Olney: Yanks expected to listen to offers for Gary Sanchez

First Domino Falls: Scott Kazmir traded to Astros
Sweep! Tanaka cruises, offense crushes Ubaldo in 9-3 win over O's
(Presswire)
(Presswire)

According to Buster Olney (subs. req’d), rival executives are expecting the Yankees to listen to offers for catcher prospect Gary Sanchez. The team has reportedly “sworn off” trading top prospects like Aaron Judge and Luis Severino, but Sanchez is a notch below those guys, and it makes sense to make him available with Brian McCann and John Ryan Murphy entrenched at the MLB level.

Sanchez, 22, is hitting .262/.322/.480 (129 wRC+) overall this season with 15 doubles and 13 home runs in 273 plate appearances with Double-A Trenton and Triple-A Scranton. That’s after hitting 19 doubles and 13 homers in 477 plate appearances at Trenton last year. It feels like Sanchez has been around forever, but he was 2.5 years younger than the average Eastern League player and is currently 4.9 years younger than the average International League player.

Should the Yankees make Sanchez available — and I expect they will — it would not at all be surprising. As I said in our recent trade chips post, the Yankees value defense behind the plate very highly, and Sanchez simply is not a strong catcher. He’s improving but still below-average. Both Jesus Montero and Peter O’Brien, two other bat first prospects faking it behind the plate, were dealt in recent years when they were hitting at the upper levels.

Sanchez now is a worse prospect than Montero was a few years ago but is a better prospect than O’Brien last year, so I guess that means his trade value is somewhere between Michael Pineda and Martin Prado. Not helpful! More than anything, Sanchez’s trade value will depend on whether other teams believe he can catch. That and how much they believe in the bat. All it takes is one club to think he’s an impact hitter to get a nice return.

First Domino Falls: Scott Kazmir traded to Astros
Sweep! Tanaka cruises, offense crushes Ubaldo in 9-3 win over O's
  • https://youtu.be/alYXF7a9N3U Memory Bread

    So he’s basically the centerpiece of any big deal in the next 39 days including the August waiver period … amirite?

  • ÅndyInSunnyDB

    I would rather trade JRM, call up Romine and then let Gary fight for the back-up job next year

    • https://youtu.be/alYXF7a9N3U Memory Bread

      Don’t let Mike read that , never understood the obsession with J.R Murphy

      • http://riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

        You’re going to feel so dumb when this is JRM in 60 years.

        http://a.espncdn.com/photo/2010/0411/ny_rings_05_800.jpg

        • https://youtu.be/alYXF7a9N3U Memory Bread

          So he’ll look like Yogi with Gregg Zaun’s stats (who I think his eventual upside offensively will be).

          • Greggreen

            career 344 OBP? yes please

          • yclept

            many teams would do cartwheels for a Greg Zaun bat in this day and age. Including the Yankees once McCann cannot catch everyday anymore.

      • Greggreen

        hes a 24 year old catcher hitting actual big league pitching and is praised for his defense. whats not to like?

        • chris hines

          Hitting to the tune of a .304 OBP and a .346 SLG?

    • Sir Didi Nakamura

      Sanchez gets a better return, that’s why. (probably)

      • Greggreen

        idk if people think murphys bat is real then i think he has very high value.

        • chris hines

          “Real” in what sense? He has a 77 wRC+ on the year and a 67 in 197 career PAs, he hasn’t shown anything yet for people to be proclaiming his bat as real or fake.

  • Sir Didi Nakamura

    Zobrist

    • argenys

      Lol

  • LarryM Fl

    JRM is a solid catcher both offensively and defensively. He will provide any power with the bat but singles and doubles you cannot ask for more. He’s performing well in the backup role. Sanchez is red meat to some teams looking for a catcher who may hit with some power and overlook the the weak defense.(IMHO)

  • Angelo

    That’s unfortunate. He seems a bit underrated at this point and I hope the Yankees keep him, but I guess we’ll see. One of the few guys in the system with the potential to be an All-Star caliber player (from an offensive perspective.)

    The writing has been on the wall for him to be traded for a while though. Hopefully the Yankees will get a really nice player in return.

  • thisiscarter

    I’m cool with this. I like sanchez a lot, but if you can trade from a position of depth and improve the team you have to do it

    • Greggreen

      heres the thing, if you trade sanchez we dont have alot of catching anymore. unless we find some way to keep romine after this year.

