It’s no secret that the New York Yankees biggest weakness is the starting rotation. At his best, Luis Severino could be the best pitcher in the American League, but he was wildly inconsistent this past season. Jordan Montgomery, who has shown promise, has dealt with many injuries over the past two years so where he is right now in terms of play quality is TBD, and CC Sabathia is almost 40 and on the decline. The only consistent pitchers the Yankees had last year were Masahiro Tanaka, who might’ve had his best year yet, and JA Happ, who will hopefully be resigned this offseason. GM Brian Cashman hasn’t been shy about going after pitches this offseason and there are many players he is targeting.
Kluber is hands down the best available option. He has been the Indians ace for some time now, has won the Cy Young twice (2014 and 2017), and is a dominant pitcher come playoff time when it is most important. The Indians recently announced that they would be shopping him among other players as it seems they are trying to overhaul their roster and build around Francisco Lindor and Jose Ramirez. The Yankees are reportedly interested in Kluber and are talking to the Indians about him and another pitcher who will be named next.
Carrasco is not as good as Kluber but he is still a very good, quality pitcher. He is currently the number 2 pitcher on the Indians behind, the best available option, Corey Kluber. Carrasco is not an ace and will most likely not contend for a Cy Young any time soon, but he would provide stability in a rotation that needs it and he probably won’t cost as many prospects as a guy like Kluber.
James Paxton has had 2 great back to back years posting a 2.76 ERA with 12 wins and 5 losses in 136 innings pitched in 2017 and he followed it up with a 3.76 ERA with 11 wins and 6 losses in a total of 160.1 innings pitched. The first lefty on this list, Paxton provides some balance in the, currently righty heavy, Yankees rotation. He has established himself as one of the best pitchers in the AL and could, like the others, provide some much needed stability along with balance.
It is entirely possible that the Yankees can both trade for a pitcher and sign NL Cy Young contender Patrick Corbin, but whether they trade for one or not, he should be a priority. Like Paxton, he is a lefty and could provide some balance among the starters. He is also the youngest option at 29 years old. He finished his 2018 season with a 3.15 ERA and 246 strikeouts, hands down his best season of his career. Corbin also grew up a Yankees fan and said during the season that he wants to play in New York so this seems to be a matter of whether or not the Yankees want him, which it seems like they do. If they can trade for one of the 3 other pitchers and sign Corbin, they should be able to take the next step and truly contend for a 28th World Series.