Yankees Rumors: Interest shown in free agent pitcher Dallas Keuchel

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 08: Dallas Keuchel #60 of the Houston Astros celebrates in the clubhouse after defeating the Cleveland Indians 11-3 in Game Three of the American League Division Series to advance to the American League Championship Series at Progressive Field on October 8, 2018 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 08: Dallas Keuchel #60 of the Houston Astros celebrates in the clubhouse after defeating the Cleveland Indians 11-3 in Game Three of the American League Division Series to advance to the American League Championship Series at Progressive Field on October 8, 2018 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /
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Somehow, Dallas Keuchel is still a free agent as we enter the second month of the season. However, reports state the Yankees could be interested in signing the former AL Cy Young winner if he is still unemployed following the MLB Draft.

The 2019 MLB Draft goes from June 3-5. And according to Jon Heyman of the MLB Network, should 2015 AL Cy Young winner Dallas Keuchel still be without a team, the Yankees could make him an offer he can’t refuse.

Why wait until the conclusion of the draft, you ask?

Because once the best amateur players from the US and Canada are drafted, Keuchel’s one-year, $17.9 qualifying offer is no longer valid (which he turned down) — meaning the Yanks wouldn’t be forced to relinquish a compensatory pick to the Astros.

Heyman broke down his speculation while appearing on the Radio.com podcast, “Big Time Baseball.”

"“I do think that the Yankees are a team that once that draft pick is gone — and I’m speculating to some degree here but not completely — the Yankees are a team that would be interested in Keuchel if they did not have to give up that No. 38 pick overall. The Yankees like their picks, they’ve done great with their picks.”“Dallas Keuchel seems to be flexible in terms of the years. He seems to be OK with a one-year deal if it’s at the right number. I think he was looking to replicate that qualifying offer which was $17.9 million.”"

Accepting a one-year deal wasn’t always Keuchel’s iota. If you remember back to the beginning of last offseason, he and his super-agent Scott Boras were hoping for a five-year, $100 million deal.

However, with that pipedream shattered, it would appear that Keuchel is willing to take a much shorter deal that gets him close to what he turned initially down from Houston.

Still just 31, Keuchel is coming off a season in which he went 12-11 with a 3.74 ERA, 1.314 WHIP and 153:58 K:BB ratio across 204.2 innings.

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Although James Paxton looks every bit the ace the Yanks believed they were acquiring from Seattle last winter, and J.A. Happ appears to have turned a corner in terms of his consistency, Masahiro Tanaka has struggled significantly in each of his past two starts.

Expected to be without Luis Severino until possibly the All-Star break, and Jordan Montgomery until August, the Yankees are currently pinning their hopes on the stellar but still unproven Domingo German, and a fragile 38-year C.C. Sabathia.

If Keuchel hasn’t be scooped up by another interested club by June 5 (Braves, Phillies, Indians and Padres), the Yanks would be wise to pay Keuchel what he’s worth for the remainder of the season, especially when you factor in his past Postseason success.

Next. Yankees definitely fast-tracking prospect Deivi Garcia. dark

After all, the playoffs are precisely where the Bombers expect to find themselves, right? And let’s not forget, it was just this past November that Keuchel admitted to Fox Business that he’d happily shave off his beard to pitch in pinstripes.