The Yankees and August trades

Injuries' impact on prospect development
Update: Aardsma "fully expecting" to return this season
Former World Champion Yankee Chad Gaudin. (AP)

The trade deadline has come and gone, but as you know teams can still swing deals via the waiver system. Any player on the 40-man roster has to pass through revocable trade waivers to be dealt this month — he can be traded anywhere if he clears but only to the team that claims him if claimed. That’s why there was such a big stink when the Dodgers claimed Cliff Lee, the left-hander was officially off the market for the other 28 clubs. We’ve already seen guys like Joe Blanton, Kurt Suzuki, and Jeff Baker change teams through trades this month, and there will inevitably be more moves to come.

The Yankees haven’t been all that active during the waiver trade period these last few years, with their most notable August pickup of the last half-decade being Chad Gaudin in 2009. They acquired him from the Padres for cash and he went on to solidly soak up some innings as the fifth starter late in the season (3.43 ERA in 42 IP). They also traded for Freddy Guzman that month and actually carried him on the postseason roster as the pinch-runner/defensive specialist. Other than that, the Yankees claimed spare lefties Aaron Laffey and Raul Valdes off waivers last year, and that pretty much wraps up their recent August transactions activity*.

With this year be different? I don’t have any reason to believe it will be, but that can all change in a hurry depending on the injury news. If Andy Pettitte‘s leg continues to heal slower than expected, they could be forced into looking for an extra arm, especially if Ivan Nova doesn’t start improving. Alex Rodriguez‘s hand is doing fine but I have to believe any kind of setback would push the Yankees into looking for a bat. I fully appreciate and respect Ichiro Suzuki‘s historical greatness, but his offense these days doesn’t scare anyone, let alone qualify as a replacement for A-Rod. The bullpen is one of those things that is always is need of tinkering, so there could be some random claims for warm bodies if nothing else.

The Yankees seem to have taken on the mindset that all of the heavy roster building is done in the offseason and the only in-season moves should involve minor tweaks to deal with injuries and whatnot. That’s perfectly fine and it really is the ideal way to run a big market team, but it’s so much easier said than done. I think that more than any other time in the last three or four years, there are some obvious parts of the team that can be supplemented with August moves, specifically on the pitching side. The whole “wait for so-and-so to get healthy” strategy scares the crap out of me, especially when you’re talking about older players like A-Rod and Pettitte.

* The Yankees did claim Carlos Pena off waivers last summer, but the Cubs pulled him back and no deal was reached.

Injuries' impact on prospect development
Update: Aardsma "fully expecting" to return this season
  • Kosmo

    If NY needed a SP who would be available thru waivers ? Shaun Marcum ?

    • Steve

      Doubtful he’d fall that far. The Yankees would be the 30th team to get a crack at him, right? Do they still have the best record in the AL?

  • Matt DiBari

    All I really remember about the Gaudin era was we kept sending him in to lose games when we were trying to throw the division in 2010.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      “Chad Gaudin: The Sequel” wasn’t as good. They never really are, are they?

      • Strat

        I wouldn’t have missed Vasquez Part Deux for the world!

        • Robinson Tilapia

          There’s one I would have gladly kept on the cutting room floor, along with the rarely-seen “Marcus Thames II.”

          • Need Pitching & Hitting

            Marcus Thames II was by far the best of the trilogy. Marcus Thames III was the rarely seen, straight to DVD release.

            • Robinson Tilapia

              You’re right. It was Marcus Thames III I was referring to.

  • YanksFanInBeantown

    Scott Hairston, please.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting

      Can’t imagine he’d make it through waivers.

  • Cappy

    I hope I’m not the only one who chuckled when I saw that caption under Gaudin’s picture.

    • Paul VuvuZuvella

      No, you’re not…Chad’s got more rings than Barry Bonds afterall.

      • Gonzo

        David Eckstein laughs.

  • Jon

    As was mentioned today about Tex, hes been slumping since the wrist…how about we go and get Lyle Overbay. Hes been released, has a decent triple slash this season when you limit him against lefties. Give Tex some time to rest his wrist and get back to full strength.

    vs. righties vs.lefties
    jeter jeter
    ichiro swish
    swish cano
    cano tex
    granderson granderson
    ibanez dh jones
    chavez 3b mcgehee
    overbay 1b ichiro
    martin c martin

    • Kosmo

      who gets cut ?