      • TheGreginator/MustacheMasher

        We have McCann and JRM, who else do you want?

        • Angelo

          Well, McCann most likely won’t be a starting catcher for the entirety of his contract. At that point, he’s either your starting DH or 1B. If JRM doesn’t develop into a starting caliber catcher, there goes any actual depth they had at the position. So everything banks on the development of JRM. Otherwise, the Yankees are likely spending a lot of money on another catcher.

          I’m not really advocating not trading Sanchez, but pointing to the two catchers currently on the MLB roster to make any sort of argument about “depth” at a position is short sighted.

          • TheGreginator/MustacheMasher

            Sanchez is just blocked at the major league level, and Torrens is in the low minors. Just a weird argument to say that is they trade Sanchez, they don’t have any catching

            • Game 3

              But that’s not what he wrote.
              ‘we dont have alot of catching anymore’ is different than ‘we have no catching!!!’.

            • Angelo

              You’re mentioning a player that isn’t even playing this season in the minors. Not only that, Torrens hasn’t even played a full season at Low-A. A LOT can happen between now and then. We are talking about a guy that is likely 3-4 years away at best and that’s if he actually grows to be an MLB level player.

              That’s a pretty terrible argument for stating that the Yankees have depth at the catcher position. I mean, if we’re going to point to players with high potential but have proven very little, the Yankees have tons of depth at most positions. Talking about Torrens as a depth piece is just redundant right now.

          • n0exit

            This. JRM sill never be starter level. I don’t even think his bat is Cisco level. He’s a good BU but you probably shouldn’t run him out there everyday. Catchers get beat up, you should have 3 that can play in ML. While Torrens was a good player shoulder surgery has derailed a few prospects in the org.

        • chris hines

          Because catcher is a very low injury risk position by it’s nature.

      • https://youtu.be/alYXF7a9N3U Memory Bread

        Ain’t no way in hell Romine stays in this Org after this year without adding him to the 40 man roster before the end of the season.

        • Greggreen

          right, so we get pretty thin at Catcher if when that happens.

  • Countdown Till Bryce’s a FA

    I wouldn’t trade Sanchez for anything less than Pineda’ish quality player.

    • argenys

      That or an all-star(or borderline) 2b with a few years of control

  • Kenthadley

    After Sanchez, though, there isn’t any catching depth short of the Torrens kid and he’s got a torn up shoulder. From following the kids I don’t see any catching prospects (real prospects, not hope guys who happen to be hitting over .250 with no power). So unless they intend to beef up the position soon, they will have nothing after Sanchez is gone.

  • RetroRob

    He’s less of a prospect than Montero was at similar points, but I suspect Sanchez will go on to have a decent MLB career. He’s trending up again. They’ll be a lot of interest in him, but teams will try to lowball the Yankees.

    • Chip

      Montero’s issue was ability
      Sanchez’s issue was maturity

      Sanchez seems to have worked hard on that

      • dave_8

        I think they both had issues in both depts. But Montero was a much better hitting prospect than Sanchez has been. I’d bet that Montero re-surfaces as a DH/1b type in the big leagues over Sanchez becoming a full-time catcher in the big leagues.

        • chris hines

          I’d take that bet only because I don’t believe in Montero as a starting anything.

  • Cool Yankees Dude

    I wouldn’t trade Sanchez, he’s in an important position of insurance for Yankee catching.

  • Chip

    Of course they’ll listen on Sanchez. Stupid not to. He’s at AAA right now but McCann’s not going anywhere for a while and by the time he does, Luis Torrens will have (hopefully) moved up the line.

    For what it’s worth (which isn’t much) here’s where I think the major trade targets are going:

    Price – Dodgers
    LA is now run by the front office team that drafted and developed Price in Tampa Bay.

    Cueto – Blue Jays
    Just seems like a very Toronto target

    Chapman – nowhere
    Reds will want a lot for him but it will be too much to give up for a closer, even Chapman

    Kimbrel – Yankees
    Yankees build a pen that makes KC’s look pedestrian

    Cespedes & Soria – Angels
    They need offense in the OF where Matt Joyce has been terrible and Soria will help the back of their pen

    Hamels – nowhere
    McPhail is just getting to know his front office people, he’s not going to let them make a franchise altering deal until he finds out if they are full of crap or not

    Zobrist – Nationals
    Insurance against recurring injuries to Zimmerman and Rendon and general suckiness of Desmond

    • Reggie C.

