We often focus on who might end up coming to the Yankees near the deadline. However, have you stopped to think about which players may be leaving the organization prior to July 30th? In order to get some additional pieces for 2021, the team might have to give up some parts of its future. That’s how it works.
Furthermore, if the Yankees want to target a big fish, then the more they’ll likely have to give up in terms of players and prospects. The Max Scherzers and Ketel Martes of the world could be very costly.
When it comes to prospects, Jasson Dominguez is by far the best and most valuable in the system even though his professional debut in the United States will only be this summer. Teams will obviously ask for him, just like they asked for Gleyber Torres a couple of years ago. However, the Yankees are not going to move him and other clubs are, quite frankly, aware of that. There is always the chance Clint Frazier or Miguel Andújar are moved, but their value isn’t particularly high right now and the Yankees probably need them.
Estevan Florial could also be dealt, but the Yankees, even though they acknowledge that he is not quite ready yet, would probably want to see if he can adjust back to advanced (Triple-A) pitchers this season. Like Frazier and Andújar (to an extent), his trade value is not at his highest, and he could still theoretically be part of the Yankees’ future, if he ever figures it out. As of the beginning of play on Friday, Florial is hitting .198/.296/.356 with a 75 wRC+ and a 30.2 percent strikeout rate in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
There are plenty of interesting non-Dominguez outfielders, such as Kevin Alcántara, Brandon Lockridge, Everson Pereira, or Raimfer Salinas, plus talented pitchers like Luis Medina, Janson Junk, Ken Waldichuk, or Glenn Otto, who could be included in negotiations. Another top prospect, Clarke Schmidt, has not pitched in 2021 but is working his way back from injury and could certainly figure into talks as well.
However, here are perhaps the four strong candidates to be traded if the Yankees make a splash around July 30th:
Oswald Peraza, SS
Peraza is one of the very best prospects in the Yankees’ system, and he took a step forward with the bat this year. The team, however, is very deep at shortstop (Anthony Volpe, Alexander Vargas, and Josh Smith are quality names to watch) and, while they may be reluctant, the Yankees could be willing to part with Peraza for the right player.
Teams are going to ask a lot about him, anyway. Peraza just turned 21 on June 15th and hit .306/.386/.532 with 5 homers, 16 stolen bases, and a 152 wRC+ in High-A, earning him a promotion to the Double-A Somerset Patriots. There, Peraza is still performing well offensively, with a .276/.364/.448 line and a 124 wRC+ through the end of play on Thursday, although his strikeout rate went up from 18.9 percent to 27.3 percent. He is the real deal, and his inclusion in a trade would mean that the Yankees are targeting a star-level player.
Anthony Volpe, SS
Some prospects evaluators seem to believe that Volpe is on the verge of being considered a top-100 overall prospect. That is a very valuable trade chip, and speaks of how much he has advanced in the eyes of prospects gurus.
The reports prior to this year were that he projected to be a glove-first utility-type, but he has hit eight homers and stolen 16 bases for the Low-A Tampa Tarpons, slashing .290/.414/.580 with more walks than strikeouts. Boy, that would make one good utility, right? Teams are aware of this breakout, and given that Volpe is only 20, they could ask for him should the Yankees engage in trade talks.
Deivi García, SP
After showing major strides with his command and control last year, García regressed and is now having a hard time throwing strikes altogether. If he wasn’t having these issues, he would be pitching in the Bronx right now and we wouldn’t be discussing his name in hypothetical trade talks.
After Friday’s clunker, García now has an 8.80 ERA in Triple-A this year, and it comes with a 7.58 BB/9. Yikes. He has lost some value as a result of his struggles, but García is still an appealing pitcher for rebuilding teams with patience. It wouldn’t make sense to sell low, but if a team adamantly asks about him, the Yankees will listen.
Luis Gil, SP
The Yankees decided to aggressively assign Gil, a pitcher with a fastball that can sit in the high 90s, in Double-A even though he had yet to master High-A. The move paid off, as he had a 2.64 ERA in seven starts with the Patriots, rocking an impressive 38.5 percent strikeout rate in 30.2 innings.
Gil earned a promotion to Triple-A, but is still adjusting through his first couple starts after handing out 10 walks and 6 runs in 9 innings of work. He is already in the high-minors though, has a heavy fastball, and is 23, so he would be appealing to rival executives.