Imagining the Yankees as deadline sellers

7/22-7/25 Series Preview: Texas Rangers
Game 99: Texas

For the past two decades, the Yankees have not been trade deadline sellers. They have been perennially competitive, often missing just a piece or two to seal a playoff berth, and selling has long gone against the Steinbrenner ethos mandating winning now and winning at any cost. But what if the Yanks decide to sell? What if it makes more sense for 2014 and beyond to face the stark reality of 2013?

As the trade deadline nears, the Yankees find themselves in a complicated position. Their loss last night to the Red Sox dropped them to an even .500 since May 1, and they’re 21-23 since June 1 with a run differential of -20. They’re seven games behind Boston and 5.5 in back of Tampa Bay, but because of the second Wild Card, they’re just 3.5 games behind a chance to compete in an exciting but incredibly stressful play-in game. They’re just tantalizingly close to want to buy but not really good enough to compete, and to make matters worse, their offensive hopes are resting on the bats (and legs) of two guys closer to 40 than 35.

Meanwhile, the market right now decidedly favors sellers. There is a dearth of top-tier, race-changing talent available, and the promise of a qualifying offer allows those with bargaining chips to extract maximum value. If the Yankees were to become sellers, they have plenty of bargaining chips. So as an exercise in curiosity, let’s pretend the Yankees become sellers. They won’t trade all of these players listed, and they may only trade the one with the least amount of value. But maybe the team should consider selling and restocking. With the cards they’re holding, the spoils could be great.

1. Hiroki Kuroda
With CC’s struggles, Kuroda has emerged as the clear-cut Yankee ace and just a sheer pleasure to watch pitch. He’s giving up less than a home run per 9 IP and has a 2.65 ERA in the AL East. He’s signed to a one-year contract worth $15 million and would be a hot commodity on the market. He also has a no-trade clause that he has used in the past, notably to block a trade to the Yankees in 2011. In a sellers market, Kuroda could likely fetch a top-30 prospect and a top-100 prospect and maybe another fringy player.

2. Robinson Cano
Much like trading Kuroda would represent a pitching white flag, trading Cano would mean the end of any Yankee offense. I don’t believe the team will trade, and in fact, I strongly suspect Cano will sign a long-term deal to stay with the Yankees. Yet, he’s a second baseman playing superb defense with a .919 OPS. He also won’t take any qualifying offer. For 60 games of Cano, the returns would likely be at least what Kuroda could command. Trade one, and the future prospects are looking good. Trade two, and you can reload in a week.

3. David Robertson
Robertson is a great “sell” piece if the Yanks go down that route. He’s been a stand-out reliever for years and earns $3 million a year. He has a season of team control left and could likely close for a contender in need of a steady 9th inning presence. A Mike Adams trade under similar circumstances netted two B level prospects, and the relief market is unclear right now. A desperate team would part with more.

4. Phil Hughes
For Yankee fans, Hughes is a symbol of frustration. Heralded as the next big thing, he’s emerged more as a 4/5 type rather than 1/2 type many projected. Still, some of that stems from a combination of his pitching approach and home ballpark. Outside of Yankee Stadium, he’s got a 3.38 ERA, and the home run rate drops precipitously from nearly 2 per 9 IP to around 1.1 per 9 IP. He’s a change-of-scenery guy who could net a B grade prospect or even a B+ type if the market continues to tighten.

5. Joba Chamberlain
Once upon a time, Joba would have been untouchable. The third ranked prospect in all of baseball, Joba arrived like a revelation and then faltered. We could point fingers for hours, but it’s clear he needs to move on. Whether the Yanks are sellers or not, I’d be surprised if Joba is here on August 1. He didn’t get the ball before Adam Warren in the 11th inning last night, but if you squint, you can see velocity and a good strike out rate. Any returns will be nominal, and the Yanks’ best chances at getting anything back probably involve a package of Hughes and Joba. Save the big three, indeed.

So what do you do? The Yankees have Mariano’s farewell tour to complete, tickets to sell and ratings to realize. They want to get under a dollar threshold for 2014, and if they hope to accomplish this unlikely goal, they need cost-controlled young talent. It may makes sense to face the facts of a doomed season with too many obstacles and injuries to overcome to sell. But they’re still the Yankees, and the Yankees don’t sell.

7/22-7/25 Series Preview: Texas Rangers
Game 99: Texas
  • Crime Dog

    Important question… what happens to the KabakHat watch if Cano gets traded? Will hat still be consumed if he gets 80 walks elsewhere?

    Yes, I know they aren’t trading Cano.

    • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

      Depends on where he’s traded to. Obviously if Texas or KC were buyers, the hat would need to be BBQ’d. A trade to Philly would require it to be in a hoagie with peppers & onions, and with any team with a strong latino fanbase the possibilities would be endless.

      Bottom line, Cano walks, Kabak eats the hat.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Too bad the Expos aren’t around. We could deep fry the hat with some cheese curds and douse it in gravy. What wouldn’t taste good poutine-style?

        • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

          Poutine hat FTW!

          • jjyank

            Canada, eh? Almost made it.

  • Mister D

    Would love to empty out (Granderson too if his return can beat a comp round pick) but sadly it seems unlikely for the Rivera reasoning. Better to bid him farewell with 83 wins than 78, right?

    • RetroRob

      If they are an 83 win team they should sell. Mo should not factor into this equation.

      • Mister D

        Of course. But he will.

  • Revan

    Kuroda would fetch a nice price but no one’s giving a top 30 prospect for 2 months of Kuroda. He’s 38 and his days are numbered even if they are still quality. I’d still trade him to a contender though.

    Definitely trade Hughes for a bag of balls at this point. If someone overpays for DRob I wouldn’t mind that either.

    • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

      Texas is close to paying that for Garza, and Kuroda is MUCH better than Garza, and Garza is also no lock to re-sign after the season.

      • Revan

        Well if we ignore FanGraphs that’s the only way you can say Kuroda is MUCH better.

        • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

          I mean, more innings (due to less injury this season), better WHIP/ERA+/SO:BB/ H/9 / BB/9… all indicate Kuroda’s had a much better season.

          But you might be right, as I was using B-Ref to get that. So ignoring FanGraphs might be the difference.

          • Revan

            Garza has a 3.78 FIP and a 3.85 xFIP.
            Kuroda has 3.56 FIP and a 3.73 xFIP.

            I don’t disagree that Kuroda is the better buy. I disagree that’s there’s that much of a significance that we can say that Kuroda is “MUCH” better.

            • Mister D

              Division gives Garza better chances to do the things that feed FIP and xFIP.

              • Gonzo

                Just look at Kuroda’s stats though. Lowest K/9 of his career, lowest BABIP of his career, highest LOB % of his career, and he has the lowest ERA of his career.

