Three weeks from the non-waiver trade deadline and Yankees GM Brian Cashman will not sit still. That wheeling and dealing is a trademark of Cashman and the Yankees and this time they will be buyers. It is obvious, the Yankees feel they are in this division title and wildcard hunt until the end.
And as it is with other teams in the postseason picture, the Yankees will seek pitching. Bullpen help or a viable starter to fit in a rotation that has been inconsistent is a necessity. Cashman pulled the trades a year ago and the Yankees got younger, more athletic and there is every reason this will continue as their minor league system is considered a top two or three in the game.
Perhaps, the Yankees will have to part with a youngster or two. Not Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, Tyler Wade or Clint Frazier. Count on it though, Cashman will make a move or two because this has been a part of his legacy as a trusted, respected, and longtime GM in the Bronx. He said, there is a buyers mentality.
Justin Bour? The Marlins may not want to part with him and if so, Cashman needs to give up prospects for a first baseman that has put up big numbers in the first half. The crosstown Mets need to rebuild but when was the last time the two teams swapped players at the deadline? Lucas Duda would be a perfect fit in the Bronx and the Mets would want those prospects.
Padres’ lefthander Brad Hand, with a good strikeout ratio is a need for the Yankees out of the pen. And there is that uncertainty in the second half about the bullpen woes that were a first half issue for the Yankees. Hand is definitely on their radar.
So, assume as expected that Cashman is active in a few weeks at the deadline. That longtime and reputed scout provided a report on some of those Yankees prospects down In Tampa and with Double-A Trenton. It goes without saying, the Yankees are stocked with talent and would have the prospects for a potential trade or two.
And the good thing, because the Yankees are stocked with talent, it won’t go as a major loss. Many may not see the big leagues in the immediate future. The emphasis here is Tampa with a few and bright prospects that can be as they say, good bait for a trade:
Nick Solak, 22 years old: At second base is strong and athletic. A good number two hitter and with speed that has an impact in the lineup. He is very reminiscent of former Yankee Pat Kelly but is more athletic, a better defender and has more power.
Taylor Widener: 22-year old righthanded starter with a power arm. His slider is the best pitch and competes with a good fastball at 90-96-93. And with fast improvement, Widener could help a team in September and is ready to compete for a roster spot next year.
Trey Amburgey : 22-year old outfielder. Described as a hitter where the ball explodes off his bat. With legitimate home run power, more dangerous in the lineup than that good hitter. Can play center and left fields and reminiscent of former Yankee Shane Spencer.
Erik Swansen: 23 year old righthander with a power arm. Fastball needs to be spotted and has a solid angle to get out right handed and left handed hitters. Fastball is clocked at 91-96/93.
Jose Mesa: 23 year old righthanded pitcher with an average fastball and slider. Throws downhill but locates pitches well. Has confidence and could be a good second starter in a rotation. Fastball clocked at 92-94/94.
Ian Clarkin: 22 year old lefthanded pitcher. A tall and lanky starter with good command and three solid pitches. Has that classic and sweet delivery to the plate and fastball is good but needs to be spotted. Fastball is short and hinders his ability to throw the changeup and slider. Average velocity 89-91/90/.He missed the 2015 season with injury to this pitching arm.
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