The New York Yankees have run through the league after a 7-6 start in 2022 (can you believe that really happened?), but that doesn’t mean the work is done. Any fan knows the weak spots by now, but to put it simply, every time you’re left calculating the bullpen workload chart, only to realize Clay Holmes/Michael King won’t be available, that should trigger a response.
Every time an at-bat by a certain player finishes meekly and you say to yourself, “Well, that’s going to be fun in October,” that should trigger a response.
And every time you realize just how low Nestor Cortes’ career high in innings pitched really is, and just how little Luis Severino’s thrown since 2018, that should most definitely trigger a response. Domingo German might actually (gulp) help here.
The Yankees have been historically great, but they’ll need insurance down the stretch at the very least, and they’ll probably need two more reliable bullpen arms to ensure that, no matter the preceding workload, they’ll be able to compete in pressure situations. To fill those holes, why not give a call to some old friends? After all, they already did it with Albert Abreu earlier in the week. It’s in their nature.
In terms of filling out the lineup and diminishing Joey Gallo’s opportunities come October, the Yankees should probably go outside the organization’s past and target left-handed outfielders like Andrew Benintendi of the Royals and Ian Happ of the Cubs. Brandon Drury, a current Red and former Yankees infielder, is having an All-Star-caliber year, but would be an awkward midseason outfield conversion. No, thanks.
If the Yankees are pursuing Happ, though, they might want to just add his current teammate to the package…
3 former Yankees NYY should reunite with at trade deadline
3. David Robertson, Chicago Cubs
Old friend David Robertson will have to overcome two things if he’d like to return to the Yankees: a surprisingly high trade cost, after he rehabilitated his value over the past year, as well as a strange debacle that followed him out the door in 2018 where he came to be blamed for denying certain employees playoff shares.
If bygones are bygones — and Robertson claims the issue was the Yankees’ fault — he’d be an excellent fit for the Miguel Castro innings in the Yanks’ postseason ‘pen.
D-Rob’s intangibles speak for themselves, but his tangibles have also been remarkable in 2022 at the age of 37. Through 23 games and 25.2 innings pitched, he holds a 1.75 ERA and 1.013 WHIP, striking out 35. Robertson’s FIP lags slightly (3.05), but … you know D-Rob. He’s often going to make things interesting and crowd the bases, but he’s just as often going to clean up his own mess. Yes, you can Houdini yourself.
A Robertson acquisition will be costly, which is why the Yankees should probably double up and try for Happ in this case, too. Their recent trade history with the Cubs in the Anthony Rizzo deal proves that Chicago can be enticed to eat cost by the inclusion of a slightly-elevated prospect package. Odds are Brian Cashman will try the same methods again this summer.