Brian Cashman worked his magic again for the New York Yankees by acquiring Kendrys Morales, but what made this trade so great?
On May 14th, 2019, The Yankees acquired Kendrys Morales from the Oakland A’s in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations. Some of the initial reactions were negative as Morales in his short time with the A’s this year was only hitting .204 with only one homer. But if you look deeper into the stats, you will see why this is a great trade for the Yankees. Here is a quick breakdown of what makes this trade so great.
High OBP and Exit Velo
You may be asking yourself, why did the Yankees trade for an aging veteran switch hitter that is way past his prime? Well, the answer is quite simple. Morales gets on base a lot and hits the ball hard when he gets the chance. Morales has always been a great hitter, you don’t play for 13 years in the MLB if you can’t hit.
Over a 162 game average, Morales’ OBP is a very solid .328. Morales is the type of guy that won’t chance a ball out of the zone, if you want to get him out you are going to have to come right after him. Which is why he has never struck out more than 132 times in a season and has a below average K rate. Also, even though Morales is past his prime he is still hitting the ball hard. His average exit velocity this year is 91.8 MPH, 3 MPH over the MLB average which sits at 87.4MPH.
Morales as a switch hitter will naturally hit more from the left side and the equation of high exit velocity and the short porch in right at Yankee Stadium will be something that Yankee fans will fall in love with. I wouldn’t be surprised if Morales ends up with 20 homers this year.
High Baseball IQ
A plus to being in the league for so long is the knowledge you gain. But Morales takes what he learns on the field and takes it to another level off the field. During the Yankees game against the Rays on Friday, just before Morales crushed a pitch into the fourth deck, the Yankees booth said that Morales would spend hours upon hours in the film room watching his at-bats and studying how pitchers were pitching to him.
Morales is able to share this knowledge with the entire team and teach the young hitters some valuable lessons that will only make their play that much better.
This trade pays on both ends for the Yankees, on and off the field. Morales can still do some damage with the bat. But also has the power of knowledge to share with this young Yankees team. I think it is safe to say that Cashgod may have struck gold again.