For decades the New York Yankees and New York Mets have not accomplished a big trade. The two have made moves involving smaller players only 15 times since 1966, over 50 years ago. Last season the Yankees called about deals for outfielders Jay Bruce and Curtis Granderson, or first baseman Lucas Duda. All attempts fell through.
So when the rumors began swirling that the Mets would be open to trading their ace Jacob deGrom, folks were quick to point to the Yankees lack of starting pitching, and wealth of tradeable assets.
However, the baseball world continues to scream that nothing short of everything the Yankees have will be needed to move deGrom from Queens to the Bronx. Many sources claim the only way the ace moves crosstown is if the Yankees are willing to send rookie star Gleyber Torres back. General Manager Brian Cashman instantly laughed that idea off.
So here we are. Staring down a trade that makes sense for both teams but likely will not make it past the giant battle of egos governing it. The Mets need to acknowledge that the current wave they are riding is going nowhere, and they have no farm system whatsoever to look to for support. What few assets they have lie in the pitching staff, and they will never get a greater return than right now.
The Yankees meanwhile have one of the best and deepest farms in the league, and most would agree are one elite starter away from the World Series. Beyond Luis Severino, the rotation has either been injured (Masahiro Tanaka and Jordan Montgomery), inconsistent (Sonny Gray and Domingo German), or aged to the point that five innings is a good day (CC Sabathia). They need another high-end starter to get them over the top.
But Cashman is right. Giving Gleyber Torres, a rookie on the verge of superstardom at age 21, is not acceptable, even for one of the best pitchers in the game right now. But there are a few trades Cash can make without lighting his roster on fire that the Mets should certainly be considering.
Any deal Cashman makes would have to include Frazier, who after tearing up the Minors has continued to excel at the big league level this season. Given the logjam in the Yankee outfield, giving him up is likely inevitable. Florial is the top ranked prospect down on the farm, and some scouts have seen “Willie Mays” potential offensively and defensively. Cash won’t want to give him up, but when paying for top quality, you have to pay top price. Adams is the second best pitcher in the Yanks farm system and has shown big league potential while McKinney’s versatility is an added bonus.
If the first attempt fails, Cash can sweeten the deal with the MLB ready Brandon Drury, who has been banished to the minors due to the emergence of Miguel Andujar, giving the Mets a talented player who can go anywhere on the diamond. Tyler Austin has shown incredible pop at a position the Mets desperately need, First Base, and with Greg Bird in the Bronx, dispatching him is acceptable. Cashman can also upgrade to his top pitching prospect in Sheffield, who’s talent is already undeniable.
Trade 3: Miguel Andujar, Clint Frazier, Chance Adams and Tommy Kahnle (maybe even Tyler Austin) for deGrom
This is the absolute last resort “We want deGrom and are going to give you the best offer possible” scenario. With the Mets playing ultra hard ball, Cashman is forced to surrender his second best rookie in Andujar, who if not for his teammate Torres would be a favorite for Rookie of the Year. Recognizing the Mets bullpen problems, Cash gives them Kahnle, the odd man out in a packed Yankee pen, and keeps Frazier and Adams included to finally force Sandy Alderson to send his ace to the Bronx.