3.) Can the Yankees land a frontline starter?
For years, it seemed as if the Yankees had the ability to pick and choose which free-agent starting pitcher would don pinstripes. Not so anymore. Of the four aces on the market, Zack Greinke, David Price, Jordan Zimmermann, and Johnny Cueto, only Cueto may be interested in signing with the Yankees. There is plenty of downside risk attached to Cueto, as he did not pitch well after being traded to the Kansas City Royals. Nearly every pitcher the Yankees have guaranteed in their rotation next year comes with an equal amount of risk. Masahiro Tanaka is a ticking time bomb, Michael Pineda still cannot put it all together, CC Sabathia was forced to deal with some serious personal issues, Nathan Eovaldi is in the same boat as Pineda, and Luis Severino has never completed a full season at the big league level.
The Yankees need to add a consistent arm to their rotation, but New York is not likely to be viewed as a great landing spot for most elite pitchers. New Yankee Stadium is a hitter’s paradise. If the Yankees deem Cueto too high a risk (he was worked over by two of the Yankees biggest divisional rivals, the Baltimore Orioles and Toronto Blue Jays0, they will likely be forced to settle for a mid-tier arm like Wei-Yin Chen or Jeff Samardzija. Both of those pitchers do not seem like an ideal fit for the Yankees given their susceptibility to the home run ball. As hard as it is to believe, the New York Yankees could be hard-pressed to land a starting pitcher this winter.