Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Predicting the 2018 Trade Deadline: Danny Duffy



The name Danny Duffy is not at the top of any team’s priority list if we are being completely honest, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be more than a couple teams interested in his services this summer before the July 31st trading deadline. In my opinion, and I know this will not be a popular opinion by any stretch of the imagination, I believe that both of the teams we will watch inside Yankee Stadium this evening will be at least interested in the Kansas City Royals left-hander, the Yankees and the Braves. Who will win tonight will be decided in just a few years, but who will win in a potential Danny Duffy sweepstakes? Well that could take until the end of July to find out.  

Before we get too far into this let’s get one thing out and in the open, Danny Duffy is not at the top of the Yankees priority list and Duffy is also not the arm that will put New York over the top when it comes to the postseason and the World Series. At least not on paper, but he could be a serviceable addition to the rotation if the Yankees were to run into a few scenarios. Do either of Domingo German or Jonathan Loaisiga have innings limits this season? German has never thrown over 123 innings (he has already pitched more than half as many innings thus far in 2018) in a season and that came back in 2014 while Loaisiga has never pitched more than 68 innings in a season, so it is conceivable that both could be on innings limits by the end of the season. Do you trust Sonny Gray pitching Game Four of a playoff series? Because I don’t either. The other scenario is an injury, it could happen to any pitcher, but it could especially happen to CC Sabathia with his balky knees and lower extremities. Duffy isn’t the ideal choice, but he should be looked at nonetheless in my opinion.  

Duffy would come cheap as he has been inconsistent here in 2018, a year before hitting his free agency before the 2019 season. Duffy’s overall stats are not pretty but if you look at his game logs he shows at least something to get excited about. Duffy has made 17 starts as of the time of this writing and has been the model of consistently inconsistent in all of them. Duffy has allowed three runs or less in nine of them including three games where he allowed zero earned runs. Where his inflated numbers come in at are in the games where he allowed five runs (three times), nine runs, six runs (twice), and seven runs against the Houston Astros.  

Duffy seems to be a lot like Sonny Gray in the way that when he is good, he is great, but when he isn’t… watch out. Could Larry Rothschild work his magic on him and “fix” him? I can’t say no, he has done it with so many others before, but for the same reasons the Yankees would want him would be the same reasons why the Atlanta Braves would need him. The Braves will be stiff competition, and stiff competition makes the price for everything go up. If the Yankees decide that they need another starter and a better option doesn’t present itself first, a better option being a better pitcher who is younger and with more team control for example, then I could see the Yankees rolling the dice on Duffy for the cost of a couple low-level prospects. If the price gets too high, then I’d be content with letting the Braves have him and going with what we currently have. The Yankees don’t need him, Justus Sheffield should be ready soon, but in my opinion the Atlanta Braves do if they want to hold off the Washington Nationals and Philadelphia Phillies.  

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