Yankees: Could they ever pull off a trade for Nolan Arenado?


According to reports, it seems inevitable that Nolan Arenado is going to be traded. Any team in baseball would love to have him, but there aren’t many teams that have the pieces to potentially get a deal done. The Yankees are one of the teams that might have enough, but would they ever make an offer for the superstar third baseman?

The Yankees roster is more than good enough to contend for a championship heading into Spring Training, but after the relationship between Arenado and the Rockies front office recently soured, New York could emerge as a landing spot for the five-time All-Star.

Earlier this month reports surfaced that Colorado was looking to trade Arenado, but they were unable to find the right deal and the possibility of any trade happening fell off the table. Arenado, of course, was well aware of all the rumors surrounding him and last week he addressed how disrespected he felt by the Rockies front office for trying to deal him.

Now there’s a growing sense that his time in Colorado is running out despite signing an eight-year, $260M extension with the club before last season. Arenado has the ability to opt-out after the 2021 season and it sure doesn’t look like he’s going to opt-in and remain with the club instead of entering free agency at the age of 30.

Arenado wants to win and after appearing in the playoffs the previous two seasons the Rockies were awful last year finishing the season 71-91. Along with the San Francisco Giants, they’re the clear weak links in the NL West and neither club is close to contending anytime. That’s why it makes a ton of sense for Arenado to waive his no-trade clause and go to a team that has a chance to contend.

When that might happen remains to be seen, but his departure from the Rockies is coming. It might be this spring or before this year’s trade deadline or it might be next offseason. Regardless, I think everyone around the game expects he’ll be gone before he can decide whether or not he’ll opt-out of his deal after the 2021 season. Now the question is where will he land?

There is no doubt a trade for Arenado would make the Yankees even bigger World Series favorites than they already are, but is it a realistic possibility or just a pipe dream? Jim Bowden of The Athletic released an article on Monday that listed the Yanks as one of the eight teams who are most likely to make a deal and the package he proposed to offer for Arenado is a lot, but also fair.

Bowden proposed the Yankees could offer both Gio Urshela and Miguel Andujar who are one and two on their third base depth chart entering Spring Training. He also included top pitching prospect Deivi Garcia and outfielder Clint Frazier.

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Frazier is the most expendable of the four names and trading him wouldn’t sting all that much considering there’s not really a spot for him to earn consistent playing on the current roster. Garcia is expected to make his big league debut at some point this season, but you have to pay a big price to get a player of Arenado’s caliber and he’s one of the top pitching prospects in the system.

Trading either Miggy or Gio in addition to those two wouldn’t be that big of a blow either when the return is arguably the best third baseman in all of baseball. However, I don’t think trading both of them for Arenado is worth it when you look at how it would impact their depth across the 26-man roster and how much his contract would raise their payroll for years to come.

Neither Andujar or Gio will come even close to making the amount of money Arenado is set to make in 2020. Gio is only making $2.475M this season and Miggy isn’t even arbitration-eligible yet. Someday they both might cash in on a huge contract and earn $20M a season, but that’s down the road. Both players have proven that they’re capable of playing at an All-Star level in their young careers so trading them to acquire a player who makes over $30M a season more than them doesn’t make much sense from a financial standpoint at all.

Arenado to the Yankees would shock the baseball world the same way it did when New York acquired Giancarlo Stanton before the 2018 season. However, like Stanton, he has the full no-trade clause and is owed a boatload of money over the course of the next seven years.

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For that reason alone I have a hard time seeing the Yankees pursuing Arenado, along with the fact that they already have two outstanding options to be their starting third baseman.