Yankees’ Brian Cashman will leave things in the hands of Aaron Boone, who can’t figure out how to win

New York Yankees, Aaron Boone, Brian Cashman

The New York Yankees have started the 2021 season with five wins and 10 losses, including five consecutive defeats over the past few days. They were most recently swept by the Tampa Bay Rays, scoring a total of seven runs during those three games.

Ultimately, the team has struggled considerably to get things going, and while their pitching has been decent at times, it is their offense that has lacked gusto. The Yankees desperately need a catalyst to fuel a turnaround, and while GM Brian Cashman says the team needs to self-correct, he also stated that Aaron Boone is in control of the roster and will be making those strategic decisions.

The New York Yankees need a change, but they also need consistency:

Ultimately, the analytical process that Boone has utilized isn’t working, and rotating Brett Gardner and Clint Frazier in left-field isn’t going to get the job done. They went out and acquired Rougned Odor from the Texas Rangers to help in the infield, and while he’s added a slight spark, he can’t carry the team alone.

Currently, DJ LeMahieu leads the team in batting average at .286, with a minimum of 50 at-bats. Even that is a bit low for a player of his caliber that finished the 2020 season with an impressive .364 average. Again, there’s plenty of time to turn things around and go back into the shape of things, but Boone’s lack of motivation and strategy behind the scenes is clearly on display.

As the manager, (Boone) always has the disposal to utilize the roster how he sees fit,” Cashman said Monday in a Zoom media call. “Clearly there’s a lot of different choices to play with. That’s something he deals with and wrestles with his coaching staff on a day in and day out basis. If you want to switch things around in the outfield, you certainly have some other choices to play with if you want. And you can do the same on the infield, too. There’s a little bit of flexibility there. And that goes all the way to the catching spot, too. So he’s always had that in his back pocket.”

Unfortunately for the Yankees, switching things around doesn’t avoid one major reality, depth isn’t supposed to be as good as starting talent. Currently, one of their biggest flops so far this season is Aaron Hicks, who is hitting .160 over just 55 plate appearances. He has been utterly useless on the offensive side of the ball, for the most part, striking out 25.5% of the time.

Boone is considering shaking things up a bit regarding roster decisions, but he must continue to give action to his primary players instead of making too many changes too frequently.

“There’ll be some things that I consider about shaking things up, no question,” Boone said. “I’ve done it a little bit, but it’s a little tough. It’s a little bit of a different era when you only have three or four bench guys, but they’ll probably potentially be some more opportunities for guys that maybe haven’t been playing as much.”

New York Yankees: Big wigs weigh in on the Yankees dismal start

New York Yankees fans are outraged and frustrated at the Yankees’ dismal start of the 2021 season. Now to respond to fans who threw balls out onto the field during one game and after the loss Sunday in the finale for a team sweep, fans loudly booed the team as it left the field; management is talking to the media.

Aaron Boone on the poor start

Before the sweep of the New York Yankee by the Tampa Bay Rays, manager Aaron Boone gave his usual patient, rosy outlook when facing the media. But after losing five in a row, including that sweep by the Rays, Sunday finally seems to be taking on a different tone, one that says we have to play better.

The fact of the matter is the if your name isn’t Gerrit Cole, you have not pitched dependably; if your a hitter, you, with few exceptions, have not hit consistently or situationally. If you’re a player on the field, you have provided some pretty sloppy play. Sunday’s game was a mess with several mistakes you might not see in Little League play.

Finally, Friday night, after another loss in the opener with the Rays, Aaron Boone called for a team meeting immediately at the games’ end. Slugger Giancarlo Stanton, who has the most RBI’s this season, said that Boone seemed angry. The Yankees only performing starting pitcher Gerrit Cole had more to say about it:

“I haven’t played with Aaron quite as much as some of the other players,” Cole said before Saturday’s Yankees-Rays’ game at Yankee Stadium. “But I’ve certainly been reamed out by a few managers in my day. It was pretty par for the course from what I’ve seen in my experience in the big leagues. I think the players listen to (Boone), and I think it was impactful.”

