to be? Which ones do you consider to be better than Romine, and what would you give them in terms of ceiling, probability, and most likely case?

      • Rainbow Connection

        Cashman was willing to give away Montero (and more) just a few months of Lee, no?

    • Stryker

      last time i checked the yankees locked up their “bonafide ace” to the tune of 5 years/122 million.

  • Ted Nelson

    I still don’t understand why so many people assume that the White Sox are in a rush to move John Danks for relative crap like Phelps, Romine, and Warren. They’re legit prospects, I’m just saying I believe Danks’ trade value will be much higher.

    Danks has averaged 3.9 fWAR the last 4 seasons, is a lefty, and will be 27 next season. He’s a total beast. There’s certainly the possibility Kenny Williams pulls another Swisher, but if he puts Danks on the trade market I can’t imagine that the best offer he gets is Warren, Phelps, and Romine. If that’s the best offer he gets I can’t imagine they trade him rather than just re-signing him. We’ll have to see, though. Maybe Kenny Williams and the White Sox look at the W-L record and 2011 regression, and don’t see a stud.

    • viridiana

      I agree with you that people seem to think Kenny Williams is some sort of an easy mark who will simply fold to the Yankees. I would imnagine after the Swisher trade he’d be the least likely guy to give something away to Yanks.

      That said, I’m not so sure Danks is worth that much more than the Romine/Warren Phelps package. I always see it as a bad sign when guys suddenly gove up more than a hot per inning. This happened to Danks last year, a marked performanhce decline. His ERA was also below league average. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to imagine that Warrwen or Phelps could be league average — and of course they’re cheap. Romine is not real exciting but he does project as a major league catcher. Sweeten the deal with a promising lower level reliever and I think that would be a fauir offer for Danks. My concern is that Williams will be so afraid of looking bad again a n a deal with Yanks that he will simply hold out for more than Danks is worth.

    • Slugger27

      its clear im in the minority on this, but i think phelps/romine/warren is a very fair trade for 1 year of danks. if anything the yankees are giving up too much.

      • Ted Nelson

        Danks has the 17th highest fWAR among SPs since 2008. His bWARs were very good until 2011. He’s only going to be 27 next season (i.e. one year older than Phil Hughes and 2 years older than Nova), so he should be entering his prime and getting better. He’s not Roy Halladay, but he’s a very good pitcher.

        • Ted Nelson

          Warren and Phelps are back-of-the-rotation prospects and Romine is a borderline starting C prospect who can’t hit AA pitching particularly well and gets mixed reviews on defense. Would you have been happy if the Yankees dealt “one year of” CC Sabathia before last season for two #3 starting prospects (inflated from back-end prospects like Warren and Phelps) and a pretty decent C prospect? Would that have been fair to you? I believe that you are prospect hugging and not looking at the situation objectively.

          • Slugger27

            first of all, comparing danks to sabathia is laughably absurd, so i wont even address your ridiculous comparison beyond that.

            second, if you look at a lot of the trades that have occured for pitchers with 1 year(ish) left before free agency, the returns have been underwhelming. dave cameron even noted it before the trade value series over at fangraphs. even the greinke trade last year. and danks doesnt have near the resume greinke has.

            • Ted Nelson

              You’re missing my point on the Sabathia comparison. You seem to have your opinions and be unwilling to re-evaluate them when presented with new evidence. I tried to make it clear that I was proposing a relatively similar trade offer… i.e. Sabathia is a lot better than Danks, so the pitching prospects would be a lot better than Warren and Phelps. Since Warren and Phelps are back-of-the-rotation prospects, I said #3 starting prospects for CC. Semantics aside, the point is: would you have been in favor of trading CC with 1 year left for prospects with little chance of ever being nearly as good? If not, why should the White Sox give up Danks for that sort of a deal?

              Again, he’s not on a one year deal if you agree on an extension before acquiring him.

              “even the greinke trade last year.”

              The Royals got a haul for Greinke. They got a one-year-removed top 12 BA prospect at THE premium position in the game, they got BA’s #69 prospect in a SP, they got a former 1st round relief prospect, and they got an MLB ready OF. In Yankees terms that might have been something like somewhere between Montero and Romine, Betances, Joba, and Nunez/Cervelli/Dickerson. I’m not really an Escobar fan, personally, so I don’t know that I make that deal. Objective value wise they did well there, though.

              Prospects don’t usually work out. That’s a big part of the reason why in hindsight these hauls look bad. It’s also why you have to give up better prospects than you’d like to: they could be really good, but their odds of being really good aren’t that great.