      What’s the cost for Kimbrel?

      • Chip

        Depends.

        If the Yankees are willing to take on a bad salary (Gyorko) it could be lower. Something like Refsnyder, Mitchell and Rookie Davis (maybe even get San Diego to take back Stephen Drew). If they’re not then you’re looking at something along the lines of Refsnyder, Sanchez and another premium guy (Mateo?)

        • Deep Thoughts

          Gross. Three decent prospects for an expensive marginal upgrade from Warren/Wilson/Shreve for the 3rd-best reliever? Hard pass.

    • Mandy Stankiewicz

      I could see Shark to Toronto
      I think Cueto would love NY, and I think NY would really love his personality. Not baseball related, just as a cool dude.
      Still think Zobby is a possibility for NY, same with Kimbrel, only be cause of the rumors.

  • CashmanNinja

    I really do like Sanchez as a prospect, but I’m open to trading him if the price is right. I love that they seem against trading Severino and Judge. I wouldn’t say any prospect is untouchable, but only if the right deal comes along. That type of deal is harder to come by with the extra wild card spot and more teams being in contention, so they’re basically staying put. Sanchez becomes a valuable chip because he plays a premium position, is still young, and has shown improvement. The recent hot streak doesn’t hurt either. I don’t want to trade him just for the sake of trading him, but if a deal comes along that makes us a lot better then it should be done.

    • Chip

      I would actually sooner move Bird than Sanchez just based on the positions they play.

      • CashmanNinja

        Eh…I’d be on the fence. I do like that Sanchez is a catcher whereas Bird…isn’t. Sanchez isn’t a great catcher though, but at least he’s shown improvement in some areas. I think Bird translates as a better overall MLB hitter and that’s why I’d rather keep him. I’d lump those 2 together in terms of trade ability right now, but I give the slight edge to Bird because I just think he could be a better overall hitter whereas Sanchez would be a good hitter for a catcher. If Sanchez has to be moved from behind the plate then that could really knock his value down.

        • n0exit

          A bad catcher is worth more than a bad 1b. Especially if the bat is similar. I don’t see Bird as so much better than Sanchez that they shouldnt be willing to move him (before Sanchez IMO) but apparently that is their stance at the moment.

          • Chip

            Also don’t forget that the Yankees have Jagielo. He’s going to likely move to 1b. He’s just as good a hitter as Bird and more athletic. So there’s that.

            • n0exit

              Bad timing injury wise because I thought he was the most tradeable piece. His fielding is worse than Bird I think. In terms of guys I would trade I’d go 1. Jags, 2. Bird, 3. Sanchez. But two separate reports that they won’t move bird, means that Gary is on the block.

            • chris hines

              He has more raw power than Bird but I don’t know that I’d call him a better overall bat, it’s very likely Jagielo ends up a platoon or bench bat who strikes out a ton.

          • Stan

            Yankees have more catching depth than 1B depth

        • chris hines

          I like Bird but I’m scared he could end up being a guy who struggles to hit above .230 at the major league level, he should draw walks and hit for some power at least but his contact ability still has questions against the elite level of pitching.

      • Looser Trader FotD™

        Depends on whether Sanchez really “plays” C.

  • Vern Sneaker

    A CATCHER, 22 YO, in AAA, hits okay and with power, excellent arm, might turn out to be an adequate defender, nobody else in the organization close behind him — you’d have to knock my socks off before I’d trade him at this point.

  • YankeeFan™

    I love Gary Sanchez & he’s a country man so I like him even more the only way I would want the Yankees to trade him if it’s for a really good player.

  • n0exit

    I mean cash is always listening so rival evaluators opinion (read industry speculation) is not wrong. But I don’t really think they buy JRM’s bat at C. McCann probably won’t be a full time C in 2017 and Sanchez has a terrible reputation. I think these things conspire against him being moved. I just don’t think they get offered the piece they should for him. The catcher who went to the A’s for Kazmir is basically Sanchez in A Ball at 20. 50FV guy defensive questions. The yanks need to get at least that level of return for it to be worth it. (While he should be worth more than Nottingham, his rep hurts his value).

    • chris hines

      The Astros also threw in a pitcher who sits in the mid 90’s and the A’s likely view him as an eventual starter.

      • n0exit

        Ha yea well then Beane should get checked out because said pitcher has 4 pitches, no plus, looks like a long man or back end starter. Best case is David Phelps.