“I think there’s a handful of different variables, the first one being that baseball is a hard game. A lot of times when everything’s going well it can seem easy. And when everything’s not going well, it can dumbfound you at the same time. I think it is early and we all were looking to settle in.

“A streak like this after two or three months of really solid baseball will get overlooked, but we don’t have that backdrop right now. We’re kind of scuffling here and we’re starting off the season with a less than ideal record. It is what it is, and we’ll take it one game at a time and keep trying to improve.”

After Friday night’s brutal loss and a team meeting, Boone had a night to think about the slow start; although still confident the team will pull out of it; he had this to say on Saturday morning:

“I think [I’m] more pissed off at the way we’ve come out of the gates here, not playing our best,” Boone said Saturday before his team tried to get back on track against the Rays at Yankee Stadium. “But I think we all share that in that room. Look, I concern myself with all things our club. As far as big picture and where I think we’re going, I’m still as confident as ever that we’ll work our way out of this and get rolling here eventually and be the team we expect.

“It’s always frustrating when you’re going through a tough time, but it’s also part of being a major leaguer and part of the 162-game season. Adversity’s going to show up for you. You don’t know when and where, how often, but you gotta be able to deal with it. That’s part of it. I’m confident we will.”

After the reaming out Friday night, although there was some spark in Saturday’s matinee, Sunday’s game was a disaster when the Rays completed their sweep. No matter how hard the team tried, they lost two more games seeing them at the very bottom of the American League.

Cashman on his part this season

“Our record is reflective of our organization,” Cashman said. “Obviously, Aaron’s a piece of that, as am I. But otherwise he’s doing everything he needs to do. … Obviously he spoke to the team after that tough loss (on Friday night). He obviously engaged the group in a strong way. So he’s doing everything he needs to do, and most importantly supporting these guys because we trust our players and we trust their abilities and we trust over the course of time that will, as it normally does, correct itself with a lot more games on the belt. So I think Aaron Boone is doing everything he can do within his power currently.”

Cashman on owner Hal Steinbrenner

“He’s disappointed, clearly,” Cashman said Monday in a Zoom media call. “Hal obviously has got a lot invested in this situation, but he’s also a fan just like we all are. Our expectation is to provide great Yankee baseball for those who come to the games or those who are watching the games, and we haven’t done that here in the beginning of April.”

This writer wants New York Yankee fans to realize, the bottom line in all of this is to remember this is not the end of the world, it’s a long 162 game season, and these first 15 games are just a blip in that season, even the best of teams in their best years have ups and downs in a season. In 1997 the Yankees got off to a 5-10 start and then won 18 of their next 25 games. They did lose the division that year and the Wild card berth. But did win 4 World Series Championships in the surrounding five years.

The unfortunate part of this slow start is that every loss this early in the season can be impactful at the end of the season. The Yankee pitchers have to pitch better and longer. The defense needs to get down to basics and clean up their act. I do not doubt that the Yankees hitters will start hitting, but they must start doing it sooner than later.

The New York Yankees now have a hole to dig themselves out of, and hopefully, that will start today when they face the Atlanta Braves. They have faced the Toronto Blue Jays and Tampa Bay Rays an inordinate number of times to start the season. After the short 2 game series with the Braves, they will face the Cleveland Indians, the Baltimore Orioles, and the Detroit Tigers. Hopefully, they can turn themselves around in their search for the elusive New York Yankee 28th World Championship.

Brian Cashman discusses Yankees’ slow start to the season

New York Yankees, Brian Cashman

The Yankees are off to the worst start since 1997. They currently sit at 5-10 on the season, which is an American League worst. There have been many things that have led to this slow start. The offensive has been horribly inconsistent, and the pitching staff hasn’t been anything to brag about. Everyone not named Gerrit Cole has had trouble finding any sort of consistency. 

Many have concerns regarding the start of the 2021 season. How can you blame them? The Yankees have one of the best all-around rosters in the MLB. That’s what’s so frustrating about their recent performance. At this point, New York should not be one of the bottom feeders in the AL.

