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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 1/9/23

Yankees’ left field situation; comparing the Yanks to the Astros; Volpe named as a potential 2023 Rookie of the Year candidate

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MLB: Cleveland Guardians at New York Yankees Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Trade Rumors | Simon Hampton: Entering the season with Aaron Hicks, Oswaldo Cabrera, and a bunch of recent minor signings battling it out for the starting left field gig doesn’t sound entirely optimal. However, it’s starting to become a more likely option.

Hampton goes through the Yanks’ offseason priority list when it comes to left field, stating how Andrew Benintendi was the first choice and they were “very involved” in trade talks for Daulton Varsho before he went to the Toronto Blue Jays.

Now, they find themselves interested in Bryan Reynolds but the Pittsburgh Pirates’ asking price is sky-high. While the Yankees are interested in Jurickson Profar, the fact Cabrera was solid in his rookie season makes giving the former a multi-year deal not enough of a needle-mover according to Joel Sherman of the NY Post.

NJ Advance Media | Bob Klapisch: The Yankees are definitely an improved team in comparison to the one that got swept in the American League Championship Series against the Houston Astros, but Klapisch wonders if they have enough to finally beat them.

He analyzes and compares every area, and while he gives a slight edge to the Yankees in the rotation, he considers the Astros superior on offense, bullpen, and in the manager departments. | Jonathan Mayo: Julio Rodríguez and Michael Harris II won the Rookie of the Year awards in MLB in 2022. Who are the candidates to take home the award in each league this season?

Mayo asked that question to several baseball people, from general managers to farm directors, from scouting directors to analytics specialists. Five players were named: the early-odds favorite Gunnar Henderson, Hunter Brown, Triston Casas, Josh Jung, and Yankees’ top prospect Anthony Volpe (who got six percent of votes in the exercise).

Between Double-A and Triple-A, Volpe hit 21 home runs and stole 50 bases with an excellent triple slash line. He could see the Bronx in 2023 and is shaping up as a major piece of the Yankees’ future.

Chris Kirschner ofThe Athletic recently suggested that the Yankees could forget about external options and let Cabrera, Hicks, Estevan Florial, Willie Calhoun, Billy McKinney and Rafael Ortega vie for the job. If they want to hold on to their top prospects, it could be their most realistic manuever