More Details Emerge About Brian McCann Trade Talks
The New York Yankees and Atlanta Braves have their trade talks about Brian McCann until the offseason when they will reassess.
Catcher Brian McCann was one of the many veterans to be shopped by the New York Yankees at the August 1st trade deadline this year. Both the Atlanta Braves and Texas Rangers were reported to have interest at the time, although the Rangers eventually filled their needs behind the plate by acquiring Jonathan Lucroy.
Talks progressed the furthest with Atlanta, but ultimately the two sides weren’t able to come to an agreement on a deal before the deadline.
When McCann cleared trade waivers in August, it was speculated that trade discussions could resume, but ultimately New York decided they’d be better off keeping McCann for their playoff run, even after giving his starting catcher job to rookie Gary Sanchez.
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According to Jon Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball, the Braves and Yankees have put a pin in their trade talks and will wait until the offseason to resume. There are a number of solid free agent catchers available this winter including Wilson Ramos and Matt Wieters. Presumably that will help Atlanta’s bargaining position as they will have several alternatives to turn to instead of McCann.
Heyman reports that the Braves wanted the Yankees to eat at least half of the $34 million owed to McCann over the next two seasons to facilitate the trade. In addition, they were only willing to “send a prospect or two, but not significant players.”
It seems as if Atlanta wants to have their cake and eat it to in this potential trade. McCann is probably slightly overpaid at this point, so having New York absorb money shouldn’t be out of the question, but if they do, they should be receiving premium young talent in return.
McCann would be an absolute bargain on a two year $17 million contract, which is what the Braves would be getting if the Yankees ate that much money. He’s having a down year, but a catcher hitting .234/.329/.394 with 16 home runs and solid defense is still a very valuable player.
The Braves have four young pitchers in MLB Pipeline’s Top 100 list, one of whom would make a fair return for McCann if the Yankees were paying down his salary. If Atlanta were willing to offer Sean Newcomb, Kolby Allard, Ian Anderson, or Mike Soroka for Mac, they would likely have themselves a deal.
Next: Six Potential Free Agent Bargains for the Yankees
Even with Gary Sanchez catching every day, the Yankees should not be feeling any pressure to move Brian McCann this winter. Having a second viable starting catcher on the roster is a nice problem to have, and McCann gives them a proven veteran bat in a lineup that is expected to be carried by a number of rookies in 2017.