So, where do you toss the blame?

Considering the Yankees didn’t make many changes this offseason, the recent decline is very dumfounding. This has some pointing at guys like Aaron Boone (manager) and Marcus Thames (hitting coach) for the recent struggles. As much as I would like to defend the coaching staff, I can’t put a pin in it either.

The recent struggles led Yankees’ GM Brian Cashman to schedule a conference with the media. He started by saying that they are “disappointed” at where they stand and that the most “troubling” thing so far has been their record. He also addressed the offensive and how right now, “they’re not a strength of ours” and that they’re a team “that opposing teams would want to face.” But he said that throughout the season, “they will” become a huge strength. 

Cashman also talked about the defensive and base running errors. Saying that “when the offense is not thriving,” then the “smaller stuff gets magnified.” He makes a good point by stating they need to be as “clean” as possible in the field and on the bases as the offense “finds its stride.” 

Cashman was also not pleased with the fans throwing stuff onto the field. Saying that, “if someone wants to throw something on the field, then they should expect to be arrested.” He understood the frustration from the fans but said there is “no place” for that at any time. 

Lastly, Cashman was asked about Aaron Boone’s performance thus far. He said that he’s “doing everything he needs to do” and is, most importantly, “supporting our guys.” It seems as though Cashman is putting little blame on Boone and expects everything to flatten out over time. He also expressed support in Boone’s decision to talk to the team with a stronger tone. 

Cashman and the Yankees are obviously not happy with their performance. With that said, they’re still very confident. They know that they can play. They’ve expressed time and time again that this 15-game stretch in no way defines who they are. 

Only time will tell whether the Yankees can pull it together. Fifteen games is a very small sample size to go off. This team is good enough to compete late into the year, they just need to show it. Tune in tomorrow as the Yankees begin a two-game set against the Braves. It might be the series where the Bombers turn things around! 

New York Yankees: “Oh no, cuts are on the way”

New York Yankees, Aaron Boone

For all 75 New York Yankee players at spring training, cuts are coming as the team whittles down to just 26 roster players. As many as 75 of them have one thing in common they hope to make the club, but the reality is that most of them won’t and face an uncertain future. Some clubs have starting cutting players already; the Yankees have not. Manager Aaron Boone said he wasn’t sure how cuts would work, although the club runs a parallel spring camp with some pitchers off-site at the player development complex.

The dreaded cut has changed over the years; back in the day, a player would return to his locker and find a red tag on it. That was the unceremonial way they found out; they cleaned out their locker and left. Today the cut method is far less harsh. You might get a tap on the shoulder and be escorted into the manager’s office. There would likely be a coach or two present. Besides being cut, they are often instructed what skills to continue to develop. But the result is the same, here one day and gone the next. That’s almost 50 closed-door meetings, 50 reassuring conversations, 50 sets of marching orders, often with the feel of an old Alfred Hitchcock movie.

If it’s a Major Leaguer that is being cut, it’s a bit more complicated. GM Brian Cashman or assistant GM Jean Afterman would also be in on the meeting to answer questions and take abuse from the exiting player. Aside from wanting to make the team, players also want to delay being cut as long as possible. While in spring training, as long as they stay in major-league camp, they receive major-league meal allowances. For 2021, a New York Yankee player who doesn’t make his year-round home in the Tampa metroplex is entitled to a weekly allowance of $345.50, a supplemental weekly allowance of $61.50, a daily room allowance of $40, and a daily meal and tip allowance of $98. These may not be the exact amounts but are representative as each team is a bit different.

One oddity of the cut season is that players often can’t be found; they may be hiding, in the parking lot, or just not around. But they will be found. Some may be elusive on Mondays because that’s when many cuts are made to avoid another week’s stipend. For some players reassigned, there will be no place to go. Minor-league camps won’t open until April 1, after the major-league club departs to open the season.

