Friday, December 18, 2015

Justin Upton, Yoenis Cespedes and Brett Gardner Sitting in a Tree

W-A-I-T-I-N-G. The MLB free agency market for the outfielders has been slow to develop this winter despite the fact that Jason Heyward, the top overall free agent and far and away the top outfield free agent on the market, signed with the Chicago Cubs for $23 million annually. Justin Upton and Yoenis Cespedes are far and away the best remaining free agents in the outfield on the market and they will likely have to be signed before the New York Yankees can even think about trading one of their own, Mr. Brett Gardner.

I believe that the Yankees and their GM Brian Cashman have made both Brett Gardner and Andrew Miller available for trade this winter and I believe that the Yankees are likely to move Gardner, but not for a while it seems. The way the market is shaping up many teams are waiting for the top-tier free agents to sign before the secondary market begins to take shape. Gardner, as much as we love and adore him as Yankees fans, may lead the secondary market as the best outfielder available but I find it hard to place him in the upper-echelon of outfielders with Upton and Cespedes.

When we begin to see Upton and Cespedes come off the market teams will begin to scramble for talent, we have seen it many times over the years. The dominos always fall and those dominos are holding up much of the market right now. If the Yankees really want to get the ball rolling they can sign one of them themselves, preferably Upton over Cespedes for obvious reasons, but Cashman is not one to get in a hurry during the offseason. Cashman will continue to wait the market out and then pounce, or not, with Gardner. The price is only going to go up on him the closer we get to January and February.

New York has made trades that shocked many as late as spring training, they really don’t mind making additions to the club at any point in the season, so I’m not getting impatient and I’m far from worried yet. I’m just going to sit back, relax and wait for the bigger chips to fall before I start planning my new 25 man roster predictions and lineup predictions without Brett Gardner. 

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)