Yankees Miss Out on Luis Castillo, So They Focus on Their Last Remaining Star Trade Option

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Duane Burleson/Getty Images
John Allen
Saturday July 30, 2022

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With the MLB trade deadline quickly approaching, the New York Yankees must act quickly if they want to add a starting pitcher to their rotation.

On Friday night, after the Yankees crushed the Kansas City Royals with an Aaron Judge grand slam in the eighth inning, one of the market’s top starters, Luis Castillo, was traded to the Seattle Mariners.

With Castillo, Logan Gilbert, Robbie Ray, and others, the Mariners now have a playoff-ready rotation. This, however, has a negative impact on the Yankees, who have a shaky rotation that cannot be relied on in October.

Frankie Montas, the Oakland Athletics’ 29-year-old pitcher, is the market’s top remaining starter. Montes has one more year under contract before becoming a free agent in 2024. Montas has seven seasons of MLB experience, including two seasons in which he pitched over 100 innings.

What kind of impact would Montas have on the Yankees?

Montas has a 3.18 ERA and a 3.22 xFIP this season. After pitching 187 innings last season, he has pitched 104.2 innings this season, the second most in his career. He currently has a strikeout rate of 9.37 per nine innings, a left on base rate of 73.4 percent, and a ground ball rate of 46.1 percent.

His 12.6 percent HR/FB ratio is a little high, but he has a solid repertoire of pitches that would easily help the Yankees rotation.

Frankie has a four-seam fastball, a split-finger fastball, a sinker, and a slider. He also throws in a cutter at 9.2 percent usage. His split-finger fastball is by far his best pitch, generating a.180 batting average against with a 33 percent WHIFF rate and a 21 percent put-away rate. His 4-seam fastball averages 96.2 mph, with opposing hitters batting.245 against it and a 28.4 percent WHIFF rate.

With Castillo off the market, general manager Brian Cashman will almost certainly have to overpay for Montas, as he has no negotiating leverage. The Athletics are looking for a sizable return, most likely including at least one of the team’s top prospects. If the Yankees are desperate for a starter, they will almost certainly have to include Oswald Peraza in the deal.

What do you think, leave a comment below?

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