Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman made his third big pitching acquisition of the week, as they acquired RHP Lance Lynn and cash considerations from Minnesota in exchange for INF Tyler Austin and RHP Luis Rijo on Monday night.
This comes in addition to adding Zach Britton to an already impressive bullpen and J.A. Happ to the rotation.
The Yankees starting rotation now has something it has been searching for all year: depth.
In addition to Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, and CC Sabathia, they can round out the starting five with Happ and Lynn.
These moves put Sonny Gray’s status with the Yankees in a tenuous spot. He could be a sixth starter if they go that route the rest of the way to keep these arms fresh, or a move to the bullpen, or they could trade him for a bat, such as a right fielder to take Aaron Judge’s place as long as he is out with his wrist injury.
Lynn, 31, went 7-8 with a 5.10 ERA (102.1IP, 105H, 61R/58ER, 62BB, 100K, 12HR) in 20 starts with Minnesota this season after signing a one-year contract with the Twins on March 12, 2018.
Over parts of seven Major League seasons with the Cardinals (2011-15, ’17) and Twins (2018), Lynn has gone 79-55 with one save and a 3.54 ERA (1,080.0IP, 995H, 459R/425ER, 431BB, 1,019K, 98HR) in 203 games (181 starts). He has reached 10 wins and 150K in each of his five full seasons at the Major League level (2012-17). The Marion, Ind., native appeared in the playoffs each season from 2011-15, posting a 4.50 ERA (52.0IP, 26ER) in 24 postseason outings (seven starts).
After missing the entire 2016 season recovering from right elbow ligament replacement surgery performed at the end of 2015, Lynn made 33 starts for the Cardinals in 2017, going 11-8 with a 3.43 ERA (186.1IP, 71ER). In 2012, his first full season at the Major League level, he was named to the NL All-Star team.
Lynn was selected by the Cardinals in the first round (39th overall) of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of Mississippi. He will be a free agent at the end of the season.
Austin, 26, hit .223 (27-for-121) with 16R, 6 doubles, 8HR and 23RBI in 34 games in one stint with the Yankees this season. His 15.13 AB/HR ratio is the highest among all Major-League rookies in 2018 (min. 100AB). Additionally, he appeared in 25 games this season with Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, batting .253 (25-for-99) with 14R, 9 doubles, 6HR and 14RBI. Across three seasons with the Yankees, Austin hit .230 (56-for-244) with 27R, 11 doubles, 15HR and 43RBI. Of his 15 career home runs, 11 either tied the game or gave the Yankees the lead. Along with then-teammate Aaron Judge, the pair combined to hit back-to-back home runs in their first career Major-League plate appearances, becoming the first teammates to do so in Major League history. The Conyers, Ga., native was selected by the Yankees in the 13th round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft.
Rijo, 19, went a combined 4-1 with a 2.77 ERA (39.0IP, 42H, 15R/12ER, 3BB, 32K, 0HR) in seven games (five starts) this season with Rookie-level Pulaski, Single-A Tampa and short-season Single-A Staten Island. Over three minor league seasons, he has gone 9-6 with a 2.80 ERA (125.1IP, 123H, 48R/39ER, 14BB, 117K, 4HR) in 27 games (18 starts). The native of Valencia, Venezuela, carried an 8.36 career K/BB ratio (117K/14BB), the second-highest career mark in the Minors since 2016 (min. 120.0IP). He was signed by the Yankees as a non-drafted free agent on July 2, 2015.
Warren To Seattle For International Signing Bonus Pool Money:
In addition to the Lance Lynn trade, the Yankees also traded right-handed pitcher Adam Warren to the Seattle Mariners for international signing bonus pool money.
Warren, 30, appeared in 24 games for the Yankees in 2018, posting an 0-1 record with a 2.70 ERA (30.0IP, 26H, 9ER, 12BB, 37K, 3HR). Originally selected by the New York Yankees in the fourth round of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, the University of North Carolina graduate compiled a 20-20 record with six saves and a 3.18 ERA (407.0IP, 354H, 144ER, 132BB, 361K, 37HR) in 246 games (20 starts) over seven years and two stints with the club (2012-15, 2016-18).
Warren was traded to the Chicago Cubs with a player to be named later (Brendan Ryan) on December 8, 2015, for second baseman Starlin Castro. After going 3-2 with a 5.91 ERA (35.0IP, 31H, 23ER, 19BB, 27K, 1HR) in 29 games (one start) for the Cubs, Warren was traded back to the Yankees on July 25, 2016, along with second baseman Gleyber Torres and outfielders Billy McKinney (who went to Toronto in the Happ deal last Thursday) and Rashad Crawford in exchange for left-handed pitcher Aroldis Chapman (who came back to the Yankees that offseason).
Warren will definitely have his chance with the Mariners, whose bullpen is not nearly as deep as the Yankees, and with Seattle holding the second wild card spot, he can play a part in their reaching the playoffs for the first time since 2001.