Trading The Future For Now, Again…

Imagine my lack of surprise when I found out that the Yankees had once again dealt parts of their future for a chance to win now.  It was something that the team had gotten away from in the middle of the decade, hanging on to a good portion of their farm system and seeing what became of them.

But, in recent weeks, the team has fallen back into the trap of sacrificing later for now.  First the Curtis Granderson deal, and now this one.

The Yankees have acquired Javier Vazquez and Boone Logan from the Atlanta Braves in exchange for young outfielder Melky Cabrera, promising lefty reliever Mike Dunn and 19-year-old righty Arodys Vizcaino.  This would be the same Vazquez who fell apart in pinstripes in the second half of the 2004 season.

But is it really that bad of a deal?  Yes, the Yankees have unloaded a ton of prospects in these deals, but they’ve managed to hold on to the majority of their upper echelon guys.  Getting rid of Austin Jackson may come back to bite them in the end, but other than that, they don’t appear to have given up too much. 

But it’s still difficult to see the team parting with guys like Mike Dunn — who would have had a great opportunity to help the Yankees in the big leagues this year — for someone else’s lefty reliever.  Maybe it’s just because I’ve followed these guys for the past few years, but it’s always preferable to see any team stay with their homegrown talent.

Your thoughts on the deal?

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

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12 Responses to “Trading The Future For Now, Again…”

  1. RPimpsner Says:

    The Yankees got rid of their top pitching prospect, a lefty reliever and a solid outfielder that can play all three positions for Vazquez and that other guy.

    Vizcaino just turned 19 and profiles as a front of the rotation starter who has three pitches right now. A fastball that topped out at 96MPH this year a good curveball and a developing changeup. He is one of these guys that will only get stronger as he gets older and fill into his body.

  2. Brandon Says:

    I actually like the move, but I see both points. I see the players given up as replaceable. Melky is a 3rd-4th OF, Dunn a lefty-reliever that throws hard but has control issues, and Vizcaino a prospect with a bunch of years ahead of him.

  3. Dave S. Staten Island Says:

    The Yankees what to win again this season and I think this trade makes them much stronger. Vazquez was lights out this season and doesn’t have to be the #1 or #2 guy. He will fit in nicely. Melky is a 4th outfielder and Dunn may be ok. We will find out about Vizciano down the road. I’m not big on trading prospects but I think this one is a big help.

  4. Bryan Says:

    Melky Cabrera is nothing more then a fourth outfielder and will find out what it’s like not playing in Yankee Stadium 81 games a year, Mike Dunn is a converted outfielder turned lefty reliever who at best was a lefty-lefty specialist and that’s IF his command was on as it has been spotty at best and 19-year-old righty Arodys Vizcaino was a non-drafted free agent signee who has yet to even pitch a full season of ball after going 2-4 with a 2.13 ERA in 10 starts at short-season Class A Staten Island !

    In 2009 Javier Vazquez was 15-10 with a 2.87 ERA, and he was:

    – 3rd in WHIP.
    – 4th in Walks per 9.
    – 2nd in strikeouts.
    – 2nd in strikeout/walk ratio.
    – 6th in ERA.
    – 5th in innings pitched.

    All in all getting the second best pitcher in the NL last year to be your #4 in the rotation can’t be a bad thing for any reason whatsoever ! Better yet if he is offered arbitration next year as a Type A free agent and rejects it then we get two draft picks (first round and supplemental) which will make all those worried about the farm system happy !

    Incidentally, Zach McAllister is their top pitching prospect as he’s in AAA. If you think that a pitcher who pitched at short season Staten Island A ball is their top pitching prospect then the farm system is in more trouble then I thought !

    Caleb Cotham, Brett Gerritse, Graham Stoneburner, Brett Marshall and Dellin Betances are just a few of the other names that will make you forget all about this so called magic man, Arodys Vizcaino !

  5. Sapna Says:

    When you’re the Yankees, you really should only keep prospects that offer the type of talent that can’t usually be found on the free agent market. Back-end starters like Kennedy are a dime-a-dozen on the market every year, so he should be expendable. And how many mediocre bullpen lefties like Coke do we see available? I had no problem with the Yanks giving up either one of those guys.

    Losing Jackson, Dunn, and Vizcaino was a little tougher, but it was still, in my opinion, justifiable. Jackson right now is basically a guy who hits for a decent average and steals about 20 bases — not that unique a skill set and one that could be replaced easily through free agency next year by adding Carl Crawford. While power lefties like Dunn are a rare breed, I didn’t hear anything about him being more than just a middle reliever on the Yankees, and to me, you can’t let a non-closer bullpen piece hold you back from obtaining an established starter. Vizcaino’s K rates make him intriguing, but he’s too low in the system for anyone to be that upset about losing him at this point.

