The Yankees would’ve had to pay a steep return for Mike Clevinger or Lance Lynn.
The New York Yankees came up empty-handed when the clock struck 4 p.m. on Monday, which signaled the end of the MLB trade deadline. Despite the injuries currently eating the Bombers’ roster alive, general manager Brian Cashman was unable to find a deal that suited the club well.
Could there have been smaller moves made? Sure. We went through some of those on Monday. However, a blockbuster deal was unlikely heading into Monday, and details that have reportedly emerged from various trade talks further proved that sentiment when the dust settled.
According to SNY’s Andy Martino, both the Cleveland Indians AND Texas Rangers, both of whom the Yankees were in talks with regarding Mike Clevinger and Lance Lynn, wanted two of Clint Frazier, Deivi Garcia and Clarke Schmidt in exchange for their star pitchers. That got a big “NO” from Cashman and Co., and rightfully so.
First of all, we all knew the Yankees were not going to give up a haul for Lynn. The team had just acquired him in 2018 in exchange for Tyler Austin and Luis Rijo. Lynn was OK in New York and didn’t like it there. Why in the world would the team give up two impact players for him now? Simply not going to happen. Maybe if he had a different name.
As for Clevinger, the situation was a bit different, but not really. This was another guy the Yankees were probably never going to acquire, but were required to conduct their due diligence on the situation. After all, he has the second-best ERA in MLB since 2017, with Justin Verlander the only pitcher ahead of him.
The problem with Clevinger was that — regardless of what the Indians said — he was being driven out of Cleveland because he disobeyed safety protocols during that night in Chicago with fellow pitcher Zach Plesac, which made headlines and resulted in the two getting optioned to the team’s alternate site after the players came out against their return to the roster.
Not only that, but Clevinger has two years of arbitration remaining, and his salary is expected to see massive hikes in 2021 and 2022 given his performance over the years. That’s how the system works, but that’s another reason why the Yankees weren’t willing to make the deal. Trading away young, controllable players for a pricey regular season arm with a lack of postseason experience. Not going to fly either.
Here’s some more from Martino:
“For the Yankees to get Clevinger or Lynn, the price did not fall from those heavy asks. With so many injuries to the outfield and pitching staff, the Yankees couldn’t afford to part with Frazier and Garcia in particular. Cashman has been reluctant before to trade both of those players, but that was when they were prospects and their main appeal was upside and team control.”
Then again, you can’t hang on to your young players and prospects forever. The Yankees need another reliable starter behind Gerrit Cole, but it seems overtures weren’t made on that front.
Clevinger and Lynn didn’t fit the bill for what the Yankees really needed and the price was wrong. That’s why neither one of these guys is in New York right now.