Two weeks after the trade deadline and the Yankees and Red Sox are going in complete opposite directions. The Yankees became the evil empire again and acquired numerous players that some would consider valuable. While the Red Sox made small deals, and promoted their top prospect. While also giving the veterans and the young major leaguers a shot of confidence.
The team in New York acquired Todd Frazier, David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle from the White Sox for Blake Rutherford and Tyler Clippard. Sonny Gray from the A’s for Dustin Fowler, Jorge Mateo, and James Kaprielian. On paper, it would appear the Yankees acquired names with a lot of value. It doesn’t appear that these moves are helping much. Why? The Yankees never really addressed their actual problems, they just tried to do what they always do and acquire players they don’t need so no one else can have them. Todd Frazier is battling through the worst year of his career and he strikes out way too much to be a successful major league hitter at this point in his career. While he may hit for power, a team in the playoff race that already has some trouble scoring runs consistently, cannot afford to have two players at the third base position who do not hit for an average. Plus, Frazier is not great in the field anymore either.
David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle are okay acquisitions that could help this team. Kahnle throws hard and has major strike out potential which helps a lot playing in the small ballpark that it is Yankee stadium. Robertson has been an above average reliever for some time now. He will do a great job bridging the gap to Aroldis Chapman. Honestly, that is where the problem lies with the Yankees. They acquired Kahnle and Robertson and they are using them in the wrong way. Aroldis Chapman has been terrible this year against the Red Sox, and the Yankees bullpen has blown the most saves in baseball. Robertson does not throw as hard as Chapman, sans Joe Kelly and Kimbrel, no one does. The one thing Chapman does is he tends to walk a lot of guys, and that is not something you want in your closer. Robertson has a 3-1 walk to strikeout ratio in his career. In 50 innings coming into this year he has only walked 13 guys. Now while Robertson is not anything special or flashy, he can get guys out and he should 100% be the closer on the Yankees team.
Sonny Gray has injury concerns and played in the largest ballpark in baseball. The narrative of the Yankees won the trade deadline is tired, every major media outlet and so called “expert” said the exact same thing last year when they acquired all their young minor league talent. As I have explained, the Yankees deals are overrated and never did anything to make their team better. The over-hyped Aaron Judge is on pace for about 220 strikeouts, their team is riddled with infielders who can’t hit and old expiring contracts, especially that of Jacoby Ellsbury.
Bob DeChiaria USA Today
The Red Sox and their front office understand the value of instilling the confidence in your current roster. Rafael Devers is tearing the cover off the ball and Eduardo Nunez is becoming a legend in Boston by how he has hit, and his play in the field has been more than passable. Addison Reed has left a little to be desired, but with Joe Kelly back in the mix and Matt Barnes able to put his woes behind him for the most part, this bullpen is a force to be reckoned with. Since the Trade Deadline the Red Sox are 11-2 and the Yankees are limping to the finish.
The approach of acquiring as much major league talent as possible and trying to win with that much talent does not work. The Yankees, Red Sox, Padres, and The Blue Jays are all just recent examples that show having a balanced team with homegrown talent is the best way to win in the Major Leagues. The Red Sox have not won the division yet but if they can beat the Yankees in these next two series they have coming up, they should be able to cruise to their second consecutive division title. The Sox are also 5.5 games back of the Astros for the best record in the American League and home field advantage for the playoffs.