Avoiding premium level free agents can be the difference between winning a World Series and falling short of one, which is the reality the New York Yankees faced in 2019. Signing Patrick Corbin last offseason might have given them the extra starter to make their goals attainable. While the rotation performed well in the playoffs, one dominant performance could have separated them from success.
General manager Brian Cashman didn’t let the luxury tax scare him away this year, as he inked Gerrit Cole to a nine-year, $324 million deal, and he might not be done yet. Milwaukee Brewers’ Josh Hader has developed into a hot commodity on the trade market, and Cashman is exploring a potential deal that would likely include Miguel Andujar, per Jon Heyman.
Yankees remain interested in Josh Hader and could begin a package with 3B Miguel Andujar (Brewers don’t really have a set 3B). Interested teams still aren’t totally convinced Milwaukee would move the star closer though.
Hader, 25, has four years of team control remaining on his contract, which makes him an even more enticing piece to add to the Yankees’ already finished puzzle.
This leads us into our rumors/news of the day:
The depth for the Yankees at catcher is problematic, as Kyle Higashioka will replace Austine Romine as the backup. Erik Kratz, 40, was also added to the team in hopes of extracting a bit of veteran savvy during the 2020 season. However, neither of these two players can be trusted to supplement Sanchez’s offensive production. The inevitable groin injury will force Higashioka into a more normalized role, and that could be ambiguous.
Cashman had choice words for Kyle, though, despite his lack of offensive efficiency last season. He stated that the reserve catcher had “elite power vs lefties.” His three home runs last season and .214 batting average might indicate otherwise. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Bombers brought in another catcher to compete for the backup spot.
The Yankees get their spring training schedule:
Yankees pitchers and catchers report: Wed., Feb. 12
Major League pitchers and catchers first workout: Thurs., Feb. 13
Major League position players report: Mon., Feb. 17
First Yankees full-squad workout: Tues., Feb. 18