Before spring training commences within six weeks at the New York Yankees training facility in Tampa, Florida, the team must add a strong piece to the starting pitching rotation. Moreover, with the free agency market in shambles, the Bronx Bombers are gonna need to adopt a trade approach. But nothing comes without a price. Thus, let’s explore the options the Bombers have to trade it for a pitcher this off-season.
Over the years, the Yankees have invested a lot in several minor-league prospects, including Oswald Peraza. However, Peraza’s growth has been shunted owing to competition from fellow rookie Anthony Volpe. With Volpe locked in as the team’s regular shortstop for the near future, Peraza’s currently a misfit. Moreover, personally, the prospect’s time and talent are getting wasted in the minors. Thus, it’s ideal for the Yanks to use him as a prized trade chip and land a potent pitching reinforcement from elsewhere.
Outfield prospect Everson Pereira made a lot of noise with his insane home run-hitting spree in Triple-A last season. The hot form earned him a major league call-up. But Pereira missed the opportunity by a country mile. He slashed .151/.233/.194 during his limited appearances in September 2023. Moreover, with the arrival of Juan Soto, Trent Grisham, and Alex Verdugo, outfield space has ceased for the upcoming season. Thus, Pereira is a perfect trade chip for the Yankees to consider while pursuing a strong starter.
Jose Trevino’s season-ending wrist injury acted as a blessing in disguise for catcher Ben Rortvedt as he received a call-up last September. However, Rortvedt’s first assignment as Gerrit Cole’s standard catcher was tough to endure. He faced the wrath of the pitcher on multiple occasions, not just on the field but also in the bullpen. On top of that, hits dried up from Ben’s end, which further plummeted his chances of making it to the 2024 season lineup. While Ben alone won’t be enough to lure any team into trading a pitcher, it’s a head start to perform multiple permutations and combinations.
The 6-foot-6 tall prospect Spencer Jones has drawn an uncanny resemblance with Yankees captain Aaron Judge owing to his raw power and intense athleticism. Though he bats left-handed, Jones just made it to Double-A last season. Thus, the prospect needs at least one more season in the Triple-A to be eligible for a major league call-up. Of course, trading Jones is a big risk. But if the Bronx Bombers are serious about its intention to contest for the World Championship in 2024, something has to give.
Having said that, Hal Steinbrenner’s hesitancy in giving up farm system depth has been second to none. Thus, in case the New York Yankees fail to trade a pitcher, prospects Chase Hampton and Will Warren are a couple of in-house candidates for the position of mid-rotation starters. While Warren and Hampton are not major league ready, the Yanks will be out of options if they fail to make a splash signing this off-season.