Yankees: 3 fan favorites who could be traded by Opening Day

1 of 3

The Yankees could still say goodbye to some fan favorites before Opening Day.

If the New York Yankees are going to make additions to their rotation and fortifications to their roster this offseason, there’s a good chance they’ll come from the trade market.

And yes, they’ll quite likely have to give from the back end of the rotation to get more proven arms.

Things have been slow thus far, and you can be assured the Yankees will attempt, first, to conceive of trade options that keep familiar names out of the conversation. In a slow offseason unlike any other — though one in which they’re still subjected to the “Yankees Tax” of an automatic higher cost — the team will have to be extremely creative to do so.

Yes, as per usual, MLB teams will ask for the moon from the Yanks for marginal upgrades. And, at a certain point, Brian Cashman will have to be more proactive than reactive to improve this roster, and will likely start really churning after DJ LeMahieu makes his DJ-cision.

These three fan favorites should be a part of the future for 2021 and beyond, but will all find themselves included in trade conversations, to varying degrees, over the next two months.

Deivi Garcia #83 of the New York Yankees prepares for a game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium on September 15, 2020 in New York City. The Yankees defeated the Blue Jays 20-6. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

3. Deivi Garcia

Deivi Garcia is probably the Yankees pitcher most likely to be traded.

If you watched Deivi Garcia’s 2020 season and experienced the poise he brought to the mound — repeatedly in key games against the Toronto/Buffalo Blue Jays — you walked away very impressed with the way he was able to command a fringe fastball.

The surface numbers don’t tell the same story, though; Garcia’s 4.98 ERA, tainted by a tough outing at Fenway Park in Boston, won’t blow anyone away. The Yankees are now counting on his production in 2021 instead of accepting it as a nice bonus, though, which is an issue for the team’s rotation depth.

Garcia and Clarke Schmidt remain the Yankees’ top two pitching prospects, but the team might be too confident in both men delivering 150+ effective innings in 2021, and should likely dip into the trade market in an attempt to insure against either man’s semi-inevitable backslide (and obvious innings ceiling).

Therein lies the problem, though. Any trade for a pitcher above Joe Musgrove’s level will include Garcia, and he’s a surety to be included in any blockbuster trade — say, for Francisco Lindor.

Watch this space in the coming weeks. The Yankees’ goal should be to add a No. 2 or No. 3 starter without sacrificing Garcia, keeping him as needed depth. But teams are going to come to the bargaining table asking for the moon, plus a future moon.