The New York Yankees’ weakest position last season was by far second base. However, to really kick-start this off-season they’ve made a trade which immediately upgrades that position while keeping all other starting position players put. Starlin Castro (25) was acquired from the Chicago Cubs for Yankees’ pitcher Adam Warren and infield utility man. Brendan Ryan. The Yankees were in talks with the Cubs about a possible Castro/Gardner deal last month, but talks never came to fruition.
It was announced around 5 p.m. ET by Ken Rosenthal that the Cubs were in talks with the Yankees.
After that tweet it was all just speculation as to who the Yankees would be sending over to Chicago. The first name that immediately came up again was Brett Gardner, but that was soon put to rest when it was announced he was not part of the deal. Of course talks can stall at any moment, but after the news of the Cubs signing 2B Ben Zobrist on a four-year deal hit the world, the next headline was figured to be the Castro trade. Joel Sherman was on the move as it was agreed upon.
Following the agreement, the news of who the Yankees were sending didn’t come until about ten minutes later. Adam Warren and Brendan Ryan would be going to Chicago, no money involved in the deal. Brendan Ryan will also not be announced as part of the trade until after the Rule 5 Draft for this reason. As for Castro’s contract, it is very team-friendly and gives the Yankees room to make another move this off-season. He’s owed $37M for four years with a fifth year option.
His contract details are as followed:
- 2016: $7M
- 2017: $9M
- 2018: $10M
- 2019: $11M
- 2020: $16M
Like last year with the Shane Greene and Didi Gregorius trade, this helps the Yankees stay younger. Castro is just a little younger than Didi and is definitely the Yankees second baseman for the long haul. Overall this trade is easily a win-win for both teams. Adam Warren was extremely versatile for the Yankees and though it’s unfortunate to see him go, I hope he succeeds with the Cubs especially in a weak hitting National League. Brendan Ryan can be another utility player for the Cubs who have three now with Ryan, Javier Baez, and Ben Zobrist.
As for the Yankees and Castro, how exactly does this help the both of them? The Yankees get that contact (right-handed) hitter who they needed badly to balence out their heavy left-handed lineup. For Castro he gets the assertion of being a team’s full-time starting second baseman. While he was in Chicago he was sharing time with Baez and Addison Russell who made his emergence last season for the Cubs. His numbers were noticeably better when the Cubs put him at second base strictly with his batting average being .339 at second opposed to .243 as a short-stop.
The bottom line for this trade is:
- The Yankees finally get an all-star second baseman to replace Robinson Cano
- The Yankees get this immediate upgrade without giving up a starter
- This move opens up the availability to move Rob Refsnyder and others for a starter
This will definitely not be the end to the Yankees’ winter. I expect them to now make a move for a low-budget pitcher as it seems Brett Gardner will stay in Pinstripes. Are you a fan of this trade? Is it going to give them that balence in the lineup between lefties and righties? Also has Brian Cashman finally showed fans enough to make them believe he has changed his past-prime motive?
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