It appears that Yankee GM, Brian Cashman, was just taking his time. Yankee fans watched the Angels sign Albert Pujols and CJ Wilson. They watched Mark Buehrle sign with the revamped Miami Marlins and the Rangers win exclusive rights to negotiate with Japanese pitcher, Yu Darvish. Rumors surfaced that the Yankees would add Jair Jurrjens to their shaky, pinstriped rotation in exchange for young shortstop Eduardo Nunez, but nothing came to fruition.
After resigning to the fact that the Yankees may not make a major move this off-season, Yankee fans were hit with two huge moves that may transform a lousy rotation into a deep, World Series caliber group. One that could even be called the strength of the team.
After months of hearing that Hiroki Kuroda was uncomfortable moving to New York and would either remain in Los Angeles or head back to his native Japan, the AP has reported that the two parties have struck a 1-year, $10 million pact. Kuroda is 36 years of age, but his age is not a concern to me and evidently not too big of a concern to Brian Cashman. Last season Kuroda posted MLB career bests in wins, innings pitched, strikeouts, and ERA–finishing the year with 13 wins, 202 IP, 161 Ks, and a 3.07 ERA. Barring unforeseen injury I don’t think a 17 win, 3.60 ERA season is an unreasonable expectation.
In the same day that Yankee fans heard Kuroda would don pinstripes, they also learned that star prospect, Jesus Montero, was traded. The reaction went something like this, “Oh no, they gave away another star prospect. We always do this! This is terrible… Wow, we got Michael Pineda. Hmmm, he’s pretty young, huh (22)? Wow, with Kuroda AND Pineda our rotation is pretty good now. I think I like this deal. Wow, we may win the World Series!”
Prior to Transactions
- CC Sabathia
- Ivan Nova
- Freddy Garcia
- Phil Hughes
- AJ BurnettAfter Transactions
- CC Sabathia
- Michael Pineda
- Hiroki Kuroda
- Ivan Nova
With Posada retiring and Montero now on his way to the Pacific Northwest, the Yankees may have created a hole at the DH slot. This may have been intentional though, as they now can give Eduardo Nunez plenty of playing time on the left side of the infield while keeping Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter well rested. The rotation looks fantastic, with two potentially dominant pitchers at the top of the rotation and an incredible amount of depth. The Yankees still need to add a lefty in the bullpen to help Boone Logan, but suddenly baseball season can’t start soon enough. The Mariners and Yankees, after failing to consummate a Cliff Lee deal, reunited to strike a seemingly win-win trade. The Evil Empire is back.
As always, please subscribe to this blog by clicking the “Follow” button at the top of the right sidebar. If you don’t have a WordPress account, you’ll have to enter your email address. You can share your opinions in the comment section below or by tweeting to @Ryan_Kantor. Thanks for reading!