As the official start of Spring Training has begun, it only makes sense for the offseason to continue...right? Normally I wouldn't agree that this is the time for offseason-like discussions, but this offseason has been an exception in every single reasonable way. Top free agent pitcher Yu Darvish finally agreed to a deal within the past week, and star players like J.D. Martinez, Eric Hosmer, and Jake Arrieta (among others) are still on the board.
Now, with all of that out-of-the-way, let's get to talking about Ken Rosenthal's Idea:
(All parts of article are taken from the free preview)
All this comes from the article itself, but just so we're clear we are going to reiterate it here:
"Let’s start with multiple disclaimers. The trade scenario I am about to discuss is no more than a concept and, as far as I know, it is not currently under serious discussion. The teams kicked around the idea, according to a major-league source, but even if they could agree on the particulars – which is doubtful — the deal remains highly unlikely to happen" (Ken Rosenthal).
The Trade Itself:
"The New York Yankees acquire right-hander Jake Odorizzi from the Tampa Bay Rays for mid-level prospects.
The Yankees then package Odorizzi with outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury and a prospect for Baltimore Orioles infielder Manny Machado.
The prospect going to the Orioles would be a good one, most likely third baseman Miguel Andujar. And the Yankees would pay approximately half of the $68.4 million remaining in the final three years on Ellsbury’s deal" (Ken Rosenthal).
How to Get Odorizzi?
This is the part where we can start to have some fun with this trade, and first-things-first let's get Jake Odorizzi from the Rays. The quick facts are that Jake Odorizzi has a career 8.1 bWAR, along with his career 3.83 ERA, 1.219 WHIP, and he averages exactly 188 innings per 162 games, all of which are pretty good numbers. Unfortunately, he does have an injury history (who doesn't?) being placed on the DL twice last year, once for his hamstring and again for his lower back. Finally, he has two arbitration years left on his contract and he beat the Rays for a $4.1 million salary from the Rays.
Back in 2014, the Rays traded (current free agent) Jeremy Hellickson during his second arbitration year, who was a similar pitcher to current-day Odorizzi. He was traded for two minor-leaguers, both at Level-A Ball: Andrew Velazquez and Justin Williams, and neither made the show.
This should give an ok frame for what the Yankees would have to give the Rays to facilitate a deal: two good- not great- minor leaguers with a chance to make the majors. Would the duo of Billy McKinney and Ben Heller be enough to go through? Maybe, maybe not, but I could see them willing to try testing to see if McKinney could be a 1B option, even with Logan Morrison still on the market.
Perfect, we got Odorizzi (somehow)...now what? Machado?
This offseason has been filled with Machado rumors, with some websites even posting for and against articles within days of each other. Nevermind the fact that Orioles owner Peter Angelos refuses to trade with the Yankees. Hypothetically, he now wants to trade with the Bronx Bombers, so let's make a deal:
Using Rosenthal's parameters, the Yankees are sending Odorizzi, Jacoby Ellsbury (and half his salary), and some prospects- of which he lists Miguel Andujar. Obviously, that wouldn't be enough though..and it is awfully hard to find a deal where a superstar like Machado with one year left on his contract has been traded. The most recent deal I can think of is the Justin Upton-Angels deal, but even that isn't too close of a comparison.
Instead, let's just say the Yankees will trade from their prospect strengths, and with Andujar, also trade solid RHP prospects Chance Adams and Freicer Perez. Both of whom will probably crack (or be right below) the Yankees Top-10 prospects lists. The addition of Odorizzi and taking on half of Ellsbury's contract probably beats the rest of Ellsbury's trade value and throwing on an extra three Top-10 Yankee prospects sounds like a deal that might make sense for both sides.
So, simplfy that down for me? That was too much writing.
Gladly. Here are the trades- using both Ken Rosenthal's parameters and my own guessing:
Trade One: Yankees trade OF Billy McKinney and RHP Ben Heller for RHP Jake Odorizzi
Trade Two: Yankees trade OF Jacoby Ellsbury, RHP Jake Odorizzi, 3B Miguel Andujar, RHP-prospects Chance Adams and Freicer Perez, and cash (Ellsbury's salary) for 3B/SS Manny Machado
Would this work? I have no idea, but it was fun to imagine it for a few minutes.
Is this too much? Too little? Let me know in the comments below.