Yankees Rumors: Latest on Brian McCann Trade Talks
The Yanks Go Yard team brings you the latest trade rumors regarding ousted New York Yankees veteran catcher Brian McCann.
While it is far from a certainty that they go through with it, the New York Yankees are expected to take offers on their former starting catcher Brian McCann this winter, and the rumor mill is already beginning to heat up about potential suitors.
Buster Olney of ESPN has previously listed the Braves, Astros, Rockies, Nationals, Mariners, and Angels as speculative fits for McCann, and cited MLB sources who believe it is “far more likely” the team trades him this winter than retains him.
George King of the New York Post adds another possible suitor for McCann to the mix, the New York Mets. While deals between the two rival clubs are rare, the Amazin’s have a clear need. As King puts it, “After watching Travis d’Arnaud struggle this past year, the Mets should at least check with the Yankees about McCann.”
The 27-year-old d’Arnaud hit .247/.307/.323 (69 OPS+) in 276 plate appearances for New York and was below replacement level on the year (-0.8 WAR) according to Baseball-Reference. It is worth remembering though that he’s just one year removed from being a solid starting option with a 126 OPS+ and 1.7 WAR.
The clear favorite for McCann’s services this winter if a deal does go down remains the Atlanta Braves, however. The two clubs held extensive talks in the days leading up to the August 1st trade deadline.
McCann will have considerable say over where he ends up because of his full no trade clause, and Atlanta could be his preferred landing spot because it is where he still maintains his offseason home after spending the first nine years of his MLB career as a Brave.
Previous rumors suggested that the Yankees had pursued Ender Inciarte and Mike Foltynewicz at the deadline, while Atlanta was not willing to part with top talent for the veteran catcher. King confirms that New York’s “fondness” for Foltynewicz “likely killed more serious talks.”
While Inciarte and Folty is clearly too steep a price for McCann, a one-for-one swap isn’t too far off in my view, especially if the Yankees eat some of the $34 million remaining on the catcher’s deal to facilitate the swap.
The 25-year-old Foltynewicz is far from a sure thing to even stick in the rotation long term, pitching to a 4.92 ERA and 4.60 FIP in 228.2 career MLB innings. He was a roughly league-average starter this season with a 4.31 ERA (96 ERA+) and 4.26 FIP in 123.1 IP.
Foltynewicz does have some prospect cred. He was ranked 59th in Baseball America’s Top 100 before the 2014 season and 54th on MLB.com’s list that same year. He fell out of BA’s rankings for 2015, but still managed to grab the #78 spot from Jim Callis and MLB Pipeline.
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The Yankees are not going to get an ace in return for McCann, but a young, controllable starter with mid-rotation upside seems reasonable if they are willing to absorb about half his remaining salary.