2 and 1. Frankie Montas/Sean Manaea
Now, Yankees, listen closely here. You should absolutely trade for either Frankie Montas or Sean Manaea, two of the final pieces on the A’s Yard Sale table.
You should not finally deploy your entire pile of assets in either of these deals, overpaying in prospect capital just because everybody made fun of you for not doing so earlier.
Montas, after all, has ace upside and flop downside, striking out 207 men in 187 innings last year after a 5.60 ERA implosion in 2020 with a PED suspension mixed in (80 games back in 2019). Manaea’s metrics from 2021 were all over the place, and he might just be a reliable No. 4 in a more fire-breathing package.
Either would help the Yankees on some days and drastically hurt them on others. We’d applaud both acquisitions, but wouldn’t sacrifice more than a single top-five prospect in a Montas deal, and wouldn’t even want to dip into that area for Manaea — and the competition here is very high.
The frustrating thing about this Yankees offseason is just how easily it’s taught us all to examine all the warts on potential acquisitions before they’re made, from Carlos Correa to Trevor Story to the Oakland pitching duo. Trying to implore the Yankees to use their monetary advantage in free agency rather than their prospect supply on the trade market could alleviate some of this risk, but still … when the team lets past bad decisions block future moves, that’s not so easy either.
If you ask us? The solution to the German Problem isn’t in the building right now, and probably the best-case scenario is adding one of these Athletics. But don’t overpay just to do it.