                I’m not saying he’s not good. I think he’s the best pitcher on the Yankees and I LOVE the guy, but sometimes you have to look at Kuroda with the same investigative look you do with other players too.

      • Gonzo

        I don’t believe anyone in the Rangers rumored package was in the top 30. Olt didn’t even make KLaw’s top 50 and he’s had concussion symptoms this year. I guess it comes down to your definition of “close” though.

        Personally, I think Mike is off on this one. Let’s use Greinke as a comp. Segura wasn’t in KLaw’s mid-season top 50 and #44 on BA’s mid-season 2012 list. Add in Hellweg and Pena, and it doesn’t get to a top 30 prospect + a top 100 prospect.

        I know Kuroda is having a great year but the peripherals suggest he’s been a little lucky. Not a lot lucky, but at least a little.

        • Deathstroke Heathcott

          Ben wrote this article.

          • Gonzo

            My bad. Sorry about that Mike.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

      Kuroda would probably be the best available pitcher on the market if the Yankees chose to make him available. At the minimum, he should return a top 50 prospect plus more. A top 30 prospect isn’t entirely unreasonable, especially if the Yankees were willing to eat some of his contract to get more teams involved in the bidding.

      • Revan

        Hiroki has a 3.50 FIP right now. He’s 38. Pretend he’s still on the Dodgers. Would you give up someone like Jose Campos or Rafael DePaula for a pitcher close to retirement? We’re not talking about Halladay type production, it’s a 3.50 FIP. Also a 3.70 xFIP. Campos and DePaula are fringe top 100 guys but I have a feeling if such a scenario were to occur people who say the Yankees overpaid.

        • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

          Close to retirement is irrelevant.
          Teams would be trading for 2 months of Kuroda, not his future.
          Kuroda would probably be considered the best available starter.
          What I would give up isn’t relevant. What other teams would, and have, given up for that type of pitcher is relevant.
          Top 30 is probably overly ambitious, but not impossible. Top 50 is probably more realistic.

          • Revan

            True what the fans would give up is essentially irrelevant. I just find the lack of objectivity annoying in trade talks. H

            And no close to retirement isn’t irrelevant. The Yankees were willing to get 2 months of Lee so that they’ll be able to convince him for a long term deal. Essentially that’s what most trades are about. The brewers got CC for a playoff run and to potentially have an ace for the next few years. It didn’t work but teams are willing ti risk that.

            In this case it’s 2 months with not a whole lot of potential for the future.

            • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

              You think the Brewers seriously thought they’d be able to resign CC? You think they tailored their trade package based on that slim possibility?
              I’m sure they knew there was a big chance it was just a 2 month rental.

              • Gonzo

                The Brewers also knew they were getting two draft picks. The team acquiring Kuroda would get nothing when he left.

                • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

                  Right. I do think the new draft pick compensation system changes the equation considerably. The Greinke and Garza trades are probably good benchmarks for what Kuroda might be able to fetch. A top 50 prospect and 2-3 more lesser pieces seems about right.

                  • Gonzo

                    Let’s not count the Garza trade yet. We have no idea what he’s going to fetch just yet. We ahve an idea, but that’s it.

                    I cited Greinke too. Even Greinke didn’t fetch a top 30 prospect (turns out Segura should have probably been a top 10 though), and KLaw didn’t even rank him in the mid-season top 50. He just missed, but I think that was more because of injury concerns than talent.

                    I wouldn’t guarantee a top 50 for Kuroda let alone a top 30 either though. Around top 50? Sure, why not, maybe better maybe worse. Especially when you look at Kuroda’s peripherals.

                    • Gonzo

                      And like that, the deal is done. I don’t think they gave up any serious impact in the trade, but that’s still a nice haul for a Garza.

                    • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

                      Yeah, the more I look at it, the less likely I think that a top 30 prospect would be realistic. Top 50-ish seems about right, depending on the strength of the other pieces involved.
                      As for the peripherals, while I would expect some regression (he’s never been a sub-3.00 ERA pitcher before), he’s consistently outpitched his peripherals for a few years now, so I’m not sure how big of a deterrent that would actually be.

                    • Gonzo

                      Yes but some of his peripherals are going in the wrong direction.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      And you all still really think that despite it happening at the deadline countless times before. Kuroda would be worth a shit-ton right now. He’d instantly slide into the front of any team’s playoff rotation.

      • Revan

        Silly me 38 year old pitchers who in the previous offseason spurned most offers that didn’t come from Japan or the Yankees are such an often commodity. Hostility for superiority aside, teams value prospects more than ever.

        When Jesus Montero and Nunez were too much for months of Cliff Lee I really doubt a top 30 prospects will be in the bag for 2 months of Kuroda.

        If this situation we’re in reverse everyone would kill Cashman if he traded Gary Sanchez for Kuroda. Of course this is a Yankee site so you overrate everyone on the team but stop acting like an omniscient priest.

        • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

          Montero was a top 5 prospect at the time. That’s much better than top 30.
          Age really isn’t all that relevant, considering it’s a 2 month rental.
          Teams don’t give up more because they might resign a player in the offseason.
          Top 50 prospect is probably more realistic, but top 30 is at the realm of possibility.

          • Revan

            And CLiff Lee that year was significantly better than Kuroda now. The overall point is that prospects are valued as gold for other teams. I’m surprised by the lack of objectivity here. Even by a sports fan’s standards.

            • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

              2 months of Greinke returned a top 50 prospect and 2 additional pieces just last year. That’s a pretty good barometer for what 2 months of Kuroda might fetch.

              • Revan

                As I just posted above these trades for top tier pitchers are made with the possibility of them staying longer than 2 months. Every example people are making are pitchers who still have years left on the tank.

                They trade them for enticement. It’s a gamble. With Kuroda it’s an unnecessary gamble because unlike Halladay or Johan ro Sabathia or Greinke or Oswalt Kuroda ain’t pitching for 3-4 more years.

                Kuroda’s case is unique here so this “countless times” thing is complete and utter bullshit.

                • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

                  I seriously doubt the slight increase in possibility of resigning a pitcher for the future has any substantial impact in what teams offer in trade. Teams aren’t that stupid. (Most teams anyways)

                • Caballo Sin Nombre

                  Two months of Kuroda would be the difference between a team being a serious contender, vs. being odds-on favorite to be the World Champion. Winning the WS is what teams are supposed to be shooting for. Yes, that incremental difference– between finishing first in your division and winning it all– is worth an awful lot.

            • Robinson Tilapia

              Bullshit. A team who wants to win now, and add a piece like Kuroda to the top of their rotation, isn’t going to think too hard about their Top 30 prospect.

              Also, you don’t get to choose what objectivity is unless you have crazy superpowers.

              • LK

                “Bullshit. A team who wants to win now, and add a piece like Kuroda to the top of their rotation, isn’t going to think too hard about their Top 30 prospect.”

