There are tons of different ways to view the trade that went down Tuesday night between the New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox. The Yankees got Todd Frazier, Tommy Kahnle and David Robertson in exchange for Tyler Clippard, Blake Rutherford, Ian Clarkin and Tito Polo.
To start, there really is no way to determine who “won” this deal outright. The White Sox continue their trend of stockpiling young prospects, and the Yankees get necessary bullpen reinforcements controllable beyond 2017. Oh, and Todd Frazier.
A lot of people on the Internet have been viewing the deal as Rutherford (No. 3 NYY prospect pre-trade) for Frazier. In reality, Frazier feels like a throw-in. Logic says you don’t trade your No. 3 prospect for a rental hitting .207. Brian Cashman did not. He traded that prospect for two fantastic bullpen arms.
Kahnle and Robertson rank third and 12th in strikeouts-per-nine-innings in the MLB this year. Both have a history with the Yankees organization. This acquisition allows Joe Girardi to have an impressive arsenal at his command in the later innings. It also gives Chad Green the chance to dominate in a longer-relief role with more flexibility.
Todd Frazier’s arrival gives the Yankees the chance to maximize Chase Headley‘s value. He will move into a platoon at first base with Garrett Cooper. Headley hits righties way better than lefties this year, so the team can capitalize on that split and Frazier’s 16 home runs.
Rutherford’s departure stings a bit, but the Yankees already have a surplus of minor league outfielders. The team really likes 19-year-old Estevan Florial, and reports indicate that Rutherford profiles as a corner outfielder. Rutherford has a clearer, and faster, route to the big leagues with the White Sox organization.
Tyler Clippard gets a badly-needed change of scenery. His recent struggles made him a target for jeers, and made him an unusable player essentially. Ian Clarkin will have a chance to contribute for the White Sox, as long as his injuries subside. Tito Polo seems like a talented outfielder with lots of upside. He brings speed and athleticism to the ChiSox farm system.
The Yankees fix their holes, and the White Sox continue to plan for the future. This trade could be one that works out well for both.