Darvish to Yankees Is Necessary

By William Coppola

Should the Yankees go in full throttle on the Yu Darvish free agent scene or not? I believe they should and must go all in on Darvish. He has averaged 6.1 innings in a six-year career with a 3.42 ERA and a record of 56 wins and 42 losses. All but nine of his starts were with a very good Texas Rangers team.

Those nine starts were with the best team over the 2017 season — the Los Angeles Dodgers. His strikeouts-to-walks ratio is still extremely good. I say still good because he is coming off of Tommy John surgery that took away all of 2015 and part of the 2016 seasons. He showed some rust in the post-season last year. Whether or not that was from fatigue, or the play-off slippery slide home run ball MLB used in the post-season, we will never know.

Don’t let that win-loss record fool you, this is filet mignon we are talking about here and every team in baseball would love to have him staring down hitters. With a bullpen the likes he has never had to work with before, the Yankees would give him an excellent chance to become a Cy Young winner, at last. With this Yankees club, 18 to 22 wins are a reasonable number for him.

It could sway his thinking in favor of the Bronx Bombers who will also be scoring a lot this year. Whoever ends up signing this ace will be getting one of the top starting pitchers in all of baseball. But should the Yankees be that team? Be reminded that this is not the same Yankee organization of  George “The Boss” Steinbrenner who would throw caution to the wind and spend big money to get a player like Darvish. If George were still alive, Darvish would have had an image of himself adorning One Times Square on New Year’s Eve last year.

Lead by Brian Cashman, the Yankee brain trust has evolved into a savvy deal-making organization. The trades they have made over the past two years exemplify good planning, scouting, research and creativity. In a grand swoop of late season trades in 2016, they made their farm system the best in baseball and then re-acquired some of the same players they had dealt, such as Aroldis Chapman and Adam Warren.

That strong farm system has made it possible to make deals for players like David Robertson, Tommy Kahnle, Sonny Gray and the blockbuster deal for Giancarlo Stanton.

William Coppola is a contributing writer and involved in the game of baseball the past 40 years as a player, coach, umpire, and advance scout.

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