  • n0exit

    The more interesting part of Olney’s report was that he said Judge Severino AND Bird were off the table. Heyman said the same AND refsnyder a couple of days ago. I wonder if either report is completely accurate.

    • Stan

      The report is… but the information the Yankees are giving them probably isn’t

    • Robinson Tilapia

      I’d say any report deeming Refsnyder untouchable was written by a moonlighting RAB commenter.

      • Looser Trader FotD™

        *not it*

    • dave_8

      I wonder if it was just a fumble of names by Heyman at the time. Sherman was listing 4 players but had Mateo as the 4th while Heyman said Refs.

  • Dellin Beteddardnces

    And they should listen to offers on Sanchez. He’s redundant in the system with McCann signed another 3 years after this and JRM. That’s why they reluctantly traded Frankie, and now he’s doing wonders in Pitt.

  • cxz

    I’m of the camp that’s not very high on offense-first catchers (sorry Jorge). I like his bat a lot, and he’s got a good arm, but he’s absolutely a guy I listen on during this next week of negotiations. That doesn’t mean I put a sign up saying “available to the best offer”, but if there’s a piece that makes sense for this club, and his name comes up, I don’t throw a fit if he’s dealt.

    • Tom

      Posada wasn’t the best defensively but he was good enough.

      • cxz

        He was definitely offense first though, which is what I’m getting at. Also, Posada really wasn’t “good enough”, we just lived with it because of his bat and who he was to us.

      • chris hines

        He cost the team more runs over the course of his career with defense than he ever saved, he just mashed at an almost unprecedented level. His defense is the only thing that’s going to keep him from the hall.

  • Gregory Eckes

    Possible landing spots IMO: Twins, Braves, Mariners

    • Stan

      I’m thinking the Mariners may be a bit hesitant trading for a Yankee minor league catcher.

    • cxz

      Sanchez for Peraza, make it happen Cash(never going to happen, but a man can dream)

  • W.B. Mason Williams

    Not gonna lie, the prospect fatigue has only increased my crush for the Sanchize. He’s the holdover from those couple of years ago when the farm system looked like the Dust Bowl.

    Obviously Severino and Judge are the most talented in the system, but Sanchez has a niche in my heart, damn it.

  • Farewell Mo and Jeet

    While Sanchez certainly isn’t an untouchable prospect, I’d hope that they’d get more than just a rental player for him.

    • Douglas Rau

      Depends on the rental player. What if it were Justin Upton, who came in, played an above average right field and crushed left handed pitching? That changes the look of the team.

  • Jordan

    I have a feeling if Sanchez is traded it will be for a underwhelming return.

  • Shane0

    Trading him is inevitable. Either this trade deadline or in the offseason. John Ryan Murphy’s bat is underrated. I would be more than happy seeing him as the starting catcher in 2017 with McCann taking over the DH and 1B duties. Murphy is turning a corner right now, he could take over as early as tomorrow.

    • chris hines

      I think you’d be extremely disappointed with the production out of Murphy if he had to start every game from here on out. Being a backup catcher is no where near the same as a starting one.

  • Hank1967

    I say we take the best we can get for Sanchez, Mason Williams and a triple a pitcher not names severino. Gonna. Cash need to do the best he can trading from our excess.

  • LazerTown

    I’d certainly consider trading Sanchez, but not for a rental piece.

    • chris hines

      Depends on the rental though doesn’t it? Mike Leake of course not but David Price? You bet I would. Not all rentals are created equal and sometimes that extra couple of months can play into re-signing a guy who might not normally choose to sign with you for one reason or another.

  • Douglas Rau

    You can’t prospect-hug everybody. Looking long term, if Teix leaves after next season, Brian McCann could move to first if John Ryan Murphy looks to be an everyday player and/or there is also Greg Bird at AAA, not a bad prospect, to keep in mind. The one thing the Yankees can’t do is find a spot for McCann, Murphy, Bird AND Sanchez in the everyday line-up. At some point, not necessarily right now, they have to consider moving somebody for a position of need.

    • dave_8

      I think Bird and Jagielo would be considerations for 1st before McCann. I think they’ll catch him for as long as they possibly can. He might yield a little more to JRM over the next 3 yrs — but judging from Girardi’s comments in the off-season, I don’t get the feeling Sanchez is in their catching plans. I’m not surprised that he’s available. But he’ll never net what Montero did.

    • LazerTown

      Not all of them will work out though. You kinda gotta hang onto them though for that treason.