                I love Hiroki and think prospects are generally overvalued, but this is just insane.

              • Gonzo

                I’ll have to disagree here. Kuroda’s good, don’t get me wrong, but look at those top 30 prospects and tell me a team is going to just hand them over for a pitcher for the first time in his career has an ERA lower than 3 and has the lowest K/9 in his career. I mean c’mon, let’s not act like he’s performing at Bartolo Colon levels.

                What I’m saying is that that the odds that Kuroda performs this well in the second half isn’t very strong.

                Put in another way, if the Yankees had a gaping hole at SP (not hard I know), and were tied for first place (harder), would you trade Gary Sanchez for Bartolo Colon?

              • Steve

                Would you give up Gary Sanchez, who isn’t a top 30 prospect, for 6 months of a 38 year-old pitcher? And in addition to Gary Sanchez somebody like Slade Heathcott or Tyler Austin?

                • Deathstroke Heathcott

                  If it’s another Kuroda-caliber pitcher, and the rest of our team looked like they were serious contenders, yes.

                  • Gonzo

                    Like Bartolo Colon?

                  • Steve

                    Interesting. Was a serious question, as well. I think you’ll find you’re in the minority here. People hug their own prospects while disregarding the value of other teams. I doubt you’d find too many people willing to deal the team’s top 2 prospects for a 6 month rental with no draft pick compensation on the end. Maybe I’m off on that.

    • RetroRob

      It’s a seller’s market. The new Wild Card format creates this scenario.

      A top 30 prospect (and there is a world of difference between #1 and #30) could easily be a bust.

      No reason to sell Hughes for a bag of balls since that would be selling low. Go for the compensation pick if all that’s being offered is the bag of balls. He won’t accept the QO, even though he’ll get a lower AAV, but he’ll want the long-term deal, which he’ll get at his age.

  • SEHumphrey

    Taking a look at the team next year, I just don’t see how they are prepared to compete. There is limited talent available (even if everyone comes back) – this has to be the time that the Yankees sell.

    Personally, I think they could still get Robbie back if they trade him (explain that they want him to have a better team next year, plus he gets a better chance at being in the playoffs).

  • Tom T

    As I stated in a twitter conversation with Ben, I’d sell. The reason is that with new CBA it’s very challenging to acquire young, cheap talent if you’re a) drafting at the end of the 1st round or b) not drafting in the first round at all, because you’re the yankees and you sign other people’s picks and c) stuck with low INTL bonus pools.

    Even if that weren’t true… come on, the Yanks are going to catch several superior teams with this offense? Why chase a pipe dream when the opportunity to completely revamp the farm in days is staring them in the face?

    Sell, sell, sell.

    • matt s

      i agree, young talent is getting harder to come by. And this team is going nowhere.


  • Frank

    The problem with the Yankees is that they don’t think long term…they’re worried about the here and now. They have debit bills and low attendance and they don’t even want to consider missing the playoffs or god forbid…rebuilding.

    After the season they COULD conceivably, and this isn’t much of a stretch have the following openings…

    C – Starter
    1B -Backup
    2B -Starter & Backup
    SS -Starter (I don’t think Jeter is realistically a starter next year)
    3B -Starter & Backup (ARod likely gets suspended and if he doesn’t…he’s 39 with two bad hips)
    LF – I guess if you want to trot Ichiro out there…
    RF – Open
    CF – Gardner

    Of the 5 starters they COULD have 4 openings with CC the only one coming back. Oh, and they lose their closer who’s been pretty consistent through the years.

    That is a ridiculous number of holes to file…I don’t care how much (125MM or so) they have coming off the books if Arod is suspended.

    Now, how many of those holes will be filled from within? Catcher…Murphy is making a case. OF…none of the youngsters are ready although maybe Almonte can surprise and stick. The infield…forget it. Starting pitching…Phelps/Warren as number 4/5 I guess.

    In the bullpen they’ll probably be able to use Betances and maybe Montgomery with Robertson shifting to the closer role.

    Trading Kuroda, Cano, and anyone else you can for a guy who is ready to come in next year and man a starting role would be awesome b/c next year’s team isn’t winning anything so hoping kuroda comes back is not really worth much. And getting a pick for hughes won’t have an impact, if it ever does, for 5-6 years. The yankees don’t have 5-6 years to re-tool and they don’t have the farm system ready to re-tool now so they have to supplement it by realizing they’re not a good team right now and need to sell. Now.

    • Guns

      Agreed. I’m all for the Yankees selling not just because of this season but for the future as well. I want the organization to show me that they have an eye towards the future instead of signing past-their-prime stop gaps.

    • RetroRob

      That’s always been the problem. They’ve always thought short term, and that’s why they always suck.

      Oh, wait…

      • ChrisS

        Easier to do with core of five or six 4+ WAR players year in and out.

  • KyleLitke

    What am I missing on Robertson? I’ve seen quite a few people suggest he be traded. Isn’t he under contract for another two years after this one (or is it just one? i thought he wasnt a free agent until after 2015, but not positive) and the obvious choice to replace Mariano at a reasonable price? If you can get some kind of amazing return, fine, but he really doesn’t seem to fit with the “free agent in 2 months” crowd.

    • Benjamin Kabak

      He’s a free agent after 2014. Mostly I was just looking at guys that could return something of value. Brett Gardner would be worth a blurb. I’m not advocating that the Yanks trade any or all of these guys but am simply saying that if the Yanks were to be sellers, these are guys who could potential be dealt in exchange for something useful (or more than useful) for 2014 and beyond.

      • Pseudoyanks

        I think I’d keep Robertson and Cano unless they think they can get Cano back this winter. I’d trade Gardner though for the right return.

  • Frank

    The fact that they haven’t drafted well in years (Despire DO being lauded as a great eye for talent) or been able to develop any studs from the IFA market (Save montero and sanchez) is killing this organization. If they were cutting back to 189MM next year but Heathcott and Williams were in the outfield with Sanchez behind the plate and Pineda fronting the rotation…I’m all for it. But, they are going to be at 189MM with Nix at third, steward/cervelli behind the plate, and ichiro / wells in the outfield. Absurd waste of money. I’d rather be at 90MM if I were them and play the kids like the marlins do. Mediocrity has no use in sports. You either suck and use that to get access to better talent via drafting or you compete for a championship. Right now they can’t do either.

    • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

      So you’d rather they suck so they can draft players you concede they are incapable of doing in the first sentence than play at $189M with a fighting chance? Seems legit.

      • Guns

        A “fighting chance” is giving next year’s team far too much credit in my opinion, barring any miraculous changes. And simply because they’ve failed to produce impact talent from the draft in the past doesn’t mean they can’t/won’t benefit by drafting higher up in the first round. That’s just nonsense. And never mind the talent they could possibly acquire by trading certain pieces of the major league team… as well as players that could be acquired via trading said pieces in the future. Makes sense to me.

