The only locks for the Yankees’ 2017 rotation right now are Masahiro Tanaka, Michael Pineda and CC Sabathia, but Joel Sherman of the New York Post writes that GM Brian Cashman won’t take a reactionary approach to plugging holes in his rotation. As Sherman points out, though, the quartet of Luis Severino, Chad Green, Luis Cessa and Bryan Mitchell has yet to prove that there’s a definitive starter among them, and any could end up in the ’pen. The Yankees will add at least one arm this winter, he continues, though given the paucity of quality starters on the free agent market, a trade from the team’s suddenly top-ranked farm system might be the most rational expectation. Sherman lists speculative candidates ranging from Ervin Santana to Chris Sale, though the top-tier names like Sale are included more as a means of demonstrating the depth of New York’s farm than as a genuine indication of likelihood. Sherman rightly points out that with free agency looking so sparse, the asking prices in trades will be staggering — especially for the likes of Sale, Jose Quintana, Chris Archer and other top-tier arms.
More from the division…
- The injury from which Andrew Benintendi recently returned was a bit more significant than originally reported, according to Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald, who reports that in addition to a sprain in his left knee, Benintendi also suffered an avulsion fracture just below the knee. The Red Sox have fitted Benintendi with a custom brace that he’ll wear on his left leg for the remainder of the season, but the 22-year-old tells Drellich that he’s already accustomed to the brace and no longer notices that he’s wearing it.
- Red Sox lefty Drew Pomeranz could be feeling the effects of a career-high workload of innings, writes Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal. Manager John Farrell explained to MacPherson that while Pomeranz’s velocity remains strong, his pitch-to-pitch command hasn’t been present of late, which has cost him. Pomeranz, acquired in exchange for top pitching prospect Anderson Espinoza in July, has lasted a combined 5 2/3 innings across his past two starts. He’s currently slated to make his next start (Friday against the Rays), but MacPherson notes that his fading results could land him in the bullpen once the postseason rolls around. Pomeranz is up to 164 1/3 innings this season, and his previous career-high (147 1/3 innings) came all the way back in 2013.
- MLB.com’s Bill Chastain writes in his latest Rays Inbox column that he wouldn’t be surprised if Tim Beckham’s time with the Rays organization is coming to a close. Adding Matt Duffy to play shortstop and moving Brad Miller to first base to pair with Evan Longoria and Logan Forsythe at third and second has solidified the starting infield mix. And, he notes, the heightened play of Nick Franklin in 2016 gives him a leg up on the utility job. The Rays demoted Beckham on Aug. 31 right before rosters expanded due to some perceived carelessness on the basepaths, and they doubled down on that harsh message by electing not to bring him back up later in September. The former No. 1 overall pick, set to turn 27 in January, hit .247/.300/.434 with five homers in 215 PAs for the Rays this season.