The New York Yankees are keying in on several free-agent players but don’t rule out a blockbuster trade to bolster a spot of weakness on the roster. With GM Brian Cashman and the coaching staff electing to release Clint Frazier, the Bombers need to begin thinking about a solution in the outfield, especially with Aaron Hicks proving to be a liability.
With Starling Marte signing with the Mets on Friday in their big Black Friday spending spree, the Yanks are waiting patiently for the right opportunity to arise. That opportunity may have just presented itself, as All-Star outfielder Cedric Mullins is reportedly being placed on the market by the Baltimore Orioles.
According to Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the Yankees are one of several teams in pursuit of Baltimore Orioles star outfielder Cedric Mullins:
Word has gotten out that the Orioles would listen on star CF Cedric Mullins, and teams are lining up to give it a shot knowing itâ€™s a long shot. Asking price is understandably extremely high. All these teams (and more) could use a CF: Philly, Rangers, Astros, Giants, Mets, Yanks.
Mullins is coming off his best season yet, hitting .291, 30 homers, and 53 RBIs this past season. Mullins posted an offensive master-class, but a lone season of production should scare off potential suitors who may be looking for a bigger sample size of numbers to work off of.
The Orioles’ young stud posted an 18.9% strikeout rate and 8.3% walk rate, sufficient numbers that showcase patience at the plate and discipline. At 27-years-old, Mullins has years left on his deal before he becomes a free agent in 2026. Defensively, Mullins played 1264 innings this past season in center-field, logging a .985 fielding percentage with 6 errors. If he can make gradual improvements as a defensive player, he could develop into an elite balanced outfielder.
Natural regression could impact his performance in the future, but given his price tag will be so cheap, a team can continue to develop his talents, and if he pans out, they’ll have one of the best up-and-coming outfielders in baseball reaching his prime.
According to Steamer projections, Mullins will hit .259 with 25 homers and 74 RBIs in 2022, a solid state-line — better than most Yankee players this past year. A potential deal for Cedric would have to include several top-end prospects, which may be worth it for a proven player with an upward trajectory.