New York Yankees Editorial: Yankees Trade-Off Pressure Of 2015 For Future Core


After suffering a weekend sweep at the hands of the Toronto Blue Jays, the New York Yankees division lead is down to just half a game entering play Wednesday.  While the Blue Jays put all their chips into 2015 at the trade deadline by acquiring Troy Tulowitzki and David Price, a move that has the team on an nine-game winning streak entering Wednesday, the Yankees decided to hang on to their top prospects, making only one trade, a minor move for Dustin Ackley, who was injured after just three at-bats with the club.

If the Blue Jays are able to catch the Yankees in the standings, something that seems very possible, should the Yankees consider the 2015 trade deadline a failure?  No, they should not.  As much as Price, or Johnny Cueto or even Cole Hamels could have helped in 2015, the market for free agent pitching will be loaded following the season, with Price, Cueto, and possibly Zack Grienke headlining what figures to be a very strong class.

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While the Blue Jays haven’t reached the postseason since repeating as champions in 1993, the Yankees are a team that looks to win it all every season, and Luis Severino has shown that he is the type of pitcher who can be a part of the rotation for a long time, someone who shouldn’t be gambled for a rental that can be signed in the offseason.

Monday, when asked about his quiet deadline, Brian Cashman stated that he felt that there was no offer that represented a significant upgrade without including his top prospects:

"We tried to improve it.  We tried to match up where it didn’t involve the [Aaron] Judge‘s, the [Luis] Severino‘s and the [Greg] Bird‘s.  Every offer we made that didn’t involve those players wasn’t good enough compared to what they got."

Price was one of those upgrades, as now-former Detroit Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski refused to listen to any package that didn’t include one of the Yankees top prospects.  After seeing so many long-term contracts fail to work out, the Yankees are attempting to stay away from those deals, leading the organization to hold on to their young talent, even if it causes them to fail to reach the postseason for the third straight season.

Although it is still possible for the team to look back on the 2015 trade deadline with regret, that is something that should be determined down the line, after we see the impact these prospects have.  Severino has already debuted, and has looked impressive thus far, allowing just three earned runs across 11 innings pitched in two big league starts, pitching to a WHIP of 0.27.  Even with two strong starts, Severino has a long way to go to justify Cashman’s decision to hold on to him, and Judge and Bird will get the opportunity to do the same soon.

While the Yankees could have sold the farm, and possibly won a title in 2015, they chose to play it safe, hoping that it will result in multiple titles down the road, knowing that they remain in title contention in 2015 without making any big moves.  Unfortunately, we will not know if Cashman’s gamble was a smart decision until several years down the road.

What do you think Yankees fans?  Should Cashman have traded one of his big prospects to upgrade the 2015 roster or was he right to hang on to the prospects?

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