New York Yankees: Veteran duo could make a major bullpen difference

New York Yankees, Adam Warren

This off-season, one of the New York Yankees‘ goals was to bolster their already solid bullpen. The team reportedly signed veteran right-hander Darren O’Day to a one-year, $2.5 million deal and inked two other veterans to minor-league contracts. Adam Warren will return to the Yankees for the third time, while the team also added 30-year-old Kyle Barraclough. Both players missed the 2020 season but now have an opportunity with the most prestigious team in baseball.

Neither guys are locks to make the team out of Spring Training, but both can potentially have great success with the Yankees.

Adam Warren

Warren was drafted in the fourth round of the 2009 MLB draft by the Yankees and made his MLB debut with the team in 2012. After the 2015 season, the Yankees dealt him to the Chicago Cubs in a deal that brought Starlin Castro to New York. Just months later, the Yankees acquired Warren back in a trade that sent Aroldis Chapman to Chicago.

Warren spent two more years with the Yankees before a 2018 trade with the Mariners sent him to Seattle. He finished the season in Seattle and then signed a one-year deal with the Padres for 2019.

Across eight seasons, Warren has a 3.53 ERA with a 117 ERA+ and a 4.02 FIP. However, Warren’s stats in New York are significantly better than with any other team. He has a 3.18 ERA in New York with a 129 ERA+ and a 3.61 FIP.

Warren’s shown to have great success before with the Yankees, and it would boost the bullpen if he can do it again. If he makes the club out of Spring Training, he should have a middle-relief role with the Yankees.

Kyle Barraclough

Barraclough had a lot of success earlier on in his career, but the past few seasons have been rough for the five-year veteran. The St. Louis Cardinals drafted Barraclough in the 7th round of the 2012 MLB draft and remained with the organization until 2015 when a trade for Steve Cishek sent him to the Miami Marlins. Barraclough debuted in the majors around a month later and performed well with a 2.59 ERA and a 3.42 FIP.

2016 was just as dominant for Barraclough, pitching to a 2.85 ERA and a 2.11 FIP. He performed well in 2017, but 2018 was rough for him, ending with an ERA of 4.20 and a FIP of 4.97.

After the 2018 season, Barraclough was dealt to the Nationals for cash considerations. He never panned out with Washington, recording a 6.66 ERA in 33 games in 2019. The Nationals placed Barraclough on waivers, and the San Francisco Giants claimed him. In 10 appearances, he recorded a 2.25 ERA, showing he still has some promise.

If the Yankees can get Barraclough back to where he was a few seasons ago, it would be huge for the Yankee bullpen. He likely will begin in a low-leverage role with the team but could work his way into late-innings situations with success.

Kieffer Bellows has come a long way in just one year for the Islanders

A year ago tonight, Kieffer Bellows was called up to make his NHL debut for the Islanders. The promotion was served as a purpose to spark the sputtering Isles offense. Bellows would tally his first point in the National — an assist in the Islanders OT win over the Dallas Stars — while two nights later he would pot his first two goals against the Kings. After that promising start it was a slow slide back down to the AHL.

When the Isles reconvened for the league’s Return To Play format in the summer, Bellows was a part of the group fighting for one of the extra forward slots. Eventually left back as the club headed for the Toronto bubble, Bellows was hit a few months later for violating the league’s performance-enhancing rules.

By that time, Bellows’ stock had dropped within the organization and his future with the Isles looked bleak.

Fast forward to now — the year to the day Bellows suited up for the variety for the first time — the 19th overall pick from 2016 has made his presence felt.

“I have trust in Bellows game,” Isles head coach Barry Trotz told reporters yesterday. “He’s getting chances. I think he’s been around the net. He’s that type of guy. Hopefully, he just breaks out. That will just give him some confidence.”

Bellows is still looking for his first point of the season; he’s come close on several occasions. But it’s his overall game that’s what has impressed the most.

The 22-year-old Bellows looks more confident without the puck as opposed to his short stint last season where he had trouble with the defensive aspect of the game. It’s one of the reasons his call-up only lasted eight games. There’s also the spark that he, and fellow freshmen Oliver Wahlstrom, have brought to the lineup offensively, particularly the third line, which was a big question mark coming into this season.

The recent road trip, that line — centered by J.G. Pageau with Bellows and Wahlstrom manning the wings — was the team’s best line in the losses to Washington.

“I didn’t have any worries about them,” Trotz said.

