With the MLB Hot Stove just begining to heat up, its time we look at the possible moves for this off-season. Since the Yankees didn't make the World Series and thus labeling the 2010 season as a failure, they will definetely be looking to add pieces to make them better.
Even though the Yankees don't do every single rumor that is made by a "source close to them", what if they did? Imagine it, having 5 starting pitchers that were once the ace for their staff, and having 9 All-Stars in the lineup. New York fans can only dream.
This is more of a foregone conclusion rather than a fantasy. The Yankees have been aiming to get Lee for the past two years, first when his name was swirling in trade runmors during the 2009 season, and then again in 2010 in July before the Rangers eventually came and swooped in and took him from the Yankees grasp.
Unbeaten in the playoffs until this years World Series, Cliff Lee has shown the Yankees many times why they should make such a hard-pressed quest for him as they will. Last year Lee was the only pitcher to beat the Yankees in the World Series, and if it weren't for him the Series wouldn't even have been close between New York and the Phillies.
A sure All-Star, this move is the biggest and most important for the Yankees if they want to win the 'Ship next year, and we all know, money is never an object for the Bombers.
Ladies and gentleman, say hello to Mr. Zack Greinke, guy with past problems of depression, and has even said that he doens't want to go to New York. But did a players wish for not coming ever stop the Yankees? Just ask C.C. Sabathia if your still unsure.
An often talked-about move this "off-season", many have said that if New York can't land Lee they would trade Jesus Montero, their best prospect, for a front-of-the-line starter. Namely, Zack Greinke. The Royals have been looking to move the guy, and New York is of course looking into it. Forget the fact that they've got millions of great pitchers waiting in the loom to come out of the darkenss known as the minor leagues. Forget that in this scenairio, they already have a bunch of starters. New York's addition of Zack Greinke (though he is a head-case) would probably double the Yankees chance of wining the World Series (we don't even have to worry about getting there, a nine year-old could manage this team to the WS). And because of that, the addition of Greinke would prove great value not only for this year, but for years to come (the guys only 27).
Also, since Montero would be gone, Posada and Cervelli would take over the catching duties until Austin Romine, the Yankees number six ranked prospect by Baseball America, could come up. Romine is better defensively than Montero, Posada, and Cervelli, and has quite a bat himself.
While this more of the "completely crazy" type of thinking, this is about blowing the competition away, and boy would this move do so. Adding an up-and-coming yet still sort of a vetern pitcher in Matt Cain would make the Yankees starting rotation the most feared in all of baseball.
Presuming Cain would be the number three pitcher, he would probably be the best thrid pitcher in a rotation ever. Because of Cain's move, (and the fifth slide), New York would probably return Phil Hughes to the 8th inning, where he would continue his dominance of 2009 and be the heir apparent for the closer job once, sadly, Mariano Rivera leaves. However, Hughes probably wouldn't be needed all that much because of New York's ptching dominance.
Since the Yankees would have traded Nick Swisher for Matt Cain, they would've needed an outfielder. And it just happens that there are two free-agents that can fix that problem.
Carl Crawford and Jayson Werth are two of the best in the buisness, and the Bombers are always looking to add more pieces. I personally would want Carl Crawford, what with his amazing speed (remember the six-steal game he had against Boston) and great power, Crawford would have an amazing year at Yankee Stadium. He would probably lead-off (who cares if he said he wants to hit third), and would be able to start the Yankees off amazingly in a game even if he just got a single (which could easily turn into a double once he stole a base).
However, Crawford is more of a left-fielder, and for that the Yankees would more likely pursue Jayson Werth. Coming off great years in Philly (his 2010 season had more of a drop-off though), Werth has good speed himself (he had 13 last year and 20 in each of the ones before) and can hit for power. With the addition of Werth in the lineup, this is what the batting order would look like:
1. Derek Jeter SS
2. Curtis Granderson CF
3. Robinson Cano 2B
4. Alex Rodriguez 3B
5. Mark Texeira 1B
6. Jayson Werth RF
7. Jorge Posada DH
8. Austin Romine C
9. Brett Gardner LF
Not bad at all. If Crawford came it would be him, Jeter, Cano, Rodriguez, Texeira, Posada, Granderson, Romine, and then Gardner.
If Andy decides to come back, it certainely would help. With his addition, the Yankees would have five front-of-the-line pitchers in their rotation. Also, it would banish A.J. Burnett to the bullpen where he would only be used as a long-relief guy. Not only that, but it would allow their to be a Plan B if some one got injured (though I'd rather have Nova over him).
Again, just think about it, with Pettitte in as the number five, New York will have everyone in their rotation being in "ace" at one point or another in their career. Imagine it, C.C. Sabathia, Cliff Lee, Matt Cain, Zack Grienke, and Andy Pettitte. Sounds like an All-Star rotation, doesn't it?