Good afternoon everyone, it’s time for another edition of the mailbag. Remember to send in your questions for our weekly call by e-mail to pinstripealleyblog [at] gmail [dot] com.
damn_yanks asks: What are the chances that Deivi García is DFA’d before the end of the season. Yankees could use the bullpen help and there are guys currently not on the 40 that may be able to help the team. Hard for me to see many teams wanting to add him onto their 40, so probably a good chance he’d pass through waivers and they could sign him to a minor league contract.
Deivi García is an enigma, even among the many wayward prospects that arise. Whatever the team worked on with him last season apparently broke him as a pitcher, and his results have been simply dreadful since. He’s shown flashes of competence, but never anything that really inspired hope that he’d be up with the major league team again any time soon. Is it to the point where the team would DFA him in the coming weeks? No, I don’t think we’re there yet ... but if you asked me when he’d be wearing pinstripes again, I wouldn’t have a confident answer.
Now, to be clear, if he were DFA’d I don’t think he’d go through waivers untouched — I’m sure some team at the bottom wouldn’t mind taking a flier on him to see if they can fix whatever went wrong with García. That being said, I don’t think the Yankees are pressed for 40-man spot enough to warrant the concern at the moment ... but check back in this in a couple of months.
Stephen M. asks: The way I see it, we have three weaknesses on the team thus far: lacking offense from our catchers, underperforming left side of the outfield and a thinning relief corps now with Green out for the year and Chapman struggling hard. If you could only make one trade to improve the club, what’s your focus?
I think the answer here is to address the outfield. As we covered last week, the internal options aren’t great for the Yankees down in the minors, and there are two sources of concern here that need to be addressed — dealing with just one struggling outfielder could be managed with patience, but two weighs on the lineup too much if it continues into July.
As for the other two areas of concern, there are reasons not to be too worried about them. Catcher is a difficult position to find offense out of, and the Yankees made a conscious decision in the offseason to focus on defense and comfortability with the pitching staff here. Now, did their plan for that work out? Not really, Ben Rortvedt is a person that allegedly is in the Yankees system but no one has seen him and Kyle Higashioka has been underwhelming in his chance to take the starting gig, but Jose Trevino has balanced out the equation a bit. With the bullpen, even though they’re pressed for their marquee relievers at the moment this is the area of the deepest depth in the organization — and trading for unknown relievers and turning them into gems has been a Brian Cashman hallmark.
The idiot that said, “Harper is coming” asks: What are the chances the Yankees trade for old friend David Robertson to help shore up the bullpen this season?
It’s too early to tell which teams are going to be selling, let alone who they’d be willing to deal — but if you had to guess, you’d say the rebuilding Cubs are going to be sellers in a month or two. David Robertson has had a wild ride since leaving the Yankees (for the second time) after 2018: he signed with Philadelphia but dealt with massive injuries, made it back to the majors with Tampa Bay late last year, and now has signed on with Chicago and looked back in form so far.
Robertson was with the White Sox rather than the Cubs when he was suddenly dealt back to the Yankees, but I’d say the likelihood of a trilogy is low. As we discussed in the last question, the bullpen is the area that Cashman should be least concerned with bolstering, though Robertson shouldn’t be too expensive a rental if they did want the veteran back. I wouldn’t say no to more D-Rob action, and I’m sure there’s a handful of my colleagues who would agree.