Yankees: Remembering Brian Cashman’s Best Trades on His Birthday
By Adam Weinrib
2. The David Justice Trade
David Justice arriving in New York sealed the Yankees 2000 World Series bid.
Cashman had to do some rare heavy lifting in 2000. Coming off back-to-back World Series titles, nothing in the Bronx looked the same as the millennium turned, except the names in the lineup card. This offense needed a wake-up call, big time.
Faced with the availability of a few big names (yes, Cashman considered Sammy Sosa), the Yanks ultimately pulled the trigger on former Braves and Indians rival David Justice, and he did not disappoint. It cost Ricky Ledee, Jake Westbrook, and Zach Day.
In 78 games, Justice triple-slashed .305/.391/.585 in the Bronx, rocking 20 homers and 60 RBI. And when the lights shone brightest, he punched New York’s ticket (token?) to the Subway Series, ruining Arthur Rhodes’ life in Game 6 of the ALCS.
He returned to the Boogie Down in 2001, but the magic was gone, and Justice retired after the 2002 season in Oakland.
But he’ll forever be the missing piece to a three-peat, whom Cashman uncovered when confronted with a number of options. Perfect fit.