So, the New York Yankees have reportedly decided to include prized right-hander Phil Hughes in a deal for Johan Santana.
From the New York Daily News:
After two days of internal discussions among front-office executives, the Yankees swallowed hard Friday and decided to offer Phil Hughes to the Twins as part of the trade package they hope will land them Johan Santana.
“We’re going for it,” was the way one club source put it.
Based on their talks with Twins GM Bill Smith, the Yankees knew they couldn’t make a deal for Santana without including Hughes, their 21-year-old righthander widely regarded as a potential staff ace.
Both the Yankees and Red Sox had been resisting offering their top prospects for Santana. For Boston, that means pitcher Clay Buchholz and outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury. For the Yankees, that means Hughes and Joba Chamberlain.
It’s no surprise to me if it is indeed the Yankees who crack and give Twins GM Bill Smith what he wants. The Red Sox already have Josh Beckett and have won two of the last four World Series. Santana would be nice, but Boston can win again next year without him.
The Yankees have no legitimate No. 1 starter, face the possibility of losing Andy Pettitte to retirement, have lost AL East supremacy and face the prospect of having three rookie starters in their rotation next season. Jorge Posada was right. To knock Boston off the throne the Yankees need an ace. NOW!!
“We need a No.1, and I think that’s one of the reasons we’re going after Santana,” Posada said. “It is a need in October, no question about it. When you look at the past World Series champions, they were able to have a No.1 throwing at least two games to win the title.”
Wallace Matthews of Newsday makes the point that the Yankees have to keep Santana away from Boston. Period.
If Santana goes to Boston, the Yankees go to second place in the American League East for the rest of George Steinbrenner’s life, and maybe Hank Steinbrenner’s, too. It’s as simple as that.
No matter how many home runs Alex Rodriguez hits, no matter how many hitters Chamberlain freezes, no matter how many great years Derek Jeter and Jorge Posada have left in them and no matter how much further Robinson Cano, Melky Cabrera, Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy develop, the Yankees will never overcome a team on which Josh Beckett is the No. 2 starter.
For that reason alone, the Yankees have to re-think their position on Hughes, Kennedy, Cabrera and Cano. The name of the game now is keepaway, and the Yankees had better master it in a hurry. Santana can go to the Dodgers or the Mets or the Angels or the Cubs, but under no circumstances can he be allowed to set foot in Fenway Park except as the enemy.
I’m with Matthews on this one. I think Hughes will become an outstanding big-league pitcher. The Yankees, simply, aren’t in position to wait for that to happen. If the opportunity is there, and it seems to be, they have to put Santana in pinstripes.
Santana, only 28, is widely regarded as the game’s best pitcher. This is not Randy Johnson or Kevin Brown, former aces hanging around for a paycheck by the time they got the Bronx. This is a guy, who, provided he stays healthy, can continue to be among the best pitchers in the game for many years to come.
What do you think, Yankees fans? Keep the kids or go all in for Santana?
There are currently 5 responses to “Should the Yankees give up Hughes for Johan?”
Hot Stove New York uses Gravatars — short for Globally Recognized Avatars — for the pictures that show up next to comments.