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In case you missed it, the New York Yankees are making moves, trading a player to be named later to the Oakland A's for Jeff Francis in the hope that he can solidify their starting rotation.
That's the same Jeff Francis who hasn't been relevant since 2007, when he won 17 games for the Colorado Rockies. That's the same Francis who, since that 17-win season, has gone 23-46 with a 5.22 ERA and 1.45 WHIP.
Chances are, that player to be named later is going to be more valuable to the A's than Francis will be to the Yankees.
With Ivan Nova, Michael Pineda, CC Sabathia and now Masahiro Tanaka all sidelined due to injury—and Nova, along with perhaps Sabathia and Tanaka, out for the season—the Yankees simply don't have the starting pitching that it takes to make a deep playoff run.
Throw in the team's inconsistent offense, which has scored as many runs (371) as the offensively challenged Seattle Mariners, and their defense, which, whether you're a fan of UZR/150 (minus-3.1, per FanGraphs) or DRS (minus-23), advanced metrics agree is pretty bad, and the Bronx Bombers are fighting a losing battle.
Any season in which the Yankees fail to reach the World Series is viewed as a failure, but to expect that adding a high-priced veteran—such as Philadelphia's Cole Hamels or his injured teammate, Cliff Lee—is going to result in an appearance in the Fall Classic is insane.
Buying at the trade deadline would only add to the insanity.