              • YanksFan

                But the Yanks probably will not give an extension to Danks as part of the trade. That is not Cashman’s M.O. That is double dipping as far as Cash is concerned. He doesn’t want to give up prospects and a FA contract, which is what Danks would want.

                • Ted Nelson

                  I’m not saying that they will trade for him. In fact, I’m pointing out that they probably won’t. If the Sox say he’s worth $1 and the Yankees say he’s worth $0.50, it’s possible that they compromise or find a 3rd team to help split the difference, but it’s also possible that they walk away or find another partner (like with Ubaldo, Greinke, Lee, etc.). People are saying the Yankees should just offer a crap package, but why would the White Sox accept that? It’s possible that they’re looking to dump Danks immediately and can’t find a better package, but I doubt it.

    • theyankeewarrior

      I’m thinking Betances or Romine would have to be the headliner of a trade for Danks.

      Anything less, the White Sox say no. Anything more, the Yanks walk away.

      Warren/Phelps/Mitchell etc. seem to be icing on the cake rather than the main prize for a guy like Danks.

      Just an estimation though.

      • Ted Nelson

        I mostly agree with you, but there’s a third option: trade him to any of 28 other teams. Perhaps the Yankees and Sox find a match, but if not there will likely be other bidders and perhaps the Sox find a better match with them. That’s where you have to decide between walking away and overpaying in your own estimation if you’re the Yankees.

        If I’m the Sox I am not all that excited about Romine. Guy hasn’t hit particularly well in AA for two straight years. There are mixed reviews about his defense. Cs are very scarce, so he certainly has good value. Good Cs are a lot scarcer than solid-ish Cs, though, so I might rather get a better looking prospect at a less valuable position if I’m the Sox.
        Similar story with Betances. As a Yankee fan I am high on the kid and waiting for him to put it all together to become a top-of-the-rotation starter. If I’m on the phone with Cashman working out a deal, though, I’m telling him with that control the kid is a relief pitcher.

        If I’m the Sox a deal would have to start with Betances AND Romine + one or two solid prospects in the Phelps, CoJo mold or maybe a younger upside guy.

        Or maybe they’re willing to wait longer on a Sanchez, Bichette, Mason Williams…

  • steve (different one)

    Good article, but I disagree with the premise that few teams could absorb $8-10M for Danks. I think almost every team could do that. A quality starter on a 1 year deal with 2 picks possible at the end of the year? That is a very valuable commodity. It’s going to take real assets to land him.

    I think many of us think because we stole Swisher, KW is going to hand over Danks for David Phelps.

  • Monteroisdinero

    Don’t do a thing if we can’t sign Darvish.

    Sox are reeling. We won division easily last year.

    Sit tight.

    • Slugger27

      how are the sox “reeling” ?

      arent they returning essentially the entire team minus ortiz?

      • Pat D

        And minus Lackey and DiceBB which, naturally, makes them better.

        Drew will be gone, too, not that anyone will notice.

        • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

          But who will their replacements be? Wakefield? Doubront? Weiland? I’m not sure if any of those are better than Lackey and Dice K, and I just can’t see them going after Wilson or Darvish.

  • Kosmo

    If NY makes the high bid for Darvish then the frantic search for a top flight SP becomes less so but having said that IMO Garza is the SP to trade for. The Cubs need position players in the worst way possibly at 3B,2B,1B,RF,C. A.Soriano isn´t going anywhere but with exception of Castro at the MLB level and with Brett Jackson and Josh Vitters still 1/2 year or more away they have major holes to fill. The Yanks could match up with a package of 5 players. Make an offer that´s a little better than what the Cubs gave up to land Garza.
    Cubs aren´t a .500 team with Garza and are in a rebuilding mode.

    • mike

      I agree . I’d rather have Garza than Danks .

      • Ted Nelson

        Based on what?

        • mike

          Garza is AL EAST battle tested. I like Garza. i just can’t buy the hype on Danks. sorry

          • theyankeewarrior

            Garza is also more injury-prone though, right? Does anyone know his injury history?

            I know the Rays abused his arum in his last couple seasons and then cashed in on him.

          • Slugger27

            mike, didnt you know he was 17th in fWAR since 2008?

            • mike

              im not a Saber guy slugger.

            • Ted Nelson

              Nice one… Garza is actually Danks’ most similar player according to B-R.

              You criticize fangraphs as a source, but you have no argument at all except “I just don’t trust him as a #2 in the playoffs.” Nice.

            • FIPster Doofus

              You say that as if it’s meaningless. Danks is really good, regardless of your confirmation bias.

          • Ted Nelson

            Ironically Garza and Danks are each other’s most comparable player on baseball-reference.

