How good will the New York Yankees be this year? We know they have an amazing offensive lineup, but the biggest question is their starting pitching. As of right now, the only three definite starters the Yankees have are CC Sabathia, Phil Hughes, and the very inconsistent A.J. Burnett.
Lately, the Minnesota Twins have said that they are open to trading their number-one starter, Francisco Liriano. Liriano is a very good starting pitcher and has nasty stuff. Brian Cashman knows the Yankees need this guy. Here's a few trades that could bring Liriano to New York.
Now here's two players Minnesota would be very interested in. Andrew Brackman is one of the Yankees' top pitching prospects and has a lot of potential. He can really help Minnesota if they ever need to call him up if someone gets injured.
Eduardo Nunez is one of the Yankees' backup infielders. We saw him play a little last year and he looked very good. He's got a lot of potential and Minnesota would be very interested in him. Not to mention, the Twins have a few questions about their middle infield. Alexi Casilla isn't really playing up to his full potential. The Twins would love to have Brackman and Nunez.
Manny Banuelos is another one of the top prospects that the Yankees have. The 19-year old starting pitcher can max out at 95-96 MPH and can be a real star once he hits the majors.
Kevin Russo would be a very good utility player for the Twins. He can play multiple positions in the field and would help the Twins a lot. He's played in the big leagues before and has played decently for the Yankees.
Joba Chamberlain electrified the crowd when he made his debut for the Yankees a couple of years ago. They tried turning him into a starter, which didn't work out so well. When they moved him back to the bullpen, he had his ups and downs, but still did a nice job for the Yankees in a setup role. Joba has nasty stuff when he's on, and would provide the Twins with great bullpen help. The Twins would also receive Sergio Mitre from the Yanks, and some cash.
I would hate to see Francisco Cervelli leave, but he took a big step back last year with the Yankees. He started off the season as hot as anyone can be, keeping his batting average around .300 until the All-Star break, then it went downhill from there. He was in a big slump for the rest of the season, and didn't provide the Yankees with much help during the playoffs.
He provides the Yanks with a lot of energy on the field and in the clubhouse, but it might be time for them to move on from Cervelli. He'd be a good backup catcher for the Twins whenever they need to give Joe Mauer a day off. Andrew Brackman would also be included in this deal. This trade would eventually lead up to the Major League debut of Jesus Montero, who all Yankee fans have been waiting to see.
Ivan Nova did a pretty good job for the Yanks last year. He came up big when they needed him and did a good job down the stretch. He's got a good fastball along with a nice changeup, and would be a solid fifth starter for the Twins. He's still young and has a lot of potential.
Gary Sanchez is one of the top catching prospects that the Yankees have behind Jesus Montero. The Twins traded their top catching prospect, Wilson Ramos, last year for Matt Capps. Sanchez would be a great replacement for him. This deal makes the most sense for both the Yankees and the Twins.
In order for the Yankees to keep up with Boston in the AL East, they need one more good starting pitcher. Francisco Liriano would be great for the Yankees. Sabathia, Liriano, Hughes, Burnett, and whoever the fifth starter is seems like a nice rotation to me. Liriano would really help the Yankees battle for the division title this year, and for the next few years as well.