Yankees Prioritizing Bench, Bullpen Help

ESPN's Buster Olney tweets the Yankees' trade deadline priorities:

"Even in the aftermath of Andy Pettitte's injury, the Yankees' focus is not on adding a starting pitcher; rather, the clear priority is improving the bench, and in order of importance, adding a reliever is priority No. 2."

On the bullpen front, the Yankees have been very loosely connected to five righties in recent weeks: Michael Wuertz, Leo Nunez, Joakim Soria, Kevin Gregg, and Jason Isringhausen.  Gregg is the most viable option there, but it's likely the Yanks have inquired on a few more of these potentially available relieversOlney tweets that one talent evaluator feels the trade market for relievers is "absolutely terrible."

The Yankees signed Chad Tracy to a minor league deal, and have also been connected to Wes Helms and Ty Wigginton as possible bench bats.  The market features plenty more, like perhaps Willie Bloomquist, Russell Branyan, Adam Kennedy, Willie Harris, Xavier Nady, Jason Michaels, Craig Counsell, Jim Edmonds, Bobby Crosby, Andy LaRoche, Austin Kearns, Hank Blalock, and Augie Ojeda.  All of those names are speculation on my part.


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25 Comments on "Yankees Prioritizing Bench, Bullpen Help"


Yankeeboy11
5 years 1 month ago

Lol the Chances of the Yankees getting Soria is like 0.1%. I can see them getting Nunez/Gregg for the Pen and Wiginton and even bringing back Xavier Nady

pounder
5 years 1 month ago

Never,NEVER, ever, underestimate the financial clout of the Evil Empire.

95isOver
5 years 1 month ago

You can take Branyan off that list, remember everyone said that they will never deal with the M’s again!

Ferrariman
5 years 1 month ago

joakim soria for Kevin Russo and Ramiro Pena!! C’mon the yankees gotta save soria from mediocrity and bring him to winning baseball! this is for him, not for us!

(sarcasm)

5 years 1 month ago

The Soria thing is ridiculous. Agreed. Gotta sell those papers and get those website hits, though.

My thoughts are that the Yanks at the deadline act more like the 2009 Yanks than the 2008 Yanks.

Just_MLB
5 years 1 month ago

i wonder if Pedro Martinez and Carlos Delgado would be a good match in the Bronx…

basemonkey
5 years 1 month ago

I wonder what the general Yankee fans’ interest in Ty Wiggington is?

He’s a pretty useful bat with power at multiple positions (i.e. Ranked in order of defensive proficiency: 3B, 1B, 2B, OF, SS). I wouldn’t describe him as a typical Utility guy, whose specialty would be defense; Ty’s value is his bat. Though his glove is not bad either. He won’t lead the league in range at any of those positions, but he’s solid and makes all the routine plays. The plays he misses are ones where you don’t notice so much, because they’re due to a lack of range, and may look like infield hits. You see (or don’t see) those plays when he plays up the middle of the field. Though his best positions might be the corner infield spots, where he shows off pretty quick reflexes and sharp glovework to pick out tough inbetween grounders.

I wouldn’t think the Os are asking for any team’s top top prospects for him, but then again, they aren’t giving him away for parts either. I think the Os are probably interested in young players with upside esp. if it comes at SS.

ltdibo020
5 years 1 month ago

Just for FYI Yanks hold one of the best ss prospects(nunez) and also one of the best catching prospects (Montero) in AAA baseball….funny how the “experts” always say the Yanks farm system is weak, yet they bring up Cano, Joba, Hughes, Gardner, Coke, Pena and on and on in the last few years…plus Detroit seems to be happy with Jackson and Arizona with Kennedy both starting on those clubs…also Dunn just came up to Atlanta…Tabata starting in Pittsburg, nats like Clippard….whats that 11 players to the minors in the last few years…I know I missed a few….”experts” though in rating the minor league systems of clubs? hilarious….also Romine, McAllister looking good down there…..hmmm…I’m just saying