As much as fans crave for his offense — that’s been his MO as a prospect in the Isles’ system — seeing Bellows grow into a complete player has more significance. The points will come in due time, but Bellows’ development remains the most important thing right now. And on such a veteran-heavy squad, it’s nice to see him getting his chance and making the most of it. Cracking the Isles’ lineup in recent years as a youngster, unless your name was Mat Barzal or Noah Dobson, hasn’t been easy. The addition of the taxi squad because of COVID-19 protocols only adds another layer of difficulty.

Bellows has played in seven of the Islanders’ nine games this season and with how he’s performed thus far, he should see the ice a ton more. The reason being the difference from last year until now in his demeanor and that his play has greatly evolved.

The Islanders might have something in special in Bellows.

He’s come a long way in a year’s time.

—

When you’re mentioned in the same vain as Connor McDavid and Nathan MacKinnon, you know you’re doing big things. That seems to be the sentiment from Barry Trotz on his star center Mathew Barzal.

In The Athletic today, Isles beat writer Arthur Staple quoted Trotz saying, “Mathew’s one of those guys, the really high skilled guys with that tremendous speed like (Nathan) Mackinnon, (Connor) McDavid. When they give it up and get it back, they’re almost unstoppable. That’s where Mathew’s game has grown the most. And he’ll still take you on one-on-one. That’s the biggest growth, the offensive stuff without the puck.”

That’s a hell of an endorsement and an indictment on how Barzal has looked so far this year. He leads the team with ten points in nine games.

—

The Islanders will see something they haven’t seen in nearly 15 years when they head to MSG on Monday for their next tilt with the Rangers. That being their Liberty “Reverse Retro” jerseys.

The last time the Isles faced the Blueshirts in those threads, they won 7-4 at MSG on the backs of Viktor Kozlov’s four-goal performance.

 

Yankees News: One young starting pitcher could end up playing a significant role in 2021

New York Yankees, Deivi Garcia

Predicting when injuries will occur is simply impossible, but over the past few seasons, the New York Yankees have dealt with significant issues in the department. They should be anticipating injuries at this point, especially in the outfield and with their starting pitchers. Last season, James Paxton missed a majority of the campaign, Luis Severino missed the entire year recovering from Tommy John surgery, Domingo German was still serving a suspension, and Masahiro Tanaka was plunked in the head with a line drive, forcing him to miss a few weeks.

The Yankees have only doubled down on their risk, acquiring Corey Kluber and Jameson Taillon, two pitchers who have barely played over the past two seasons.

The current rotation is far different than it was in 2020, but that doesn’t mean we should feel confident they can stay healthy and playing an entire 162 game season. Consider the fact that the starters last year couldn’t even make it through 60 games healthy.

Projected New York Yankees 2021 starting pitching rotation:

1.) Gerrit Cole

2.) Corey Kluber

3.) Luis Severino (upon return)

4.) Jordan Montgomery

5.) Domingo German

6.) Deivi Garcia

Reserves:

7.) Clarke Schmidt

8.) Michael King

9.) Jonathan Loaisiga

The one young starter who could end up playing a significant role is Deivi Garcia, who pitched in six games last year, earning a 4.98 and 0.8 WAR. He only featured over 34.1 innings, having a few stand our performances and getting hit around on a few others. It was essential experience for the 21-year-old prospect. Considering he’s barely able to drink an alcoholic beverage in the USA, nobody anticipated him becoming a focal point in the rotation last year. At just 5-foot-9 and 163 pounds, he’s not an imposing pitcher on the mound.

In fact, he utilizes a unique blend of finesse and deadly curve to rack up strikeouts. He recorded just 8.65 strikeouts per nine this past season after spending his entire minor-league career in the double digits. The expectation is that his experience last season will roll over into 2021 and prove to be a major factor in his development. The Yankees feel confident that he can be a solid option in the latter portion of their rotation, but given the risk, Brian Cashman has installed into the rotation, García could easily be moved up if injuries do arise.

We will keep an eye on his development, especially during spring training when he has an opportunity to showcase his growth. At such a young age, he has plenty of time to refine his abilities, and the Yankees feel very highly he will be one of their premium starters in the future.

Knicks’ Julius Randle details one major factor in his transformation this season

New York Knicks, Julius Randle

The New York Knicks overcame a pesky Chicago Bulls team on Wednesday evening, 107-103. The Knicks are just three games back from being a .500 team, and accumulating this victory was a necessity after losing two straight. Against the Bulls, the Knicks started off extremely valiant, scoring 34 in the first quarter and taking a 19 point lead at one moment in the game.