        • lightSABR

          Agreed. I don’t care how good your scouts are, there’s a lot of luck involved in the draft. Only 2/3 of first-round picks ever see the show, to say nothing of becoming useful major leaguers. With the Yankees picking toward the end of the first round, it’s to be expected that they’ll pick a lot of duds.

      • The Bastard

        They drafted a certain SS with the 6th overall pick in 1992, a pick they wouldn’t have had if they won significantly more than the 71 games they won in 1991.

        • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

          From the sounds of people around here, we’re not winning 71 this year or next, regardless of who gets traded or traded for…

        • Robinson Tilapia

          They can’t even handle being over .500 right now. You think they’d handle a stretch like that or TEH HORACE CLARKE. Hilarious.

    • Guns

      Agree again!! Treading water and standing pat would be the worst thing the Yankees could do this season, IMO. Make a decision one way or the other. Buy or sell.

  • Jesse K

    Another possibly overlooked reason to sell this year is that if they sell and the rest of the season is even more in the toilet, they will draft higher next year, which will further strengthen the rebuild.

    If there is a problem with the medical/training staff as mentioned in the previous post and they wrangle that this year as well, they could be set up for another decade after a quick rebuild.

  • Crime Dog

    Would it be worth it to stick Ichiro in there with one of the better players (Cano or Kuroda maybe) in this scenario? You save some money for the next year or so and gear up for spending in 2014-2015. I guess you can also try and sell on Gardner. He’s a FA after next year, and having a career year.

    You can even try to trade Granderson in August, maybe even try a CC blockbuster as well. Someone would take on some of his contract. This is all fantasy though, there’s no way this happens. It would be interesting to see the team turnover that much though.

  • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

    IF (huge, tremendous, super-sized IF) the Yankees were going to sell, I think it has to be now and it HAS TO BE all or nothing. I do not advocate the selling, but I would agree Cano/Kuroda/Robertson and even Gardner/CC would all have to go. I would also advocate that if you’re going full bore, you have to try and move Granderson in the waiver period and move Tex in December.

    It makes zero sense to trade Cano & Kuroda today to trot out the rest of this team in 2014. And since everyone wants to see a young exciting team come out here and lose 90 games next season so we can be just like Boston in 2015 (that sentence makes me want to puke in my mouth a little bit), you got to shit or get off the pot. Interesting to see how many of you will still be here then.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      I don’t think they’d HAVE to trade both Kuroda and Cano to accomplish that. I think Kuroda would get a nice headstart on the haul, and I think they should be pursuing the market for Hughes anyway. Let’s see how that market looks with the first-tier guys like Garza being talked about – I agree with Ben’s assessment on every one of these guys.

      I still don’t believe they should be in “sell” mode, but I don’t think it’d be completely crazy. Frankly, crazy is this idea that you trade Robbie and then try to re-sign him. I don’t think that has a chance in hell of working out. I’ve lost all logic and reason with Robbie. Just ask someone else about him.

      I’d love to see the reaction on the “sell, sell” crowd in a year or two once the growing pains begin. It’s a big risk in itself.

      • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

        All I’m saying (not disagreeing with you at all) is that if you’re gonna sell on a few and then expect for everything to be OK next season with the same bunch of guys minus Cano, that’s a VERY tall order. If you want to blow it up, then lets BLOW. IT. UP. NBA style. Sell anything that isn’t tied down.

  • Pseudoyanks

    Sell Sell Sell. I know this is controversial and probably even moreso because to people on either side (buy or sell) it appears like their position is a no-brainer. Great summary Ben. I’d trade Kuroda, Hughes, Joba and anyone else who can bring a good return. I know it could mean winning 75 games next year, but I think that is going to happen either way unless the rotation of CC, Pineda, Kuroda (Sure bring him back for a year even if he’s traded, why not?), Nova and Phelps can get them to .500 next year.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      I don’t think it’s a no-brainer at all. I’m a “buy” guy, but I don’t think the opposing argument is crazy. At all.

  • Jason

    No one would fault Yanks for selling. Attendance already bad and only gonna get worse. We’re not idiots. We realize you can’t win every year and at some point you need to look to future.

  • JLC 776

    Go big or go home. If this team wants to sell (not that I’m endorsing it), move everyone over the age of 30. Just remember that if you advocate selling, the chances of an immediate rebound like Boston is enjoying are very slim until we also flush the system of payroll.

    • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

      Everyone forgot the Sox sold the farm and then just spent a shit-ton of money again. Outside of the guys you’re trading, there is not a ton of valuable players out there to grab this offseason.

      Its actually fucking garbage:

      So if you want to commit to the sell, you have to assume its for the long haul, not a ‘success story’ like Boston.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        They’re not doing that. It’s this fantasy vicious circle they’re in.

        They like the fantasy of this team just trading away for prospects, but that it’ll never be like the Royals, or what the Rays were for years, or whoever else, because we’re the Yankees and we’ll just turn around and supplement all those young players by then SPENDING.

        • JLC 776

          It’s also a million people that don’t want to think more than one step ahead (SELL!!! and everything will be great!), or if they do think two steps, it’s completely nonsensical (package deal of Hughes and Joba for Harper and Strasburg!!! and everything will be great!).

          After months of facepalms, it’s become kind of funny.

  • Mark Teixiera – Ghostbuster (formerly Drew)

    Listening to Michael Kay at work…

    He suggests a Cano for Kinsler and Profar.


    I would do that in a heartbeat, pretty sure Texas would laugh in NY’s face.

    • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

      In a cocaine heartbeat.

    • Pseudoyanks

      I think Texas is getting a bit desperate in a “win now” kind of way, but not sure they would do that.

    • mitch

      no way texas would do that. They wouldn’t even do Cano for Profar straight up.

    • Guns

      Yeah, that’s why I try not to listen to sports talk radio.

  • viridiana

    Logan would be another valuable chip.
    Some of the logic invoked to minimize the returns D-Rob would bring is worse than dubious. Relievers are inconsistent and fungible, the new common wisdom says, so why pay up for them? But Robertson has been a rock of consistency. He’s been better than very good every single year. If anything, this should elevate his value even more in a field where others are presumably unreliable. Logan has also been quite good over several years. Not as good as D-Rob, of course, but certainly better than the so-called “fungible” average. And incidentally, maybe Joba’s value is also greater than some think — shouldn’t he be due for a good couple of years?
    Personally, I would not trade D-Rob except for a truly lavish return. Worth too much, expecially with Mo gone next year. But I would trade Logan. I’d also trade Kuroda if they feel he won’t return. And Hughes is another one whose value is consistently under-rated. His 3.38 road E.R.A. speaks for itself. He also incidentally had 16 and 18 win seasons, along with a bullpen stint that got Yanks to WS in 2009. Not too many 27 year olds with comparable resumes available.

