1. Zack Wheeler to the Yankees
Go ahead and grab a pillow. Scream in it, Yankees fans. Actually, rip it open with a knife and eat the feathers. Because this trade was actually the closest to coming to fruition. In fact, it was agreed upon in 2019 until … it felt through because of “medical concerns” regarding another player in the deal. We don’t know who it was.
The Mets hung onto Wheeler for the remainder of his contract year, missed the playoffs by three games, and saw him sign a big time pact with the rival Phillies after the season. Now he’s one of the best pitchers in baseball (2.49 ERA and 1.05 WHIP in 27 starts since 2020).
Just imagine how this could’ve altered the course of Yankees’ history. That 2019 ALCS against the Astros would’ve been completely different had they possessed another capable arm to throw at Houston. If he did well, there’s no question New York would’ve figured out a way to fit him and Gerrit Cole in the rotation. Actually, ha, just kidding! They probably wouldn’t have! But let’s pretend they did.
Cole and Wheeler as a 1-2 punch? The Yankees could’ve avoided all the nonsensical heavy lifting they’ve done the past two years like … signing Corey Kluber, trading for Jameson Taillon, hanging onto Domingo German despite domestic violence allegations only to watch him not validate their decision, and whatever other wrong decisions they made. They could’ve coped with the Luis Severino and James Paxton injuries … at least a lot better than they have.
Instead? We’re wondering who the player was that stopped this trade from going through.