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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 10/15/18

A $1 billion plan for the Yankees in 2019; Didi fill-ins who aren’t Manny Machado; D-Rob to rep himself in free agency; Verlander matches Don Larsen; How the Yanks whiffed on Gerrit Cole; A-Rod loses ALDS bet with Papi, takes champagne shower in Red Sox jersey.

Manny Machado remains the Yankees’ best option to replace Didi Gregorius at shortstop.
Manny Machado remains the Yankees’ best option to replace Didi Gregorius at shortstop.
Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Newsday | Anthony Rieber: Rieber presents a one-billion dollar retooling plan for the Yankees to follow in 2019. It involves New York signing both Manny Machado and Bryce Harper, top available starters Dallas Keuchel and Patrick Corbin, and reuniting with reliever Andrew Miller. To make it work, Rieber would also trade away Giancarlo Stanton, move Gary Sanchez to DH, start Austin Romine behind the dish, and leave Miguel Andujar manning the hot corner. Well, I didn’t say it was a good plan. | Randy Miller: Miller presents a list of 20 players who could replace Didi Gregorius at shortstop (with odds). Hint: There’s a steep drop off in talent after Manny Machado. Miller gives 40 to 1 odds that Ronald Torreyes will be the starting shortstop for the Yankees in 2019. And Jose Reyes somehow made the list. We’ve officially entered The Twilight Zone. Joel Sherman of the New York Post offered his take on the subject as well.

CBS Sports | Katherine Acquavella: David Robertson becomes a free agent this offseason and will represent himself after parting ways with agent Scott Leventhal of All Bases Covered. The former closer is coming off a four-year, $46 million deal, and only six relievers in MLB history have received more guaranteed money in a contract. Robertson told Brendan Kuty of that he’d like continue wearing the Yankee pinstripes, but added: “I have to look at what’s best for me.” | Mike Lupica: Justin Verlander has given up only nine hits over his last four postseason starts, becoming the first pitcher to accomplish the feat since the Yankees’ Don Larsen did it during the World Series from 1955-57. Lupica wonders if Houston’s deal to acquire Verlander was the “best trade ever.” Thanks, Mike, for reminding us that the penny-pinching Yankees could have landed the ace last summer for little more than the willingness to take on his remaining salary.

New York Post | Ken Davidoff: In another case of a coveted pitcher slipping through the Yankees’ fingers and into the hands of the waiting Astros, Davidoff reports that Pittsburgh wanted both Clint Frazier and Miguel Andujar last winter for Gerrit Cole. The Yankees were willing to part with Frazier, but not Andujar, so the Pirates dealt the right-hander to Houston for a questionable package.

Cut 4 | Adrian Garro: Finally, A-Rod wore a Red Sox jersey and got a champagne shower from David Ortiz because he lost the pair’s ALDS bet. Thanks for laying it all on the line to support your former team, Alex!