    • JLC 776

      I will continue to throw my hat in the ring in Hughes’ defense as well.

      The guy has been inconsistent but has also put together 4-6 game stints where he’s been the best pitcher on the roster. And he’s 27 for crying out loud. History is riddled with great pitchers that didn’t put it together until their 30’s; we sell Hughes, we will barely get anything in return and we will regret it.

  • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

    Trade Mo to the best team in baseball for whatever they’re willing to give.

    We can’t win him a world series appearance, maybe somebody else can.

    • JLC 776

      There’s a million reasons why this won’t happen, but if you want to entertain the idea, I can’t imagine that anyone would give a serious package for half of a year of a closer. I don’t care who his name is.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Not only would they burn down Yankee Stadium, they’d burn down the stadium recieving Mo as well.

        I don’t think there’s anything batshit crazier which could be suggested on here. It’s a complete lack of understanding of the New York Yankees. You think Mariano wants to retire a winner? Mariano wants to retire a YANKEE.

        • Darren

          I’m all for any trade that results in burning down Yankee Stadium 3.

          “Of all the dramatic things! The Stadium is on fiyuh! This conflagration brought to you by State Farm, for all your fiyuh insurance needs.”

          • jjyank

            Sometimes I feel like I’m the only one that Likes YS3.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Not sure if serious.

      Where would the Yankees play once fans burn down the stadium?

    • Winter

      The Yankees aren’t trading Mariano Rivera. I don’t care if hell freezes over and pigs fly, it’s just not happening. It would be the worst PR move since, well, ever. Short of leaving New York, I don’t think there’s anything worse the club could do.

      Not to mention Rivera has 10 and 5 rights, and I’m sure he’d refuse a trade anyway.

    • John in Forest

      I had the same horrid thought over the weekend, and I don’t think it’s as crazy as it sounds. Target teams could be Detroit and Boston, two teams with closer issues. It’s not a case of the team getting Mariano for two months, it’s getting him for the post-season. One big reason why the Yankees won it all in 2009 was that Mo was the only closer who didn’t fail.

      The target team gets Mo for the World Series run, the Yankees get a significant player in return, and Mo gets to finish his career battling for a Series title. What’s not to like? But it’ll never happen.

  • mitch

    I’d add Logan to the list of guys who should definitely be dealt if they went that route. Some desperate team might even take the Ichiro contract off their hands. Overbay might fetch more than a bag or balls as well.

  • Bill

    Would the Dodgers take ARod if we gave them Kuroda and Cano?

  • Mike D

    I absolutely LOVE the idea of trading away all of the above + Granderson. Would probably be most reluctant to give up Drob.

    This team is in need of a massive overhaul in order to compete again with a YOUNG DIVISION in the near future. I love Cano, but $180+ isn’t going to fix the issue. He’s not 27 and I think his production can be replaced by filling in a few holes.

    I think moving Hirok, Cano and Granderson prior to the deadline would put this team in a great place come 2015. That coupled with a few higher than normal draft picks could really turn this team around.

    I’d rather sit through a horrid 2014, but be ready to turn the ship around in 2015 rather than 5-6 more years of 3rd place as we wait for A-ROD and Tex to expire.

    • MannyGeee is no longer an ACE

      News flash: Past Baltimore and kinda Tampa, this division isn’t young.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      This is where it hurts, though. If this was a true rebuild, and David Robertson could get you multiple prospect pieces, which I think he could, you have to throw him in there. Robertson could step in and close for several contending teams right now.

      What makes you think a true rebuild would turn things around for 2015?

      • Mike D

        It’d suck to see him go, but I’d certainly throw him in there if the price is right. Many teams could certainly use him.

        I just think by 2015 we’d at the very least be headed in the right direction with the ability to fill in gaps via better free agency classes moving forward. If we move all of the above, coupled with a few nice draft picks, we should have a stellar farm system.

        By that point we’d hopefully have some combination of our current guys become everyday players in the bigs.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          I spent the 90’s going back and forth with the Yankees and Marlins. I can talk what an actual true rebuild and sell-off looks like. It is NOT pretty.

          I have the guts to sit through it but, yeah.

          This is why Bud Norris gets brought up for the Astros. For intents and purposes, he should be a part of their future, but not if they can get stronger by dealing him for even more parts.

  • trr

    Obviously, selling would be a 180 degree shift in strategy, and might be indicative of what the mind set of the F/O really is. Right now, we just can’t tell. Still, I just can’t see them trading Cano/Kuroda/Granderson; I’m sure they’d like to move Hughes/Chamberlain, esp Chamberlain who I think is a definite goner.

  • Oy

    In my opinion, Boone is a much more realistic selling piece than Joba. He’ll fetch something decent. If selling, trading Robertson would be silly, he’s still cost controlled and Yankees will need a closer for next year.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Which is exactly why he’d be one the most valuable pieces to hypothetically move.

  • viridiana

    I really fear that the Yankees are in for bad times due to horrible management.
    Apart from the whole 189 issue, it seems to me that Hal is incapable of making the sorts of bold and decisive moves needed to rebuild this franchise.
    Delusion is the word that comes to mind. Prince Hal is deluded if he thinks fans will continue to support the sort of team fielded this year. Injuries may be an acceptable excuse for this season. But fans won’t buy it next year. He is also deluded if he thinks this team can compete in the post-season. Pitching has been good, but the ace is in decline. And the trusted lefty Texan may be as well too
    The only solution I see is to sell the parts that won’t be here next year anyway — or will be too expensive to keep. It’s really very simple. And yet this management seems paralyzed. Acquiring a bat or two will not lead this team to WS. Sell, sell, sell.

  • Dicka24

    How about Kuroda and Cano for Kinsler and Profar? How about to Detroit for Castellanos? As a package that might be plausible. I said might so don’t give me the finger…hehehe…

    I’m in the sell department, so long as what you’d be getting, is appreciably better than the compensatory pick the Yanks would receive. If the Yanks resign Cano and Kuroda this offseason, and add in a healthy Text + Granderson + Jeter, they’re contenders again. So while I would like to see them sell, so as to reload their talent base moving forward, it should only happen if they are being significantly compensated for it.

    That being said, I’d totally sell Hughes right now if there is any market for him. I’d like to think that their is one. If not he should get the QO this offseason. He’ll be worth something on the trade market, or as a 1 year starter at age 28, if he accepts.

    Grandy I’m not moving. I think the Yanks need him next year, if he’ll take the QO. Grandy and his 40 homer bat are worth the QO in a market value rebuilding year. Then in 2015 you hope you’re ready for one of the kids.

