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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 4/7/21

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Yankees acquire Rougned Odor, DFA Thairo Estrada; Gary Sánchez should see BABIP regression; which Yankee top prospects could contribute in 2021

Los Angeles Dodgers v Texas Rangers Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images

MLB Trade Rumors | Steve Adams: In a surprising move, the Yankees traded two prospects, outfielders Josh Stowers and Antonio Cabello, to the Texas Rangers in exchange for infielder Rougned Odor, whom the Rangers had designated for assignment last week. Odor, still just 27 despite the fact that he’s entering his eighth season, is under contract through the 2022 season (with a team option for 2023). Although he hasn’t played well at all over the last few seasons, the left-handed second baseman undeniably has power, with three 30+ HR seasons. Considering the fact that the Rangers will be paying almost the entirety of his salary, the move seems like the kind interesting low-risk flyer that the Yankees have turned to gold in recent years with Gio Urshela and Mike Tauchman.

To make room on the 40-man roster, the Yankees designated infielder Thairo Estrada for assignment.

FanGraphs | Devan Fink: Gary Sánchez has been a major topic of discussion among baseball writers and fans since last season, and for good reason: his .147/.253/.365 slash line was by far the worst of his career, and among the worst in Major League Baseball. Fortunately for the Yankees, however, there’s some evidence that he’s due for some positive regression. His BABIP of .159 (fourth-lowest in baseball) was over 100 points lower than what would be expected based on his bat control (defined as “the standard deviation of a player’s launch angle on their batted balls” and which correlates well with BABIP).

MLB.com | Sam Dykstra: MLB.com’s minor league expert ranks how much every team in baseball should expect to see their top 10 prospects contribute at the major league level this season. With starters Deivi García and Clarke Schmidt expected to make more than a few starts due to last year’s shortened season and Estevan Florial near enough to receive the call-up should outfield depth be needed, the Yankees are placed firmly within the middle tier (which he dubs “Healthy stream of prospects”) along with the Houston Astros, Toronto Blue Jays, Chicago Cubs, Texas Rangers, Cincinnati Reds, Colorado Rockies, and Minnesota Twins.