Some players that are cut will be assigned to alternate sites; some will be cut with nowhere to go or will join the unemployment line. But there will be valid reasons for teams to reassign or option players in the coming days. One example: Players who are optioned on or before March 16 can continue to participate in exhibition games until the end of the spring. But if they haven’t been optioned by that date and sustain a disabling injury in an exhibition, teams would be forced to place them on the major-league injured list; and pay them a major-league salary.

As difficult as this is for managers, there is a flipside. They also get to hand out the good news to players, getting to tell a Double or Triple-A player that his dream has come true, and he would be able to stand on that chalk line on Opening Day at Yankee Stadium.

New York Yankee Manager profile: Aaron Boone will his contract be extended?

New York Yankees, Aaron Boone, Brian Cashman

The New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone was a baseball player for twelve years, mostly with the Cincinnati Reds. During the last half of the 2003 season, he famously played 52 games for the Yankees. Boone became a Yankee star when the 2003 Red Sox won the sixth game of the ALCS forcing a game seven.

Tim Wakefield pitched a scoreless tenth for Boston and in the bottom of the 11th faced Aaron Boone, who had entered earlier as a pinch-runner. On Wakefield’s first pitch of the inning, Boone launched a walk-off home run into the left-field seats of Fenway Park.   ALCS MVP Rivera running to the mound and collapsing on it in joy, Boone jumping on home plate, and Rivera being carried off on his teammates’ shoulders as the Yankees won the ALCS. Boone was forever entered into Yankee’s lore.

After the 2017 season and loss to the cheating Houston Astros (not known at the time), the New York Yankees decided it was time for a managerial change. Joe Girardi, who brought the Yankees to their last World Series win, did not renew his contract. The Yankees searched for a new manager, interviewing several prospects. Considered for the job was Girardi’s 10-year veteran Rob Thompson, Eric Wedge, who worked in the front office of the Blue Jays, Hensley Meulens, a hitting coach, and Aaron Boone. The Yankees ended choosing Boone and gave him a four-year contract.

Yankees fans, upon learning of the hiring, said Aaron, who? Boone had no managerial experience and was only known for hitting the walk-off homer in 2003. Most fans thought the Yankees should have kept Joe Girardi, but the Yankees wanted a manager that could better communicate with younger players and was not as strict as Girardi.

In the eyes of New York Yankee fans, Boone had some pretty big shoes to fill. The Yankee brass claimed that one of the main factors in his removal, besides his overbearingness, was that he didn’t communicate well with the young players. This was the same manager who brought a young Miami Marlins team that nothing was expected of to fourth place in the National League and was named Manager of the Year in 2006. The first time a Manager of the Year was ever awarded to a manager of a fourth-place team.

It wouldn’t take long to gain some faith in Boone and his approach to management. Boone and the team won 100 games in 2018. At the end of the season, the Yankees won their Wild Card games against the Athletics but lost the divisional series against the Red Sox. In 2019 Boone bettered his record and won 103 games and the AL East. In the postseason, they swept the Minnesota Twins in the divisional series. They went on to the ALCS against the Houston Astros but again excited early in losing to the Astros.

Still, Boone was praised for bringing the team to the postseason with unprecedented injuries. Fast forward to the 2020 coronavirus season when injuries again plagued the Yankees. The Yankees would lose the East to the Tampa Bay Rays. But in the expanded playoffs, the Yankees got a berth in the Wild Card Series sweeping the Cleveland Indians. The Yankees would have to face their foe in the south, the Tampa Bay Rays in the ALDS. The Yankees lost again.

With their third early exit in a row from the postseason, many began to question Boone’s leadership, at least in the postseason. Boone is now in the last year of his contract, and a contract extension was in question. Maybe in the eyes of the fans, but not so with the Yankee front office. General Manager Brian Cashman made it known he wants Boone to be the manager for the next ten years.

With the New York Yankees’ full faith and a new rotation of pitchers to work with, Aaron Boone will have a chance to prove that Cashman’s faith in him was warranted. The Yankees probably have the best chance of advancing this season than they have had in several years. If Boone fails to win the division that has several weakened teams or has another early exit in the postseason, we may again be having this discussion.

