If the Yankees are going to acquire a front-line starting pitcher this summer, it’s not going to come at the expense of rookie second baseman Gleyber Torres. General manager Brian Cashman suggested to Brendan Kuty of NJ.com and other reporters Friday that the 21-year-old Torres is untouchable. Asked if he’d consider dealing Torres, Cashman quipped, “C’mon now. I have to walk around this city.” Cashman estimates that he has talked trades with around 20 teams since June 6, though it’s no surprise that he’s uninterested in sending Torres anywhere. Torres has made good on the considerable hype he had as a minor league prospect by opening his MLB career with a .290/.345/.568 line and 13 home runs in 178 plate appearances. As a result, Torres may be the American League Rookie of the Year front-runner.
- Torres is part of the new guard with the Yankees, whose longest-tenured player, outfielder Brett Gardner, remains a quality major leaguer at the age of 34. Gardner, who debuted with the Yankees in 2008 and is controllable through 2019 on a $12.5MM club option (or a $2MM buyout), discussed his future with Kuty earlier this week. While Gardner revealed that he’s aiming to play “two or three more years,” preferably with the Yankees, he admitted he’d consider finishing his career elsewhere if they “don’t want me here anymore and I still wanted to play a couple more years.” Whether Gardner will remain a Yankee in 2019 is far from certain – they may still boast outfielders Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Hicks and Clint Frazier without him next year, after all – but he has made a strong case to stick with the franchise. Through 269 PAs this season, Gardner has batted .258/.350/.384 with five homers and seven steals. His above-average offensive output and outstanding work in the field (14 Defensive Runs Saved, 5.9 Utimate Zone Rating) have already led to 2.0 fWAR thus far.
- Like Gardner, Rays catcher Wilson Ramos could find himself in another uniform next season. However, the free agent-to-be informed Bill Ladson of MLB.com that he’d be content to continue in Tampa Bay, in part because it gave him a chance after he tore his left ACL and meniscus while with the Nationals in late 2016. “I’m very happy with this organization because they gave me the opportunity to have my career, especially after the knee surgery,” Ramos said. “A lot of teams were behind me before the knee surgery. After the surgery, everybody turned around and didn’t pay attention to me. But [the Rays] helped me to get better, helped me with my rehab. So I’m very excited with all the little things they have done for me. If I stay here, I’ll be happy.” The Rays guaranteed Ramos $12.5MM over two years on the heels of his injury, and while his production went backward in 2017, he has rebounded this season. The 30-year-old has slashed .282/.326/.437 with eight HRs in 227 PAs, also earning plus marks as a pitch framer. Ramos’ bounce-back efforts not only bode well for another potential trip to the open market, but they could make him an attractive trade chip in the next couple months.
- A report Friday indicated the Orioles have interviewed former Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti for a front office position, but O’s executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette shot that down Saturday. “My understanding is it’s not true,” Duquette told Dan Connolly of BaltimoreBaseball.com. “That’s all I can tell you.” If hired, Colletti would perhaps help replace Duquette, who’s in the last year of his contract and has reportedly lost power in the team’s front office. However, Duquette informed Connolly that he’d like to continue with the Orioles, who hired him back in 2011.