The New York Yankees have one of the strongest rosters in MLB, but it could use a couple of upgrades in specific positions.
Those two players can help the Yankees win their first World Series since 2009.
1. Max Scherzer, SP, Washington Nationals
The Washington Nationals are, before Tuesday’s games, in last place of the National League East division, with a 16-21 record.
They aren’t too far off the New York Mets for the division lead (four games behind), but there is a sizable gap in talent between the Nationals and the two teams perceived as favorites to fight for the division: the Mets and the Atlanta Braves.
If Washington falls in a deep hole and decides to sell come the trade deadline, they would be smart to entertain dealing their ace, Scherzer.
Scherzer is 36 years old, but is still dominating.
He has a 2.10 ERA with a 3.09 Fielding Independent pitching, or FIP, in eight starts this season, striking out a whopping 35.8 percent of the batters he has faced.
In other words, he is back to his best version after scuffling a bit (for his standards) last year with a 3.74 mark.
The Yankees have a great rotation, but Scherzer could be the final piece in the puzzle, the one that helps him get over the bump.
I'd trade anyone not named Jasson Dominguez for even just three months of Max Scherzer.
Those will be only thoughts regarding Max Scherzer and the Yankees.
— Max Wildstein (@MaxWildstein) May 9, 2021
If the Yankees can get Luis Severino back sometime in the summer, and can also add Scherzer near the deadline, they could be unstoppable come October.
A rotation consisting of Gerrit Cole, Scherzer, Corey Kluber, and Severino has no match in the league and could be extremely problematic for opposing lineups, with Domingo German, Jordan Montgomery and Jameson Taillon as complementary parts of a dominant pitching staff.
Because he is expensive, old, and in the last year of his contract (he would be a rental), the theory states that Scherzer shouldn’t be too expensive to acquire.
If the Yankees pull it off, it would be a coup.
2. Trevor Story, SS, Colorado Rockies
The Yankees have previously said that they see Gleyber Torres as their shortstop of the future, and for good reason.
In 2019, Torres showed he belongs in the elite of the position by hitting 38 home runs and spending time in the two middle infield positions.
However, Torres hasn’t gotten going in 2021, and his abbreviated 2020 campaign wasn’t very good either.
More importantly, his defense hasn’t developed the way the Yankees would want to, although he has worked hard and made some improvements.
That’s why the Yankees would be smart to at least kick the tires on Story.
Column: Trevor Story is going to be the best player traded this summer and the Rockies will get good return — but because of the positional context, the market for him may be very limited. https://t.co/8jvnaYcMWb
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) May 11, 2021
Story is the whole package for the shortstop position, with excellent defense and instincts.
He has speed to burn, and was the National League’s top base-stealer in 2020.
And, perhaps more importantly, he is a premier offensive performer.
For his career, Story has a .276/.343/.529 line, which is formidable for a shortstop.
And Torres can be moved to another position to accommodate for a hypothetical Story arrival, although the Yankees’ depth can complicate things.
For the win-now Yankees, getting Story makes sense, considering that the prospect capital shouldn’t be too much of a hurdle since he would be a rental.
Story could be the missing piece for the Yankees to finally make the leap and win their first World Series since 2009.