 

 

 

Yankees: 3 outfielders Cashman could sign in the coming days

New York Yankees, Brett Gardner

The New York Yankees aren’t done making moves yet, and with spring training just around the corner, we should expect GM Brian Cashman to be active in the coming days. The expectation is that he will allocate resources toward the outfield, as the Yankees are currently set to roll with Clint Frazier as their starting left-fielder in 2021.

The question is, should we feel confident with Frazier starting on a daily basis, or should Cashman bring in reinforcements just in case? The Yankees do still have Mike Tauchman as an option to utilize, but the LF position has been spotty the past few seasons.

There are still some free agents available the Yankees could consider on cost-efficient deals, but with minimal money left over after trading away Adam Ottavino in a salary dump, acquiring a starting-caliber player is likely off the table.

Three outfielders the Yankees could sign in the coming days:

1.) Brett Gardner

The easiest move for the Yankees would be to bring back Brett Gardner for one more season. They already rejected his $10 million option for the 2021 season, electing to take his $2.5 million buyout. With that being said, the 37-year-old will have to return on a cheap, veteran deal if he wants to play one more season in pinstripes. The Yankees aren’t ready to splash the cash on his services at this point, so they might look to a different player who is willing to take less money.

2.) Ben Gamel

Ben Gamel might raise your eyebrows, considering he was drafted in the 10th round back in 2010 by the Yankees. He spent the last two seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers, earning a .237 batting average last season over 40 games. He isn’t the most efficient and productive player, but he can fill a reserve role behind Frazier. He would also be extremely cheap, but he has struggled with strikeouts the past two seasons.

3.) Matt Kemp

Another veteran option is Matt Kemp, who played for the Colorado Rockies in 2020. He finished with a .239 average, six homers, and 21 RBIs. He did log a career-high 31.1% strikeout rate but also a personal best 11.4% walk rate. He is two years removed from a .290 average of 21 homers with the Los Angeles Dodgers, but those days seem to be behind him. At 36 years old, he’s only a smidge younger than Gardy, and his defense isn’t as proficient as the Yankee veteran. Based on these numbers, the Yankees are better off offering Gardner just enough to bring him back.

New York Yankees: Jameson Taillon fantastic rehab news

Jameson Taillon, New York Yankees

With ownership forcing general manager Brian Cashman to stay under the $210 million luxury tax threshold, there’s no surprise the New York Yankees took a few additional risks this off-season. The Yankees will rely on players coming off of the injuries to keep the cost down, as their contracts are more cost-efficient.

Cashman landed Corey Kluber on a one year, $11 million deal and traded for Jameson Taillon of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Both starters haven’t pitched over 37 innings over the past two seasons, but the expectation is that both will be ready for spring training. Kluber stated last week that physically he feels good but mentally, he needs to find his way out of rehabilitatio-mode. On the other hand, Taillon has been extremely optimistic about his status and expects to be 100% healthy for the season.

Per ESPN’s Buster Olney:

Taillon, now 18 months removed from elbow reconstruction surgery, is said to be throwing with exceptional control and appears ready to go for the start of the Yankees’ camp.

Taillon has undergone Tommy John surgery twice in his career, but with a slight change in his fundamentals and utilizing more of his legs, he should be able to take that additional pressure off his arm. As a former first-round pick, Taillon has spent the last five seasons with Pittsburgh, missing the entire 2020 campaign.

Taillon’s last significant sample size was in 2018, when he pitched 191 innings. He logged a 3.20 ERA with 8.43 strikeouts per nine. He has the ability to dominate at the MLB level, and his familiarity with Gerrit Cole will likely make his transition to the Yankees much smoother. He primarily utilizes a fastball, slider, curveball, and change-up. He hovers in the 95 mph range with his fastball, which is an indication of solid velocity. As he tweaks his fundamentals and utilizes his legs more, Jameson should be able to put a bit more power behind his pitches.

Despite the risks, Cashman took this off-season, if the dice roll his way, the starting rotation will be in great shape moving forward.

