Brian Cashman didn’t wait long to start making moves. There were two big announcements today – the Yankees traded John Ryan Murphy to the Minnesota Twins for outfielder Aaron Hicks and Jose Pirela to the San Diego Padres for right-handed pitching prospect Ronald Herrera. Both players were popular in the clubhouse and the fans, so you’re not alone if these don’t sit well with you.
Aaron Hicks is a 26-year old centerfielder with 3 years’ experience at the major league level. He holds a career batting average of .225. 2015 was his breakout year, where he got his average above .250, his OPS over .700, and got into almost 100 games. Note sarcasm. Seriously, though, he is a decent fielder with a career .995 fielding percentage and above average range. He looks like a solid late-inning defensive replacement. For which we traded the guy that Joe Girardi said would be part of a good catcher tandem with Brian McCann, just yesterday. Yeah.
On the other half of the story, in Ronald Herrera we get a 20-year old right-handed pitcher who has not seen major league action yet but has completed 4 years in the minors at various levels. He finished the season last year at the AA level San Antonio Missions with a 3-1 record, a 4.53 ERA, and a .1420 WHIP. Minor league pitchers sometimes have potential that coaches have to see while the kid is pitching, and maybe that’s the case here, but the numbers just don’t tell that story. Remember, we gave up a top 2B/OF prospect for him.
There is some thought being published out there that acquiring Hicks sets up a Brett Gardner trade. If that were the case, wouldn’t you want an everyday outfielder? Rumors kicked up earlier today about trade talks with the Mariners. Unless King Felix is in the mix, I don’t see how the Yankees end the day in the positive. I am trying to maintain some journalistic impartiality here, but it’s beyond me at the moment. These deals just suck.
Anyway, that’s the news. Carry on.
--Ike Dimitriadis, BYB Senior Staff Writer
My blog is: Shots from Murderer's Row
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