basemonkey
5 years 1 month ago

The Yanks aren’t terrible at all. They have a very solid system. But their prospects tend to get a lot more hype than other systems, which is natural of its market. Every team will have their top prospects, which will rate more or less highly against the national lists, but no disrespect to any of those guys you mentioned who all have a good-to-decent chance at turning out to have above-average majorleague careers, but when was the last time they produced a potential superstar type a la Longoria, Price, Chase, Kershaw, Sizemore, Heyward, Strasburg caliber of prospect? Again, no disrespect to those Yankee prospects, but they are still prospects, and in terms of the scouts, they aren’t placed in the same category.

CosaOne
5 years 1 month ago

I get what you are saying but the guys you listed were all pretty much top 10 picks (with the exception of Grady Sizemore) and the Yankees simply had no shot at drafting any of those guys. Its not like they passed up on drafting any of those talented players Also I would definitely argue that Robinson Cano and Phil Hughes are potential superstars that the organization has developed. And Montero is a very highly prospect currently

basemonkey
5 years 1 month ago

Cano has turned out to be muuuch better than any “expert” projected him to be. The Yankees deserve credit for developing him. He’s obviously having a career year this season. Sure, I think he benefits from playing in an excellent offense, but this season makes you wonder how good he is in spite of the context. I tend to be very conservative about my projections with these things, only cus I’ve seen so many bright young stars flame out, but I can’t give either Hughes, Cano, or Joba that kind of credit until they string together 3 consecutive years of superstar production. That might be a high standard, but we are talking about “superstars,” right? Though to their credit, they are in the argument.

As far as Montero, he is no doubt a very highly regarded player in all of baseball. I personally read reports and saw him play and he kind of feels like one of the best prospects the Yankees have produced in a long time. Maybe since Jeter. With Nunez, I just don’t agree. He’s on a high point right now, but he just strikes me as a dome-a-dozen type of middle infielder with promise that nearly every system has. With a guy like Montero, there is moments you watch the game and think, he’s maybe the best player on the field.

CosaOne
5 years 1 month ago

Initially you just said have they developed “any potential superstar talent” and judging by Cano they have regardless on where he was ranked by the experts. You need 3 years on consistent superstar production but then use Price, Heyward, Strasburg, Longoria and Kershaw as examples? None of those guys even have 3 complete seasons in the majors and Heyward and Strasburg do not even have 3 consecutive months of MLB success yet let alone 3 years. The last productive season Grady had was 2008. Really the only guy you listed that fits that criteria is Chase Utley who is one of the top 5 players in all of baseball.I agree if we are talking about superstars with MLB track records of dominance then Hughes would not apply but if names like Price, Kershaw and Strasburg are discussed Hughes’s production is similar to what those guys have done.I completely agree on Nunez hes worked his way into being a decent/averagish prospect but hes certainly nothing special. I wouldnt hesitate to trade him for a second

basemonkey
5 years 1 month ago

Regarding my earlier mention of Price, Strasburg, Kershaw, Longoria, etc.. I expressly called them “potential superstar types” and and I still stick to that. Even Longoria could flame out next year or suddenly bad health derails him, so, yes, he’s a POTENTIAL superstar. Funnie things have happened. All excellent players though, with great talent. To me a superstar type of player is a player who is pretty much automatic, like, say, what you can consider Arod, Jeter, and Texeira.

No offense to Hughes, because he is a supremely gifted player coming into his own today and did have one of the more dominating AAA runs you’ll ever see, but he’s not the same class as Price, Strasburg, Kershaw. Just my opinion. Feel free to disagree. I can respect that. I’m making that call simply based on stuff and the way these other guys dominates MLB hitters. Now, out of this group could Hughes end up having the better and longer overall career? Sure he could. I remember having a similar debate in the mid 90s about Pettitte, whose minor league career was probably unspectacular compared to Hughes’, and who competed against much better prospects with far and away better stuff than Andy. If you ask any Yankee fan about it, I bet they they’d still take Pettitte over the other higher touted stud every day of the week.

