Yankees: The 2017 pieces fit. Re-assembly is not required

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

The Yankees, and it’s only May, are already starting to hear from the media about trading for this guy or that guy. By July, the din will reach a climax that overshadows anything the team is doing on the field. The pieces fit. Leave it alone.

The Yankees have put together a pretty good team for the 2017 season. And it was accomplished, not by accident but by design. Between Brian Cashman and Joe Girardi, decisions that brought about the final cuts in March and the ascension of Ronald Torreyes and Jordan Montgomery, a 25-man roster was formed that is still mostly intact.

The duo also resisted any talk that suggested the veterans on the team, like Jacoby Ellsbury, Chase Headley, and Brett Gardner was either over the hill or had lost their competitive nature. They insisted that CC Sabathia can still pitch and Luis Severino and Michael Pineda, with their upside, were ready to turn their careers around.

Cashman hasn’t been wrong yet, has he?

And in every one of these decisions, the Midas touch prevailed. Ellsbury is no longer hitting .330, but he’s batting .280, and Headley is no longer raking in the .400’s, but he’s at .270. And while they’ve fallen back, Gardner has stepped his game up and Aaron Hicks, another player Girardi would not give up on, is a one-man army as their fourth outfielder.

The only thing the Yankees didn’t plan on is what’s happened with Greg Bird. Between injuries and a mysterious loss of consciousness at the plate, Bird has opened up a hole at first base that is begging to be filled.

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Hence, the “suggestions,” for instance, that Paul Goldschmidt will soon be a Yankee via trade, leaving Bird – where? His Spring doesn’t count anymore, and the Yankees throw him out with the trash? And he no longer has this upside that everyone has seen?

Forget it, Brian Cashman and Joe Girardi have a handle on this team and any moves they make, if any, do not include giving up on Greg Bird.

There’s a reason why cliches are used so often. It’s because they tell the closest thing to the truth that we can summon. The one that applies here is the one you’re probably thinking about, If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

The Yankees will disassemble, just not yet

There will come a time when Brian Cashman will disassemble the current Yankees team, and rest assured that time will be sooner than later. But it won’t be now, and it won’t be in July. Injuries can, of course, change everything. But as long as these 25 guys stay healthy, with a small tweak here and there, big moves are not necessary, and especially ones that force giving away the farm.

The Yankees will be active in the winter when the dust from this season has settled. Alex Rodriguez and his $21 million will be off the books, as well as CC Sabathia’s $20 million. Chase Headley and Brett Gardner will be entering the final year of their contracts, and Michael Pineda will be a free agent.

So, there’s plenty of time later to be thinking about how the Yankees can spend this new found money by signing players from the Class of 2018, or by tossing money into trades with teams that need it for players that can benefit the Yankees.

Cashman’s original plan called for the Baby Bombers, and most especially the young pitchers like Chance Adams, Luis Cessa, Justus Sheffield, and before he was injured, James Kaprielian to spend the entire season in the minors learning how to transition from a thrower to a pitcher.

The plan was sound then, and it remains sound now. Next spring, it’ll be open season for these guys in the hunt for a spot in the Yankees rotation. Jake Arrieta will be a free agent if the Yankees want to go that route and Jose Quintana will still be trade bait for the White Sox.

But for now, just leave it alone. The Yankees are doing just fine, thank you.