Thanks to another outstanding performance from Julius Randle, the Knicks managed to close out a game that they nearly blew in the fourth quarter. Randle finished with 27 points, six assists, and six rebounds. While he missed both shots from the free-throw line, he had over 50% from the field and connected on 5-of-7 three-pointers.

Randle detailed one major difference in his game compared to last season, which is proving to be a significant factor in his success this year.

“Honestly, it just wasn’t a great season shooting the ball from 3 last year,’’ Randle said. “It’s something I got in the lab and tightened things up. Repetitions and confidence, man. My mental approach is completely different. I have unlimited confidence in it.’’

The New York Knicks needed Randle to turn one category around:

The 26-year-old power forward finished the 2019–20 season with a .277 three-point percentage. This season over 23 games, he’s averaging .396, and shooting the ball from downtown, even more, indicating a major upswing in efficiency.

Julius has been a catalyst for the Knicks on offense, dominating daily and quickly earning himself an All-Star nod. Head coach Tom Thibodeau expects this of him, leading his team into battle and showing aggressiveness on both sides of the ball. He did that against Chicago, helping his team finish out the game and secure the win.

“That’s what we expect from him — a veteran leader, play strong on both sides of the ball, share the ball, make the right plays and set an example for everyone,’’ Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said. “He gives the team the belief we can win. You get that by making hustle plays. The more hustle plays, the more it ignites and inspires the team. That’s what we expect from him.’’

Former Yankees’ star reliever will hold a showcase next week

The New York Yankees still have some funds available to sign a cheap reliever, and they do have the need to do so since their bullpen has lots of question marks after Aroldis Chapman, Zack Britton, Chad Green, and Darren O’Day.

However, reports indicate that they could also be looking to re-sign outfielder Brett Gardner after letting him go in the winter by declining his club option. That may complicate the enterprise of getting another reliever.

One name that could potentially come on the cheap is David Robertson. Injuries have derailed their 2019 and 2020 seasons: he had Tommy John surgery in August of 2019 and didn’t pitch at all in 2020 after having a setback last summer.

However, when healthy, Robertson is a difference-maker in any bullpen due to his incredible ability to miss bats. Over his long career (most of which came with the New York Yankees) the right-hander has a fantastic 32.2 K%, and he has struck out 11.93 hitters per nine frames.

Mark Feinsand of MLB.com is reporting that David Robertson (elbow) will hold a showcase for interested clubs next week, specifically on February 11.

The Yankees would be wise to pay attention

Apparently, Robertson is over the setback that he encountered last year, and is eager to show teams that he can still contribute in a major league bullpen.

Granted, the Yankees would be getting an risk given that he is already 35. But if the price is right, he can make sense for them.

He has had, to this point, a remarkable career: in 663.2 frames, he has accumulated 14.3 fWAR, a 2.90 ERA and a 2.84 FIP.

If he shows that he still has some juice left in his right arm, the New York Yankees would be wise to approach him with an offer that could theoretically fit in their remaining budget for the 2021 season.

UFC: Is there anything to the latest Khabib – GSP rumors?

This week the UFC world has been buzzing with another rumor surrounding Khabib Nurmagomedov (29-0). This rumor all started a few days ago when former fighter and broadcaster, Kenny Florian, talked about a potential superfight on his podcast with Jon Anik. 

On the podcast, Florian said, “It (The Rumor) comes from a well-known coach who apparently is aware of a fight between Khabib Nurmagomedov and a legend of the UFC in Georges St. Pierre. Supposedly, that is a fight that Georges might be getting ready for.”

Of course, this has had the world buzzing. It’s worth noting that Florian might be talking about Firas Zahabi who is his former coach as well as the head coach of GSP. Nevertheless, Florian might actually be someone who knows something.

Since then, the manager of the UFC lightweight champion has come out and said that the rumor was, “Fake news.” Ever since Khabib retired after UFC 254, people have said that the only fight he would come back for is a fight with Georges St. Pierre (26-2).

Will the UFC ever make it happen?

Dana White recently has said that the fight would never get made. However, there is a lot of things that Dana has said would never happen and they did. For example, Tito Ortiz returning to the UFC or women fighting in the UFC.

Moral of the story is to never say never in this game. Now, the likelihood of this fight actually happening is pretty low. Khabib’s late father, Abdulmanap, wanted the GSP fight to be Khabib’s final fight in the UFC.

To the Nurmagomedov’s, GSP was the perfect opponent to cement his legacy at 30-0. St. Pierre has been vocal about his desire to take the fight if that fight is ever offered to him by the UFC.

