With the Sonny Gray trade and trading Yefry Ramirez to the Orioles today the Yankees picked up additional bonus pool money. While the $1.5M picked up in the Gray deal seems like chump change compared to the money being thrown around in free agency it's a big bump from the annual $3M allotted teams for international signings.
Could it be that the Yankees are stock piling International bonus pool money to make a run at Otani? There's no guarantee that Otani will be released from his contract to play in the U.S. next year and Otani has already publicly stated that playing in the US is more important to him than contract dollars. But it sure is nice for the Yankees to have that extra money if he gets a chance to sign with a U.S. team next year.
Cashman's trade for Gray might turn out to be an even bigger deal than what's on paper today.