3 former Yankees players who would solve team's problems right now
By Adam Weinrib
Sonny Gray (After Getting 'Men in Black' Wiped)
OK, presuming Sonny Gray was willing to completely forget his previous career with the Yankees and get his brain chemistry altered in order to start anew with a clean slate, he'd be a pretty enjoyable fit right about now!
And, after all, isn't this a completely different scenario? It's not terribly far-fetched. Sure, Aaron Boone is still here (???). Brian Cashman is still here (???????). But Larry Rothschild and the Yankees' Dinosaur Pitching Program (DPP) are long gone. Nobody's viewing Gray as a generic right-hander who should be thriving with high fastballs, despite his preference for the low two-seamer (we hope).
In 2017-18, the Yankees were confused by modern pitching technology, but even Gray admitted this week that only the Astros seemed to know the secrets back then. The Matt Blake-era Yankees have definitely caught up, though they still seem to prioritize sweeper/changeup. With a pitcher as talented as Gray, you'd assume they would've found common ground.
Best of all, when Carlos Rodón and Luis Severino come back, Gray could live the pressure-free Yankees existence he always craved, slotting in as the team's No. 4 starter. Nestor Cortes Jr. in the fifth spot! It's all happening, the way Cashman intended when he added Rodón to Frankie Montas! This dream world is better than reality.
In real life, Gray and his AL-leading 0.77 ERA would never come back here, and the fans would never have him back. But, in any scheme to steal former Yankees from across the league, he clearly merits a top-three draft pick.