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Friday, December 9, 2022

Is Gaby Sanchez Available?

Is Gaby Sanchez really available?
Is Gaby Sanchez really available?

Ever since the New York Yankees lost Mark Teixeira, there have been plenty of rumors connecting the Pirates to the Yankees. Most of those rumors seem to be of the message board type. One team has a need, the other team has a strength in that area, so they match up. In this case, the Pirates have a strength, the Yankees have a need, and baseball doesn’t make sense unless the Pirates deal from their strength to help the Yankees fill their need, regardless of what they get in return.

Earlier today Joel Sherman of the New York Post connected the two teams based on the strength of the Pirates and the need of the Yankees. The deal sounded like something that would come from a Yankees message board, suggesting that the Pirates would be interested in David Aardsma to support Jason Grilli at the back of the bullpen. That doesn’t make much sense for two reasons. One is that the Pirates have placed a high value on Garrett Jones, and they dealt a first round compensation pick for Gaby Sanchez. The second is that the Pirates don’t have a history of paying for relievers. So any deal sending one of their high valued first basemen for a reliever doesn’t make sense.

Jon Heyman added to the speculation tonight with the following Tweet:

I’m not sure where Heyman gets that Sanchez is available. It’s pretty clear that the Pirates plan on platooning Jones and Sanchez this year. They’re both hitting well this Spring, but that doesn’t mean one or the other would be available. It just means that the platoon could work out as planned.

This seems to be more of the same thinking. The Yankees need a player. The Pirates have two players at that position with value. So the rumors say that the two sides are a match for a deal, regardless of whether it would make sense for the Pirates to deal one of their players.

I’m not sold that the Pirates are dealing either of their first basemen to the Yankees. We’ve seen the asking price for Jones. We saw what the Pirates were willing to give up for Sanchez. Unless the Yankees are offering top prospects, I can’t see a deal happening. All of these rumors seem to be coming from the perspective of the Yankees needs, while acting as if the only reason the Pirates would ever have depth is to trade it away when the Yankees need a player.

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Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.


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I’d personally like to see Sanchez at 1B and Jones in RF for the majority of games. I think Sanchez is much more likely to have a nice year compared to Snider. And that’s the exact reason I wouldn’t be looking to trade him.

Maybe the Pirates get lucky with Sanchez/Jones/Snider all having nice years…then they can look at moving 1 near the deadline. Otherwise, I like having the depth to start the year.

Steve Zielinski

I doubt the Yankees would trade top prospects for G. Sanchez or G. Jones. Both are older, non-stars who may have a shorter shelf-life than Teixeira. The Yankees, I suspect, know that the future for this team has already passed it by. They actually need those prospects — to rebuild!

But, if Steinbrenner the Lesser wants to make another Pennant run and if he needs reinforcements some of which the Pirates have, the Pirates should demand and accept nothing less than Gary Sanchez and Mason Williams. The Yankees and their methods and capacities are toxic poison for the Pirates. The Pirates ought to ruthlessly (no pun intended) exploit the Yankees when they are weak.


can i +1 this?


As far as I am concerned I would trade anyone for the right price, I just don’t know if the Yankees have anyone that fits the right price.

Albert Zangrilli

Agreed. Their top 4 prospects are really suspects masquerading. They’re in a bad position as an organization: old 25-man and barren farm.


Williams iheathcott, and Austins are VG prospects and all in the BA Top 100. The guy I forgot to mention is Ty Hensley, RHSP, 19, their No. 1 (30th overall) in 2012. 6’5″ 220, 92-95 mph fastball that has touched 97, and a VG 12 to 6 Curve (thought to be the best curve in the whole draft last year.


The Yankees strength is in the OF with 3 kids – Mason Williams, Slade Heathcott and Tyler Austin in their Top 4 Prospects. The Pirates also have a strength in the OF with 3 very young OF already in the majors and a lot more in the minors. So, if the Pirates and Yankees can find a third team that needs OF and can offer something the Pirates need, then a trade with the Yankees is possible.

The Green Weenie

They also are pretty strong in catching prospects and though he is a coupel of years away from the bigs I wouldn’t balk at Gabby for Gary Sanchez with the upshot that in 10 years time people might forget the name Tony and just assume that we drafted a Gary.

Lee Young

“Unless the Yankees are offering top prospects, I can’t see a deal happening.”


Bleep the Yankees!!!!!!

Bob Hungerman

If the Pirates do trade a first baseman to the Yankees, I would prefer to see them keep Sanchez, who I think is returning to his allstar level of a couple years ago.


I’d rather keep Jones by a long shot. Sanchez never had a year as good as Jones’ 2012.

Bob Hungerman

Sanchez has been an allstar. Jones is a platoon player.


Who cares if Sanchez was technically an All-Star for a terrible Marlins team? He was worth 2.4 WAR that season. Jones has been worth more WAR in his career, and was better last season. They are BOTH platoon players.

Benjamin McFerren

Gaby Sanchez should start at first for the Pirates. GI Jones should platoon with Tabata in Right Field. Snider should pinch hit off the bench.


Sanchez isn’t good enough to be a full-time starter.


well the only reason we exist is as a 4a team to keep the large markets fed with talent. fire sale any one? these people believe it.

Albert Zangrilli

Thanks for writing this, Tim. Spot on. The Pirates would never be interested in David Aardsma (1) because he stinks and (2) because they’ve got relievers coming out of their ears. And I’m not sure that they have the prospects to acquire either of our guys – assuming we’d even want to trade – which makes Sherman’s thinking along the lines of what you surmised. That and of someone who hasn’t come to terms with the new approach in the Bronx.

If the Yanks are targeting Bucs, they might be a better match for a Sands, Robinson, or even Hague.


I cant remember the last time the Yanks traded for a young guy and gave him the starting job at a premier offensive position. sands, robinson and hague??? yanks would never do it. they dont rebuild.

Albert Zangrilli

That’s the point, the Yanks have *changed*. When’s the last time they lost a bidding war on a FA to . . the Pirates? They wouldn’t have done it in the past, perhaps, but this is a new FO with different priorities.

Moreover, this situation is different in that they’re looking for a stop-gap vice permanent replacement, at least at 1b.


the yankees would never put Hague in their starting lineup on a semi regular basis. this is my point.

Steve Zielinski

The Yankees did not lose a bidding war to the Pirates. The Yankees choose to keep their offer lower than the Pirates’ offer.


they were trying to keep under the 189 million luxury tax threshold, imo.

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