The Yankees have reached out to the Mets to express interest in 1B Lucas Duda and closer Addison Reed, reports Mark Feinsand of MLB.com.
The Yankees, who are interested in acquiring a first baseman and late-inning reliever, were scouting the Mets on Monday night at Citi Field, according to the NY Post's Kevin Kernan.
The Mets are reportedly open to dealing any player who is not under team control beyond next season, including Reed and Duda.
Sandy Alderson said July 14 that he's not opposed to trading with the Yankees, despite the two teams not connecting on a player-for-player big-league deal since swapping Mike Stanton for Felix Heredia in 2004.
The Yankees, who are 47-44, are a half game up on the Twins for the second Wild Card in the American League.
While the Yankees might not make a long run in the postseason in 2017, they've created enough buzz courtesy of their hot start to promote a desire to at least reach the playoffs.
With Greg Bird more or less completely removed from consideration as an option this season, the Yanks might not believe in a Ji-Man Choi and Garrett Cooper platoon.
The argument for the Yankees' desire for a rental at first base goes hand-in-hand with their contention that Bird is still considered the first baseman of the future. Enter Duda.
Duda's left-handed power could be tailor made for Yankee Stadium's short porch and since he is a rental, the prospect cost might not be too substantial. The interesting thing about Duda is that the Yankees might still want to platoon him with Cooper due to the Mets' outfielder's OPS splits of .956 against RHP and .715 against LHP.
The Yankees don't seem to have a lot of competition among playoff contending teams for first basemen, so that too could make Duda (and other first baseman rentals) an inexpensive move.
Adding Reed to a deal with Duda or taking the reliever on his own has some merits for the Yankees, as he would provide an immediate boost to a beleaguered bullpen. However, with Reed set to hit free agency at the end of the season, I'm not sure the Yankees are in the position (a tight grip on a wild card spot) to use prospects for a rental reliever that might have a high price tag considering the market for high-leverage arms.