The Yankees are going to be in the market for controllable pitching again this offseason.
The Yankees — and stop me if you’ve heard this one before — still need young-ish pitching that’ll be under control for multiple seasons.
It’s seemed, for the past few years, that Brian Cashman’s efforts have been foiled mainly by changing circumstances here.
Cash went most famously for Gerrit Cole, who had two years left before free agency, but the Pirates chose Houston’s inferior offer, the Astros never won a ring with Cole, and the whole thing has now reached its rightful (though more costly) conclusion. Other targets like Luis Castillo of Cincinnati … well, they got too good, and their teams started to contend. Weird, but it happens sometime.
So, who’s still on the table, for the right price? The Yanks may be able to pry these three pitchers loose this offseason.
3. Matthew Boyd, Tigers
The Yankees will forever and always be pursuing Matthew Boyd.
Finally, the time may be right for the Yankees to pounce on Matthew Boyd — though, of course, the rest of the league will be thinking the exact same way.
Boyd, armed with a wipeout slider, emerged as a prime target at last year’s deadline, but was overvalued by his own GM. Yes, the Yankees (and other contenders, like the Astros) wanted him. No, they didn’t want him in exchange for Gleyber Torres.
Now, though, Boyd is suffering through an unfortunate 2020, marred by a 9.64 ERA through his first five starts. This hasn’t zapped his value, but it’s likely instilled a few regrets in the mind of Al Avila, who could’ve jettisoned him for much more value last summer.
Prospects like Casey Mize and Tarik Skubal have already shoved their feet through the door and cracked the rotation, and Matt Manning isn’t far behind. Boyd is only the de facto ace, and will not be involved in the next great era of Tigers baseball.
This is the offseason he’ll move, and he’ll still bring his elite slider and strikeout tool with him. Cashman should be ready to strike, likely with two top-15 prospects.