With Aaron Judge still not swinging a bat more than a month after fracturing his wrist, it appears the Yankees are making a real play for outfield help. Joel Sherman reports that the team is quickly trying to work out a deal for San Francisco Giants outfielder Andrew McCutchen ahead of tomorrow’s playoff-eligibility deadline.
Abiatal Avelino was pulled from his minor league start earlier in the night, and all indications are that he would be included in the package for Cutch. The longtime Pirate and now Giant boasts a 115 wRC+ on the season and would be owed about $2.47 million through the end of the year. With the Yankees close to the luxury tax threshold, they could probably sweeten the deal with prospects to lower the salary hit. McCutchen would be such a great fit for this team.
Shane Robinson has played putrid, with a 27 wRC+ in the majors. Brett Gardner seems to be slowing down as the season draws to a close, and Giancarlo Stanton has played in 82 straight games. The Yankee outfield is desperate for reinforcements, and with Judge still not swinging a bat, and Clint Frazier just now beginning a minor league rehab assignment, the boost has to come from outside the organization.
If the Yankees want to finalize a trade for McCutchen, they’ll have to work fast. Tomorrow’s waiver deadline means that Brian Cashman is pushing it to the very last minute, not unlike what the Astros did last year with Justin Verlander. Should this deal go through, McCutchen would hopefully have a similar impact for the prohibitive Wild Card favorite.
Keep an eye on Pinstripe Alley tonight and tomorrow, as we’ll be quick to update you on any developments.