Things are looking pretty good for the Yankee starting rotation right now, so it's not a necessity that they start looking for a trade quite yet, but it's surely on the horizon.
The Yankees are currently happy with what Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon have been giving them out of the back-end of the rotation, but it is only a matter of time before they start looking to cut a deal.
We know the Yankees are going to stick with CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett and Ivan Nova. What we do not know is how long they'll stick around with Freddy Garcia AND Bartolo Colon. Most likely, one of the two will not be in the starting five by the trade deadline.
Basically, we have two possible scenarios that could develop. First, Garcia and Colon continue to produce, and the Yankees wait the season out for the free agency market to make a move. Second, the Yankees aren't totally confident with what the see in the two older guys, and they make a trade.
Most likely, the second scenario will play out. After this past off-season, where the Yankees missed Cliff Lee, it's very unlikely they let an ace slip by again. They were a little hesitant to offer too much for Lee in July, expecting to sign him later, and they turned out empty handed. This time around, they're landing the ace through a trade.
The idea of trading Jesus Montero is warming up to me more and more as the days go by. At first, I wanted to keep him no matter what, but it's becoming clearer that there really isn't a spot for him on the Yankee team. Scouts say his defense behind the plate is lacking, he's not athletic enough for third, and let's be honest, nobody is taking over for Mark Teixeira at first base. You're probably not going to make him an exclusive DH, that spot will be reserved for whoever needs rest out of ARod/Jeter/Tex.
Also, with the way Martin is playing, it seems like he's here to stay. Martin, who is only 28, could have several productive years ahead of him, plenty of time with guys like Austine Romine and Gary Sanchez waiting in the minors. Not to mention Francisco Cervelli, who is the current backup.
If the Yankees were willing to trade Jesus for Cliff Lee, you can be sure they would do at least that for Felix Hernandez. He's younger, and on the same level as Lee, with more potential.
I wouldn't be surprised to see a deal with something like Montero, Eduardo Nunez, Joba Chamberlain, Justin Maxwell and maybe another prospect.
That is probably the base offer the Yankees will give. If the Mariners ask for more, the Yanks will give it. It's even possible that Gardner, Swisher, Granderson, could be offered. The Yankees know this kid is what they need, and they won't let the Mariners send him anywhere else.