With all the talk of the Yankees needing to trade for a starting pitcher, is there another pitching hole they could look to patch up?
When people hear “Zach Britton” and “Yankees” they probably think of a word similar to overkill. Why would such a great bullpen need even more help? Here is my answer: you can never have enough pitching.
We all know the Yankees need rotation help. It should be the first priority for Brian Cashman. That being said, I think there is another pitching spot that could be fixed. That spot is a left-handed reliever.
We aren’t going to include Aroldis Chapman since he is the closer, so that leaves Chasen Shreve. All that needs to be said about him is that whenever he takes a step out of the bullpen, fans everywhere say; “why”.
Now, lefty specialists are sort of outdated. They are used, just not as frequently. You still need a lefty though, and who better than Orioles closer, Zach Britton. The Yankees know him all too well. Every time the Orioles have a lead, all I can think about is that witchcraft Sinker we are about to see in the ninth.
Britton is a nasty pitcher. In 2014, he posted a 0.54 ERA and got CY Young votes. Buck Showalter also left him in the bullpen in the wild-card game (sorry, I had to). He only pitched in 38 games in 2017 and 13 so far in 2018, due to injuries.
Because of those injuries, this could be a perfect time to “buy low”. He will still take a decent return but his injuries and few hiccups this year could drive the price down a little bit. Now, let’s talk about obstacles in this trade. I see two big ones.
The first obstacle is money. Britton is due about 12 million this year. That’s a slightly high price tag for a rental. The Yankees may be willing to eat it, but we know how they are about their luxury tax. I don’t know if this is a deal breaker, but it is definitely a possible obstacle.
The second obstacle is division hatred. A lot of people see a trade between the Yankees and Orioles as unlikely. There have even been reports that Peter Angelos despises the Yankees and wouldn’t give them players. I personally hate the whole division thing. If they are offering the best package then take it. Nonetheless, that is not always how it goes.
The trade seems like it could be on the back burner right now, but if it did happen, the Yankees bullpen would be even scarier than it is now.