The New York Yankees, under the guidance of General Manager Brian Cashman, are actively pursuing several high-impact players this offseason. These include star international pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto and the much-coveted superstar slugger Juan Soto, who might be available through a trade.
On Thursday evening, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman slept in Times Square to raise awareness of youth and young family homelessness. He spoke to several reporters regarding the Yankees’ off-season strategies and indicated that they will certainly be involved with the top players available.
“We’re knocking on those doors, we’re having those conversations. Hal Steinbrenner and his family have always run it the way that if there’s some opportunity worth pushing through on, they’re always there to allow that to happen. It’s really all about a team situation and how the collective all works together, so we’ll see how this winter plays out. But we’re going to have conversations about the big ones and the small ones.”
Targeting Yoshinobu Yamamoto and Juan Soto
The addition of Yamamoto to the Yankees’ rotation could be a game-changer. His impressive performance in the JPPL, with a stellar 1.21 ERA across 164 innings, showcases his potential for success in the MLB. At only 25, Yamamoto embodies the youth and resilience the Yankees are seeking. The pursuit of Yamamoto could lead to a substantial financial commitment, with estimates suggesting a figure around $200 million.
Juan Soto represents another exciting possibility for the Yankees. Expected to command around $30 million in his final arbitration year, acquiring Soto would necessitate planning for an extension, considering his consistent performance over the last three seasons. Soto’s impeccable record last season, including a .275 batting average, .410 OBP, and slugging 35 home runs, underscores his value as an elite player. His presence in the lineup could provide crucial support, particularly if key players like Aaron Judge are sidelined.
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Yankees Evaluating Alternative Options
Considering Cody Bellinger
While Soto and Yamamoto are primary targets, the Yankees are also contemplating Cody Bellinger. Despite his excellent recent season, Bellinger’s inconsistent performance in previous years makes a significant contract a potentially risky investment. Bellinger, a left-handed batter, could offer exceptional defensive skills in centerfield and possibly transition to first base. However, his potential for regression raises concerns about the long-term impact on the team’s performance.
At the very least, Cashman seems to be interested and has the green light to be aggressive with some acquisitions this off-season, which makes logical sense since owner Hal Steinbrenner told Judge that he would continue building around him and adding World Series-caliber pieces to the mix.