With the 2019-2020 free agent period a month or so old, a few teams jump-started the offseason, particularly in the catching department. With this being anticipated as one of the more fruitful markets for starting pitchers, the focus now shifts to the Yankees and their front office. Many are wondering if the Yankees will finally make a big splash for Gerrit Cole or Stephen Strasburg. In a recent interview, Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner sat down with YES Network’s Meredith Marakovits to discuss the free agent market and what lies ahead.
Steinbrenner does not have the reputation his father did. It seems as thought the late George Steinbrenner would reel in any player he desired, and at whatever cost. After his death in 2010, his two son’s, Hal and Hank, took ownership of the team. Since then, the only top arm they splurged for was Masahiro Tanaka in 2014.
In her interview. Marakovits brought up Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg as potential targets for the Yankees. She then asked how “actively and how aggressively” will he pursue either of the two. Steinbrenner pretty much dodged the question. “I’m not going to talk about anyone in particular,” he responded. He did, however, make it a point to add that “all options are open as far as I’m concerned” and anything that comes his way he will look at “real seriously.”
When it comes to free agency, "all options are open," says Hal Steinbrenner.— YES Network (@YESNetwork) November 25, 2019
Check out the full interview next Monday. pic.twitter.com/gWJYbFnDrd
The full interview with Steinbrenner will be released next week so we don’t get to the rest until then. Nonetheless, his comments are interesting to say the least. Let’s circle back to last offseason when superstars such as Manny Machado, Patrick Corbin, and Bryce Harper were on the market. “Fans should keep an open mind that I’m never done until I’m done, and that’s usually not until Opening Day,” Hal said back then,
He also made the point that he does take the team’s future into consideration before bringing in a player on a big contract. “Three, four, five years from now, we’ve got a lot of homegrown kids that we love, our fans love, that are going to be coming up for free agency, and that’s something I’ve got to keep in mind as well.”
Holding onto prospects and not dealing them away for established talent is something that the Yankees have been criticized for, especially during this past trade deadline. When it comes to free agents, they’ve been ridiculed for not spending the money necessary to reel in the big fish.
We will have to wait to know if the Steinbrenner’s will open up their wallets because it seems as though Cole and Strasburg are worth the investment. It seems especially important that New York can grab one of these guys considering that their starters had the highest ERA out of any American League playoff team. Let’s see if he does take this free agent class “real seriously.”