ltdibo020
5 years 1 month ago

Cano? He may be better than everyone you listed….? Hughes (jury still out) and of course we don’t know about Montero nor Nunez…but I tend to agree….it changes the “experts” opinion though when they say they have a weak minor league system …. its not an opinion of “superstar” types but strength of overall system….but again I think we are close in our thinking…..or as Yogi says” we agree different”

basemonkey
5 years 1 month ago

To me it just sounds like you guys are not acknowledging the depth of other teams systems. It’s not a knock against the Yankees to say they aren’t the best here. Oftentimes, a top 10 type of system in baseball goes all the way to #15-20 deep in terms of prospects who will contribute in some degree in the majors. Every system has a a stud or 2 at the top. The better system thins out slower as you go down the depth chart. It says something when you find a team who has, say, a mid-90s SP with good stuff at #16 or so. That’s what the supposed “experts” are taking into account.

All that being said, I think the Yankees have done well since they’ve had the “misfortune” of having to pick so low in the 1st round. 😉

CosaOne
5 years 1 month ago

Im confused here I wasnt talking about organization strength at all in posts. Just making the case that Cano is indeed a potential superstar since you said they hadnt developed any. The highest I would potentially rank the Yankee system is 23-24 so Im definitely NOT making the case that they have a farm loaded with blue chip stud prospects

basemonkey
5 years 1 month ago

Sorry. I was wrongly slumping you in with indibo20, the other poster in this thread. I think you and I are pretty much on the same page with a lot of things actually.

ltdibo020
5 years 1 month ago

sorry…I meant 11 players to the Majors, not minors

pharryn
5 years 1 month ago

Does anyone see a match for Yankees in Jose Guillen? He could be used @ DH and in the OF on occasion and the Royals are looking to deal him.

pharryn
5 years 1 month ago

Does anyone see a match between NYY and Jose Guillen? He could DH and play some OF and the Royals are looking to deal him to save $.

5 years 1 month ago

as a royals fan I see a match!

Spirit of '69
5 years 1 month ago

This is just so hilarious. Yanks lose an all-star pitcher who has double-digit wins at the break and has been of their most reliable pitchers for over a decade … so they get Olney to say that they’re going to focus on their bench. Anyone who believes this for a second will be happy to know I have some marshland in Louisiana available for a great price.

YanksFanSince78
5 years 1 month ago

I can understand, to a slight extent, that some Yankee prospects might be a little hyped, not by the organization, but moreso by fans but it also seems that some of the prospects go completely ignored. One of whom is Brandon Laird. Why isn’t this kid getting some ink? He’s muddled around having decent seasons over the last 2 or 3 years but really came into his own this year. At age 22 he’s got 19 hrs and 82 rbi. His batting avg/obp has slipped to .274/.331 due to a poor July (.167 bat/.233 obp) but he’s among the leaders in HRs at the AA level and leading in rbi. Yet, he hasn’t even cracked the top 10 on the Yanks prospect list.

basemonkey
5 years 1 month ago

Laird is an interesting prospect for sure. Though from the look of him he seems to be physically maxed out, or close to it, so you can’t expect a boost in power as he advances. Then again that isn’t the part of his game that needs tuning. He’s very much a homerun hitter. With him I’d be concerned with how pull-happy he can get. The walk rate is a issue. He gets his power from a good front load, getting his stride down quickly. My concern with that would be it limits his ability to adjust his swing midswing that most good majorleaguers feature an aptitude to do. So I might expect Thst strikeout/walk rate to deteriorate the closer he gets to the show. The defense us nothing special.

That being said, he strikes you as a gritty kid whose hardworking ethic outstrips his physical gifts. Those types of players sometimes ends up surprising you and he deserves a shot or two. Though right now, no disrespect to him, I’d expect his strikezone and walk rate to sink, which adversely affects his contact and power, as he moves up the chain.

bphilip78
5 years 1 month ago

soria for joba