The Yankees have made it clear they will be on the prowl for another rotation piece before the trade deadline strikes. The prospects they will part with to acquire their new arm, though, is still up in the air.
One of the top prospects that will entice teams will likely be OF Clint Frazier, who has been the odd man out among a stacked Yankees outfield that includes veterans like Brett Gardner and Aaron Hicks along with Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge.
Though Frazier's name will likely be presented to GM Brian Cashman in proposed deals, he doesn't want to see him out of pinstripes anytime soon.
"We'd like to hold on to him," Cashman told the Daily News' Mike Mazzeo on Frazier. "I know he's someone that we're going to get asked a lot about, and so far we've been able to say no and hand-check everything, but I'm a big Clint Frazier fan.
"He was a big piece of that trade of Andrew Miller along with some others and I think he's got a lot of really good baseball ahead of him. He's going about his business perfectly right now. He's impacting us in a positive way and saying all the right things."
Frazier may be saying the right things, but he has also expressed his frustration of waiting in Triple-A where he was racking before the Yankees called him back up. Luckily, Cashman understands that frustration.
"But it's got to be frustrating for a talented player like that to be obviously at times either not playing at the major-league level or stuck at Triple-A," Cashman said.
With Scranton/Wilkes-Barre this season, Frazier is hitting .312/.389/.558 with seven homers and 11 RBI over 38 games. Since returning to the Yankees 25-man roster, he has went 4-for-11 with four runs scored. He was robbed of a home run in a pinch-hit situation in the team's final game of their series with the Rays on Sunday after a shot to left hit a speaker in the rafters at Tropicana Field.
Frazier has shown improvement in his game since the Yankees acquired him, and Cashman has certainly taken note of it.
"We're lucky to have him," Cashman said. "He's getting better. He's a toolbox that every year since we've gotten him he's exponentially improved."
Scott Thompson, SNY.tv | Twitter |
Thank you, Cash. I love hearing from someone as important as you in the organization that Frazier is worth keeping.
Now, I understand how important pitching is for this Yankees team to take the next step, and make that push in the postseason. But, with the exception of Jacob deGrom possibly going up for sale, I wouldn't put Frazier in any package for the pitchers expected to be on the market.
Just think: Would you send a former Top 5 draft pick that has shown success in the big leagues at the ripe age of 23 away for a second-tier starter like J.A. Happ or Cole Hamels? Would you add Frazier in a package knowing teams are drooling over the boatload of other prospects in the Yankees' system?
"Red Thunder" can certainly start on other ballclubs across the league, and it is sad to see him (along with Brandon Drury, but that can be for another time) waiting his turn in Triple-A. But, with Brett Gardner hitting free agency after this season as well as Aaron Hicks in 2020, Frazier may have a place as an everyday guy down the road.
Aaron Judge wasn't brought up until he was 24, and was the Rookie of the Year last season at 25. Frazier may not live up to Judge's standards, but Cashman and Yankees fans alike should bear that in mind when debating whether or not to deal him away.