The New York Yankees and its fans are in unfamiliar ground: the future.
It began with August 1st’s MLB Trade Deadline, when the Yankees split up the renowned “No Runs-BMC” (Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman). Chapman was the first dealt to the Chicago Cubs for a rich package. Miller brought the Yankees a similar deal with his move to the Cleveland Indians.
The trade deadline witnessed two more Yankees deals go down. Carlos Beltran went to the Texas Rangers for the Rangers’ top 2015 pick in left-handed pitcher Dillon Tate, among others. Ivan Nova got shipped to the Pittsburgh Pirates for two players to be named later.
After one week of a new look for the Yankees, the changes didn’t stop there.
Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira announced he would retire after this season. He ends a career with a World Series ring and MVP candidate. It was his injuries that forced him to make this decision.
Perhaps the bigger news to arrive came from the Bronx earlier today, where Alex Rodriguez will play his last baseball game on Friday.
Rodriguez will remain with the Yankees as a special advisor and instructor for the club and, according to GM Brian Cashman, will still receive the money owed to him as promised.
This means one thing and one thing alone: the New York Yankees are banking on the future.
The Yankees acquired top prospects for two relievers. They acquired shortstop Gleyber Torres from the Cubs at the Chapman deal. He’s their No. 1 guy from their organization.
The Cleveland Indians gave the Yankees outfielder Clint Frazier among others for Miller. He is their top prospect from that ball club.
Keep in mind the Yankees kept outfield prospect Aaron Judge and the young Luis Severino in their organization. Plus, Gary Sanchez officially got the call. The catcher has arrived to the show since the trade deadline ended.
Also remaining in their lineup is the promising infield duo of Didi Gregorious and Starlin Castro. Both developed quite the rapport and chemistry needed to strengthen the backfield. First baseman Greg Bird is also still on the team, despite missing the season with a right shoulder labrum tear.
This is not the New York Yankees we’re accustomed to. They always seem ready for the now and leave the future as an afterthought. Not anymore.
This is the future. The New York Yankees are bankrolling not in the stars of today but the players of tomorrow. Who’s to say they’re done wheeling and dealing?
The waiver deadline is still in play. There were many other names mentioned from the Yankees that could be sent elsewhere. Among those names was Brian McCann, who was rumored to go to the Atlanta Braves before the trade deadline passed.
The Yankees’ plans are in the future and the future alone. It’s uncharted territory for them and their fans, but it’s a step in the right direction.
Yes, there is a strong chance the names mentioned above won’t pan out. Then again, how many established stars that came to The Bronx truly created a lasting impact in the past ten years?
Hall-of-Fame pitcher Randy Johnson was supposed to become the ace for the Yankees starting in 2005. His most memorable moment as a Yankee was attacking a cameraman who invaded his privacy.
Gary Sheffield was allegedly the missing link for the Yankees at right field in 2004. His most memorable moment was shoving a fan at Fenway Park instead of cleanly fielding a baseball. Keep in mind that said fan attacked Sheffield during play.
The main thing to understand, whether you support or root against the Yankees, is everything is the unknown. You can take chances with established names all you want, but it cannot come at the cost of generations to come.
Welcome to the future, Yankees Universe. It’s going to be a long ride and, perhaps, an eventful one.
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