Aug 7, 2016; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman addresses the media during a press conference announcing the retirement of designated hitter Alex Rodriguez prior to the game between the Cleveland Indians and New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium. Rodriguez will play his last game on Friday August 12, 2016. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
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New York Yankees rumors have been picking up steam in recent days with the offseason beginning. What is the latest hot stove buzz?
After the end of the World Series, New York Yankees rumors have been heating up as the weather around the country cools down. After a surprisingly successful 2016 season, the Yankees are looking to improve in the offseason.
Last season, the Yankees made a serious push for the postseason after the trades of Andrew Miller, Aroldis Chapman, and Carlos Beltran. Usually, when a team is sellers at the trade deadline, they struggle for the rest of the season, but it was the opposite for the Yankees.
The call-up of catcher Gary Sanchez really sparked them in the second half, as he put up historic numbers upon his arrival. The call-up of Sanchez was the first of many upcoming call-ups for the Yankees, as they have a ton of young talent on the horizon. The decisions to trade some of the great players at the deadline last season was controversial, but there is no denying that they got a lot in return.
With the offseason underway, there have been rumors about what moves the Yankees will be making to try and fix up their roster for next season. Due to the young prospects in the system, some of the remaining veterans will likely find themselves on the trading block.
In addition to some veterans being on the trading block, the Yankees will also be looking to strengthen in some areas like their bullpen. With the offseason underway, here is the latest buzz on the hot stove for the Yankees.
Sep 20, 2016; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York Yankees left fielder Brett Gardner (11) hits a RBI single during the seventh inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Expect a few teams to inquire about Gardner’s availability, ones that could use a lefthanded bat/leadoff hitter. Gardner could bring back prospects to add to the Yankees’ war chest. “Open to listening to anything,” said GM Brian Cashman.
Gardner is coming off of a gold glove season for the Yankees but with Jacoby Ellsbury on the team, Gardner can’t be utilized to his full potential. Like Cafardo mentioned, Gardner can be a leadoff hitter and a starter on many other teams in the league.
Last season, Gardner totaled .261 batting average, seven home runs, 41 RBIs, 16 stolen bases, and was only caught stealing four times. Adding Gardner to a team that doesn’t have a leadoff hitter would be a good idea, as he is certainly capable of that.
For the Yankees, moving Gardner would also allow them to have some more flexibility in their outfield to add more of a power hitter. Gardner also comes at a rather affordable price for the next few seasons and could get the Yankees some more prospects to add to their farm system.
Aug 31, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Boone Logan (48) delivers a pitch in the eighth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Coors Field. The Rockies defeated the Dodgers 7-0. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Another recent rumor for the Yankees has been a possible reunion with left-handed reliever Boone Logan. According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the Yankees will be one of the teams that are interested in the services of Logan this offseason.
Adding a left-handed reliever to their bullpen makes a lot of sense for the Yankees, as they have lost a few key ones in recent years. In the past two seasons, the Yankees have seen Justin Wilson, Andrew Miller, and Aroldis Chapman all be traded.
Having a good left-handed pitcher in the bullpen is very important, and Logan would fill a need. After a few tough seasons in Colorado, Logan rebounded in 2016. Last season, he totaled a 3.69 ERA, and also recorded 27 holds. 2014 and 2015 were really rough years for Logan, as pitching in Colorado is no easy thing.
Logan is familiar with New York, as he pitched for the Yankees for four seasons. With the Yankees, Logan totaled a 19-7 record and 3.38 ERA. While Logan isn’t a dominant left-handed pitcher like Chapman or Miller, he could be used to help bridge the gap from the middle innings to closer Dellin Betances. Logan wouldn’t be a flashy signing, but he is a good fit for the Yankees.
Oct 2, 2016; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees catcher Brian McCann (34) circles the bases after hitting a home run in the bottom of the fourth inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium. It was the 20th of the season for McCann. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports
One of the most talked about players for the Yankees so far this offseason has been catcher Brian McCann. At the trade deadline last season, the Yankees were trying to move McCann in order to clear the way for Gary Sanchez. A trade of their veteran catcher never came to be, and now he will be hearing his name mentioned in rumors throughout the offseason.
Sources: Yankees have expressed willingness to pay half of Brian McCann's remaining $34M, but want multiple top young players in return.
One of the teams that have expressed interest in McCann is the Houston Astros. There is certainly a fit for McCann in Houston, as they are looking to acquire a left-handed bat to help balance their lineup.
Last season, McCann had a pretty solid season for the Yankees, but it will be his price tag that is a major sticking point in any possible trade. In 2016, McCann played in 130 games, totaling 20 home runs, 58 RBIs, and a .242 batting average.
McCann will be 33-years-old when the 2017 season starts, which is a bit old for a catcher. However, he has shown no signs of breaking down in his three seasons with the Yankees. Getting a lot of time at DH in the second half of the season also likely helped him last season.
With Sanchez and Austin Romine on the roster, the Yankees will be actively looking to move McCann this offseason.