What Were the Yankees Doing?

The Yankees have been a dominant force in baseball for years. But what were they doing to make themselves so successful?

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The New York Yankees are a Major League Baseball team that plays in the American League East division. The Yankees have won 27 World Series championships, more than any other team in Major League Baseball. The Yankees also have more players in the National Baseball Hall of Fame than any other team.

The Yankees’ Off-Season Moves

It’s no secret that the Yankees have been busy this off-season. They’ve made a number of moves, both big and small, that have raised eyebrows around the league. Some have lauded the Yankees for their aggressive approach, while others have criticized them for making too many changes. So, what exactly have the Yankees been up to this off-season?

The Giancarlo Stanton Trade

On December 9, 2017, the Yankees made a splash by acquiring slugger Giancarlo Stanton from the Miami Marlins in exchange for second baseman Starlin Castro and two prospects, right-handed pitcher Jorge Guzman and infielder Jose Devers. The trade was first reported by Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.

The 28-year-old Stanton is coming off an MVP season in which he hit .281/.376/.631 with 59 home runs and 132 RBI. He is currently under contract through 2028 with a team option for 2029. In 2019, he will make $26 million, which is a relative bargain for a player of his caliber.

The Yankees are clearly looking to add firepower to their lineup as they attempt to dethrone the Boston Red Sox in the AL East. With Stanton and fellow slugger Aaron Judge, the Yankees now have two of the top five home run hitters from 2017 on their roster.

The Sonny Gray Trade

The Yankees acquired Gray and $1.5 million in international slot money from the Oakland Athletics for three prospects: outfielder Dustin Fowler, infielder Jorge Mateo and right-hander James Kaprielian.

Fowler, 22, was ranked as the Yankees’ No. 11 prospect by MLBPipeline.com. He made his big league debut this season and played in only one game before suffering a season-ending ruptured patellar tendon in his right knee while crashing into a wall chasing a foul ball at Chicago’s Guaranteed Rate Field.

Mateo, 22, was the Yankees’ No. 6 prospect. He was suspended two weeks in 2016 for violating team rules and again this past season for disobeying an order from a Florida State League umpire.

Kaprielian, 23, was the 16th overall pick in the 2015 Draft but missed most of this past season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in April.

The Gerrit Cole Signing

The Yankees gave Cole a record-setting nine-year, $324 million contract, the biggest pitching contract in baseball history. The deal includes a fourth-year player opt-out clause and a record $50 million signing bonus. Cole will earn $36 million in each of the first three seasons of the deal, $31 million in 2024 and 2025, and $29 million in 2026 and 2027. He will also receive a full no-trade clause.

How These Moves Help the Yankees

The New York Yankees made some big moves this offseason, including the signings of Gerrit Cole and DJ LeMahieu. These moves have helped the Yankees become one of the favorites to win the World Series in 2020. Let’s take a closer look at how these moves have helped the Yankees.

The Giancarlo Stanton Trade

Stanton was just what the Yankees had been looking for: a right-handed slugger who could take advantage of the cozy dimensions of Yankee Stadium. In his first season in The Bronx, Stanton hit 38 homers with 100 RBIs while posting a .266/.343/.509 slash line. That production, combined with that of fellow offseason acquisition Aaron Judge, helped power the Yankees to an AL-best 100 wins.

The Giancarlo Stanton trade was one of the most significant moves made by the Yankees during the 2017-2018 offseason. By acquiring Stanton, the Yankees added a right-handed slugger to their lineup who could take advantage of Yankee Stadium’s short porch in right field. In his first season with the Yankees, Stanton hit 38 homers with 100 RBIs while posting a .266/.343/.509 slash line. That production, combined with that of fellow offseason acquisition Aaron Judge, helped power the Yankees to an AL-best 100 wins.

The Sonny Gray Trade

The Yankees got their guy in Sonny Gray. The right-hander fills a void in their rotation and they didn’t have to give up much to get him, dealing from a position of strength in their farm system.

They acquired Gray and minor league infielder Jorge Mateo, right-handed pitchers James Kaprielian and Dustin Fowler and $1.5 million in international signing bonus pool space from the Oakland Athletics for outfielder Dustin Fowler, infielder/outfielder Matt Olson, third baseman Eric Jagielo and right-handed pitchers JC

The Yankees picked up a quality arm without sacrificing any of their top prospects. They also freed up a spot on their 40-man roster by dealing from an area of depth.

The Gerrit Cole Signing

The Yankees beefed up their pitching staff in a big way this offseason, signing former Houston Astros ace Gerrit Cole to a nine-year, $324 million contract. Cole joins a rotation that already includes Luis Severino, James Paxton, and Masahiro Tanaka, giving the Yankees one of the best pitching staffs in baseball.

The Cole signing is just the latest move in what has been a busy offseason for the Yankees. New York has also signed outfielders Brett Gardner and Mike Tauchman to new contracts, while re-signing infielder DJ LeMahieu and reliever Zack Britton. The Yankees have also acquired starting pitcher Kluber from the Cleveland Indians in a trade.


Based on the information gathered, it seems that the Yankees were most likely trying to gain an advantage by using pine tar. Although there is no concrete evidence to support this theory, it is the most likely scenario given the circumstances. If the Yankees were indeed trying to gain an advantage, then they violated the rules of the game and should be punished accordingly. However, if they were not trying to gain an advantage, then they should not be punished.

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