The Yankees, if 2017 means anything to them, and it doesn’t necessarily have to, need to orchestrate the trade looming in the background for several months that will virtually ensure them of a spot in the Playoffs this year.
The Yankees have been dabbling and tinkering with their unstable and unflattering starting rotation for months now. With the season opener a week away, it should be clear to the organization that this Yankees team isn’t going anywhere with the one they currently have.
In and of itself, that’s not necessarily a problem if the Yankees have decided to pretty much write 2017 off with an eye towards next season when all elements of the brewing pot will gel. Fans, myself included, will yell and scream but then settle down to enjoy a season with what we have with the likes of Gary Sanchez and Greg Bird pounding the ball.
If the 2017 season means anything to the organization, Jose Quintana has to be a New York Yankee
But if the team is serious about this year, the only real alternative to what they have is to go out there aggressively in grabbing a true number two starter behind Masahiro Tanaka. And bless his heart, despite the fact that Joe Girardi has handed him the start in the second game of the season, CC Sabathia is not the answer.
The answer is sitting in Chicago where the White Sox have thrown their bait in the water in the name of Jose Quintana.
The White Sox are apparently shopping Quintana as a blue-chip starter for some time now, but no team, including the Yankees, has taken the bait even for a bite, at least publicly. The price is high, but that’s what you’d expect for a talent who’s already been designated to open the season for the Central Division White Sox.
For the Yankees, the choice is to either deal with their hodgepodge olio mix of starters for one season or go all-in at the cost of giving up some of the prospects they’ve assembled since last July when Brian Cashman completely remade the organization.
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Granted, it’s not an easy decision for any team to make, although the Red Sox went all-in on Chris Sale and were criticized for the level of talent they surrendered to get him. But, look where they sit now.
Yankees fans, on the whole, would surrender this season for next year. But that is predicated on Cashman and the Yankees saying that’s, in fact, what they are doing. But because of ticket sales and all that, it’s not likely they are willing to concede the season in that manner.
Still, the Yankees are one of the few teams who can meet Chicago’s price and still (more than) survive for the next day.
From here, you only get into the question of which prospects the Yankees can and should surrender for Quintana. Who’s untouchable and who’s not? But, that’s a question best left for the baseball people in the organization to figure out.
Brian Cashman has proved himself to be more than capable when it comes to wheeling and dealing in trades, as witnessed by the very players he has acquired and will now be talking about discarding to acquire Quintana.
Place your bets wherever you want to. Does Jake Arrieta sound better at the end of this season as a free agent signee? Maybe. But it all depends on where you stand for this season. Or, perhaps you see Jordan Montgomery stepping in and later James Kaprielian to fill the void.
For the second time in three months, the Yankees are reportedly in pursuit of starting pitcher, Jose Quintana. Just do it and be done with it.
But if your focus is on 2017, the only real option in the march to the 2017 Playoffs rests in Quintana, regardless of the cost.