That said, with each passing day, GSP gets a little older. The former two-division champion has only fought once since 2013 and he turns 40 in May. I lean on the side of thinking this fight isn’t going to happen. However, there’s been smoke there for a long time and whoever truly knows with the UFC.

Yankee News/Rumors: Cash and Pudge talk Sanchez, Taillon upset already, and more

New York Yankees, Gary Sanchez, Gerrit Cole, Aaron Boone

Brian Cashman and Pudge Rodriguez talk Gary Sanchez

Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez, who caught for the New York Yankees during 2008 and has since become a Hall of Famer, received a Thurmon Munson Award Tuesday night virtually. When speaking with reporters, Pudge had much to say about Gary Sanchez’s 2020 season and his commitment to bounce back this year.

“What the Yankees organization needs to do is just let him play baseball,” Rodriguez said. “He has tremendous ability, defensively and offensively. I know that he’s been struggling in both sides of the game, but I think right now it’s more mental.”

Ivan Rodriguez believes that he saw a player who needs to rediscover his love of the game.

“This year, he needs to come back to Spring Training ready to play, enjoying the game and enjoying putting that pinstriped uniform on,” Rodriguez said. “Go out there and be with his teammates, go behind the plate and do what he can do. I know he can be a great player behind the plate and also with his hitting.”

New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman talked about whether to non-tender Gary in December, which would have allowed him to become a free agent. The Yankees still believe the 28-year-old catcher can still be one of the best catchers in the league. Cashman and others in the front office showed their support for Sanchez by tendering him and giving him a slight raise, despite his horrible season last year.

“The fact that he’s still with us is proof of how we felt and how we feel,” Cashman said. “I know he’s looking forward to proving last year was a fluke. We look forward to him justifying our continued commitment to him and his talent level. We’ve invested our time, effort and money into him, for good reason.”

Jameson Taillon is upset with MLB.

Just a week ago, the New York Yankees traded with the Pittsburgh Pirates for starting pitcher Jameson Taillon who is coming back from his second Tommy John surgery. In the short time since he came to New York, much has been written about the talented pitcher and the Yankees’ hope that he can bounce back to his 2018 form. One thing that has not been advertised is that when with the PIraters, he was their representative to the MLBPA, The Major League Baseball Players Association.

When Taillon talks with his experience, he knows what he is speaking about and means what he says. Now with the Yankees, although he is not the Yankees representative, that hasn’t stopped him from letting us know how he feels about MLB and player issues. Now he is talking about the MLB’s latest moves to change the season and his disapproval.

“I know from a player perspective, we anticipated and expected the league to come to us with something back in October, November…December, even,” Taillon. said “At a certain point as a player, you have to get ready to compete. For them to come to us now, this late into the offseason while guys have…I mean, the human aspect of it, guys have started shipping cars, booking Airbnbs for spring training, all that. But then from like the big-league ballplayer side of it, guys are ramped up. Guys are facing hitters. I was watching Tyler Glasnow pump 97 against hitters the other day. Now you’re gonna ask him to ramp it back down and take a break? I just don’t think that’s right.”

It should be noted that not only Tyler Glasnow is at camp. Several Yankees are already working out at the George M. Steinbrenner training facility in Tampa, and why not its certainly better weather there than in New York. Among those already in Tampa are Gary Sanchez, Aaron Judge, Luke Voit, Mike Ford, and Michael King. Catchers and pitchers don’t have to report until February 17, with the rest of the team on the 21st.

The Post’s Davidoff makes a case for Gardner

The New York Post’s Ken Davidoff thinks Brett Gardner will be back with the Yankees in 2021. I’ll wager $6 million over three years that the Yankees and Gardner find a way to reunite. I think it’ll happen, but based on the factors in play, I’m not willing to bet much on it.

Davidoff gave several reasons the New York Yankees should work on a deal. If Gardner could get a three-year deal, he would be as happy as a kid in a candy shop as he wants to retire from baseball as a Yankee where he has spent the last 15 years of his life.

Davidoff pointed out that he is a potential lefty bat on the bench that can at times hit for power. Gardner is a genuine lefty bat that is better than the lefties on the bench, Mike Tauchman, Mike Ford, and Tyler Wade. Gardner is also a bonafide centerfielder easily capable of replacing Aaron Hicks should he get injured. Brett can also fill in nicely in left field. Gardner is the most durable outfielder the Yankees have had. In all of baseball, he is second in plate appearances over the last eight years for outfielders.

