J.A. Happ
(Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

New York Yankees LHP J.A. Happ is on the trade block and several National League teams appear to be interested.

The New York Yankees are actively shopping left-handed starter J.A. Happ and according to Andy Martino of SNY, “plenty of National League teams” are interested. Martino also noted the Milwaukee Brewers as a “team to watch.”

Yesterday, Joel Sherman of The New York Post reported the Yankees were “actively looking” to trade Happ and his $17 million salary for 2020. Happ was 12-8 with a 4.91 ERA last season and allowed a career-worst 34 home runs.

More importantly, Sherman noted the Yankees’ reason for shopping Happ was to clear luxury tax space to sign Gerrit Cole.

As for potential trade partners, the National League just makes sense. Happ, 37, is a fly ball pitcher whose diminishing fastball velocity makes the AL East (and the AL in general) a rough fit. He is also no stranger to the NL. Happ has played for the Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates, and Houston Astros while they were still in the NL Central.

The Brewers, meanwhile, are an interesting team in this case. They have already lost some key pieces in free agency and could use some balance in the middle of their pitching rotation. Given Happ’s increased use of two-seam fastballs last season, the National League may be his best option.

As for the Yankees, they will certainly need to cover a good chunk of Happ’s salary for 2019. General manager Brian Cashman may also need to add a significant prospect or two to sweeten a deal involving Happ.

Either way, the Yankees are determined to land Cole and trading J.A. Happ makes that easier. You’d be hardpressed to find a single Bombers fan who isn’t completely and totally on board with the move. Stay tuned to ESNY for more updates.

Josh Benjamin has been a staff writer at ESNY since 2018. He has had opinions about everything, especially the Yankees and Knicks. He co-hosts the “Bleacher Creatures” podcast and is always looking for new pieces of sports history to uncover, usually with a Yankee Tavern chicken parm sub in hand.