Trading with the AL

CBA Madness: Even more draft changes
The winter of our content

As the Hot Stove League slowly inches toward the Winter Meetings, trades have been a popular topic of conversation. No one is that impressed with C.J. Wilson or his $100 million asking price, and Yu Darvish’s posting remains on hold as he sorts out his divorce. So the Yanks could turn to the trade market for inspiration and improvements.

We’ve heard some names of potentially available players. Maybe the Yanks will eye Matt Garza. Maybe Oakland will dangle Gio Gonzalez. Maybe the White Sox will part with John Danks. Of course, we can draw up trade proposals (that probably come out of left field), but the truth remains that some GMs and clubs get along better with each other than others.

So as an exercise in both pointless baseball minutiae and Yankee history, let’s review their past trade history. We’ll start with the last transactions the Yanks have made with each of the Junior Circuit clubs and wrap up with the NL tomorrow night. As free agency has become their milieu, the Yanks certainly have not been very active on the trade market over the past few decades.

Baltimore Orioles: Despite 55 trades in their long histories, the Yankees and Orioles haven’t done much wheelin’ and dealin’ since John Habyan came to New York in exchange for Stan Jefferson in 1989. Their most recent trade involved a swap of Jaret Wright and cash for Chris Britton in November of 2006. In 2009, the Yanks purchased Freddy Guzman from the O’s, and that’s all she wrote.

Boston Red Sox: Frequent division rivals make for infrequent trade partners. On August 13, 1997, the Yanks sent Tony Armas and a PTBNL (eventually Jim Mecir) to the Red Sox for Mike Stanley. The Red Sox used Armas to acquire Pedro Martinez a few months later, and the two teams haven’t made a deal since then.

Chicago White Sox: Yankee fans love to target the White Sox as potential trade partners because they always seem so willing to bend over backwards for the Yanks. On November 13, 2008, the Yanks sent Wilson Betemit, Jeff Marquez and Jhonny Nunez to the South Siders for Nick Swisher and Kanekoa Texeira.

Cleveland Indians: The Yanks and Indians consummated two trades in two days at the 2010 deadline. On July 30, the Yanks landed Austin Kearns for Zach McAllister, and the next day, Brian Cashman brought Kerry Wood to the Bronx in exchange for Andy Shive and Matt Cusick. The two teams’ last trade involving only Major League players came in 2000 when Zach Day, Ricky Ledee and Jake Westbrook turned into David Justice.

Detroit Tigers: Over the past decade, the Yanks and Tigers have been very active trade partners. A 2002 blockbuster saw Jeff Weaver land in the Bronx while the Yanks dumped Gary Sheffield on Detroit in late 2006. In 2008, Pudge Rodriguez came to New York just in time to ruin Joba Chamberlain while Kyle Farnsworth left. The most recent deal between these two teams though involved Curtis Granderson. In December of 2009, the Yanks landed Granderson while Phil Coke and Austin Jackson went to Detroit. To round out the deal, Ian Kennedy and Edwin Jackson headed to Arizona, and the Diamondbacks sent Max Scherzer and Daniel Schlereth to Detroit.

Kansas City Royals: The Royals and Yankees last made a trade together in 2000 when the Yanks shipped out Wilson Delgado for a fringe Minor Leaguer named Nick Ortiz. Only seven times in Royals franchise history have these two teams traded. That’s a far cry from the days of raiding the Kansas City A’s.

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim: The Yanks and Angels love trading back-up catchers. In 2007, the Yanks sent Jeff Kennard to the Angels for Joey Catch, and in 2005, they landed Wil Nieves for Bret Prinz.

Minnesota Twins: Since acquiring Chuck Knoblauch in early 1998, the Yanks and Twins have done business just twice. Their last trade came in 2003 when the Yanks shipped Jesse Orosco to the Twins for Juan Padilla.

Oakland A’s: The Yankees and A’s have match up for a trade 63 times, mostly because the Yanks used to treat the A’s as their own Major League farm system. That pipeline has dried up in recent years. Outside of the three-team Weaver deal in 2002, the Yanks haven’t dealt with Billy Beane since 2003 when Chris Hammond went west for Eduardo Sierra and J.T. Stotts. Honorable mention goes out to the 1997 trade of Kenny Rogers for Scott Brosius, and for opposite reasons, the 1989 swap of Greg Cadaret, Eric Plunk and Luis Polonia for Rickey Henderson.

Seattle Mariners: The Yanks and Mariners have swapped players just twice since 1995. The earlier trade that sent Tino Martinez, Jim Mecir and Jeff Nelson to New York for Russ Davis and Sterling Hitchcock was the bigger one. The 2003 exchange concerned Armando Benitez and Jeff Nelson. Best to let those sleeping dogs lie.

Tampa Bay Rays: In 2006, the Yankees bought Nick Green from the Rays, and that’s the only time the two teams have swapped players.

Texas Rangers: The last big trade between the Yanks and Rangers involved some guy named Alex Rodriguez. In 2010, the Yanks sent Mitch Hilligoss to Texas for Greg Golson, and a few weeks later, the Rangers bought Edwar Ramirez from the Yanks.

