15 Dec 2011
Over on ESPN’s GM’s Office (subscription required) Jim Bowden has posted five trade ideas that he sees as fair for both teams. One of them is Felix Hernandez to the Yankees for Ivan Nova, Jesus Montero and Dellin Betances. So, if you are the Yankees, do you make this trade?
Personally, I would and here’s why. I think the Yankees are selling high on Nova. Sure, he was awesome in the second half last year, but he also didn’t strike out a lot of guys. It’s very hard to be a great pitcher in this era if you don’t get your K’s and I view Nova as a nice back of the rotation guy rather than a #2 or #3. I could be very wrong about that and if he stays in the Yankees rotation I hope I am, but the jury is still out on him.
Montero is obviously the big hit in this trade, but I still don’t think the Yankees view him as a catcher. To me, the fact that they sent Romine across the country when Martin and Cervelli went down in September tells you all you need to know. And, if he can’t catch, his value to the Yankees goes way down. I should also note that I saw Brian Cashman on TV get asked about putting him in rightfield and Cashman basically said he didn’t think Montero could handle it. So, it’s catcher or bust with Jesus and unless the Yankees have had a change of thinking about his abilities there, better to trade him while the illusion that he can catch still exists.
Betances would hurt too, but of the remaining “B’” I would much prefer to hang onto Banuelos. If you got Hernandez you would have a dominant 1-2 punch to couple with Hughes, Burnett and Garcia. I think you have to do that trade if you are the Yankees.