    Sell Ichiro now and get out from his 2014 contract. He’ll never be worth more, if he’s worth anything at all.

  • HateMclouth (formerly I’mVernon)

    I just don’t see it happening in Mo’s final season. Maybe Hughes or Jobber goes at most.

    It might make sense to sell while the market is tight, at least to me, but don’t see it happening.

  • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

    The pieces that scare me are when people say things like ‘give Hughes a qualifying offer’ because I’m not sure he’s worth it. Sure, that’ll work with Cano, but what about Granderson? He might take it and suck or be great on a rebuilding team.

    Lots of decisions, not a lot of time left.

    These quad strains are really gumming up the works.

  • John

    Cano to STL for Taveras + Miller, Rosenthal or Wacha

    Kuroda to TEX for Profar

    • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

      STL and TEX are sharing a hardy laugh right now.

    • Mister D

      Granderson to Balt for Machado

      Robertson to Min for Buxton

      Hughes + future considerations + a 7th round pick to LAA for Trout

      • nyyankfan_7

        I’d probably do Chris Stewart for Bryce Harper.

  • Will

    I say sell and trade all these names listed. I don’t think the Yankees should cave in and give Cano the Prince Fielder-esque contract he wants. I’ll give him David Wright money but not $200MM when he’s shown he can’t hit lefties and while his UZR plummets. I seriously hope they’ve learned their lesson from A-Rod’s contract. Just load up on prospects and aim to contend in 2015.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      “Just load up on prospects and aim to contend in 2015.”

      Another one.

      • Will

        Just my opinion dude.

      • Shittyshittybangbang

        Huh?! Are you contrarian just for the sake of being contrarian ? R-tils, you’re a smart guy with some baseball common sense, cut it out. This is a legitimate quandary; to buy, to sell ? Those who make the “right” choice, and do it well (i.e., the Red Sox), have a quicker rebuild / turnaround. This decision is necessary. Will selling be painful ? Yes, probably. Might it set us up positively for the future ? Yes, probably. Most Yankees fans aren’t fair weather fans, we know that this possible “rebuild” might take 2, 3 or more years.

  • Short Porch

    Remember what it takes to build a championship team. You need a core group of good young players you can build around. We had our ‘core four’ of Jeter, Mo, Posada, and Pettitte and so for 15+ years they gave the foundation for a competitive team.

    So – move everyone over 30. Clean house. Get as many good prospects as you can.

    I lived through the Horace Clarke Years, and The Mel Hall Years. I can live with the NY Yankees being brutally awful for 3 years so that they can reload.

    It’s a seller’s market. This team is painful to watch. Why prolong the agony with aging, expensive and mediocre players? All in — and hope that we trade wisely and get a lot better at player development. Give me a brand new homegrown team I can root for.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Oh, I could sit through it. I just think too many people advocating it think everything will be magically better for 2015 – as if this is some sort of “Get Out of Jail Free” card.

      • Will

        Not magically better but I’d rather be mediocre and have a promising future and young talent on the way with a flexible payroll than a mediocre team with a barren farm, underperforming players with burdensome contracts and a ominous future.

        • Mike D

          Will – Hit the nail on the head. My sentiments exactly.

          • Will

            I’m glad to see someone agrees. It’s time for the Yankees to bite the bullet and sell what assets they have while they’re still valuable. The organization is at a crossroads and needs to hit the reset button like the Red Sox did last year.

        • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

          Selling or not likely isn’t going to get rid of the burdensome contracts. Between high $$, declining performance, and no trade clauses, the big contacts are likely here to stay.

  • LarryM Fl

    The Yankees at best in 2014 may have a .500 club with a Robbie Cano. Cano will garner 6@150 at minimum. So 25 million each year along with CC,Teixeria, Arod and Jeter. Five players at 110 million is costly for 189 budget. So the team has to go young without much consideration. If Arod is suspended for 150 games you have some wiggle room to buy on the FA market but the pickings are pretty slim. The Yankee farm hands are close but may not be ready for the big show as is the indication from all the reading material. The Perfect Storm has hit the Yankees. Age,FA has dried up, international money has handcuffs applied to it. The days of competing for the playoffs and the shot at the WS has been limited both naturally and with CBA.
    If I were the Yankees Joba, Hughes and Kuroda would be my chips for sale. With knowledge that Kuroda could turn it down with his NTC. The Yankees will have to rebuild, no matter the circumstances of trade deadline buyers or sellers. There are so many holes to fill with limited assets to trade. First, second base are fine. Third and short are up in the air with shortstop being filled by two part timers, Jeter and Nunez. Third base and catcher need help. CF is filled. Corner OFs are needy. The bullpen seems competent with Robertson as our closer and pretty inexpensive. Starting pitching is CC, Nova, Pineda, Phelps and ???. This team is long way from being a division winner of even a WC.

    The fans must recognize that the Yankee teams of dominating are being curtailed by circumstances brought about by MLB for the most part in the name of fairness for all teams except the Yankees.

  • your mom

    I’ve got a feeling a ton of people here will be cheering for Texas and Tampa this week. And in the end, we still won’t sell.

  • Pseudoyanks

    I love Mo as much as everyone. He’s having a dominant year and is there anyone here who thinks he couldn’t dominate again next year? Well, despite this fact, he’s decided to retire and not be here in 2014, 15 and beyond. Mo is entitled to retire anytime he wants, deserves to have his wishes respected and also deserves all the attention he’s getting in this, his swansong year.

    All that said, you don’t hurt the teams chances to improve in 2014 and not take advantage of a trading deadline sell opportunity because Mo has another 15-20 career saves to scratch into his Cooperstown plaque over the next 2 months.

    If it’s time to sell, then sell.

  • KEN


  • Hats on deck

    Cano to cardinals for taveras their 2nd baseman and a b prospect.
    Robertson and heathcott to tigers for castellanos and a bullpen prospect.
    Throw castellanos and taveras in the outfield now with Gardner.
    Outfield set for a few years.

    • RetroRob

      …and exactly why would the Cardinals do that? They don’t need a 2B’man, so they keep their current cheap one and Taveras and pass on the three-month rental.

      I’m not saying Taveras isn’t a good person to target. It’s just that he’s on the wrong team to make that deal.

    • Oy

      You forgot about Kuroda for Profar and Granderson for Taillon.

    • Will

      I think any Yankees fan would want these deals in a second but I don’t think the Cardinals or Tigers would do this at all. Maybe if the Cardinals were desperate to seperate themselves in their division they would give us Carlos Martinez and Kolten Wong for Cano but Taveras is their Bryce Harper and is better than Cano was at that age.

  • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

    4:08pm: The Cubs will receive Olt, right-hander C.J. Edwards and one other player, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

    Now wait and see who comes calling for the package of Hughes and Joba.

    • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

      For Matt Garza

      • your mom

        I guess we know who’s the fourth starter we’ll face this series. An old nemesis.

  • Oy

    Hypothetically, would Kuroda and Granderson be enough to get Hanson and Polanco from Pirates? Pirates need a starter and an outfielder would not hurt them.

  • Greg

    assuming that $189M is real, and assuming that Cano wants 8/200 AND assuming we think the Dodgers will give it to him, THEN – trade Cano, Hughes and Joba to the Dodgers for (something like) M.Ellis (to replace Cano), Capuano (to replace Hughes), Winthrow (better than Joba, replaces Logan eventually), Lee and Pederson (two top prospects). Alternative is to keep them all and make them Cano and Hughes qualifying offers. Cano won’t accept but Hughes might.

  • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

    If Miller begins to melt, we may be able to move Kuroda to the Cards and add Cano or another bat and get some pretty decent return. That would really shore their lineup AND their rotation, but I’m nowhere near smart enough on their farm to have any idea what we could get in return. Anybody? Maybe Miller himself plus…

  • yeayo

    The Yankees need to sell. This “win now” mentality is not sustainable especially in the changing free agent market. Less star players are testing free agency and are signing long term “team friendly” deals out of financial security. As result, the Yankees can’t use other teams as their farm system anymore. The new market is forcing teams to develop from within and the Yankees are still living in the past which is why the outlook for the future right looks terrible.

    • The Real Greg

      100% correct


    I know this is akin to shitting on the Pope but… what about trading Rivera?

    If the Yanks are truly sending up the white flag, then he’s of little value to them. And there’s gotta be some team out there with playoff aspirations who’d be willing to give up the goods for the most sure-thing postseason guy there is. And because of the sentimental value to the Yankees, they’re not exactly motivated sellers, and they’d have to get something good to give him up.

    • Oy


      Though it would be pretty neat if Yanks offer Mo a qualifier, which he declines. Then, he agrees to sign with Boston, they were interested in signing him a few years back, IIRC. Immediately after signing the contract during a press conference, Mo rips it up and puts on a Yankees hat declaring retirement. Thus, netting us Boston’s first round pick. Last show of glory.

      • your mom

        That is so un-Mo like. But that would be awesome.

      • jjyank

        They would get a comp pick, not Boston’s first rounder.

        And if you think that the word “glory” belongs in a thought of Mo pitching in Boston, you sir, are fucking crazy.

        • jjyank

          Somehow I missed the part about not actually pitching in Boston. Nevermind, kind of. But even the though of signing there to begin with.

          Besides, I don’t know how interested he ever was signing there years ago. Pretty sure he was just negotiating shrewdly.

          • Oy

            I think it was Boston driving up the price. Or maybe it’s my perception of Mo being a saint.

  • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

    Braun suspended for rest of year. Have to figure Arod can’t be far behind.

    • JLC 776

      Braun being suspended really makes me smile.

    • Shittyshittybangbang

      Best of all is that Braun “admitted” culpability and seemingly won’t fight suspension. Have to think that the preponderance of evidence must have affected his decision. Maybe a similar deal is already in place for A-rod. Hence the “discovery” of the strained quad. We shall see.

      • Gonzo

        T.J. Quinn is saying a source said the evidence against A-Rod is “far beyond” what they had on Braun.

    • sangreal

      A-Rod should jump on it if they offer him a deal like Braun’s. He’ll be out for the rest of the season anyway once the Yanks stash him in the minors for another “rehab” period

      • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

        Not sure that really benefits the Yankees though.
        I’d almost rather he get a long suspension that doesn’t start until next year when the Yankees would have an opportunity to put the saved resources to better use.

    • your mom

      What if Arod gets a life ban?

    • Tom

      Just saw that – I’m stunned.

      • Tom

        And I should add what a lying sack of shit… He threw the drug tester under the bus when he failed the past test.

        They must have really had the goods on him, and I wonder if he actually got off lightly… 65 games means more than one occurence.

    • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

      One down 19 to go.

      • mustang (The Has Beens & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

        Now 65 games is more then 1st (50 games) and less then the 2nd (100).
        So that New York Daily News report of A-Rod getting 150 doesn’t look that weird anymore.

        • Kramerica Industries

          150 games is just stupid. Make it a full season suspension.

  • CS Yankee

    I’m really not one for selling, but the some times you just can’t make hay no matter how hard you try. This is the year of the DL, and it is highly unlikely that;
    1) Arod or Cerv’ will return.
    2) CC will adjust to his skinny and lo-vel days this quick
    3) Jete returns in a form that isn’t a weak DH without range.
    4) Grandy rakes with some average.
    5) the C & RF gets corrected.
    6) Youk returns
    7) LOverbay hits LHP
    8) Pronk hits low-inside junk.

    I would keep Kuroda & Cano to fill seats and facilitate resigning them. Keep Drob, but make Hughes, Joba, and most everybody else available for the right price in prospects.

    Sorry, Mo…you’ll just have to sign a three month contract from August thru October, 2014 to get #28.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

      Problem with that is your not really accomplishing much. Outside of Cano, Kuroda, and DRob, probably only Gardner has significant trade value.

  • Bronx Bombers23

    Sell, sell, sell.

    You are living a pipe dream if you think giving Cano an 8-10 year deal is going to instantly restore this team to a 95-100 team in ’14. This team has too many bloated contracts as it is, and too many players with declining skills, that are north of 30. At some point, even the Yankees can’t keep holding this together with spit and duct tape. They have to get younger, and more athletic.

    This team badly needs an infusion of talent…young talent. It’s time to pull the plug on this season, and move who you can move. We need the financial flexibility moving forward. Besides, if you move some guys, and get some high end prospects, we could potentially package some of those in the offseason to bring in a Stanton, who would be a young superstar to build around.

  • Coolerking101

    Kuroda and Hughes to STL for Taveras and a B prospect or 2.

    • Gonzo

      Kuroda and Hughes?

  • Rob Booey

    Wonder if everyone on this site who defended A-fraud and attacked the Miami New Times will correct themselves now?

    Probably not.

  • wilcymoore27

    I agree with BronxBombers23 … it’s time to sell.

    The team needs an infusion of young talent. I’m not in favor of gutting the team; I’d like the Yankees to finish over .500, and I’d like Mariano to have a shot at 50 saves. But someone like Kuroda (assuming he’ll waive the no-trade clause) could bring a nice return. He’s an unnecessary luxury for a squad that will be lucky to finish third. Even if the Yankees were to squeak into the post-season … and that’s really a reach at this point, there is virtually no chance they could advance very far. Play the percentages … sell.

  • Duh Injuries

    Sabathia should replace Kuroda on that list. There’s an NL team out there who’d give up three starting pitching prospects and think they’re getting over on the Yanks. Since none of you have proposed who to trade to who I can say “an NL team” which is really me saying I want him out of the league.