      • Jon

        Yeah, I just took a closer look at that and its tough everyone is pretty much set in stone. I would say DFA someone from the bullpen and get the extra hand on the bench but the way our pitching has been going its not really on option.

  • forensic

    I fully appreciate and respect Ichiro Suzuki‘s historical greatness, but his offense these days doesn’t scare anyone

    I don’t know about that. I’m pretty scared when he comes to bat in many circumstances. Lefty on the mound? RISP? Very scared.

    Still can’t believe he passed as the DH last night…

    • Need Pitching & Hitting

      Ichiro as DH is just …. insane.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        It’s one game. It happens.

        • forensic

          It happens is an excuse for an error or mistake, not a conscious decision like this which is in the same area as DH’ing Martin, which has happened several times too.

          • forensic

            Error or accident, that should be, though on-field mistake is close enough.

            • Robinson Tilapia

              I guess I could apologize on Girardi’s behalf, it that’s what you’re looking for.

          • Need Pitching & Hitting

            Martin DH’ing the last time I was fine with. The other options were Ibanez vs. a lefty or Ramiro Pena. There were plenty of better options this time than Ichiro as DH.

            • Robinson Tilapia

              Perhaps so. I’m not getting myself worked up over what was probably reason #5 as to why they lost the game.

  • Rich in NJ

    If Ichiro refuses to walk, or even bunt, it’s a pretty good sign that a resurgence is very unlikely.

    • YanksFanInBeantown

      Ichiro has never walked though, even when pitchers had a reason to throw him something out of the strike zone.

      • Rich in NJ

        He’s at 0 right now with the Yankee. He doesn’t seem like he even wants to get 1.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    I agree that relying on aging players to just suddenly be healthy can be scary, and that its never too late to upgrade, I just never expect much to come out of August, even with some of the names that have changed hands.

    Perhaps there’s a catcher out there. Perhaps there’s an extra starter that can give the team a cushion to allow Ivan Nova to work out his issues in peace and away from, from what I hear, Jimmy McNulty.

    • Jose M. Vazquez

      Perhaps we can pry Jaso away from the Mariners then sign him for next year. I don’t know what the asking price would be but I hope it is no too high.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Wouldn’t clear waivers, I assume.

        • jjyank

          Definitely wouldn’t. He’s a free agent after the season and not getting paid much.

          • Need Pitching & Hitting

            Jaso? Not a free agent. He’ll be first time Arb eligible. He’ll be cheap and has 3 years of team control left.

            I wish he was a free agent after the season.

            • Robinson Tilapia

              That’d be nice.

              Gracias, senor.

            • jjyank

              My bad. That’s what I get for trying to look for information in between customers.

              • Actual Bank Customer

                I’M RICH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • mryankee

    Whats the point Cashman has no motivation to make a deal, e has his money and rings as do most of the players on the team. They will go through the motions and when games like last night occur they will make excuses and “tip the cap” and I doubt they will hold their lead in the division and if so they will go out in the first round. I hate to feel this way because they were so good a few months ago and there was real hope. Brian Cashman dropped the ball and did not help this team with real players when needed and now this is just another team, not a special team.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Merry Fucking Christmas, everyone.

    • jjyank

      Alright then.

    • Bunt Gardner

      How are things in the Hundred Acre Woods, Eeyore?

    • Rey22

      Ok…so, “they were so good a few months ago and there was real hope” and now basically the EXACT same team, sans a couple of injured players that will be back, “will go through the motions and when games like last night occur they will make excuses and “tip the cap” and I doubt they will hold their lead in the division and if so they will go out in the first round”

      Awesome, makes perfect sense.
      See you in 2013 then!

  • Edmond

    Johnny Damon and godzilla are available!

  • Troy

    Can we just walk cabrea for fucks sake! This season is turning into a joke.

  • Chris in Maine

    what about catcher. There has to be someone out there better than Stewart…

  • Trs

    Cashman should be fired…he has sucked it up for years now when it comes to signing free agents and at the trade deadline. If we do trade or sign someone they seem to be older than what we have now. not really, just saying. there are tons of could young players we could get but he says I like the team we have. I like the team we have to, until it comes to playoffs. FIRE CASHMAN NOW