      • dave_8

        Not if you can get a piece to help you win now. You’re in position for a playoff lottery ticket. It’s about winning. You could hold to all your depth if your position is to develop players to win in some future that never quite arrives. They have a lead. Time to put the cleat on the neck of the division. A catcher that still has trouble catching after 6 years probably won’t be a catcher at all. And he’s never been a Montero-like bat.

        • LazerTown

          Yes, it’s about winning. If your trading Sanchez for a rental you likely got the divison. You likely already got the divison anyways. You are subtracting from the future there in order to make now better.

          • dave_8

            There might not be a future for any number of issues the rest of your roster might have. Gotta take your shot. And depending on who you get, that player might help you advance in the playoffs. And nothing is more beneficial for the Yankee brand than to get into the post-season picture again.

            And with Sanchez, you might be trading someone without a real future for a piece that brings you that much closer to winning. But at the end of the day, you’d still be dealing a minor leaguer for a proven major leaguer. The fact that they’d listen on Sanchez but depict others as off-the-table tells you the difference in the belief they have in that player being key for them down the road.

          • chris hines

            I imagine any big trade they make now would be with strengthening the team for the playoffs not so much just making it in.

    • Rick Myles

      If Tex continues to hit the NYY may resign him for another couple years. When was the last time the NYY waved good bye to a productive vet to clear the way for an unproven kid?

      • Robert

        Let’s see what Tex does in 2016 before we resign him

  • chris hines

    Olney breaking the hard hitting news! Wouldn’t they listen to offers on every player on the team? Listening doesn’t indicate aggressively shopping it just means you’ll listen if someone wants to throw an offer out there, only the worst run team in baseball would refuse to listen to offers for any player.

    • LazerTown

      This is way true. Nobody should be off the table. It’s all about what you get in return. They shouldn’t be overpaying in prospects to get pieces for right now.

  • DZ

    I’m a huge sanchez fan, as many have said, he’s been victimized by prospect fatigue. I think he has the same upside as he always has – an above average hitting catcher with just below average defense. With that said, I think it’s pretty clear he doesn’t fit what the yankees look for in catchers, and he doesn’t really fill a position of need for the immediate future with McCann and JRM. If they can trade him and a few others for a stud starting pitcher I absolutely think it’s the right move. If you can’t get at least a samardzija or kazmir (yes I know he was just traded) then you don’t pull the trigger.

  • disqus_aca44tENL2

    I’m not sure what we trade him for.

    The only way I’d want to pick up an extra pitcher is if it was an ace – i.e. David Price, Jonny Cueto or Cole Hamels. A mid-rotation starter is out of the question considering we had to kick one to the bullpen to make room for Nova. OTOH I am not too comfortable with Eovaldi/Sabathia/Nova as our 3rd starter in the PS.

    Maybe a package of Sanchez and others lands Hamels or Cueto. From the Davis, Cave group of guys. Cueto’s injury concerns could drive down his price, and Hamels contract also. Although they also drive down the desirability too.

    Price would be awesome, but I think is going to the Dodgers, and we can’t outspend their deep farm system. Not without giving up Judge or Severino.

    Seems like an overpay for Zobrist IMHO, and there is no other 2B available that is really that great. A Sanchez/Zobrist – one for one – swap wouldn’t make me mad, but I wouldn’t be for it either. Honestly I’d rather stick with Refs.

    Leaving a reliever – Kimbrel or Chapman. Not sure committing 20MM for two relievers (Kimbrel and Miller) is a good use of resources, but it would be an awesome bullpen. Six inning starts in the PS, and the game would be over. Actually, Dellin can go two, so five inning starts.

    • argenys

      In a game 3 I’d take Eovaldi with him knowing he’s only going 5, straight to any of Shreve/Wilson/Warren to Betances to Miller to Chapman. Over any minor upgrade we could get in the rotation without giving up any of out top 5 prospects including Sanchez.

  • Rick Myles

    OMG Sanchez is 22 and he isn’t Thurman or Posada. Of course we were hearing he was better than both when he was 17 so it’s hard to separate the reality from the hype. Maybe he turns out to be a real nice player in a couple more years. But the NYY don’t have the patience to give many young players a chance to develop in this pressure cooker media market. Unlike say St. Louis.

  • GoGoPlatter

    Isn’t an easy comparison post-catching Victor Martinez? If that is their presentation, I’d say that production is worth a decent amount to an AL team.