This offseason the Yankees had something, which was unheard of in the past. Not a single big money splash on a big time player. But still the Yankees are in the hunt with a team assembled with minor league players essentially.
The key for the Yankees in the second half of the season will be to keep their momentum going and the best way to do that is to use up the $12 million the Yankees got from Mark Teixeira’s season ending wrist injury to make a few trades.
Firstly the Yankees should look to get a better first baseman. Using Lyle Overbay in hopes that he turns things around for the ball club is not the best option. The Yankee fans are used to seeing Mark Texeira covering 1B but with the season ending wrist injury that he suffered, it seems that Joe Girardi has made it clear that the job at first base is open and the only player in my mind who the Yankees should target is Justin Morneau. Morneau, 32, has been in great form this season hitting .272 with 7 HR’s and 51 RBI’s. He has proved to be one of the more solid player that Minnesota has this year but with the Yankees lacking a true first baseman, Justin Morneau may be leaving for New York soon. The Yankees would most likely offer cash, and some prospects considering that Morneau is 32. But if this deal does get done, there is no doubt that Morneau will be the every day first baseman.
The Yankees should look to add a corner infielder because of the inconsistency of David Adams and the many injury problems of the infamous Alex Rodriguez and Kevin Youkilis. The perfect player to fill that role is Placido Polanco. The Marlins are going to be sellers at this year’s deadline and Placido Polanco seems to be on the trade block to the highest bidder. The 37 year old third baseman is batting .252 with 1 HR and 15 RBIs and he would provide a consistent presence at the corner infield role for the Yankees during the second half of the season. The Yankees probably wouldn’t have to give up anything special for Polanco as he is a player on the decline but it seems that since Joba Chamberlin is on the trade block, that he may be succumbed to be playing baseball in Miami now.
The next need for the Yankees is to get a catcher. Austin Romine and Chris Stewart is the not most deadly combination of catchers in the MLB and if the Yankees were to acquire a new catcher at the deadline they would be able to use Chris Stewart at his usual role of backup. The Yankees should look to go after Jonathan Lucroy of the Milwaukee Brewers. Lucroy has been batting .268 with with 11 HR’s and 48 RBIs this season and with Cervelli’s return to the MLB being delayed it would help to get a experienced catcher into the clubhouse. Lucroy is a solid catcher with a good bat so it would take much more than a prospect to get him. The Yankees will most likely have to give up Phil Hughes and a prospect to land the catcher.
With the Yankees outfield looking like a retirement house with it mainly consisting of Vernon Wells and Ichiro Suzuki day in and day out it may be a good idea to bring in a more consistent player to help partner Zoilo Almonte out there. Alex Rios should be the first player that should come into GM Brian Cashman’s mind. With the White Sox looking like sellers this offseason it may be a good idea for Cashman and the Yankees to pounce on Rios. Rios, 32, is batting .271 with 11 HR’s and 38 RBIs and would provide some help as it would allow for the Yankees to rest some of their more aged outfielders.
The final need for the Yankees this trade deadline is for them to shore up their number five spot in the pitching rotation. With CC Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, Andy Pettitte, and Michael Pineda’s (once he returns) spots guaranteed, the Yankees still don’t have a decent pitcher to finalize the rotation. Phil Hughes, once touted to be a great pitcher in this league, has been inconsistent throughout the whole season and with Ivan Nova’s recent form peaking it still doesn’t seem that either of them could hold down the spot for a long time without having a couple of bad games in the process. The Yankees should look to go after Matt Garza. The Chicago Cubs are no doubt going to be sellers at the deadline and there is no doubt that there is going to be a lot of interest for him, but to me there is only one place where he should land up. The New York Yankees. The Yankees are in dire need of some starting pitching help as Andy Pettitte has now gone cold after an extremely hot start to the season, Ivan Nova is no longer the rookie we remember him as, and Phil Hughes is as inconsistent as we remember him as. Garza is 5-1 with an ERA of 3.22. Those stats sound good and look good and on the mound it is always business as usual for Matt Garza. Matt Garza would probably come at a high price though, the Yankees may need to cough up Ivan Nova, Phil Hughes, and a prospect for the pitcher but it would be worth it. If the Yankees make these moves, I do not see a reason why they cannot make another push for the postseason, overtake their arch rivals, the Boston Red Sox, clinch the AL East, and make a deep run in the playoffs.