    I’d trade Sabathia to an NL team and offer Kuroda a one-year $20M extension he’d take in a heartbeat after the trade.

    The logic behind this trade is it clears Sabathia’s remaining 2013 salary and $71M in future guaranteed salary for Saathia to re-sign Kuroda and Hughes, moreover Sabathia still buries 2011 A.J. Burnett despite his mediocre 2013 so the Yanks could get a bounty for Sabathia who would be the PERFECT ace or #2 for a contending NL team.

  • Backseat GM

    Okay, so first of all, the Yankees could justifiably sell. They’re in a position to do so, and selling some good pieces could help strengthen the farm system and contribute to the next youth-based dynasty.

    For instance, there’s Logan, who is unquestionably at his best statistical season in Yankee Stadium. At age 29, it’s possible he’s finally figured it out and is on the cusp of very good to elite status. He’s a free agent this year, and from teams desperate for bullpen help (Detroit in particular, but also the Braves and several other teams to boot), who knows what he could buy? The Tommy Hunter and Chris Davis for Koji Uehara deal has been publicized a lot lately to demonstrate how far relief pitching can go as a trade chip. (I would, of course, recommend talking to Logan before the trade and setting up an understanding that he would be resigned in the offseason, which I believe can be done without exceeding the tax cap. There won’t be many lefties as good as him on the market, and they will be in demand. However, that’s a whole other post. For now, I will concentrate on the present, and selling in 2013 for the future.)

    There’s also Gardner. Many people would freak at my mention of one of the two most productive Yankees as a trade chip. However, there are several options with him. The best one for now is the Cincinnati Reds. The Reds are short an outfielder (Ryan Ludwig) and have been using Shin-Soo Choo in center field despite his poor defensive ability. They are fighting two tough opponents in the Pirates and Cardinals and are looking for a corner outfielder to fill out their roster. The Reds are also trying to cut payroll for next season. Gardner as a Cincinnati Red would take over center field with far superior defense to Choo’s, allowing Choo to switch back to a corner outfield spot. Gardner, with his development of some power this year to complement his speed (and with splits significantly lower than those of Choo, who is so useless against left-handed pitching that any savvy manager would be wary to sign him to a big deal), could then bat either first or second with Choo in the other top spot in front of Votto, Phillips, and Bruce, placing the finishing touch on an elite top-five offense that could power the Reds to greatness and maybe the World Series. Then next year, when Choo is a free agent, the Reds have Gardner to fall back on in case they lack the finances (or the desire) to resign Choo, and Gardner’s a sure-fire lead-off man again in a lineup that looks something like Gardner, Phillips, Votto, Bruce, Ludwig. Gardner also could be traded to any number of teams in the offseason to recoup value for the Reds farm system – the Mariners and Mets come to mind.

    Dealing Gardner now, at the trade deadline, might allow the Yankees to capitalize on the sense of urgency the Reds will feel to win this year and also add for next year, while their core players (Johnny Cueto, Votto, Phillips, and Bruce, etc., etc.) are still in their prime. Ichiro and eventually Granderson (and even Almonte and Melky Mesa, who played center field at Triple-A) could take over the spot this year, and next year a similar shared-duty arrangement could be reached with Granderson likely accepting his qualifying offer, with the hopes of Mason Williams and/or Slade Heathcott taking over the job by 2015. The Reds farm system is highlighted by Billy Hamilton, a super-speedy center fielder who still has some things to prove offensively at Triple-A before he’s big-league ready, and a number of young, high-upside pitching prospects. I somehow doubt the Reds will deal Hamilton (their center fielder of the future), given how far he stands above the rest of their prospects, but maybe a promising High-A pitcher or two wouldn’t be too much to ask for a year and a half of Gardner. (One can never have too much pitching in the farm system – never.) Of course, I wouldn’t recommend selling Gardner for anything less than a haul (given that at this rate, he’ll probably warrant a qualifying offer as a free agent, his price must be significantly more than a single first-round pick in 2015), but the option is there. I have other ideas about what Gardner could net the Yankees in the off-season, at the next trade deadline, or in terms of a first-round pick in the 2015 draft – to be explored later, after the 2013 deadline.

    Robertson, the closer-in-waiting, I’d rather not deal (unless the deal is outrageous, as in Castenellos-included for a package of rental Yankee relievers [Logan, Robertson, Joba/Hughes?] and maybe a PTBNL), and the rest of the pen needs to be kept for the future and the $189 million tax cap, as does most of the rotation (although I don’t need to tell you what Kuroda could buy in a trade – blue chip!). Granderson has little trade value at this point, so there’s no reason to deal him, especially when doing so would eliminate the qualifying offer and its off-season draft pick benefits. Ichiro could go to the Phillies as a fill-in center fielder and eventual right fielder with the return of Ben Revere, but how this would really benefit anyone is unclear. The Yankees signed him to provide star power, a Japanese audience, and a member of the 3000 hits club (as well as speed and defense), and Ichiro turned down the Phillies this off-season anyway. I could even see Ichiro in pinstripes in 2015, much to the dismay of disgruntled 2013 fans, in pursuit of that 3000-hit mark. Wells, Hafner, and Overbay have little value to contenders at this point, and I really can’t imagine the Yankees not resigning Cano, so I’ll leave that stone unturned. Hughes and Joba obviously won’t fetch much in this market except in a package with other pieces, and the big guns like CC, Tex, and A-Rod have huge salaries and no-trade protection. So that just about covers the Yankees’ trade chips for this deadline – Logan, Gardner, and possibly Kuroda (who may or may not have no-trade protection). Each could help fetch a valuable young piece (or two, or three) to bolster the farm system and prepare the Yankees for home-grown success in 2014 and beyond.

  • anthony

    Time to sell
    Kuroda and Cano to the cardinals for Wong,Martinez,Freese and Adams.
    Sign cuban pitcher gonzales as free agency in 14 and 15 slim pickens

  • any comins

    Ben… How could you even float the idea of trading Robbie?!
    Best regards,
    Wayne’s old friend,

  • Jarrod

    Sell. If ever a team needed blowing up it is this one – and I say that only because of the stupid “under $184m at all costs” approach.

    Sell Kuroda because we might get some value in return. Sell Robbie because we shouldn’t hand out yet another ridiculous contract. Sell Granderson for the same reason as Cano. Sell Hughes and Joba because they are of no use moving forward.

    Buy Jeter out ($3m), get ARod to take his pending suspension from the start of next year so some of his $25m goes away (65 games means approx. $10m). Use that saved money plus the money not spent on Mo, Wells, Granderson, Pettite, Youklis etc to bring in short term talent and kick off the rebuilding phase.

    Will never happen though so this team will still suck next year, the one after and so on and so forth.