Which pitchers can be dangled for lineup help?
While major league teams can never have enough pitching, the Yankees' biggest need this offseason is an impact bat(s). There are a few options out there on the free agent market, but the most intriguing ones seem to be those waiting to be traded.
Considering how much upper minors pitching depth the Yankees have on their hands, it seems that it would be the optimal place to trade from. The question is, which arms will potential trade partners be interested in?
The rumors so far this offseason have the Yankees interested in Juan Soto, Brendan Donovan and/or Alec Burleson from the Cardinals, and Manuel Margot from the Rays. Considering the lack of control and the $12 million guaranteed to Margot, he likely wouldn't cost one of the Yankees' top arms.
But if the Yankees go after Soto, they'll need to pay up. Not only would they be trading for arguably the most valuable asset on the market, but they'll be dealing with Padres GM AJ Preller, who is no slouch in evaluating talent.
With Michael Wacha, Seth Lugo, and Nick Martinez all opting out of their deals in San Diego, the Padres would likely be interested in someone like Schmidt, who could instantly slot in in the middle of their rotation and provide at least 150 innings.
If the Yankees decide to deal with the Cardinals instead, they could find themselves parting ways with some of their more controllable talent, such as Warren, Beeter, and/or Vásquez. The Cardinals are in more of a rebuild mode, so they might be inclined to take on major-league-ready pitchers who have yet to debut.
Of course, if the Yankees trade from their depth, they'll likely have to add some proven veteran talent. Perhaps Frankie Montas is brought back on a prove-it deal. Maybe they turn to a veteran like Wacha to fill those innings. The number of paths the front office could take is what creates intrigue, but they need to get it right.