May 19, 2024

The New York Yankees have emerged as the leading contender to sign controversial free-agent pitcher Marcus Stroman, according to a prominent report from MLB Network. Stroman, who had a solid season with the Chicago Cubs, posting an ERA of 3.95, 119 strikeouts, and a WHIP of 1.26, is now a sought-after target for the Yankees, who are keen to bolster their starting rotation.

Could Yankees consider Cubs' Marcus Stroman for MLB Trade Deadline? -  Pinstripe Alley

The Yankees face a pressing need to enhance their rotation, especially after ace Gerrit Cole’s exceptional Cy Young-winning season. Beyond Cole, uncertainties surround pitchers like Carlos Rodón and Nestor Cortes due to injury-plagued seasons, while Michael King has been traded to San Diego for Juan Soto, and Clarke Schmidt remains untested. The recent signing of Japanese pitcher Shōta Imanaga by the Cubs may open up an opportunity for the Yankees to pursue Stroman. Despite initial reservations about Imanaga due to his fly-ball issues, Stroman presents himself as a viable alternative.

However, Stroman’s potential addition comes with its share of controversy. The pitcher has a history of publicly criticizing the Yankees and their General Manager, Brian Cashman. In 2019, following the trade deadline, Stroman took to Twitter to express his displeasure after the Yankees opted not to trade for him, leading to a public spat. Stroman, a Long Island native, has also been critical of the Mets and their fans. Despite this past friction, the report suggests that if Stroman delivers outstanding performances on the field, he could win over the Yankees’ fanbase.

Concerns about Stroman’s hip injury from the previous season and the team’s desire to avoid injury-prone players in 2024 add a layer of caution to the potential deal. Nevertheless, if the Yankees do secure Stroman, his on-field excellence has the potential to overshadow any previous controversies. The outcome hinges on Stroman’s performance and health, making the situation worth monitoring as the offseason progresses.

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