            Garza wasn’t all that great in the AL East. Good, but not nearly as good as he was in the NL in 2011. He was actually not all that good in 2010 at all. He really blossomed in the NL. Danks isn’t in the AL East, but he’s been in the AL his whole career. I don’t know of a good source on level of competition faced, but would be interested to see one if anybody has a link.

            I don’t necessarily favor one over the other, I just don’t see why you do. From a tradability stand-point I’m looking at Danks. A few factors make him likely to be a better value: Kenny Williams isn’t Theo Epstein, the Cubs just traded two of their best prospects for Garza one year ago and he in-turn had a career year, and Garza is cheaper. I don’t see the White Sox giving Danks away, but I could see him being a better value than Garza.

          • Kosmo

            Agreed. Garza has in the past pitched well against AL East opponents.
            I think Garza has 2-3 years left on his contract . I honestly forget.

    • steve (different one)

      Would you really want to give up more than the Cubs gave up for Garza? First, the Cubs gave up a lot. 2nd, he is now 1 year older and one year closer to FA.

      Seems like a bad idea.

      What WILL be interesting to see is if Theo and Cashman do hook up on any deal now.

      • Kosmo

        Archer and Guyer are the 2 keepers. Lee is a Punch and Judy hitter. The other 2 were throw ins.
        Yanks could offer a better deal than that.

        • Ted Nelson

          Archer was the 27th BA prospect. So, yeah, the Yankees could offer Banuelos.

          Lee plays SS. SS are extremely scarce. SS who can hit are one in a billion. We’re talking at least Romine, I’d say.

          The Yankees CAN offer more, but should they?

      • Ted Nelson

        He also went to Chicago and had a career year. I can’t see the Boy Genius trading him for less after he had a better season (granted, against worse competition… but GMs seem to miss that part of the equation all the time, so he can probably still get better value).

        As you say, they gave up a good bit. Archer was the 27th BA prospect in all of baseball. We might be talking Banuelos there. Lee was 92 and plays SS. At least Romine I’d say.

  • mscott

    As far as the “barren” market for LOOGYs is concerned, I would have signed Mike Gonzales at 12:01 this morning.

  • Bavarian Yankee

    I think we’ll trade for a pitcher if we don’t sign Darvish or Wilson.


    looks good to me. Now let’s get it done :D
    Maybe Cash tries to trade Burnett (if Alex Anthopoulos can do it, Cash can do it too :D) and trade for another starter.

    • Pat D

      When did Anthopoulos trade Burnett? Or are you referring to his masterful job of letting the Angels take Vernon Wells off his books?

      • pat

        I’m assuming BV meant being able to dump Rios and Wells.

        • Bavarian Yankee


  • China Joe

    Time for a patented Cash Ninja Move…it’d be better if he made his move before Wilson signs or Darvish is posted, though I bet most GMs will wait until late in the offseason, after the free agents sign and the price of pitching goes up

  • mt

    Danks also gets some extra play and mention because a) he is lefthanded. In YS III, Yanks have figured out the lefthanded power (Cano, Granderson, Tex as lefty) part of the home field success equation but have faltered with the lefty starting pitcher (not to mention the bullpen) except for CC, of course. and 2) if WS resign Buehrle, ChiSox have six or seven starters (Peavy, Floyd, Humber, Danks, Zach Stewart, Buerhle) with Sale also possibly ticketed as a starter c) they have Rios, Peavy and Dunn contracts as untradeable (although after LA took Wells from Toronto AND also gave them Napoli alst year, no contract may be untradeable except Arod’s.)

    ChiSox may be a perfect target for a trade.

    On the Kenny Williams reluctance to trade again with Yanks after Swisher “heist”, I wonder if in his mind he thinks he did the best he could if Ozzie really told him that Swisher needed to go.

  • steve (different one)

    I was going to suggest using Rios’ contract as a way to deal for Danks, then I looked it up. Ouch. It would be $40M/3 for a 4th OFer. What happened to that guy?

    • Slugger27

      started chasing bad pitches, cant catch up to a fastball.

      or maybe its just cuz he got paid.

      • Bavarian Yankee

        he just doesn’t have the “grit and wily veteranship of Scott Podsednik” :D

  • David, Jr.

    I wonder what it would take to get Gio Gonzalez? Montero and Banuelos?

    • Jesse

      I’d say no to that.

      • Bavarian Yankee

        I’d even say no to that if we had to trade just one of Banuelos and Montero. Gonzalez walks batters like hell (don’t know if he gets incentives for walking batters), he’s the last guy I’d trade for. If they take Betances and Romine straight up I’d do it but they’re not getting anything more.