Fauci wants another try

The nation’s top virus expert thinks that by mid-summer, enough baseball fans will be vaccinated to allow socially distanced fans in the nation’s ballparks. He also wants a redo of his terribly botched first pitch of the season last year at Nationals Park.

“I would hope that by the time we get into May, June, July, that we will have enough people vaccinated in the country that the level of infection would be low enough — maybe not yet total herd immunity — but low enough to say that we can go to a game, you know: wear a mask, but be seated — not sitting right next to each other,” Fauci said.

The Yankees still have one significant trade asset to continue bolstering pitching

New York Yankees, Miguel Andujar

The New York Yankees could still yet make another move this off-season, despite acquiring several players to help bolster their pitching. The starting rotation added two new faces, Corey Kluber and Jameson Taillon, while the bullpen added Darren O’Day, formally of the Atlanta Braves and Baltimore Orioles.

Despite Brian Cashman supplementing losses this off-season, he took a few major risks on players that are rehabilitating from serious injuries. He even acknowledged how risky his approach was, but management encouraged him to stay beneath the $210 million luxury tax threshold, so we should expect similar moves in the coming weeks.

Nonetheless, the Yankees still have ammunition if they are looking to make another trade. Supplemental player Miguel Andujar, who is just 25 years old and controlled until 2025, makes for a quality asset. If the Yankees are looking to acquire another starting pitcher or add to their bullpen, moving Andujar could be a beneficial move.

The New York Yankees could still try and sell on Andujar’s potential:

Recently, Andujar switched agents, as even he might be looking to move teams and acquire more starting time. This past season, the Yankees try to transition him to the outfield, but that experiment ended poorly. He also struggled offensively, hitting .242 with just one homer and five RBIs. Since his illustrious 2018 season when he finished with a .297 average and 27 HRs, Andujar spent the last two years fighting and clawing his way back. He tore his labrum in 2019, which shut him down early and ultimately allowed the Yankees to inject Gio Urshela into his previous position, who has locked down the hot corner since.

Unless the Yankees feel confident Andujar can end up playing a role in the infield, they might be better off moving him for a pitcher. They have plenty of depth in the infield currently, and with Clint Frazier arising in the outfield, Andujar has become expendable.

New York Giants: Saquon Barkley provides injury update

New York Giants, Saquon Barkley

When New York Giants star running back Saquon Barkley went down with a torn ACL in week two against the Chicago Bears this past season, the offense was immediately castrated. He was considered the most lethal threat, with his ability to break long runs and put points on the board at any moment. Looking back at his rookie season in 2018, Barkley played in all 16 games, recording 2028 yards from scrimmage. He averaged 5.0 yards per carry and scored 11 touchdowns on the ground and 4 through the air.

There is no question that Barkley has the ability to be one of the best players in the NFL, but returning from a torn ACL is easier said than done. Plenty of players have done it in the past and returned to have fantastic careers, notably Adrian Peterson and Dalvin Cook. However, it is different for every player, and there’s no guarantee Saquon will ever be the same on the football field.

Nonetheless, modern medicine gives him a very good chance to make a full recovery and regain his form, but it will take him time to regain his strength and learn how to juke, cut, and exercise his strengths to perfection.

Barkley recently updated the media on his rehabilitation, and all seems to be going well at this point.

“I’m doing really well in rehab,” Barkley said on the AP Pro Football Podcast. “Very lucky to have a great team around me, great trainers, great doctors. Everyone has been very beneficial to me and very helpful to me. So whenever the opportunity I’m able to get back on the football field with my team, I’m definitely going to cherish that moment, and I just honestly can’t wait for that day to happen soon.”

An injury of his nature usually takes an entire year to return from, so the expectation is that he will be prepared to start the 2021 season. Of course, the Giants will likely take it easy for the first few weeks as he regains his legs, but overcoming the mental aspect of tearing an ACL can oftentimes be the most challenging hurdle.

“You have to start all over, and you have to teach yourself how to walk, jog, run, sprint, cut, and all that stuff again,” Barkley said. “But the mental part, especially when I hurt myself, at the moment I felt I was letting all my teammates down. To watch those guys on Sundays was very emotional. But everything happens for a reason. I have to continue to work. You control the things I can control and let the rest take over.”

The New York Giants need to add more talent on offense:

The reality is, Barkley has only played in 15 games over the past two years, which might justify the narrative that drafting running backs in the first round is never a good idea. They are the most injured position, and Barkley is proving the naysayers right at this point. That doesn’t make him any less a part of this offense, as they desperately need him to return if they want to have an elite running game in 2021.

