MLB Insider proposes blockbuster deal between Yankees and Oakland

yankees, matt olson

We’ve seen countless trade proposals between the Yankees and Oakland this off-season regarding first baseman Matt Olson, so let’s take a look at one more for giggles.

Olson is coming off an impressive 2021 season, hitting 39 homers, presenting a lucrative lefty bat in Yankee Stadium if acquired. He could realistically smash 40+ homers for the Yankees — imagine Olson in the middle of the batting order behind Giancarlo Santon and Aaron Judge…that’s a problem.

Even if the Yankees miss out on Olson, they can spend big money on Freddie Freeman, avoiding the departure of big prospects, as this prospective deal suggests.

Jim Bowden’s proposed a blockbuster deal including 1B Matt Olson, CF Ramón Laureano, and RHP Chris Bassitt:

The Yankees were uncharacteristically quiet before the lockout, with [Joely] Rodríguez their only signing. They have a lot of work to do if they’re going to return to the postseason this October, and it might take a blockbuster deal to get there. They match up well with Oakland and could make a strong bid to land Olson, Bassitt and Laureano. All three would be significant upgrades. Olson, 27, would give the Yankees the left-handed power hitter their lineup needs and provide Gold-Glove caliber defense at first base. He hit 39 home runs last season and posted a whopping 153 OPS+. Bassitt, who’s gone 17-6 with an ERA under 3.00 over his past 38 starts (2020-21), would fit nicely behind Gerrit Cole in the Yankees rotation. Laureano could provide 20 homers and 15 stolen bases and would be an improvement over Aaron Hicks in center field. Of course, the prospect price would be huge. The deal would have to be built around one of the Yankees’ top three shortstop prospects (Anthony Volpe, Oswald Peraza, Trey Sweeney), along with a top pitching, outfield and catching prospect. A package of five of their top 25 prospects is probably what it would take to make a game-changing trade like this. The Yankees could also substitute third baseman Matt Chapman for Olson, then re-sign first baseman Anthony Rizzo if they thought that was a better fit.

Landing a top first-base prospect with two seasons left until he hits free agency would be a fantastic grab. Laureano hit .246 last season with 14 homers and 39 RBIs. Having more adequate depth in the outfield is essential. With Clint Frazier, Tyler Wade, and Brett Gardner likely gone this season, Laureano presents a solid replacement who can start if need be. He might even push Aaron Hicks for the starting CF gig if the Yankees don’t shift Aaron Judge there permanently with Joey Gallo taking over RF. If the new CBA hosts a universal DH, Giancarlo Stanton could end up featuring in that spot more often than not.

Overall, this deal is unlikely given it includes multiple big prospects from the Yankees’ farm system. Management isn’t keen on parting ways with Anthony Volpe or Oswald Peraza. One of them would have to be a key component in a prospective deal.

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