Could Yankees finally find starter, pull off Marlins trade with new front office?

Milwaukee Brewers v Miami Marlins
Milwaukee Brewers v Miami Marlins / Rich Storry/GettyImages

The Yankees and Marlins have been locked in a trade standoff for so long that Miami's front office flipped.

Back in the summer of 2022, it seemed Kim Ng and Miami coveted Gleyber Torres, so much so that Brian Cashman was able to engineer a follow-up swap for Pablo López that would've made the Jordan Montgomery trade much less controversial. Alas, it fell through, resulting in (eventually) López dominating the Astros in a Twins uniform, Luis Arraez winning a batting title in South Beach, and Torres glumly withering away in the second half before finding his footing again in 2023.

But, despite leading the Marlins to a playoff berth on the heels of strong midseason acquisitions Jake Burger and Josh Bell, Ng was disrespected with a contract offer and now seeks greener pastures. Ex-Rays executive Peter Bendix then inherited her cabinet of young pitching, and it's up to Cashman to learn whether he has the same deep, abiding love for the Yankees' middle infielders.

A Torres trade is somewhere between "unlikely" and "impossible" entering a win-now year with Juan Soto in the outfield, but Miami was also rumored to like Oswald Peraza once upon a time. Does Bendix feel the same way? Does he harbor an affinity for the Yankees' FCL talent like Henry Lalane, which would be the much Rays-ier thing to do? At this moment, the Luzardo trade price feels prohibitive and downright Dylan Cease-like, but maybe the two sides can meet in the middle on an Edward Cabrera swap?

Will Yankees front office find overlap with Marlins on Edward Cabrera or Jesus Luzardo trades?

Again, this all boils down to whether the Yankees can establish a similar working relationship with the new regime. Who knows? Maybe this relationship will be better! Maybe they'll actually be able to reach the finish line instead of merely approach it this time!

Peraza will certainly have reps in the 2024 Yankees infield if he sticks around, even though he's unlikely to be an Opening Day starter. The likelihood of DJ LeMahieu staying healthy all season is minimal, and there's no longer an IKF-type standing in the way.

But if the Yankees have the chance to use a backup plan as the centerpiece in a Cabrera trade, they should certainly do so. The erratic right-hander walked a remarkable 66 men in 99.2 innings last season, and it wouldn't be difficult to see some team overvaluing the Ks (118) and hits allowed (78) while ignoring the glaring flaw. Matt Blake and Co. should've earned Yankee fans' trust by now, though, and if anyone can harness Cabrera's electricity, it's probably New York, San Francisco or Los Angeles (Boston and Andrew Bailey might soon be making an argument). Cabrera and his man bun relied on an excellent changeup, which was thrown 31.4% of the time last season and was responsible for a 95th-percentile offspeed run value of nine. Add in his .199 expected batting average, and it's on Blake to figure out how to instill command in the DNA of Cabrera's fastball.

It's a risky acquisition, but one that could pay dividends in the right hands. The Yankees just have to hope Miami's new overlords are as welcoming to their infielders as the previous group (and the Derek Jeter-led group that preceded them).