Brian Cashman’s approach to 2021 Yankees is already uninspiring
Yankees GM Brian Cashman is being a little bit too calm.
Brian Cashman has one of the toughest jobs in sports as general manager of the New York Yankees. Expectations are constantly sky high. The pressure is always dialed up. A championship-less season almost always feels like a failure.
With that, it’s certainly understandable Cashman needs to be the cool head in the room. He’s constantly in the trenches when it concerns the roster, from minor league promotions to free agency additions to trades, so if anyone really knows the day-to-day grind, it’s him. Exercising patience to calm the masses is almost always the best approach.
But after four straight seasons of juuuust falling short at the hands of the Houston Astros, Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays, unfortunately, patience is not the prevailing approach. It’s just not. The Yankees window is here and it’s been disrupted by injuries or the one missing piece.
So if we’re being honest, we’re not thrilled to hear that “everything will be fine” if the Yankees don’t re-sign DJ LeMahieu or make a big addition to the pitching staff. It will not be fine. We’ve now learned this four years over.
"“Brian Cashman calls DJ LeMahieu ‘an important player to us,’ but if the New York Yankees general manager’s pursuit of the slugging, free-agent infielder or any upgrade to the club’s starting rotation ultimately comes up empty, the 27-time World Series champion franchise will still contend for a title next season,” writes Christian Red of Forbes.com.“’When you have (Gerrit) Cole as a headliner – one of the best starting pitchers in the game — an elite bullpen, and an elite offense that has an above-average player in almost every position? Absolutely,” said Cashman. “If you take the 30 teams that exist out there, are we in the top 10, or whatever the playoff spots happen to be?’“’I don’t think anybody would dispute that.’”"
Cole as our No. 1 starter is great, but he can’t pitch every postseason game. While fans are certainly optimistic about the future of the rotation featuring Jordan Montgomery, Deivi Garcia and Clarke Schmidt, they simply cannot carry the load as early as 2021 — or it’s at least far from a guarantee.
As for the others? Domingo German is as big a question mark as it gets and we have no idea what to expect from Luis Severino whenever he returns.
And don’t even get us started on LeMahieu. He’s been the team MVP for two years now and was the sole reason the Yankees made it to the ALCS in 2019 and remained afloat during a largely disastrous 2020. If he’s not back, then what? We end the Gleyber Torres experiment at shortstop, bring in a stopgap option for 2021, and then play the game all over again next offseason when bigger shortstops hit the open market?
Cashman has one thing right: nobody wants him to irresponsibly overspend in free agency or in a trade for the sake of addressing something. But to think the Yankees will be “fine” if they lose LeMahieu AND don’t add pitching? Well, I guess that depends on your definition of “fine.”
If “fine” is winning the AL East and getting bounced before the World Series, then yes, we will be just fine. As long as the Blue Jays don’t sign LeMahieu.