Yankee pitchers and catchers report in less than a month which means that the offseason is finally winding down. With the new year comes a new PSA approval poll for GM Brian Cashman. At this time last year, 72% of Pinstripe Alley readers approved of the job Cashman was doing. When the season started, his approval rating bounced around quite a bit, and dipped when the team was struggling. He finished the season with a 63% approval rating, despite the fact that the Yankees were headed to the postseason. Over the past few months, Cashman has worked to improve the team, mostly by moving players around in trade packages while avoiding the free agency market. Do you approve of the job Cashman's done over the offseason?
It appears that they Yankees' roster is set for the 2016 season, as Cashman popped into the YES Network studio earlier in the week to say that he doesn't anticipate the Yankees making any other moves before spring training starts. One thing to keep in mind is that Cashman doesn't have complete freedom to do whatever he wants. If the Steinbrenners don't want to spend money, then Cashman really has no choice but to concentrate on improving the team via trade, which is exactly what he has done all offseason.
Right off the bat, Cashman traded John Ryan Murphy to the Twins for Aaron Hicks, who fills the role of backup outfielder now that Chris Young is on the Red Sox. He also traded Jose Pirela to the Padres for Ronald Herrera, a minor league pitcher. The next big trade came at the start of December, when the Yankees traded Adam Warren and Brendan Ryan to the Cubs for Starlin Castro. With the departure of the lackluster Stephen Drew, the Yankees had an opening at second base, and Cashman filled the position with a young player, similar to the Didi Gregorius trade the previous year. Next, Cashman traded Justin Wilson to the Tigers for minor leaguers Chad Green and Luis Cessa. It was a somewhat strange move at the time, but Cashman promised that he wasn't done. A few weeks later, the Yankees acquired Aroldis Chapman in exchange for a package of prospects consisting of Caleb Cotham, Rookie Davis, Eric Jagielo and Tony Renda. This was the most controversial Yankee trade in recent history, since Chapman is facing a possible suspension due to his involvement in a domestic violence incident late last year. January has been a slower month so far, but Cashman did make a deal with the Indians to acquire Kirby Yates for cash. He also traded Rob Segedin to the Dodgers for minor leaguers Tyler Olsen and Ronald Torreyes (who has already been designated for assignment).
Headed into the offseason, one of the biggest roster question marks was surrounding second base. The Yankees could have gone with a platoon of Dustin Ackley and Rob Refsnyder, but the Castro trade ensures the Yankees will have the spot filled until at least 2019 (and not with an aging veteran, either!). Although the team did lose a few pitchers that were a strength in the bullpen last year (Warren and Wilson), Chapman is the best closer in the game and it will be fun to watch the Dellin Betances/Andrew Miller/Chapman combo close games. Hopefully Cashman's gamble that Chapman won't end up with a lengthy suspension pays off. The only area that Cashman really didn't address is the Yankees' rotation. Last year's starters spent a significant amount of time on the disabled list, and it would be nice to have a sixth starter on the wings who isn't named Ivan Nova. It looks like the Triple-A guys will have to step up this year.
Do you feel satisfied with the job that Cashman has done over the offseason? Make sure to vote in the poll below and share your thoughts in the comments.