    Really, the only guys I would absolutely hate to see traded are Montero, Hughes, and Chamberlain because their skill sets are so unique, it would be tough to replace them through free agency. Montero, being a power-hitting catcher, is particularly special. And while guys with front-line-starter potential like Hughes and Chamberlain are not as rare, they’re extremely expensive.

  6. RPimpsner Says:

    Brian you comment about Vizcaino not being the top pitching prospect is flawed. By your logic then Igawa is the Yankees top pitching prospect.

    Prospect rankings is done by skill, makeup and projectability. McAllister projects as a middle of the rotation guy. Vizcaino is projected as a front of a rotation guy.

  7. Peter Lacock Says:

    I’m on the fence.
    I know I’m like Mike, ‘it’s always preferable to see any team stay with their homegrown talent’, except I don’t care about any other team and I’d like to see the Yankees use their vast resources to develop the best farm system ever created instead of what it is now.
    When the season ended I was in favor of letting all the FA’s go and replacing them from within. Instead, the exact opposite has happened and there will be no ‘from within, it will all be ‘from somewhere else’.
    Granderson is a great CF. I can get excited about him.
    Vazquez on the other hand, does not thrill me. As far as innings eaters go, he’s a good one, but he’s not great, not young and not cheap (money + players). At least he’s on the last year of his contract. Selling high on Melky is good but the thing that bothers me most is now another OF will be acquired.
    I was naive to think that there was a change in philosophy about player development and get excited about it. I was stupid to believe Cashman when he said the payroll would be lower. I won’t get fooled again.
    I like taking a chance on Hoffmann for Bruney but these other deals (and a few more pending) are wait (until 2011) and see for me.

  8. Bryan Says:

    RPimpsner,

    Check the boards and you will find that one and only one Top 10 NYY prospects list has Vizcaino in it while each and every one has McAllister on it along with Nova, etc. How Igawa makes your argument is dumbfounding as he’s not even a consideration.

    Having a Short Season Class A prospect rate in the top 10 is what is flawed. Look at CJ Henry, Eric Duncan, Hensley Muelens, David Walling, Sterling Hitchcock, Matt Drews, et al and you will find that it’s a one in a million long shot to fully reach your potential.

  9. RPimpsner Says:

    Bryan,

    Your argument is flawed. Jesus Montero, Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, Austin Jackson and even more were TOP prospects when they were in Rookie ball or haven’t thrown a pitch in a professional game.

    As someone who has covered the Yankees Farm System for eight years I have seen those you mention fail but like I said Prospect lists are based on projectability not because someone is higher level in the system.

    By your argument any player in AA or AAA is a better prospect than one in the lower level which is deeply flawed.

  10. mbn007 Says:

    Bryan;

    Robert knows his stuff. He has covered the lower level minors for years, and has written extensively on it. He has a real handle on things. Personally, having seen Vizcaino last year, he is the real deal. We have other talents in teh system, but Viz was something else. He should only get better. He has it all right now though. He does need to fill out a bit, and that also might add a tick or 2 to his FB.

    But I do like the move for Vasquez. Last year of a contract, not being asked to do more than be a #4, and eat innings. And he should be a FA worth 2 picks if he leaves. I doubt the Yankees offer him a multi year deal, but someone out there will.

  11. Tags Says:

    I hated to see Dunn go in the deal and was surprised he did. He was the stumbling block in the Granderson deal so I thought they would never move him. I think the Yanks might have worried about his control issues. But with the relief prospects the Yanks have I can understand the move. Vasquez won’t be asked to be the main guy like he was the first time around. And his second half collaspe was more because of shoulder problems. Plus he’s a guy who wants to be here who’ll take the ball every 5th day and give you 7-8 inings. As for Vizcaino yes the reports were he was promising but short season SI ball! And there were some reports the Yankees didn’t like his work habits. Plus if there is one position we’re stocked at it’s pitcher. Having been going to Trenton for years now I did hate to see Jackson go and look forward to seeing him in the majors.

  12. BTL05 Says:

    The Vazquez deal was a no-brainer. If one can afford to pay him, you’ve got to make that deal if the intention is to repeat in 2010.

    Melky may be a role player but I don’t think that book is written just yet. His switch hitting/OF flexibility should play well in Atlanta. Having said that, I’m not seeing the batting title Bill Masse predicted for him a couple of years ago.

    Vizcaino may be the 2nd coming but I wish I had a dollar for everytime I heard that about a pitching prospect. Let’s not forget that he’s yet to pitch in full season ball. Great half season run at SI but a lot of the guys he got out there won’t make it past the Sally League. He could rocket to the big leagues in a year or two but I suspect that’s unlikely.

    Dunn is a very talented southpaw bullpen guy who I suspect will have a good big league career.

    Add it up and what you traded was some solid young depth and a long range pitching prospect (of which there are many). What you got was a very under rated, veteran innings eater who most often will keep you in the game and is very capable of dominating the best hitters….a guy I’d much rather have than oh, say John Lackey.

    imo, Cashman scores big.

    BTL

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