Yankees Offseason Ideas
After the Yankees completed a trade that brought over SS/2B Starlin Castro, for SP/RP Adam Warren, there is still a dire need for starting pitching help. The Yankees completed a deal similar to last years three-team trade that involved Shane Greene being shipped to Detroit and the Yankees receiving SS Didi Gregorious from Arizona. The Yankees have been active through the trade market, and is reported to have a tight budget in free agency. But two relatively options that are available with a potential to be low-risk, high reward option and fill the Yankees need are; Henderson Alvarez and Cliff Lee. And with those moves, could lead to a potential bigger deal being made to bring in another young, controllable arm.
Let’s take a look:
Sign Henderson Alvarez
Henderson Alvarez, who doesn’t 26 until April, was recently non-tendered by his former team Miami Marlins. Alvarez and is coming off Right shoulder surgery after starting the 2015 season 0-4, 6.45 ERA, 1.57 WHIP and 9 SO in 22.1 Innings. Not too long ago was it when Alvarez was considered a front-line arm, who would pair with fellow ace Jose Fernandez and create a dynamic young 1-2 punch to build around along with star RF Giancarlo Stanton. Alvarez put up stellar numbers in 2014, as he made the NL All-Star team and pitched to a 12-7 record, a 2.65 ERA, 3 Complete Games in 30 starts over 187 Innings. Alvarez is an intriguing option, and would be an ideal fit for the Yankees, as he’s a young arm, with a lot of upside. The Yankees who have been trying to avoid spending big on free agency and acquire a young arm via trade would do just that with Alvarez, whose young, will come cheaper than the other options and has tremendous upside left.
With a young arm that is expected to make a full recovery from the surgery, and due to miss the start of the season Alvarez, when healthy, could bring a solid No. 2 or 3 starter to join a starting staff of Masahiro Tanaka, Luis Severino, Michael Pineda and Nathan Eovaldi. The Yankees should offer Alvarez a 2-3 year deal with a team option, at around $6 million annually, which would be an increase of what Alvarez would have made this year with the Marlins as well as security for himself. This deal would have the potential to look like a steal, a year down the road as Alvarez looks to fully recover and go back to All-Star form.
Sign Cliff Lee
Cliff Lee 37, isn’t the ideal fit for the Yankees who looks to continue building around younger players could find a gem in former All-Star Lee. Lee who missed the 2015 season due to left elbow surgery was medically cleared to pitch in 2016 and is looking to sign a 1-year deal with a winner. There have been reportedly fifteen teams interested in the lefty, and the Yankees should take a flier on Lee, who is expected to bounce back. In 2013, Lee threw 222 2/3 innings with a 2.87 ERA. In 2014, Lee posted a 4-5 record, 3.65 ERA, 2.98 FIP in 81 1/3 innings. If Lee could be had at around 1 year/ $7 million, that could be seen as a major bargain down the road if Lee can stay healthy and put up similar numbers to the 2014 season.
Trade Ivan Nova and Brett Gardner
With the two additions of Cliff Lee and Henderson Alvarez, the Yankees make Ivan Nova expandable and could be the main piece in a package for a young SP with less than 3 year service time. Cashman could try to package Nova and Gardner (and cash considerations) to find themselves a young, MLB-Ready pitcher. Two trade partners to watch for who are in need for OF help and have an abundance of pitchers are the Angels, and Indians. These trades could be beneficial; as it would help both teams fill voids on their roster.
Angels: Andrew Heaney and PTBNL
In the Angels trade, the Yankees would acquire a young lefty in Heaney with a lot of upside, who doesn’t become arbitration eligible until 2018. The Angels would also include a low-tier prospect to sweeten the deal for the Yankees giving cash considerations.
Indians: SP Danny Salazar and RP Josh Tomlin
With the Indians, the Yankees would get Salazar, who’s young and pitched very well in 2015, as he was 14-10, with a 3.45 ERA. Also added in the trade is Josh Tomlin, another RHP that can be added into the late inning mix and slide into the 7th inning spot along with Betances and Miller. Tomlin will be a reliable right-handed option out of the bullpen for Giradi who will help in decreasing Betances’ workload.
These moves, along with the done deals would allow the Yankees to stray away from spending big on free agency, and waiting until next year when they have big money contracts coming off the books. It also allows the Yankees to continue their youth movement and gathering young talent, as well as staying competitive in 2016 without sending any of their three big prospects, while filling their needs to bolster their team.
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