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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 7/24/21

Yankees interested in Starling Marte, Max Kepler, and Trevor Story; Jonathan Loáisiga and Nestor Cortes Jr. return from COVID IL; Corey Kluber throws off mound for first time since May.

Toronto Blue Jays v Miami Marlins Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images | Brendan Kuty: With the MLB trade deadline just about a week away, the Yankees appear to be potential “buyers.” Brian Cashman and his team have been in contact with the Marlins about Starling Marte, the Twins about outfielder Max Kepler, and the Rockies about Trevor Story. The asking prices are assumed to be somewhat high, and while he’s not untouchable, it’s being said that Yankees would rather not trade prospect Anthony Volpe.

NY Post | Greg Joyce: After missing a chunk of games due to COVID-19, bullpen arms Jonathan Loáisiga and Nestor Cortes Jr. have returned to the team. New York was in dire need of relief help, and both pitchers have been vital pieces on the mound this year. To make room for them on the roster, the Yankees optioned both Brooks Kriske and Nick Nelson back down to Triple-A.

CBS Sports | Rotowire Staff: Starting pitcher Corey Kluber has been on the Injured List with a right shoulder injury since May 27. On Friday, the veteran threw 20 pitches off the mound, throwing all fastballs. It was the first time Kluber has been on a mound since his injury in late May. Although this is a step in the right direction, it’s unlikely he joins the team before the start of September.