Playing Brian Cashman is always fun. I have a trade proposal along with a steal of a free agent signing that the Yankees should pursue. It’s not new information that the Yankees are trying to reduce payroll. That may be on hold, but we’ll assume that plan is still intact. At the end of the season the Yankees have a dilemma. They’ll have a few expiring contracts to deal with, specifically Cano and Granderson. I’m sure at least one of them will be re-signed. That will most likely be Robinson Cano. Granderson on the on the other hand might have an off-season similar to Nick Swisher if the Yankees don’t trade him.
***This was written before the Bourn signing with Cleveland***
Bourn free! (Image: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports)
Here’s my trade proposal with no exact names other than Granderson. I’m not sure Granderson could bring in a big name prospect having a single year left on his contract. He could definitely bring in a some raw prospects and a major league ready reliever. I feel a trade to the Mets or the Mariners would workout well. The Mets are searching for an upgrade in their outfield. While the Mariners are always looking to add a bat. I’m not sure if Granderson would fair well with either of those teams. Citi and Safeco are two of the biggest parks in baseball. Granderson’s swing is perfect for hitting home runs in Yankee Stadium. The other two parks I mentioned? Not so much.
Trading Granderson for scraps is just the first part of a chain of events to benefit the Yankees. As of now in this hypothetical trade world the real gain is not the scraps they just obtained, it’s the room they made to sign a free agent. A free agent like Michael Bourn?
Michael Bourn was one of the top free agents heading into this free agency. He was looking for a major payday and hasn’t found the suitor to meet his desires. Sounds like a sad love story. The Yankees are Prince Charming in this world. Cashman swoops Bourn up on his white horse wearing his ninja tights signing him for somewhat decent amount of money.
You see the deal makes a lot of sense for the Yankees. Bourn’s value in dollars has decreased because his market has shrunk. His caliber of play is still of a top notch outfielder. Bourn was 14th among hitters in batters WAR last year according to Fangraphs. The Braves had a chance to re-sign him, but instead took the route of signing and trading for the Upton brothers. The Upton’s didn’t equate to Bourn’s 6.4 fWAR. They only reached a combined 5.8 fWAR between the two. B.J. amassed a 3.3 fWAR while Justin accumulated a 2.5 fWAR. If the Braves kept Bourn and added an Upton their outfield would have really upgraded. Instead they Uptongraded. Too corny?
Granderson had a 2.6 fWAR last year despite all his power. That’s about all Granderson is good for right now. He’s a good centerfielder, but he’s not even the best centerfielder on the team. That would be Brett Gardner. Sure, trading Granderson would ruin the narrative that an outfield needs to be full of power, but in the long run it will help the team’s flexibility.