We’ve already seen some notable movement on the trade market, but unsurprisingly, the New York Yankees have underwhelmed with their acquisition of Pittsburgh Pirates reliever Clay Holmes … who has just 91 games under his belt and no minor league options remaining.
Meanwhile, the Padres have already swiped Adam Frazier from Pittsburgh, the A’s bolstered their bullpen by adding Andrew Chafin in a deal with the Cubs, the Rays brought in Nelson Cruz from the Twins, and the Braves got the party started early by acquiring Joc Pederson from the Cubs.
Every year, the trade deadline seems grim for the Yankees. General manager Brian Cashman either does nothing or simply not enough.
But in a year in which the Yankees are supposed to be World Series contenders but continue to underwhelm, will Cashman finally let his guard down and make the (likely) multiple blockbuster moves this team needs to succeed in 2021 and 2022 before their window slams shut?
It appears Cashman is at least exploring that path in the days leading up to Friday’s 4 p.m. ET deadline. Reports are suggesting the Yankees have made an offer for Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story.
So what should fans make of this buzz?
The Yankees are reportedly in buy mode after making an offer for Trevor Story.
At the very least, we can assume Cashman will be looking to make serious upgrades in an attempt to salvage the season. After all, New York is just 3.5 games out (and only two in the loss column) of a Wild Card spot. All hope isn’t lost, and you’d much rather prefer a division title, but we really can’t ask for that, especially how the first four months of the season have gone.
Now, specifically, what does the team’s interest in Story tell us? Well, it could mean a few things.
There’s been talk about the Bombers potentially using him in center field despite the fact he’s a natural shortstop. He’s never played a game in the outfield across his six-year career.
But that fits right into the Yankees’ 2021 narrative. How many guys are playing out of position or have played out of position? DJ LeMahieu is ping-ponging around the infield. Clint Frazier and Miguel Andújar manned the corner spots of the outfield for most of the year before going down with injuries/ailments. Aaron Judge has played some center field. It’s largely been a mess.
The Yankees’ biggest need is arguably a center fielder/left-handed bat, but if an impact player like Story, who hits from the right side of the plate, can handle duties on the defensive side, then it’s hard to argue with that.
Another possible option? Reconfiguring the infield. Could be bold. But let’s hope Story is OK after getting hit on the hand on Monday night.
So what would happen here? You’re looking at Gio Urshela at third base, Story at shortstop, Gleyber Torres back at second base, and DJ LeMahieu at first base. You’d be hard-pressed to find a Yankees fan that trusts Luke Voit to stay healthy this year, so maybe he’s traded or used as a platoon DH/first baseman as long as Giancarlo Stanton can finally play some outfield. That would help a ton with lineup flexibility.
But that might not work. As we said, Voit’s latest knee issue could spell the beginning of the end of his time in New York.
What else? Kiss Frazier goodbye. Probably Andújar too. Greg Allen, Estevan Florial and Ryan LaMarre have already made those guys expendable, and the addition of Story will likely make that official.
Stressful, we know. But the Yankees need a facelift in whatever manner possible. Story offers a few different options, so it’s clear there are a multitude of scenarios under consideration. According to the latest buzz, none of the offers are overwhelming, but mostly include the type of 40-man-roster-decision capital Brian Cashman is comfortable surrendering. Take it or leave it if you’re Colorado.