With spring training underway and the bullpen seemingly lacking depth, Luke Hochevar could be the answer to the New York Yankees‘ problems.
While the New York Yankees‘ bullpen may seem set heading into the regular season with Aroldis Chapman and Dellin Betances, it is not. They are lacking serious depth in the middle relief section of their pen.
This has been the Yankees problem since last season where it was a struggle for them to find a reliable arm to carry them from their starter to one of their dominant bullpen arms.
Here are some of the Yankees mid relievers from 2016:
- Anthony Swarzak 5.90 ERA
- Kirby Yates 5.40 ERA
- Chasen Shreve 5.33 ERA
- Nick Goody 4.23 ERA
These numbers are the definition of atrocious and Luke Hochevar could potentially be the solution to New York’s mid-relief woes in 2017.
Hochevar is still currently a free agent, for a good reason at that. The 33-year old is coming off surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome but should be fully healed and ready to pitch for a team in 2017.
However, many teams are not willing to take the risk on Hochevar due to the injury concerns and inability to stay on the field. This is the perfect time for the Yankees to swoop in and buy low on the reliever.
In 40 games with Kansas City in 2016, the right-hander sported a 3.86 ERA with a 9.6 K/9, numbers that the Yankees would cherish if they were able to get them out of a middle of the pen guy.
Since he will be coming off an injury and the demand is not high at all, the Yankees will not have to spend a lot of money at all to land the former top prospect. He might even settle for a minor league deal at this point.
This could be the perfect scenario of Cashman pulling off his magic once again and swooping in on a guy that has seemingly been forgotten about and turn him into a solid asset.