Ranking Yankees’ rumored trade targets ahead of Aug. 2 deadline

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We’re just over a week away from the Aug. 2 trade deadline and the New York Yankees are expected to be among the most active teams in MLB.

Though they boast the best record in the sport, the roster still needs help in the form of pitching (of all kinds) and outfielders. The trade for Tyler Wade likely fortified the infield situation, but with Joey Gallo likely to be dealt and Aaron Hicks still a bit of a question mark despite his surge over the last few weeks, general manager Brian Cashman will be looking for a more reliable option.

A lot of names have been connected to the Yankees thus far, whether it be through actual reports, loose rumors, general speculation from insiders, or the usual firestarters from Yankees Twitter. For the most part, though, the selection here is filled with mostly realistic and sensible players who will likely be on the move and fit fairly seamlessly on this current Yankees roster.

And there will be others! Cashman always surprises fans with under-the-radar acquisitions that end up producing (Clay Holmes and Wandy Peralta are recent examples). This time, however, with the Yankees owning the best record in the league and possessing a legitimate a shot as ever to win a World Series, some uncharacteristic aggression might be necessary.

Who’s on the fans’ wish list? Who’s Cashman likely keeping his eyes on? Who would put this roster over the top?

Ranking the rumored Yankees’ trade targets ahead of the Aug. 2 deadline

Michael A. Taylor #2 is congratulated by Andrew Benintendi #16 of the Kansas City Royals (Photo by Joe Puetz/Getty Images)
Michael A. Taylor #2 is congratulated by Andrew Benintendi #16 of the Kansas City Royals (Photo by Joe Puetz/Getty Images) /

7. Andrew Benintendi/Michael A. Taylor

This is merely an honorable mention, because neither move is likely to happen after it was revealed last week that Andrew Benintendi and Michael A. Taylor aren’t vaccinated. They were left off the Kansas City Royals’ roster when the team traveled to Toronto for a series against the Blue Jays. Tale as old as time (2022).

Initially, the Yankees were publicly connected to both, with Benintendi emerging as a replacement for Gallo and/or Taylor being targeted as an elite defensive replacement in center field to keep Aaron Judge in right and move Aaron Hicks to left more often.

But now the Yankees are believed to have backed off these discussions with the Royals because there’s a chance they might face Toronto in the playoffs (and have three games there still from Sept. 26-28 that could determine playoff seeding).

Unless the vaccine status changes — hey, fellow Royal Whit Merrifield said he’d get vaccinated if he got traded to a contender that required it! — don’t count on this scenario moving any further ahead.