Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge may well be on their way back to the Yankees lineup, but it is the Bombers' starting pitching that is in greater need of a jolt.
CC Sabathia lasted just 4.2 innings in Friday night's 10-2 loss to the White Sox, allowing six runs -- five earned -- on 10 hits and three walks raising his ERA to 4.42 on the season. Sabathia is 0-3 with a 6.89 ERA with hitters batting .375 against him in his last three starts.
The Yankees have now lost seven of their last 10 and have fallen out of first place in the AL East but manager Aaron Boone is not ready to sound the alarm bells just yet on his starting rotation.
"I mean obviously it's been a tough stretch for us the last 10 days or whatever it's been. But I think it's been a little bit of everything," he told reporters on Friday. "We just haven't played well enough to win consistently. Some nights, it's been pitching. Some nights, we haven't been able to mount enough offensively. A couple of games where we haven't played clean defensively. ... We have to play better in every facet in the game to start getting back in a winning column."
He may be right to an extent, but the evidence points to the starting pitching as the Yankees' greatest weakness and it has raised the most concerns recently.
In the last week, Domingo German has joined Luis Severino on the IL, putting added pressure on Sabathia, Masahiro Tanaka, James Paxton and J.A. Happ to all step up. However, only Tanaka was able to pitch beyond the fifth inning this week.
It is not as if the right-hander has been particularly sharp recently, either. Tanaka is 1-2 in his last three starts with a 5.79 ERA and 22 hits in 18.2 innings pitched.
Paxton has been disappointing since his return from the IL on May 29. He is 0-1 with a 7.15 ERA and has allowed 11 hits and seven walks in 11.1 innings pitched over three starts. His ERA has ballooned from 2.81 to 4.04.
Happ has been better of late, sure, but he has been inconsistent on the season, pitching to a 4.66 ERA.
All this further illustrates that the Yankees need to make a trade for a starting pitcher -- and probably sooner than later.
The Bombers missed out on signing free agent lefty Dallas Keuchel, whom they were outbid for by the Atlanta Braves, but are believed to have significant interest in arms on the trade market.
Madison Bumgarner, Marcus Stroman, Trevor Bauer, Matthew Boyd and Zack Wheeler are all possibilities. Bumgarner may be the most likely of the five for the Yankees to target, writes SNY's John Harper, who adds the negotiations could begin with Yankees' 24-year-old outfielder Clint Frazier.
Yet with the July 31 trade deadline still six weeks away the Yankees may have to be patient before they can find the right deal.
Just how patient they can afford to be will depend on if the rest of the starting rotation can figure things out in the coming weeks.