By: Billy Lewis
The 2019 Trade Deadline has come and gone and the New York Yankees look exactly like they did before the deadline. The Yankees did not make any impactful trade before 4:00 PM. Since before Spring Training it was thought the Yankees would look to add a starting pitcher by the deadline. It turns out Brian Cashman did not want to pay the price it would take to acquire a starter.
The Yankees biggest strength has been their bullpen. In order to win the World Series, they will need their pen to hold up. Entering Wednesday’s deadline the Yankees had a 7.5 game lead in the division over the Rays (9 games in the loss column). Taking into account all the injuries and lackluster starting pitching, it’s truly remarkable the Yankees have been as good as they have.
Luis Severino and Dellin Betances are still looking to throw their first pitch of 2019. Yes, when/if those two came back of the Injured List, it will be like making a big acquisition. If Severino gets back, I’d expect him to piggyback off Chad Green in “opener” games.
Looking to October
The mission statement for the Yankees is always “World Series or bust”. Even though they didn’t make any moves, they will still be considered one of the favorites to win the World Series. The offense and their bullpen will be the thing that leads them to the promised land.
It looked as though it was going to be a quiet deadline for most of the favorites for the World Series. Marcus Stroman and Trevor Bauer were the biggest pitching names traded, to the Mets and Reds respectively.
Zack Greinke started Wednesday’s game for the Diamondbacks against the Yankees. He was pulled after a thirty-six-minute rain delay. It turns out he didn’t return to the game because he was involved in the biggest deadline trade.
The Diamondbacks traded Greinke to the Houston Astros. The Astros have been thought of like the Yankees toughest competition in the American League. In 2017 the Astros defeated the Yankees in the ALCS in route to a World Series title.
Justin Verlander was the Astro’s X-factor in 2017. Verlander still headlines the Astros rotation and will now be followed by Gerrit Cole and Greinke.
The Yankees do not have the starting pitching to compete with the Astros. They will need to capitalize on mistakes and hope to take advantage of the Houston bullpen. The Yankees bullpen will also need to be on top of its game. When you call on so many people, it just takes one to have an off day and you can suffer a crucial loss.
Though we still have two months of the regular season, fans will start looking towards October. It looks like the Yankees and Astros are set on a crash course to meet once again in the ALCS. Verlander, Cole, and Greinke are an intimidating three-headed monster, but the Yankees have the offensive firepower to compete.