The Giants will likely allocate resources toward bolstering the offense this off-season, which should take some pressure off of Barkley moving forward.

New York Yankees: The Yankees have made over 2 dozen moves to improve the team for 2021

New York Yankees, Darren O'Day

During this offseason, the New York Yankees almost stood still waiting to see if they could re-sign DJ LeMahieu and how much it would cost them to keep him in pinstripes. Since then, there has been a flurry of activity both by signings and trades. Today is a good time to look at how the Yankee front office has improved the team; here are some major acquisitions, although there are other dozen minor league signings.

Adam Warren 12/15:

This is a reunion, Warren has pitched for the New York Yankees before. Last year with the San Diego Padres, he was 4-1 with an ERA of 5.36. He played for New York from 2012. He started one game and gave up 2 runs in 2 innings for a 23.14 ERA. From 2013 to 2016, he was 17-17 with an ERA of 3.23. Again with the Yankees from 2017-18, he was 3-3 with an ERA of 2.53. Now he is back with the Yankees on a minor league deal.

Nestor Cortes Jr. 01/04:

Nestor Cortes Jr. is another returning Yankee. Nestor was 0-1 with an ERA of 15.26 last year with Seattle. With the Yankees in 2019, he 5-1 with an ERA of 5.67 across 33 games.

Jhoulys Chacin 01/06:

Chacin has spent most of his ten-year career with the Colorado Rockies. He has a career record of 78-87 ERA 4.04. Last year with the Milwaukee Brewers, he was 1-0 ERA 7.20.

Greg Allen 01/06:

Greg Allen was an outfielder for the Indians for four years, but they played for the San Diego last year. He throws right but is a switch hitter. Greg Allen is 6′ 0″, 185 pounds. He has been invited to spring training. He was obtained via the trade with the Padres.

Tyler Lyons 01/06:

Lyons spent most of his career with the St. Louis Cardinals. He pitched in 2019 for the Yankees, and he was again with the Yankees in 2020. He combined for 12 games with an elevated ERA. He pitched in only one game in 2020 with an ERA of 21.60.

Andrew Valazquez 01/06:

Valazquez is a highly rated prospect that has played three years in the Majors. He started with the Tampa Bay Rays. Last year with the Baltimore Orioles, he had a .159 batting average. He is a good defender.

Jameson Taillon 01/24:

The New York Yankees sent four prospects to the Pittsburgh Pirates for starting pitcher Jameson Taillon. The acquisition puts buddies Taillon and Gerrit Cole back together again as they both pitched together with the Pirates. He is returning from his second Tommy John surgery, but if he can return to his 2018 form, the Yankees will have a bonified star.

DJ LeMahieu 01/27:

The Yankee’s priority this offseason was to re-sign DJ LeMahieu, and they put most everything else on hold until they could sign him. They finally agreed to a six-year deal that will keep DJ here until he is 38. The Yankees got him for $15 million a year. He was last year’s batting champ.

Corey Kluber 01/27:

As soon as the Yankees re-signed LeMahieu, they immediately completed a deal that they had been working on with 2 time Cy Young Award winning Corey Kluber. Kluber was hit by a pitch in 2019 that ended his season. He was traded to the Rangers but only pitched one inning in 2020 after injuring his shoulder. The Yankees will have a real deal if he can return to his 2018 form. The Yankees deal was for one year and $11 million.

Darren O’Day 02/01:

The Yankees hired Darren O’Day, one of last year’s best relievers. He went 4-1 with a tiny ERA of 1.10. The addition of O’Day to the bullpen will give the bullpen an entirely different look. He is a submariner, the first the Yankees have had in years. His sidearm delivery will give manager Aaron Boone a lot of flexibility in giving hitters totally different looks.

Asher Wojciechowski 02/02

Acquiring Asher was also a reunion of sorts; it puts him back with his old teammate Zack Britton. They both played for the Baltimore Orioles together. Last year with the Orioles, he was 1-2 with an ERA of 6.81. The deal will pay Wojciechowski a $750,000 salary if he makes it to the big leagues

Kyle Barraclough 02/03:

The Yankees have taken another chance with a pitcher that did not pitch last year. Barraclough pitched in the MLB during the 2019 season, having also played for Washington and Miami. Last year with the Padres, he didn’t make it out of the Padres minor league system. In 2019 he pitched just 33.2 innings and logging a 5.61 ERA.