Muscle Sport Magazine

Yankees Fading; Possible Sellers at the Trading Deadline

Courtesy of the NY Yankees

With the distinction of having the second highest payroll in baseball and the top spot in the American League, one would surmise that the New York Yankees should be in position to easily qualify for the postseason. But after dropping the opening game of a doubleheader versus the crosstown New York Mets on July 4th, the Bronx Bombers fell to 41-41 and six games out of the wild card.

What hurt in the 10-5 loss to the Mets was not only having their ace Gerrit Cole starting, but then losing two leads in a seven-inning affair. An early 4-1 advantage, then having a 5-4 lead with their slumping closer Aroldis Chapman blowing another save. All of those lead changes could have been profitable with online betting, especially those sites that allow for in-game wagers.

So the big question is, as the All-Star break is a week away, will the Yankees be buyers or sellers at the July 30 trading deadline?

 

 

The last time that Yankees general manager Brian Cashman sold was 2016 and it paid off immensely. He dealt Chapman to the Chicago Cubs (who went on the win the World Series a few months later) in exchange for Gleyber Torres and Adam Warren. Both teams were happy with the deal, but the Yanks ‘won’ it when they resigned Chapman as a free agent that same offseason. Cashman also peddled reliever Andrew Miller to the American League champion Cleveland Indians and received a package in return consisting of Clint Frazier, Justus Sheffield, Ben Heller and J.P. Feyereisen. The southpaw pitched well for the Indians and currently is a member of the St. Louis Cardinals. Frazier was the main piece coming to the Big Apple and has been on the bubble of breaking out and finally becoming an everyday player.

This time around, there isn’t as many players nearing the end of their contracts. Justin Wilson, Daren O’Day and Brett Gardner all have player options for next season and Corey Kluber  – who is currently on the Injured List – will be a free agent.

A number of players the Yankees were counting on have struggled this summer. Torres – who appeared to be a mainstay in pinstripes after busting out of the gate in 2018 and an even better campaign the following year – has been going backwards in the pandemic-shortened 2020 and his woes have continued into the current season.

 

 

Fellow infielder Miguel Andujar has never been able to repeat the strong 2018 he had when he was the runner-up for the American League Rookie of the Year. He has had trouble staying in the line-up and has even been used in the outfield to get him more at-bats.

When the Yankees signed utility man DJ LeMahieu in 2019, they didn’t expect the former member of the Cubs and Colorado Rockies to make an impact. But after a series of injuries, he ended up finding important at bats at second base, third base, first base and DH and hit .327 with 26 home runs and 102 RBI, even winning the Silver Slugger Award at second base. A year ago, LeMahieu turned it up a notch and won the AL batting title with a .364 mark and was retained with a $90 million, six-year contract. After those numbers, his .270/7/33 stats look paltry in comparison, especially when you factor in the comfortable deal he was signed to only a few short months ago.

 

 

Injuries have decimated the Yankees, but many teams that are playoff-bound if the season ended today can say the same thing. Case in point, the Mets. They have had the majority of their Opening Day line-up sidelined with various injuries, yet they have been able to hold on to first place in the weak-National League East.

So does Cashman look to trim the payroll and peddle a few veterans for prospects? It worked before and may have to again.

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