Most New York Yankees fans have a pulse on what’s going on and have a good idea what general manager Brian Cashman might do at this year’s trade deadline.
Joey Gallo needs to go while being replaced with another, more productive corner outfielder (but is Matt Carpenter that guy?!). The pitching staff needs help, with both starters and relievers. The rotation is getting tired, while the bullpen is a bit injured and fairly unreliable outside of the top three (?) options.
The one problem here is that everyone will be looking for those pieces. There’s already reportedly a robust market for Andrew Benintendi, and there will be one for Joc Pederson if he becomes available. The competition already exists three weeks out.
Then you have the price for pitching in general, which is always escalated. Every team needs pitching, especially if you’re looking to build a deep staff for October. With the Yankees’ rotation starting to regress a bit, their needs may have escalated on that front.
Or did they? Because MLB Network’s Jon Morosi confused fans a bit with his analysis this week in regard to the Yankees’ trade deadline focus.
A center fielder? Well, now, maybe with the injury to Aaron Hicks, but this report came before that happened. Is the Yankees’ top priority really “preserving” Judge down the stretch? That seems fairly off topic.
Jon Morosi thinks the Yankees will be focusing on CF at the trade deadline
This could be smoke, as is the case when we get closer to the deadline, but this also isn’t out of nowhere. A report dropped earlier in the week suggesting the Yankees were interested in Royals outfielder Michael A. Taylor, who won a Gold Glove last season and has continued his impressive stretch of play on that side of the ball.
That doesn’t make this any less confusing, though. If the Yankees want to amend their outfield situation to keep Judge from constantly roaming in center field, that’s fair. But for that to be their main deadline focus seems like the wrong idea, since Judge has been excelling in center and has paved the way for more Giancarlo Stanton reps in the outfield.
Also, not to be overly controversial, but are we sure Taylor is a better option than the speedy Tim Locastro, who’s just hanging out in Triple-A right now? Do the Yankees really need to clear roster space with an additional, seemingly unnecessary move when Locastro provides a similarly mediocre/below-average bat but superior speed, especially on the basepaths?
And is there a real reason Judge needs to move away from center field? Stanton is more comfortable in right (as is Gallo) and guys like Carpenter and Marwin Gonzalez clearly have the capability to play a solid left field (Hicks, too, assuming he’s OK).
Center field can be part of the overall deadline focus. The main focus? Please, no.