New York Yankees Add Arm to Bolster Floundering Bullpen
After what happened against the Boston Red Sox Sunday, the New York Yankees needed a change. A shake-up. A shot in the arm. Brian Cashman did just that yesterday afternoon.
The boost came in the form of a trade, in which the Yankees acquired right-handed reliever Clay Holmes from the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Yankees parted ways with Diego Castillo and Hoy Jun Park in the deal, and catcher Rob Brantly was returned to Triple-A to clear a spot on the big club's roster.
For New York, the bullpen has quickly gone from its best asset, to arguably its worst, and this trade is clearly aimed at curbing that trend.
Look at Sunday's game against the Red Sox. Jonathan Loaisiga faced four batters, and gave up four hits. Zack Britton entered the game, and promptly completed the meltdown. According to Fangraphs, he Yankees' bullpen as a whole has an ERA of 5.74 in the month of July, the fifth-worst in baseball, and well over a run worse than the Red Sox and Rays. Aroldis Chapman, Chad Green and Lucas Luetge were all fantastic to start the year, but have fallen on hard times as their workloads have increased.
Enter Clay Holmes, the 28-year old right-hander who has been in Major League Baseball consistently since 2018. Holmes is in the midst of the best season of his career, with an ERA nearly a run lower than his last full season in 2019.
He's not going to be the next Mariano Rivera, but he can pitch. That's an important trait to possess in a bullpen that's running on fumes.
In return, the Yankees traded spare parts, who wouldn't have had an impact on the Major League team during their current window to win a championship. Castillo is an intriguing 23-year old middle infielder, who was hitting .277 in Double-A Somerset at the time of the trade. Park is 25 years of age, and earned his first career MLB at-bat earlier this season. He's hitting .327 in Triple-A this season for the Yankees, but based on his playing time, the team clearly didn't see a fit right now.
This trade will likely end up being a net loss in the future, but it provides something invaluable to the Yankees right away, and that's what this franchise needs most.