Update: The Yankees appear to be in the mix for Cuban outfielder Jorge Soler, whom I would prefer over any trade candidates. It was believed that Soler was going to sign with the Chicago Cubs, but that report his since been shot down.
The New York Yankees made a classic depth for depth trade earlier this off-season when they dealt prized catching prospect Jesus Montero to the Seattle Mariners for their own prized starting pitcher, Michael Pineda. The thinking within the Yankees organization was that the team had enough depth at the catching position to allow for the loss of Montero.
One reason many opposed the Montero trade was that the Yankees had enough pitching depth to make a trade for a starting pitcher unnecessary. Take that depth, add Michael Pineda, and the Yankees now have a huge abundance of starting pitchers, which is a great problem to have.
The Yankees have "untouchables" in CC Sabathia, Michael Pineda, Ivan Nova, and Hiroki Kuroda, "fringe, but not likely to be traded" pitchers in Freddy Garcia and Phil Hughes, and "youngsters" Adam Warren, David Phelps, and even Graham Stoneburner. Add Manny Banuelos and Dellin Betances to the mix, and the Yankees have eleven pitchers that could be in the five man rotation in the next couple of years.
For the future, we can rule out Hiroki Kuroda and Freddy Garcia. Kuroda is likely a one to two year Yankee, while Garcia is almost certainly in his last season with the team. (Not talking contracts, talking likelihood of future signing with team.) Those two will be replaced by Stoneburner, Banuelos, Betances, and any other prospects that shoot through the system.
So, the Yankees have a lot of pitching depth. That is not a problem at all, but could it be a solution for the Yankees outfield of the future? Follow me after the jump for more.The idea that the Yankees should trade from their pitching depth is a risky one, as there is no way to know who will pan out and who won't. (I did not even include A.J. Burnett on the list of pitchers: His is one case of the Yankees (presumably) trading from depth.)
However, when the team has that many starters that are likely to contribute, it makes it a bit easier to lose one or two of them in a trade for a position of need.
The current position of need for the Yankees is a young outfielder, with Curtis Granderson likely needing a contract extension soon, and Nick Swisher's contract running out after the season.
If Andre Ethier, Domonic Brown, or any other outfielder becomes available, the Yankees should take a long look at the possibility of offering one or two of their pitchers, along with a couple of minor prospects, for the outfielder.
There is no need to trade from depth, it is a great asset to have, but if the right deal is there, the Yankees are in a great position with the current state of the staff.