[New York Yankees GM Brian] Cashman is confident the Twins will contact him if [Francisco Liriano] becomes available, but the Yankees won’t include Dellin Betances or Manuel Banuelos, their two premier pitching prospects, in any trade. Andrew Brackman, who is the organization’s third-best pitching prospect, is another player the Yankees would be reluctant to move.
Supposedly the Minnesota Twins are not interested in dealing Liriano right now. That might last a week, two weeks, four months or two years.
The Yankees seem to be interested in dealing for him though.
Yesterday, Brian Cashman said he wasn’t talking to anybody, but Andrew Marchand of ESPN New York was able to confirm that the two sides at least discussed the possibility of a deal.
When, or if, the Twins feel comfortable dealing Liriano, the Yankees will be there waiting. But if Curry is correct, they won’t be waiting with Betances or Banuelos. Brackman could be a possibility and we’ve already heard the names Joba Chamberlain and Ivan Nova floated out there by Bob Nightengale of the USA Today.
There are questions about Liriano’s durability, but he is young—still 26—and has great strikeout and ground-ball rates that are attractive in young pitchers. He is also under contract for the next two seasons on very team-friendly deals.
It seems like if the Yankees can acquire him while holding onto their best two or three prospects, it is a no-brainer.
Waiting until July to make a deal might be a good idea though.
That gives the Yankees a chance to see if Liriano's shoulder is really an issue or not, and it also gives them time to see if what they currently have—Bartolo Colon or Freddy Garcia—have anything left, or if their prospects—Nova, Hector Noesi or David Phelps—are ready for the big leagues.
There is a risk of waiting: Liriano could pitch lights-out baseball for the next four months and drive up his price to the point where including Betances or Banuelos would be a requirement in making a deal.
February 28, 2011—Losing Lee and Pettitte Might be a Blessing in Disguise
February 23, 2011—Yankees Have 6 on Baseball America’s Top 100 Prospects List
March 2, 2011—Rumors: Yankees Offered Twins Nova & Pena for Liriano
March 1, 2011—Yankees Manuel Banuelos Latest Prospect to Impress