A trade of New York Yankees catcher Brian McCann seems to be growing in likelihood as GM Brian Cashman lays the groundwork for a deal at the GM Meetings.
The New York Yankees came close to trading catcher Brian McCann to the Atlanta Braves at the August 1st trade deadline, and he has only become more expendable since then given Gary Sanchez‘s emergence as one of the best young catchers in baseball, in addition to Kyle Higashioka‘s surprising breakout in the upper minors.
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Both McCann and the Yankees have been saying all the right things about the veteran sticking around since he lost his starting job to Sanchez, but the swirling rumors at the GM Meetings in Scottsdale, Arizona suggest that it is increasingly likely that Mac is playing for a different club when spring rolls around.
Ken Davidoff and Joel Sherman of the New York Post report that Cashman already has several offers for McCann in hand, with the Braves and Astros the clubs who are confirmed to have interest. Davidoff and Sherman also toss out the Orioles and Nationals as other organizations who could be in the market for a catcher this offseason.
Tellingly, Cashman has also spoken to McCann’s agent B.B. Abbott about the possibility of a trade. The veteran backstop has no-trade protection so he would need to approve any deal, but as diplomatic as he’s been about losing his job to Sanchez, it seems likely he would welcome the opportunity to regain a full-time role, even if it means leaving the Bronx.
The front office has begun reaching out to several of the most notable free agent sluggers on the market in recent days, including Kendrys Morales, Yoenis Cespedes, Carlos Beltran, and Jose Bautista. Cashman made it clear that the team would only have interest in adding a bat if they moved McCann first.
While it’s nice to have two capable starting catchers on the roster, McCann doesn’t really have the bat any more to handle every day DH duties. If they can get a controllable young arm for him and then sign a veteran bopper like Beltran or Morales to fill the void on a short-term deal, that’s probably an upgrade for next year’s offense.