Yankees Trade Rumors: Updating Ubaldo and the Bombers Pursuit of Pitching
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In about 65 hours, or roughly 3,900 minutes from now, the Yankees chances to acquire reinforcements for their starting rotation will become that much more difficult as the 4 p.m. EST July 31 MLB Non-Waiver Trade Deadline will have come and gone.
After the continued struggles of Phil Hughes and AJ Burnett, coupled with the hit-or-miss outings of Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia, the Yankees are said to be in pursuit of a myriad of pitchers.
They range from those thought to be irrelevant but who could be useful additions to those thought to be better then they actually are.
After the jump, the latest on the team's efforts.
Jimenez would be a terrible addition
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Still the most talked-about pitcher on the market, Ubaldo Jimenez is the man Yankees fans covet most.
Only a few days ago, I gave five reasons why acquiring Jimenez would be a bad idea.
According to Troy Renck of the Denver Post, the Yankees remain the favorites to land the 27-year-old righty, but notes that the Yankees have given no indication that they are willing to meet Colorado's asking price.
An asking price that Buster Olney notes remains incredibly high, with Rockies GM Dan O'Dowd still insisting on three top prospects in return.
In the case of the Yankees, those three prospects are catcher Jesus Montero and starting pitchers Delin Betances and Manny Banuelos.
It should be noted that the Rockies had a scout in Trenton on Thursday to watch Betances take on Richmond.
Betances was outstanding through five innings, allowing two hits and a walk with three strikeouts but ran into trouble in the sixth, where he allowed five runs, four earned and five hits and was pulled before recording an out.
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Considering the high price of acquiring Jimenez, the Yankees need to consider all of their options.
Harden performed well, going six innings, only allowing three hits and two walks while striking out seven. The only blemish on his outing was a two-run HR by Desmond Jennings in the sixth, the first HR of the rookie's career.
Harden seems as if he has been around forever, but he is only 29 years old. The oft-injured righty, when healthy, is a solid pitcher, one who has averaged over a strikeout an inning for his career.
While the cost to acquire Harden is unknown, it's feasible to assume that Oakland GM Billy Beane would be somewhat realistic—he could not expect to receive a top-level prospect in return.
Harden is definitely someone to keep an eye on as the deadline nears.
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Bedard, only 32 (like Harden, it seems as if he has been around forever), comes off his latest stint on the DL Friday and makes his only start before the trade deadline against the Tampa Bay Rays.
According to Ken Rosenthal and JP Morosi of Fox Sports, both the Yankees and Red Sox will have scouts in attendance.
Like the Colorado Rockies, the Seattle Mariners also had a scout in attendance at the Trenton Thunder game on Thursday.
Without question, the scout was checking out Delin Betances.
Without question, the Mariners are not trading Felix Hernandez, and the Yankees are not trading Betances to the Mariners for anyone not named Felix Hernandez.
If Bedard could be had for two mid-level-prospects (Melky Mesa comes to mind), it is a move the Yankees would simply have to make.
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Two weeks ago, Peter Gammons tweeted that Brian Cashman spoke with Steve Hilliard, Kuroda's agent, and was told that Kuroda would not waive his no-trade-clause and wanted to remain with the Dodgers.
Newsday's Ken Davidoff notes that the Dodgers have not officially begun taking offers for Kuroda, while Jon Heyman of SI says that the Dodgers are telling teams that they want a "significant piece" in return for the right-hander who becomes a free agent after this season.
Would Jesus Montero be a significant enough piece?
Would the Yankees trade Montero for a pitcher who would be nothing more then a two-to-three-month rental?
With multiple contenders rumored to be interested in acquiring the Japanese import, the Yankees may have to overpay to win this race.
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The Yankees have been rumored to have interest in Wandy Rodriguez, the Houston Astros' 32-year-old left-handed starter, for over a month.
Yesterday, ESPN's Jayson Stark speculated that the Yankees would be a likely destination for Rodriguez in a salary dump move by the Astros, as the Yankees would be one of the only teams able to absorb the $23 million owed to Rodriguez through the 2013 season.
Jon Heyman of SI tweeted Wednesday that the Astros have stepped up their efforts to move Rodriguez along with Brett Myers and Michael Bourn.
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Earlier this week, the Yankees tried to pry 28-year-old right-handed starter Ricky Nolasco from the Florida Marlins.
According to Jon Heyman, the Marlins did not say absolutely not—their response instead was that "they were not ready to deal Nolasco."
While unlikely to occur this season, I would not be surprised if the teams were able to work out a trade in the off-season.
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The A's maintain that they have no interest in moving him, but according to Sherman, the Yankees would "pay big" to acquire the talented 25-year-old left-hander.
While Ubaldo Jimenez is not worth selling the farm for, a strong case could be made to do so for Gonzalez.
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Two weeks ago, Brian Cashman told Jack Curry of the YES Network that the Yankees won't do anything stupid. Cashman believes his team, as presently constituted, can make the playoffs and that he had absolutely no inclination to trade Jesus Montero, Manny Banuelos, Delin Betances or Austin Romine.
Today, Cashman told Dan Martin of the NY Post that he would be "hard-pressed to find anything better than getting Bartolo Colon and Phil Hughes off the disabled list."
Cashman insists that he and the organization believe Hughes can return to his All-Star form from the first half of the 2010 season.
He finished his conversation reiterating a point he made to Jack Curry: "I go into the marketplace with a team that's a championship-caliber team as it sits—it's hard to upgrade on that."
This could simply be posturing and part of Cashman's strategy as the deadline nears.
It could also be the truth.
Either way, the team will continue to frequently be mentioned in rumors, reports and speculation as we draw closer to Sunday's deadline.
Stay tuned, Yankees fans—we're about to enter the first home stretch of the season.