In a report that just came out from MLB Trade Rumors, Joel Sherman reports that the San Diego Padres and NY Yankees are talking trade.
The Bombers are in the need of some pitching help and that just happens to be one of the few strengths on the Padres team.
There is no doubt that the Padres will be exploring some options when it comes to trades. Brad Hand has over three years of control left on his contract, and there is no real rush to move him. The left-handed closer is the Padres most valuable trade chip in major league clothing.
Kirby Yates and possibly even Craig Stammen could also be of interest as they have been useful middle relievers in 2018. Yates, in particular, has been stellar recording a sub 2.00 ERA and holding right handed hitters to an under .100 batting average. The Padres have relief options in the minors, so dealing these veteran arms will not be catastrophic either.
Tyson Ross and Clayton Richard to some degree, might be of interest to contending teams. The Padres have Ross on a one-year deal and probably should trade the right-handed reliever while they can fetch a prospect or two. Richard has been an innings eater and a huge mentor to both Joey Lucchesi and Eric Lauer. Dealing him might be tough for the club, especially when you factor in that he is signed so inexpensively for the 2019 season.
There are options for the Yankees on the Padres roster, but what can the Friars get in return?
Most recent rumors have the Bronx Bombers dangling Clint Frazier in some trade talks. The talented 23-year-old right-handed outfielder has no spot on the 25-man roster currently, despite being major league ready. He was acquired from the Cleveland Indians in 2016 for Andrew Miller and has played well in the minors (.958 OPS this season in Triple-A).
The problem with Frazier is that he projects as a corner outfielder and the Padres are stocked in that area. Wil Myers, Hunter Renfroe and Franmil Reyes are all corner outfielders and even Travis Jankowski has been rotating there as well. Then there is Franchy Cordero who is currently shelved with an elbow issue. The position is really crowded.
Luckily the Yankees have plenty of prospects worth noting.
Estevan Florial (#37 overall) is the teams best prospect, but again probably is not a fit for the Friars. Justus Sheffield is a left-handed prospect and the second player obtained from the Indians in the Miller deal of 2016. The smaller in stature pitcher has a very lively arm and is close to being major league ready. He is the #39 prospect in all of baseball and it remains to be seen if the Yankees are willing to deal him.
Luis Medina is a Dominican pitcher who has a triple digit fastball. The 19-year-old is very raw and has no idea where his fastball is going from time to time. The potential is there, but he has a lot of mechanical issues to work through. Still, anyone who throws 100 mph is worth noting.
Garrett Whitlock is another name to keep an eye on. The 22-year-old right handed pitcher has struck out 98 batters this season in 87 innings between both Single-A levels for the Yankees. The 6-foot-5 pitcher was drafted in the 18th round in 2017 and has blossomed of late. He pounds the zone and features a heavy sinker and plus slider.
It is difficult to predict who the Padres are eyeing. They have a propensity to scout and value players that are unheralded. Expect the Padres to be hitting the lower minor league levels real hard in the next weeks. These two teams are talking. We know that. Let’s just wait and see how far they get in discussions.