Gail Burton/Associated Press
Manny Machado is settling in nicely with the Los Angeles Dodgers, and there’s an excellent chance he can be the piece the team needed to remain in front of the National League West through the regular season. Perhaps the ex-Baltimore Oriole’s presence will be enough to get the Dodgers back to the World Series once again.
Teams usually don’t like to trade within their own division, but it appears the O’s are multiple seasons away from contender status, so they might not mind making a deal with one of their traditional rivals.
As strong as the New York bullpen appears on paper, there have to be a number of concerns with left-hander Aroldis Chapman. He had a disastrous performance Saturday against the New York Mets in which he could not retire a batter with a big lead in the ninth inning, and if he had not been rescued by Chasen Shreve, the Yankees could have allowed a sure victory to turn into an embarrassing loss.
But even if Chapman was performing better, the Yankees would still have an interest in Oriole reliever Zach Britton. When Britton is on his game, his power sinker is a nearly unhittable pitch.
According to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman, the Yankees are one of seven teams with interest in bringing Britton aboard.
The other teams include the Atlanta Braves, Colorado Rockies, Milwaukee Brewers, Chicago Cubs, Houston Astros and Dodgers are all involved in the possible transaction. Heyman also tweeted that other teams could also pursue Britton.
Britton has a 1-0 record with a 3.45 earned-run average and four saves in his 16 appearances since his Achilles injury kept him out in the first part of the year.
General manager Brian Cashman is never going to be satisfied with his roster until the Yankees bring home another World Series title, and since they are five games behind the Red Sox in the American League East, there is much to do.
Happ or Hamels could fill the role of a No. 4 or 5 starter, but the key is the price the Yankees will have to pay to pick up one of the two pitchers.
Neither pitcher would require the Yankees to give up a top prospect like pitcher Justus Sheffield or center fielder Estevan Florial, according to Andy Martino of SNY.tv. Instead, it would most likely require the Yankees to give up a solid minor leaguer.
That still may be too high a price for the Yankees at this point.
However, as the trade deadline comes closer, Cashman may have to change his assessment if the Bronx Bombers are going to complete a deal for starting pitching depth.