After a silent deadline, Brian Cashman characterized the 2023 Yankees as "cautious buyers" as the Gray Area Kings met their natural midpoint at the end of July. Just out of the Wild Card, technically, while the offense flounders? We get it. If you want to add some rentals, you can go and add rentals. We wouldn't, but ... that would at least have been a defined take.
Unfortunately, Cashman's caution resulted in the Yankees failing to buy anything to help their beleaguered lineup.
Unfortunately again for Cashman, several rumored Yankees targets -- as well as potential helpful additions -- were traded. The people know the prices! They're no longer hidden. And if Cash and Co. really weren't comfortable paying the cost for players like Randal Grichuk and Tommy Pham, will they be comfortable making a trade ... ever again?
Grichuk, paired with first baseman CJ Cron, went to the Angels in exchange for two pitchers -- one of whom, Mason Albright, now ranks 21st in MLB Pipeline's Rockies Top 30 prospects list. The Rockies, for reference, have a middling farm system, especially in the pitching ranks, where they just lost a whole fleet of arms to Tommy John at the exact same time. In order to acquire Grichuk, it seems likely the Yankees would've had to surrender a pitcher like, say, Juan Carela, who went to Chicago in exchange for Keynan Middleton.
And Pham? The Yankees could've topped teenage shortstop Jeremy Rodriguez, who wasn't in Arizona's Top 30 at the time of the deal. They could've made either of these moves. They didn't want to.
Yankees could've paid for Tommy Pham and still been "cautious." Sorry!
Talk about the "Yankees Tax" in trade talks all you want -- and we certainly do! The Rockies' ask for Grichuk couldn't have been so egregious as to turn Cashman off, considering their final haul. According to Jon Heyman, the Yankees never engaged the Rockies on Grichuk. That would make sense. If they had, maybe they'd have been told the price, which we all now know was pretty easily stomached.
Don't want to add rental outfielders? We get it; we don't love this team, either. Don't want to add salary? We get it! This isn't a strong, complete, balanced roster. If you want to shuck money off to add money, that'd be alright.
But you didn't. You "cautioned" your way out of making moves to supplement the roster you purport to believe in. You will now pay through the top luxury tax tier to support this bloated mess. Don't lie to the masses about being scared off by prices. We know the prices! The prices bring the same fear factor as a bowl full of peeled grape eyeballs.
Don't pee on our heads and tell us it's too rainy to trade for Tommy Pham. It's public information. Next time you want to lie, make sure the assets you're discussing stay dormant so we can't suss you out 24 hours later.