Yankees News: Brian Cashman non-committal on Domingo German in turn of events

New York Yankees, Domingo German

The New York Yankees are preparing for a tentative spring training start on February 17, but they have plenty of decisions left to make. General manager Brian Cashman has been working like a madman to bolster the starting pitching rotation and also secure an adequate bullpen, which is easier said than done.

The starting rotation has been hedged on quality players returning from injury, specifically Corey Kluber and Jameson Taillon. As for Luis Severino, he’s expected to return in late summer, so his impact on the 2021 campaign might not be as significant as we would’ve hoped. The Yankees are also expecting Domingo German to make a return from suspension, but there is no guarantee he will be a part of the roster, despite previous assumptions he would be activated.

Several weeks ago, co-owner Hal Steinbrenner stated that he must feel comfortable with the progress German has made as a man before welcoming him back to the organization.

“I have to absolutely feel comfortable that he deeply, deeply regrets and is sorry for what he did, and I absolutely have to be comfortable with the fact that he’s turned his life around,” Hal Steinbrenner said on “The Michael Kay Show” on ESPN Radio. “Those two things are for sure.”

The Yankees put a lot of effort and time into upholding their stature as an organization. Cashman also reaffirmed Steinbrenner’s comments during a zoom meeting this past week.

“He’s on the roster,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Friday. “He’s going to be coming to Major League spring training and we’ll have a sit-down in person conversation. We have connected with him clearly via smartphone. But we’re going to meet in person when we get to Tampa, and we’ll take it from there.”

The New York Yankees could use German, but some things are bigger than baseball:

German is an intriguing player who could play a big part in the 2021 season. The last time he pitched was in 2019 when he earned a 4.03 ERA over 143 innings. He earned 18 victories with 9.63 strikeouts per nine. German was taking fantastic steps forward before a domestic abuse issue that was witnessed by an MLB employee. Domingo was immediately suspended for the remainder of the season and missed the entire 2020 campaign as a result.

While management needs to speak with German before welcoming him back, Cashman did state that German is doing well and his family is staying safe. These are all positive signs, but nothing is ever a guarantee.

“We look forward to getting (German) back in the fold,” Cashman added. “I can report everything’s going well with him and his family, but we’re obviously looking forward to meeting him and everybody else down in Major League camp.”

Yankees News: Bad Luis Severino injury news, as Cashman is vague on his return

New York Yankees, Luis Severino

The New York Yankees starting pitching rotation has been bolstered significantly off over the past few weeks, thanks to moves by general manager Brian Cashman. However, the moves he’s made are considered risky since both Corey Kluber and Jameson Taillon are coming off significant injuries.

Both starters haven’t pitched over 40 innings in the past two years, so the Yankees are hedging their bet that they will escape without any serious injury complications moving forward. Cashman seems confident in what he’s built, despite not having the financial flexibility he’s usually accustomed to.

Despite their moves to improve the rotation, the Yankees are also looking to gain back Domingo German and Luis Severino for the 2021 season. With the addition of these two homegrown players and their acquisitions, they should be in good shape, but Cashman’s latest comments on Severino’s injury and rehabilitation from Tommy John surgery aren’t exactly motivating.

Cashman stated that the Yankees expect to gain Severino back in late July, but that timeline is a bit vague. He also mentioned late summer as a possible return point, which wouldn’t even give Severino half a season to regain his form to prepare for the playoffs. Considering he hasn’t pitched more than 12 innings in two years, I wouldn’t depend on Severino being a focal point and big contributor in 2021.

Now, if you feel comfortable rolling with Kluber and Taillon as your number two and three starters, you might either be a genius or a simple fool. Cashman has done his best with limited funds, but both pitchers seem to be healthy and prepared for the season ahead. Kluber stated after signing with the Yankees that he was looking for a contending team, as he feels good physically, but mentally he needs to find his way out of the rehabilitation mentality.

As for Taillon, he asserted he feels 100% healthy, and he should have a normal workload going into spring training, which is a great sign. The evidence reveals that Cashman made two stellar acquisitions, but most expected Severino to be ready earlier than the timetable given. That will be a major blow for the Yankees, as they look to hold the latter portion of the rotation together with youth and inexperience.

