LAKE BUENA VISTA – Here come the Yankees.
One day after officially announcing the acquisition of reining NL MVP Giancarlo Stanton and proclaiming that they are “not done yet,” the Yankees stayed true to their word and made a trade with the San Diego Padres on Tuesday afternoon.
The Yankees sent third baseman Chase Headley (who started his career with the Padres in 2007), pitcher Bryan Mitchell, and cash considerations to San Diego in exchange for outfielder Jabari Blash.
The Padres will assume all of the remaining $13 million on Headley’s contract for the 2018 season, so the deal could be viewed as San Diego paying for a young, quality arm in Mitchell who showed flashes of brilliance with the Yankees but just could not stick in The Bronx.
As part of the terms of the deal, Jon Heyman reports that the teams agreed to split the $1 million assignment bonus. So the Padres will also receive $500,000, and Headley’s final cap hit in 2018 will count for $13.5 million.
For the Yankees, they get some payroll relief as they remain locked-in to getting under the $197 million luxury-tax threshold for the 2018 season. According to Ken Rosenthal, this move puts the team approximately $30 million under that desired target which gives them the flexibility to fill their needs in the starting rotation and at the hot corner.
The move also clears a spot on the 25-man roster for New York to sign another player immediately (I’m thinking CC Sabathia), and it could potentially open another spot if the Yankees decide to part ways with Blash — as expected.
On the surface, Blash would appear to fit right into this new Yankees outfield as he stands at a towering 6-foot-5 and looks every ounce of his 235-pound frame.
The 28-year-old, from the Virgin Islands, was selected in the eighth round of the 2010 MLB draft by the Seattle Mariners, and then spent time with the Oakland A’s before he was acquired by the Padres. In Triple-A last year, Blash slashed .285/.419/.617 with 20 dingers and he drove in 62 runs.
However, his power has not translated to the major league level. In 99 career games in the majors, Blash hit .200 with just eight long balls and 21 RBIs.