Yankees need Ohtani but not at the cost of generational talents

Shohei Ohtani and Yankees future stars Anthony Volpe, Jasson Dominguez, and Austin Wells

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The Yankees are interested in signing Shohei Ohtani and also are among the top favorites to have him. A recent Bleacher report predicts that a potential trade may involve sending talented shortstop Anthony Volpe, promising outfielder Jasson Dominguez, and outfielder Spencer Jones to the Angels. It could be a disaster for the Yankees to part way with their generational talent no matter how massive may be the Shohei Ohtani trade for them.

The Los Angeles Angels have not displayed any signs of considering a trade involving their superstar Shohei Ohtani. However, if the team’s performance declines and they fall out of playoff contention, it might be the only option to secure a brighter future for the franchise. Despite Shohei Ohtani’s exceptional talent on the field, his intentions for the upcoming offseason remain somewhat mysterious. Off the field, Ohtani’s future plans are uncertain, and there is speculation among fans that he may leave the Angels in a few months.

Shohei Ohtani, the exceptional two-way player for the Angels, is rumored to be potentially available for acquisition by other teams at the 2023 Trade Deadline. However, the asking price for Ohtani is expected to be extremely high. Moreover, with his impending free agency at the end of the season, any team will have the opportunity to try and sign him then. While the prospect of acquiring Ohtani is undeniably exciting, the New York Yankees might not see it as the right move at this particular juncture. This especially holds true if there is a call to part away with the Yankees’ generational talents.

The Yankees’ talents who the Angels may seek for Ohtani trade

Should trade talks between the Angels and the Yankees commence, it is likely that the Angels would prioritize acquiring promising young players from the Yankees’ roster to bolster their future prospects rather than seeking established veterans who could provide immediate assistance in staying competitive. Let’s examine three highly appealing options that the Angels might consider pursuing.

Yankees shortstop Anthony Volpe

Yankees' Anthony Volpe hit his third career home run against the Guardians on May 2, 2023, at Yankee Stadium.
Twitter

Since his selection by the Yankees in the first round of the 2019 draft, Volpe has emerged as a highly promising talent on the fast track to becoming a prominent figure in New York. As a 22-year-old rookie, he has experienced the typical highs and lows that come with playing in the renowned Yankee Stadium. However, with his impressive tally of 13 home runs and 16 stolen bases, Volpe has showcased a remarkable blend of power and speed that could mitigate the impact of Ohtani’s departure.

The Angels’ fanbase is well aware of the emergence of their promising young rookie, Zach Neto, at shortstop. However, in the event of a trade, either Neto or Volpe could easily transition to second base without significant complications. The performance of the current second baseman, David Fletcher, has declined for three consecutive years, with a recent stint in AAA during this season. Fletcher could potentially shift to a utility role or be demoted again, allowing for the creation of the most electrifying young middle infield in Major League Baseball.

Yankees AA outfielder Jasson Dominguez

jasson-dominguez-new-york-yankees
Twitter

Thus far, the buzz surrounding Yankees prospect Jasson Dominguez has overshadowed his actual performance on the field. However, it is undeniable that this young outfielder, often referred to as “the Martian” due to his extraordinary physical abilities, possesses an incredibly enticing level of potential.

Dominguez, a switch-hitter, has showcased his speed by stealing an impressive 61 bases over the last year and a half. He has also displayed his power with ten home runs this season, while his strong arm makes him an asset in the outfield. Although strikeouts have been a challenge for him, Dominguez’s disciplined approach at the plate allows him to draw numerous walks and exhibit patience as a hitter.

With plenty of youth on his side at just 20 years old, Dominguez has ample opportunity for growth and development. The Angels may choose to provide him with another year or two in the minors to further refine his skills. If he can even tap into a fraction of his immense potential, he has the potential to become the most valuable acquisition for the Angels in this trade.

As the top-ranked prospect in the Yankees organization, Dominguez holds significant value. However, considering the Angels’ focus on the future in trading Ohtani, the Yankees might be hesitant to include him in any potential trade discussions. Nevertheless, the Angels would have every right to demand a substantial return in any blockbuster deal involving Ohtani.