New York Yankees’ general manager Brian Cashman may be on to something

There may be some controversial New York Yankee players, but general manager Brian Cashman doesn’t escape the discussion. Half of Yankee fans think he should be fired for being incompetent; the other half think he is brilliant. He is secretive and seldom does what fans expect. A good example is when fans sorely wanted either Manny Machado or Bryce Harper on the team. Both got huge record-breaking contracts with the Dodgers and the Phillies. But Cashman didn’t bite; instead, he picked up a little known DJ LeMahieu from Colorado for a fraction of the cost.

LeMahieu turned out to be one of the best players in all of baseball during his two-year contract. In his first year in the Bronx, he batted .327, was an All-Star, Silver Slugger, and came in 4th in the MVP voting. The front office and fans alike thought he would have a hard time matching that in the final year of his contract, but he did, and in a big way, he batted .364, was again a Silver Slugger, and came in 3rd in the MVP voting, oh and he was the Major League batting champ.

Neither Machado nor Harper matched these stats, and LeMahieu did it at half the cost to the Yankees. He was so good that the Yankees put everything on hold waiting to resign him to a new contract, something they finally did, signing him to a six-year $90 million deal that satisfied both parties needs, LeMahieu got the security he sought. The Yankees got a low annual cost that allowed them to make other moves to improve the team.

Since then, the Yankees have seen free agents come and go, sign with other teams while the Yankees were on hold. Once the hold was turned off, Cashman immediately signed Corey Kluber to a one-year $11 million deal for a pitcher that hadn’t pitched in a year and a half. That hardly seemed like the thing to do when the Yankees already had two returning pitchers that didn’t pitch last year. But Cashman sees things that others don’t see. Kluber is a two-time Cy Young Award winner and won 18 games in 2016 and 2017, and 2018 20 games. Cashman bets on the deal’s high reward side that says he hopes he can return to the pitcher he was.

Doubling down on the strategy, he then signed another pitcher that didn’t pitch last year in another low-risk, high reward deal. He traded four low-level Yankee prospects to the Pittsburgh Pirates for starting pitcher Jameson Taillon who is coming off Tommy John surgery but will be ready to pitch on day one. It seems that Cashman never seems to do the obvious. When fans wanted reliever Brad Hand or Liam Hendriks, Cashman signed little known Brad O’Day. O’Day will give the Yankees a new look with his submarine style of pitching. This past season he pitched to a minuscule 1.10 ERA in 19 games.

Recently the Athletic’s Jim Bowden rated the top 15 best free agents remaining on the market and who would be the best fit. He claims that none of them is a good fit for the New York Yankees. Brian Cashman may be on to something with his out of the box acquisitions. He has taken some big risks, but there could be some high rewards; only time will tell what score to give Cashman.

The YES Network says: “Brian Cashman is the longest-tenured general manager in baseball, and rightfully so. He has been the mastermind behind the Yankees’ last four World Series titles and, more recently, helped spearhead the club’s influx of homegrown talent.”

In other brilliant moves, Cashman has brought Luis Severino, Mashiro Tanaka, Chad Green, Hideki Matsui, Andrew Miller, Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez, Mike Mussina, Robinson Cano, CC Sabathia, and the Yankee’s newest sensation Jasson Domingo, to name a few. Cashman has also made some amazing trades: He traded David Wells for Roger Clemens, he traded left fielder Ricky Ledee and some prospects for David Justice, he traded Alfonso Soriano for Alex Rodriguez from the Rangers, he also went under the radar to send Wilson Betemit and a pair of Minor League pitchers to Chicago for Nick Swisher. The list could go on and on, but no general manager in baseball has made more upside acquisitions or trades than Brian Cashman.

The Yankees may not have won a World Series since 2009, but in Cashman’s 23 years with the New York Yankees, he has taken them into the postseason in 19 of those years. No other GM in baseball can say that. In those 19 years, he has won 4 World Championships.