A lot has been said about the Yankees and Jose Quintana, for one he was once a Yankees prospect that walked and went on to become one of the most reliable starters in the game for the Chicago White Sox.
Many fans are scratching their heads on how the Yankees could let him walk but forget at that time the fans, nor the front office had any patience in letting kids developed so there is no guarantee he would have become the same pitcher under the Yankees coaches.
But would it be great to have him back in blue pinstripes and pitching at Yankees Stadium for the Bombers? I think so, just at the right price.
Rumors have circulated that the White Sox are looking to move him but only for a blow away package, something that would clear out most farm systems of top prospects. They are looking for what many would consider being the cost of trading for an ace, and while Quintana is good, he is not an ace.
My colleague went hard talking about his win/loss record in a previous column, and many fans bring up the fact that the Chicago White Sox offense was not a good one. But suffice to say neither is the Yankees offense. The Bronx Bombers were #22 in runs scored per game in 2016; the White Sox were #20. So, there might not be much change in his win-loss record. What would change is the peace of mind that comes with having someone like Quintana in the rotation, a guy that for the last four years started at least 32 games and gives you 200+ innings.
My only worry is his fly ball rate. We know that fly ball pitchers do not do well in Yankees Stadium. Last season Quintana recorded 107 fly ball outs with a fly ball percentage of 38.7%. That is almost a 30% jump from his 29.7% FB% in 2015 per FanGraphs. We know that Yankees Stadium sees about a 37% higher occurrence of home runs than the average MLB stadium, the highest such park factor.
So, I must ask would it be worth it especially at the cost the White Sox are asking for him. Right now I would say no. Brian Cashman has proven time and time again that he is one of the best at making trades. So, for them to pull the trigger, the White Sox needs to sweeten the pot so to speak.
Earlier today we might have gotten a taste of what that sweetened pot would be when Bob Nightengale tweeted out that talks expanded to include former Yankees closer David Robertson.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) December 27, 2016
Robertson was a fan favorite, homegrown guy that fit well in the role formally occupied by Marino Rivera. In his MLB career, he owns a 2.97 ERA and 118 saves, with 73 of those coming with the White Sox. After Robertson had signed with Chicago, the Bombers used that draft pick to select shortstop Kyle Holder in 2015.
While it would be great to have him back in The Bronx, I must ask what would it take to get him. I get it; you can’t hold on to all your prospects. You need to make use of depth to plug holes, and the Yankees have plenty of depth, especially when it comes to outfielders and middle infielders.
If you get Robertson, you almost certainly throw in an MLB relief arm, maybe a guy like Luis Cessa or Chad Green. One of the guys fighting for a back of the rotation spot to help soften the blow for the White Sox. One thing for sure is that I will not empty the Top 10 list for them, I would play it by ear and give them something that is reasonable.
So with that said, what package would you give up to get both Quintana and Robertson in The Bronx in 2017?