Toronto Blue Jays: While the Yanks may be kicking the tires on Kyle Drabek, the Bombers and Blue Jays have exchanged players just 17 times. The biggest deals between the two clubs involved David Cone in 1995 and Roger Clemens and David Wells in 1997. The last trade came in 2002 when the Yanks kicked off the Raul Mondesi Era by sending Scott Wiggins to Canada.

CBA Madness: Even more draft changes
The winter of our content
  • Drew

    Weaver and Mondesi are my 2 favorite awful Yankees of all time. I own jersey shirts for both.

    • Mister Delaware

      Now I wished I’d mailed you my old Pavano shirtsey rather than given it to goodwill.

    • Sayid J.

      If only Mondesi were awful…

      • Plank

        He was only slightly better than bad and paid $13MM back when that was one of the highest salaries in the game.

  • Plank

    I was just looking at the Weaver trade today. That was awful. They would have been so much better with Lilly.

    I remember loving it at the time though. I hated Lilly’s stupid face.

  • Tom Zig

    I miss a lot of the characters from that thread you linked. I even miss Bo and mryankee.

    • Mike Axisa

      Yeah, I think we all miss the good old comments days.

      • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

        You should track down Bo and have him do a guest-post Bogasm about Brackman’s release.

      • JobaWockeeZ


    • RetroRob

      I wonder how many of those characters are still with us, but under different names? I fall in that category.

      I did notice someone (jokingly) suggest IPK for Joey Votto. Crazy idea then, less so today.

  • Ted Nelson

    I feel the sample sizes are too small to determine whether teams “get along better” or have made more trades through random chance. That a team has made 3 deals in the last 20 years (and maybe past dozen GMs) with one team and 5 with another is just not a convincing argument to me that the current GMs get along better.

    I’m also curious as to the relevance of the historical number of trades when a team like the Blue Jays were a relatively recent expansion team.

  • Jose M. Vazquez..

    Nobody wants to help the Yankees! If you do not overwhelm another team to get something it will not trade with the Yankees. Not so the Phillies or Red Sox that are able to pry good players from other teams without giving great value. If it is the Yankees they want the farm and the deed.

    • http://none Favrest

      That’s the truth. The Mariners cost themselves half an offense just to prevent the Yankees from getting Lee.

      • JAG

        In fairness, it’s only because the rest of the Mariners are so bad that Jesus could (would?) have had that large an impact.

    • Ted Nelson

      I think that’s just your perception as a fan. I highly doubt GMs want to risk their jobs out of spite for the Yankees.

  • Yank The Frank

    “Why the hell did you trade Jay Buhner?”

    Frank Costanza

  • mike

    with revenue sharing propping up the bottom part of the league, the Yanks have lost the prime route of a “salary dump / trade” which they used to their advantage for years.

    without revenue sharing, the Yanks and other teams would have raided the Rays, Pirates, Marlins etc for their prime talent, and now those teams can afford to hold on to players rather than be perennial 100 loss teams, irrespective of the local fans interest in the team.

    IMO trades will become less common as time goes on, especially with the advent of advanced metrics ( and more to come) where eyes-on scoutingand old-time guys are phased out of importance. If two teams use the same data, and most will weigh the data the same, it will be harder to find a match up unless there is an exact fit, or one GM wants to take a flyer (and risk failure as he is staring into the face of data suggesting he is making a poor value judgement). Think NFL and draft picks, how there is almost an exact value to each round based upon historical data

    • A.D.

      Disagree with trades becoming less and less common, the nature of there being essentially no learning curve in the MLB when joining a new team, along with the nature of player development, and lack of hard cap will continue to allow a free trade market:

      -There will presumably always be the mortgaging of the future (prospects) for the now (veteran piece for the playoff run), just as we continue to see in the NFL or NBA with trade of draft picks

      -Change of scenery plays will continue, i.e. Nick Swisher who was a black hole for the White Sox and being paid a decent amount, or Josh Hamilton for Vazquez

      -While advanced metrics will likely continue to improve (particularly for defense), I question how much stronger they will become with prospects, especially the younger the prospect

      Otherwise in all likely-hood evaluators and team builders will continue to value things differently, and roster construction will continue to differ based on what talent a given team already has as a nucleus, and thus what they need to add.

    • Ted Nelson

      Without revenue sharing I believe that teams in crap markets would challenge MLB’s anti-trust exemption and just move to NY to eat Yankee revenue that way. NY is 20x larger than a lot of MLB markets. This became much more of an issue with salary inflation as well as mega TV deals.
      It’s not just fan interest, but market size. If the Yankees have 10x more fans to potentially attract and those potential fans are substantially richer… Some markets simply cannot compete.

      Even if you are all using the same historical data, you will almost always have differences in opinion on projection. No one cares about what a guy did last year, except insofar as what it says about what he’ll likely do next year. I do not believe that projection can ever become an exact science. Too many variables. Maybe in 1,000 years or something.

    • RetroRob

      Really? You think “eyes-on scouting” will be phased out? Are there really still people out there who think it’s an either-or scenario? Advanced metrics is a tool to be used in conjunction with talent evaluation/scouting, and without the latter, the former doesn’t even get a seat at the table.

  • BigDavey88