New York Yankees: Brian McCann Trade Coming Soon?

The New York Yankees may make the first big move of the off-season by trading Brian McCann.

Gary Sanchez came up for the New York Yankees last season and emerged as their best player down the stretch. As the Yankees made their transition, Brian McCann’s role became more of a backup catcher/DH/first baseman. Because of Sanchez’s emergence, one of the things Yankees GM Brian Cashman has to decide is what to do with McCann.

Apparently, the choice will more than likely be trade him, if McCann allows it.

According to a source, Cashman has already identified a potential trade partner for McCann, who has two years and $34 million remaining on his contract.

McCann has a full no-trade clause, so he will ultimately decide whether he stays or goes, but given his status as the Yankees’ designated hitter and part-time catcher, the 32-year-old could decide that he wants to catch full-time, something that won’t happen in the Bronx now that Gary Sanchez has established himself as the full-time backstop.

One of the teams rumored to have interest is the Houston Astros who appear to be going after every big fish in the free agent or trade market.

I’m sure the Yankees will be looking for some controllable assets and most likely a young arm or even two for McCann. If they can get that, then they can then pivot and take that money and spend it on a DH/first baseman.

Kendrys Morales and Mike Napoli are both free agents and both could serve that purpose. It covers the Yankees in case that Greg Bird hasn’t fully recovered from his torn labrum in his shoulder and gives the Yankees another power right-handed bat or switch hitter to help balance the lineup. Another big plus is neither has draft pick compensation attached.

The Yankees would be a little thinner at catcher with having Sanchez, Austin Romine and newly added Kyle Higashioka on the 40-man roster if they do in fact deal McCann.

I’ve thought all off-season that the Yankees should keep McCann just in case Sanchez falls back down to earth or gets injured. Going with Romine and Higashioka seems a bit risky in that case and McCann would be insurance. He could play a little first, DH and catch a couple of days a week to help keep Sanchez fresh as well.

I understand the move should it go down. Will it? That remains to be seen.

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