The season is not a wash yet! Grading the Yankees deadline acquisitions.
I don’t know about you, but I think Brian Cashman got his swagger back. Maybe? I don’t know. Between the rumors and lack-off early additions, things were looking questionable, but looking at the trades, I think he made some fleecing moves.
After a stumbling start for a variety of reasons, the Yankees found themselves 2.5 games back from the second wild-card spot. Not ideal whatsoever. There is still plenty of seasons left, but additions needed to be made until the team returns fully healthy and starts playing at their potential.
The team needed pitching depth, capable out fielding, and lefty-handed bats. They captured those needs in the trade deadline in some capacity. You obviously won’t know the outcome until October, but from the higher-level view, I say not too shabby. From the fan perspective, bias aside, Cashman’s report card for the deadline was not too bad. For this blog, the grades of the trade take account the following metrics. Players acquired, players dealt, an overall deal agreed upon, and needs to be addressed.
Photo: Getty Images
Short Term Reliever Help
Yankees Receive: RHP Clay Holmes
Pirates: INF/OF Hoy Park, INF Diego Castillo
It was a little bit of a hefty price for a reliever that isn't spectacular but it is what it is. Holmes is fine. He is a right-hander who pitched to a 4.93 ERA with 44 strikeouts and 25 walks in 44 games this season and a 5.57 ERA with 122 Ks and 84 walks in 91 career games since 2018. People are calling him the "righty assassin". Losing Park is a tough one, but the Yankees viewed him as a one-hit-wonder.
Making room for “two”
Yankees Receive: Player to be named later
Reds Receive: RP Luis Cessa, Justin Wilson
Now, this isn't an acquisition, but it made the next two trades possible. Cessa was having a career year, and always handled his role on the team seamlessly. The right-hander is under team control through the 2023 season, meaning he has two years of arbitration eligibility remaining. He owned 2.82 ERA in 29 games this season. He was the ultimate cleaner-upper, helping the team in big moments. Wilson on the other end was having a way down year. It was okay to part ways with him. Not only did it free up some payroll, but it also opened up two 40-man roster spots. I hate to see Cessa go, but something Let's hope that PTBNL is a stud, or just something nice. Don't cry that it's over, smile that it happened.
An All-Star Power Lefty heads to his hometown squad. An additional reliever added too.
Yankees Receive: INF/OF Joey Gallo, LHP Joely Rodriguez
Rangers Receive: RHP Glen Otto, INF Ezequiel Duran, INF Trevor Hauver, INF Josh Smith
Joey Gallo, the power-hitting lefty, the friend of Rougned Odor, the two-all star and gold glove winner is coming back to his childhood favorite team. He currently ranks among the top 10 in the AL in OPS+ and wRC+, and if you’re more into traditional stats, he’s also in the AL’s top ten in home runs and OBP. Not only does he smack home runs, but he also gets walked a lot. He will eat the short porch up. He's 27 and has had two 40-home-run seasons in his career. He also is controllable through the 2022 season. This is an incredible move.
What is awesome is that the Yanks didn't need to give up any top ten talent AND are paying for the rest of his salary this year. LOL love to see it.
Joely Rodriguez is an upgrade from Justin Wilson. Although a higher ERA this season, 5.93 ERA in 27 1/3 innings, his 9.4 walk rate is a career low and his 63.1 ground-ball rate is a career-high.
There’s a new first baseman in town, and he’s a beauty
Yankees Receive: 1B Anthony Rizzo
I mean, holy crap. Anthony Rizzo, the prince of the Chicago Cubs, the World Series Champion, the ultimate competitor is your new starting first baseman for the New York Yankees. Cashman literally heard the Red Sox wanted him and he said "hold my beer".
Hopefully, Rizzo isn't a rental, as he could depart in the offseason because I would love to see him as a Yankee for the rest of his career.
This made an awkward situation for Luke Voit, who ended up not being traded. I was a little surprised, but you know what... hell yeah he's staying. If Boone was a component he would put Stanton in left, Gallo in the center, Rizzo at first, and Voit at DH to ease him back in. It is an ultimate death star lineup and I am so pumped for the rest of the season. Also... Rizzo in pinstripes just looks and feels so right.
Photo: Jomboy Media / Yankees
Starting pitcher depth
Yankees Receive: LHP Andrew Heaney
Angels Receive: RHP Janson Junk, Elvis Peguero
In the closing moments, the Yanks added an extra arm to the rotation. After missing out on Scherzer, Berrios, and Gibson, they needed to address the pitching department. Now they will have Luis Severino, Corey Kluber, and Clarke Schmidt returning, plus the possibility of Luis Gil and Medina, plus Deivi Garcia, so reinforcement is on its way.
This season, Heaney holds a 5.27 ERA with 113 strikeouts in 94 innings this season. his career numbers are a 4.57 ERA in 598 2/3 innings. It's not phenomenal, but he does have a strong 28.2 percent strikeout rate and 7.7 percent walk rate, plus a very low groundball rate at 33.5 percent groundball rate. Both Junk and Peguero weren't top 25 prospects, so low-risk high reward scenario.