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Yankees acquire reliever Keynan Middleton from White Sox

At the Trade Deadline buzzer, the Yankees made a very small addition to the bullpen. Get pumped???

Chicago White Sox v Minnesota Twins

With 10 minutes prior to the MLB Trade Deadline at 6pm ET, the Yankees were the only one of the 30 teams to not complete a deal in July. It looked like they might be completely inactive at the deadline, but right at the buzzer, they’ve added a relief pitcher. It fits in perfectly with the chatter around the front office we’ve been hearing all day that the team wouldn’t sell much but would only “soft buy.”

Well, Keynan Middleton is just about the the definition of a “soft buy.” The White Sox reliever is coming to the Bronx, per ESPN’s Jeff Passan.

The return to Chicago, per our old pal and current YES Network analyst Joe LoGrippo, is minor league righty Juan Carela. A 21-year-old starter down in High-A Hudson Valley, he has 109 strikeouts in 83.1 innings, but was not listed among Baseball America’s midseason Top 30 prospects.

A veteran of seven MLB seasons, Middleton turns 30 in September and is a pending free agent. Since he was on the sinking ship that is the White Sox, he was a pretty good bet to be dealt.

The righty Middleton has a 3.96 ERA and 4.59 FIP in 39 games. He’s fanned 47 batters in 36.1 innings, good for an 11.6-percent K/9 and 30.1-percent K%. Middleton was, however, dogged by the long ball in July with four dingers in 8.1 innings leading to some pretty ugly numbers. FanGraphs ultimately has him as a perfectly replacement-level reliever with 0.0 fWAR. So he’ll join the bullpen corps that just demoted Ron Marinaccio to Triple-A Scranton following some extended struggles in July. Instant reaction: For a mostly non-prospect down in A-ball ... fine. But that’s not the issue with this team, really. It is what it is.

As of now, every single Yankees rental is staying put. The Athletic’s Marc Carig says that’s because — get ready to be stunned — general manager Brian Cashman may have outsmarted himself with his middling rentals.

As a reminder, Cashman is not going anywhere despite the pleas of Yankees fans because owner Hal Steinbrenner was satisfied enough with him after the disastrous end to 2022 to extend him for four years. This is just life, baby!

Anywho, welcome to the Bronx, Keynan Middleton. Do not take our frustrations with the front office as an indictment on you personally. You seem like a nice fellow.


Since I feel that it is my obligation to report it, the Yankees added another reliever, Spencer Howard. They got him from the Rangers for straight cash, per FanSided’s Robert Murray. As noted by Bryan Hoch above, he isn’t really good and he’s only pitched in three games for Texas this year anyway due to a lat strain. If you dare to be excited, he recently had scoreless outings on July 25th and 28th. He will report to Triple-A, per Cashman.