Yankees Mock Trade: Brett Gardner for Asher and Canelo

Sep 21, 2016; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York Yankees left fielder Brett Gardner (11) on deck to bat against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 21, 2016; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York Yankees left fielder Brett Gardner (11) on deck to bat against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

Yanks Go Yard and That Ball’s Outta Here sat down to hammer out a mock trade between the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies as part of an ongoing series at our FanSided MLB sister site.

While the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies are both big market teams in the midst of rebuilds, they are at very different points in their process. The Yankees have worked hard to get younger and shed the majority of their big money deals over the last year, opening up starting jobs for a number of their top prospects.

The Phillies, on the other hand, sound ready to spend big this winter. They reportedly want to add at least one veteran bat and one proven starter this winter to supplement the young core they’ve assembled.

One player that the site expert at “That Ball’s Outta Here” targeted as a good fit for the Phillies was outfielder Brett Gardner. Aside from Odubel Herrera, who proved his 2015 breakout was no fluke, Philadelphia’s outfield picture is pretty bleak. Gardy would probably take over the everyday job in left field and give the Phils a proven table-setter in front of their promising young bats

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The Yankees have been shopping Gardner since last winter, and would likely be thrilled to get the $26 million owed to him over the next two seasons off their books. The 33-year-old has a checkered injury history and has seen his numbers decline for the third straight season this year.

The main benefit of moving Gardner is that it opens up an avenue for top prospect Clint Frazier to land a big league job as soon as he proves himself ready in Triple-A. Some combination of Aaron Judge, Aaron Hicks, Mason Williams, and Rob Refsnyder are more than capable of holding down the fort in the meantime.

This move could also free New York up to pursue one of several enticing outfielders on the upcoming free agent market. Michael Saunders is still just 30, would provide the lineup with some much-needed pop, and wouldn’t cost as much as some of the bigger names because of his shorter track record.

While this is basically a salary dump, the crafty executives at Yanks Go Yard landed two interesting players in exchange for Gardner and a PTBNL: a 24-year-old MLB ready starter Alec Asher and 22-year-old Malquin Canelo.

Asher is a big (6’4 230 lb) righty innings eater who has a 1.66 ERA and 3.15 FIP in four September starts this year. He gives the Yankees another decent arm to toss into the competition for rotation jobs next spring. He’s projected to be a solid number four or five type guy, with three quality offerings- mid-90’s fastball, a slider, and a change.

New York’s top priority at the moment is adding young, controllable starters. Asher isn’t flashy, but gives the team a necessary safety net for next year, similar to the role Luis Cessa and Chad Green filled on this year’s club.

Canelo ranks 21st in the Phillies system according to MLB Pipeline, who gives him 60 grades for his arm, fielding, and speed. Once seen as a glove-only type, Canelo been putting on muscle over the last year and now seems like a potential big league starting shortstop who could be ready by 2018.

For the PTBNL: the Phillies will select from one of the Scranton Shuttle relievers the Yankees can’t fit onto the 40-man this winter: Richard Bleier, Kirby Yates, Tyler Webb, Blake Parker, or Johnny Barbato.

Next: Three Under-the-Radar Free Agent Upgrades for the Yankees

So what do you think Yankees fans? Did we get fleeced or would you make this move. Honestly, the return seems a little light for Gardner, but given how little interest New York has gotten on him since last winter, his value might be lower than most fans think.