Yankees AA catcher Austin Wells

Austin Wells, the Yankees prospect, at Somerset Patriots.
Austin Wells/ Instagram

Emerging talents like Adley Rutschman and Francisco Alvarez are redefining the role of catchers in baseball, showcasing their offensive prowess alongside their ability to manage a pitching staff. These individuals have been excelling at the plate, and it appears that Yankees prospect Austin Wells could be the next promising catcher to follow in their footsteps.

With a formidable mustache reminiscent of the legendary Don Mattingly, Wells adds a touch of old-school charm to his game. As a left-handed-hitting catcher, he has displayed remarkable potential since being drafted in the first round from the University of Arizona in 2020. Currently ranked as the second-best prospect in the Yankees organization, Wells has the tools to blossom into a future star.

Wells exhibits an impressive display of power at the plate, belting 20 home runs in the previous season and adding 12 more in the current year. Surprisingly nimble for a catcher, he has showcased his speed by stealing 20 bases since the beginning of last season. Additionally, Wells has made notable strides in his defensive skills, successfully throwing out runners at a rate twice as high as the previous year.

The anticipation surrounding Logan O’Hoppe’s promising performance at the start of the season had Angels fans buzzing. However, an unfortunate torn labrum injury has sidelined him since late April. With Wells in the picture, the Angels could potentially create a potent lefty-righty platoon behind the plate by pairing him with O’Hoppe. Alternatively, with Ohtani no longer on the team, the Angels could explore utilizing both catchers by incorporating one of them as a designated hitter (DH) in the lineup.

Yankees prospect Spencer Jones

Spencer Jones, a rising star in the Yankees organization, whose skills are turning heads and drawing comparisons to the legendary Aaron Judge. Beyond his impressive power and physical presence reminiscent of Judge, Jones has an unexpected surprise up his sleeve: blazing speed that catches both fans and opponents off guard, truly embodying his illustrious inspiration.

At just 22 years old, Jones has been making waves in High-A Hudson Valley, showcasing his remarkable talents on both sides of the field. A recent standout moment came when he made a fantastic running catch, denying Phillies prospect Justin Crawford of a potential extra-base hit. But Jones doesn’t just shine defensively; he’s also proven himself as a prolific base stealer, swiping an impressive 21 bases this season.

Ranked as the third-best prospect in the Yankees organization by MLB Pipeline, Jones has been living up to the hype with his stellar performance. His offensive prowess is evident in his .800 OPS, a significant measure of his overall productivity at the plate. In just 68 games, he’s already blasted 10 home runs, adding to his reputation as a true power hitter.

His combination of power, speed, and skills makes him a unique and exciting prospect to watch, undoubtedly leaving a mark on the world of baseball.

The Ohtani trade is not worth the generational talents

According to Buster Olney, the Yankees have emerged as a prominent contender for Shohei Ohtani’s services, making them a plausible trade partner with the Angels. However, for the Yankees to meet the Angels’ demands, they would need assurance that Ohtani is willing to sign a long-term extension and remain with the team. The Angels, on the other hand, have the leverage to ask for significant compensation in exchange for Ohtani, and it would be in their best interest to do so.

This could include a demand for a package of more than two and even three of the above-mentioned Yankees’ generational talents. However, this may open a future cane of worms for the Yankees. At 29, Ohtani may play for five to six years for the Yankees, if he agrees to a long-term deal, which could be a big one. But in the absence of talents around him, the team may again fall into an Aaron Judge-dependence trap.

Also, sending three of their best talents could create a generational gap in the Yankees’ farm system. Volpe, Dominguez, Wells, and Jones are the future of the team and may emerge like the “Core Four,” which led them to create a five-title winning dynasty. This will also make the Yankees look vulnerable to trade pressure and let their talents flow for established and aged players.

What do you think? leave your comment below.

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One thought on “Yankees need Ohtani but not at the cost of generational talents

  1. Ohtani in pinstripes is a dream a crack pipe dream. So let’s move on to how Donaldson needs to be DFAd last month 🤷🏻🤦🏻😡🧐🤬

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