According to WFAN’s baseball insider John Heyman, the New York Yankees declined a trade offer that would have turned New York’s lineup into a juggernaut.
The New York Yankees may have had the best lineup in Major League Baseball. Their farm system would also be comically awful.
According to Heyman, the Atlanta Braves would have sent Jason Heyward, B.J. Upton, Andrelton Simmons, and Chris Johnson in exchange for a package of prospects. But these prospects aren’t the kinds you’d call “nobodies.”
Heyward/simmons/carpenter/bj upton/c Johnson for severino/judge/banuelos/clarkin/sanchez said floated. Nyy didnt pull trigger
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) March 8, 2016
The Yankees were coming off a season (2014) in which they did not make the playoffs in back to back years.
The last time that occurred was 1993, so the pressure was on general manager Brian Cashman to fill the holes that caused October-less baseball in the Bronx.
This deal would have fixed all the problems the Yankees had, and may have made them front runners to win the division:
- C: Brian McCann
- 1B: Mark Teixeira
- 2B: Martin Prado
- SS: Andrelton Simmons
- 3B: Chris Johnson
- LF: Brett Gardner
- CF: Jacoby Ellsbury
- RF: Jason Heyward
- DH: Alex Rodriguez
Luis Severino, Aaron Judge, Ian Clarkin, Manny Benuelos, and Gary Sanchez were the prospects that were going to be shipped to Atlanta. Due to these pros, although not at first glance, would have been detrimental to the Yankee organization.
At the time, they knew what they had in Severino and Judge. In fact, this was the first of the many instances where the Yankees deemed this duo as “untouchable.” Banuelos was considered a huge bust, and Clarkin and Sanchez were new to the organization, but still promising.
The Yankees were well into their methodology of keeping their prospects for the long term financial health of the roster.
Fast forward to now, Severino went 5-3 with a 2.89 ERA in 11 starts in New York and is now considered to be the future ace. Heck, even now he may be the most talented starting pitcher the Yankees have at just 22 years old.
Judge, standing at a monstrous 6-foot-7, 275 pounds, could be the starting right fielder, and Sanchez very well may be the back-up catcher in 2017. Both have been named among the top prospects in major league baseball.
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Although he has room to grow, Keith Law named Clarkin the fifth best prospect on the Yankees top prospects list.
Good no move by the Yankees? No, FANTASTIC no move by the Yankees. Not only did they keep the best prospects in the organization, but they kept the best prospects in all of baseball. To make this trade even better, they were able to bring in young, yet major league talent to the Bronx.
If the Yankees had Simmons, Didi Gregorius would not be the promising, athletic shortstop of the future that he’s shaping up to be. No deal for Nathan Eovaldi would be made. We would not be so optimistic about the farm system, as a result the future of the organization would be a lot different, plus the financial situation would be horrifying.
The ideology of keeping their prospects for the long term financial health of the roster is the plan, and will continue to be the plan until a solid core is built. Sevy, Judge, and Sanchez will be that core without a doubt.
Do they win the 2015 AL East with the depth chart pictured above? Most likely. Is the future of the organization hurt as a result? You bet.
Some of the best trades come from the trades that aren’t made. For the Yankees, this is a perfect example of that.