It’s the beginning of a new month, and a new look for the New York Yankees. That bodes well for Brian Cashman, as he oversaw a major revamp process for a team that was looking more and more lost with every loss suffered. Cashman’s endured his fair share of flak for the disappointing season so far: his initial 61 percent approval rating at the start of the year tanked down to just 10 percent last month. Perhaps his efforts to correct course will also reflect in his approval this month.
July began as a mixed bag for the Yankees. They salvaged the finale of a series with the Mets in the Bronx, before rebounding for series wins against the Mariners and Astros — but managed to drop the series finales of both those wins in lackluster fashion with a sweep on the line. The biggest dates of the month were a stretch of games against the Red Sox, who had absolutely owned The Rivalry up to this point, and the results were far from satisfactory. A batch of COVID cases postponing the start of the first series led to a 2-1 advantage, but that was squandered when the games shifted over to Fenway — the Sox took three of four there, and managed to swipe a pair of those wins out of thin air.
Outside of the Sox, the Yanks swept a two-game set with the Phillies, took two of three from the Rays, and are in position to sweep the Marlins to complete their current road trip. They fell on their faces in the finale against the Rays as well, so securing this next victory against Miami is far from guaranteed, but the team looks noticeably different from the one that fumbled away several opportunities to gain ground in the standings.
Cashman was busy this month working the phone lines, and his work came together in the final days before the trade deadline. First and foremost was a blockbuster for Joey Gallo from the Rangers, sending out four prospects in exchange. Then came a sudden move for Anthony Rizzo from the Cubs, swooping in to take a player that had long been connected to their rivals instead. Alongside the two bats, Cashman added Andrew Heaney from the Angels, and Clay Holmes from the Pirates while shipping out Luis Cessa and Justin Wilson to the Reds.
The Yankees were one of the most active teams at the trade deadline, and compared to their competition in the American League they might just be the most improved. That comes at a cost, of course, but Cashman managed to pull this off without giving away any of the Yankees’ most prized prospects like Jasson Dominguez or Anthony Volpe. He also managed to do this without adding any additional salary, so the luxury tax is still set to reset — whatever that entails with a new CBA on the horizon. Regardless, it’s clear that this was a requirement of doing business, and the fact that Cashman made clear additions with a weighted prospect cost that still didn’t cost their highest-rated prospects is an impressive accomplishment.
The Yankees are still on the outside looking in entering the dog days of summer. They have a sizeable gap between them and the top of the division, and a couple of games to go in order to grab a wild card spot with plenty of teams in the hunt as well. They’re much better equipped to make a postseason push today, however, than they were a month ago, and Brian Cashman’s fingerprints are all over that.
So, the picture is set. All that remains is to ask the question. As of the end of July, do you approve of Brian Cashman? As always, there’s a lot to factor into a “yes” or a “no,” and you might feel like your answer is more of a soft “yes” or “no” than a stamp of approval or a sharp rebuke. However, the binary question is the best way to get a direct read on fans’ thoughts.
Vote in the poll below and let us know! We’ll revisit the results in a month.
Do you approve of Yankees GM Brian Cashman?
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