Today, the Yankees traded Chase Headley and Bryan Mitchell to San Diego for Jabari Blash. My thoughts, in no particular order:
Chase Headley is a better player than most Yankee fans give him credit for. A switch hitter with an above league average OBP, and in the top third of MLB in staying in the zone is a pretty useful player. That being said, he’s averaged less than two WAR per season since being with the Yankees – that’s the definition of replaceable.
Bryan Mitchell threw 98 career innings for the Yankees and wasn’t very good. Since debuting in the Yankees farm system in 2010 he’s had difficulty with throwing strikes and giving up too many hits. I think 8 years is long enough to justify a pattern…
Jabari Blash drew 28 walks in 195 plate appearances for San Diego last season, which is actually a better walk percentage than Headley’s. His .341 slugging percentage is a little disconcerting given his age (28) and the power environment that was the 2017 season. But…
…he did have a career .513 SLG in the minor leagues. That my friends, is no joke – the power is there. Add that to a career .378 OBP in the minors and you’re looking at a potentially very good major league player.
Being 28 and only getting 235 big league at bats will send up some red flags, but anyone with a track record of good plate discipline and power is absolutely worth the risk. Remember, Aaron Hicks and Justin Smoak (among others last season) were players with good backgrounds who didn’t start producing until their late twenties. Given that nothing was given up that the Yankees can’t replace in two seconds, this is another steal by Brian Cashman.
Make peace with whoever your higher power is, because I’ve been complimenting Cashman virtually every day lately. His performance has been so good recently, I’m assuming he has a plan for 3rd base.
Miguel Andujar? Todd Frazier? Gleyber Torres? The long play of Manny Machado?
If it were me, assuming Baltimore won’t deal Machado to NY, I like Andujar at 3rd and Torres at 2nd or Torres at 3rd and Tyler Wade at 2nd as option “B”. There is absolutely no need for Todd Frazier, and I’m hoping we’ve seen the last of Ronald “bat boy” Torreyes.
What do you think?
Whatever the case, the Yankees just got better. Again.