        • Jesse


        • David, Jr.

          No. Incentives for striking out batters (171 in 2010 and 197 in 2011). Plus, cost controlled until 2015. I believe we would pay huge for him.

          • Sarah

            No incentives for strike outs are allowed, I think. I’m pretty sure the only incentives allowed in contracts are things like innings pitched, games played, etc.

    • Ted Nelson

      I don’t think the Yankees would do that. At the same time I don’t this the A’s are giving him away. It’s possible that they find a match (maybe A’s like Betances and/or a guy in the low minors), but the A’s can also look to other teams to find that match.

  • theyankeewarrior

    I think Cashman proved last year that patience is the key. Sure, we all want him to go out and make the one move that puts our rotation into the elite realm of the AL, but if no one is available, it’s better to stand pat.

    Five of CC/Nova/AJ/Hughes/Garcia/Noesi/Warren/Phelps can probably keep us above water until the deadline where more pitching will be come available.

    Obviously, no one expects the Yankees to sign/trade for nobody all off season. But, the above list of SPs is a bare-minimum and it still puts them, along with their elite O & Pen, in a position to win a ton of games.

    At this point, most/all of the guys on the trade and FA market are question marks. Cash & co. know much more about them than we do. They have more resources than any other team in terms of prospects and $$ to get deals done. So if they pass on someone, it’s probably for very good reason.

    For me, Danks is just a personal favorite. Seems to be a good fit for CWS & NYY. Left handed. Good peripherals, innings eater, ready for a big contract, shouldn’t cost us Montero/ManBan.

    Sign me up.

    • Jesse

      Completely agree with everything you said.

      I wonder what it’d take to get Danks though. I’m not 100% certain, but I believe in a chat an RABer suggested Romine and Phelps to get Danks, and I believe Axisa said that deal could get it done. Who knows.

      • Ted Nelson

        I personally see Romine + Phelps as a very Yankee-centric offer, and would not see that coming close to getting it done. You never know because maybe the White Sox happen to really love Romine and/or Phelps and/or whoever much more than any other team in baseball. Absolutely possible. As a big market team like Chicago, though, (with a lot of $ coming off the books in the next few years) I am not trading my young stud SP for a marginal deal of two guys who may or may not be MLB players. Of course all prospects are risks, but not all are equal risks. Romine hasn’t hit AA pitching for two years in a row and some question his defense… there’s as much a chance you’re trading for Cervelli 2.0 as anything else. Phelps is only a bit younger than Danks.

        I’m looking for either more upside or more depth in a deal if I’m the White Sox. Either give me something sexy (could be Betances if they’re high on him, could be a low-minors guy) or plug a bunch of my holes. The reason to trade Danks instead of re-signing him if you’re the White Sox is that you’ve got a bunch of holes emerging and not many prospects who look up to the task of filling them. Getting what is likely to be a much worse SP and a borderline starting C prospect only does so much to help that situation.

        Finally, there are other teams besides the Yankees. It’s just not likely that the White Sox happen to be huge Romine/Phelps fans. There will be other bidders, and it’s just more likely that the White Sox are big fans of one of their prospects (any one of the them, from any one of the teams) than Romine/Phelps.

        • bg90027

          I agree with you. I think people get too wedded to that trade calculator and also overvalue our 2nd tier of prospects. While you can argue that 1 year of Danks or any of the top potential 2012 free agent pitchers isn’t worth giving up many years of a cost controlled top prospect, I think it’s also true that all of these 2013 free agents are on teams with a chance to be competitive in 2012 and they aren’t going to make their teams weaker in order to add a few young guys that might be useful but who have pretty limited ceilings.

    • Ted Nelson

      Good points.

    • Hardy

      “until the deadline where more pitching will be come available”.

      I strongly disagree with that sentiment. First of all you plan to play 2/3 of the regular season with a worse-then-necessary rotation. Secondly, you basically guarantee that you have to part with a top-flight prospect. Thirdly, there is no reason to believe that the pitchers who are available at the trade deadline are no question marks in one way or the other.

  • Bronx Byte

    Danks would be a good get and fit in the rotation as the No. 3 behind Sabathia and Nova.
    Phelps and Romine ? Make the deal before the White Sox say no.

  • aluis

    Montero annd Man Bam for Josh Johnson (assuming he’s healthy)?

    • FIPster Doofus

      When is he ever healthy?

  • LiterallyFigurative

    If it takes Phelps, Romine and maybe another spare part to get Danks, then that’s a deal that should be made 5 minutes ago.

    Outside of ManBan and Jesus, and maybe Betances, all of the AA-AAA guys are available.