MLB Trade DeadlineDate: July 29, 2014
by John Fanta
Weighing options for Yankees, Mets before trade deadline
What happens when you have a payroll of $209,416,323 million? Well, in the Yankees case, you spend more.
And the Bronx Bombers, which have underperformed based on their payroll with a 54-50 record, are still in need of some upgrades. Yes, the Yankees have caught some bad breaks with their rotation, as CC Sabathia is done and Masahiro Tanaka is still feeling elbow pain. Tanaka could be back in September, and Michael Pineda, who has been out since April nursing a back injury, may return in August. For now, it's about trying to buy some rotation talent. That's where the Yankees' biggest needs are with 80 percent of their opening day rotation gone.
But really, what's out there for NYY to pursue? Hal Steinbrenner has already been willing to add to in-season payroll. Cliff Lee is out there, but he's guaranteed $37.5 million over the next two seasons. It's not likely that he will be brought in this week, but there's always the August waiver claim. By that time, though, the Yanks have a ball club that could be at one end of the spectrum or the other with the way the AL East and Wild Card races are panning out. It was reported that the Yankees were looking into Padres pitcher Ian Kennedy, but he's missing his start against the Braves on Monday due to a left oblique strain. Besides that, he's been 8-9 with a 3.66 ERA. Those talks have seemed to dissipate.
Jon Heyman of CBS reports that left-hander John Danks has emerged for NYY. Danks is 9-6 with a 4.40 ERA in 131.0 innings pitched. He could serve as a viable option, but the fact of the matter is there's just not a whole lot out there for New York right now. Brandon McCarthy and Chris Capuano are solid additions, there's no doubt. But the time to make a splash the Yankee way seemed to have gone away when Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel were traded from the Cubs to the Athletics on July 4.
As for the Mets, currently sitting at 50-55, talks of New York getting an elite player in Troy Tulowitzki have grown. Tulo, who will make $20 million in 2015, may be a player that the Mets cannot pass on. Yahoo! Sports columnist Jeff Passan originally reported on the idea of a trade to acquire the Rockies shortstop. Right-handed pitcher Noah Syndegaard has been rumored to be on the move. The Mets have the pitching prospects to get a deal done with the Rockies, who have been able to execute moves in past deadlines but have not been able to get a big-time pitching prospect to actually deliver consistenly for them. While NYM doesn't appear to be going after a rental, the Mets have not fallen flat on their face. Jacob deGrom and Jon Niese have led a rotation that ranks 11th with a 3.70 ERA. While NYM isn't going to likely be a playoff team, the potential is there for the Mets to have success in the future. They've got the advantage in youth. That's something the Yankees are trying to search for more of every day.