Baseball America has named New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman their 2017 MLB Executive of the Year.
This may not be surprising news for Yankees fans. Brian Cashman has been one of the better general managers in baseball for quite some time, but this year was a particularly good year for the architect of the current Yankees. The Bronx Bombers outperformed nearly everyone’s expectations this year by making the ALCS, coming within one game of a World Series appearance. Cashman’s successful moves in 2016 and 2017 led to the Yankees’ current success and this award.
Brian Cashman is our MLB Executive of the Yearhttps://t.co/j9Kd95CpQ2
— Baseball America (@BaseballAmerica) November 28, 2017
In 2016 the Yankees were hanging on the fringes of the playoff race and a tough decision needed to be made. The Yankees had never been sellers at the trade deadline before. But Cashman made the right moves, deciding to trade veterans in return for young, controllable assets. Left-handed relievers Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman were traded to the Cleveland Indians and the Chicago Cubs, respectively, for a massive return of prospects, including outfielder Clint Frazier and infielder Gleyber Torres.
Cashman made a clear statement that the future was more important than the postseason race in 2016.
That future arrived in 2017. Cashman and the Yankees re-signed Aroldis Chapman to a long-term deal as their closer. But without Miller, the Yankees bullpen was considerably weaker heading into the season. As the trading deadline approached the Yankees were in the hunt and became buyers.
Cashman flipped prospects from the Yankees deep farm system and acquired relievers David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle, along with third baseman Todd Frazier from the Chicago White Sox. All three players turned out to be key pieces in the postseason for the Yankees. In addition to the White Sox deal, Cashman also acquired the Oakland Athletics’ ace, Sonny Gray, to shore up the starting rotation for years to come.
Brian Cashman has positioned the Yankees to contend for years to come. His midseason acquisitions this year played a huge factor in the Yankees unlikely run to the ALCS and his Executive of the Year Award is well-deserved.