The New York Yankees are diving deep into their farm system to add lefty batters to the lineup. With a batting order that is heavily right-handed, general manager Brian Cashman prioritized diversity with the trade deadline on Friday.
Yankees add two big lefty bats:
The Yankees acquired outfielder Joey Gallo and relief pitcher Joely Rodriguez from the Texas Rangers on Thursday morning. Gallo will feature against Miami on Friday with his new team, providing a much-needed lefty power bat in the middle of the order.
The deal sent four minor-league players to Texas, including Ezekiel Duran, Trevor Hauvevr, Glen Otto, and Josh Smith. Texas will consume Gallo’s entire salary for the 2021 season, which keeps the Yankees below the $210 million luxury tax threshold.
On the year, Gallo is hitting .223 with 25 homers and 55 RBIs. He hosts a 32.2% strikeout rate and 19.1% walk rate. As one of the best offensive power bats in baseball, he fits the Yankees’ mold perfectly and can also feature as a regular outfielder. Gall is a reliable player based on his health history, which is a great sign for the Bombers.
Most thought the Yankees were done after signing Gallo, but they managed to pull off a trade for Anthony Rizzo of the Chicago Cubs as well. Over 92 games this season, Rizzo is hitting .248 with 14 homers and 40 RBIs. He has hit double-digit homers his entire career and hosts a 15.7% strikeout rate, an exceptional number.
The Yankees are trading Alcantara and Vizcaino for Rizzo. The Cubs are picking up all of Rizzo’s remaining salary.
— Jack Curry (@JackCurryYES) July 29, 2021
Defensively, Rizzo isn’t the most refined player but offers plenty of run production and quality at the plate. This will likely keep DJ LeMahieu at second base but could supplant Luke Voit as he deals with consistent injuries this season.
Rizzo is the definition of a rental, as he is currently on the final year of a seven-year, $41 million contract. The assumption is that Chicago will take on the rest of his contract this season but will likely gain a few talented minor leaguers in the process.