1. New York Yankees
Before the vaunted Yankees-Dodgers World Series matchup can materialize, both teams will need to go toe-to-toe at the 2022 trade deadline.
While the Dodgers have some work to do, the Yankees will likely be in desperation mode. At this moment, they’re the sport’s marquee franchise riding the high of an historic start that’s beginning to dissipate. The Bronx Bombers are without a World Series since 2009; in their eyes, accounting for the unpredictability of the postseason, that has to change.
Earlier in the season, when their soon-to-be-beleaguered bullpen lost Chad Green, it was seen as disruptive, but not damning. Now, one of only two trustworthy back-end arms in Michael King has also been lost for the year. That means the Yankees won’t just be supplementing their bullpen as they look to chase Robertson and Co. They’ll be filling essential holes.
Their rotation, led by guru Matt Blake, is no great shakes at the moment, either. Jameson Taillon has fallen off, while Luis Severino is out for an extended period of time. When he returns, perhaps he’ll be an additional bullpen piece to limit stress on his right arm? All this and more is the reason Castillo is reportedly their current Plan A, even with Juan Soto lurking in the periphery.
The Yankees are the only team as motivated as the Dodgers in the Castillo chase, as well as the only club equipped to get equally crazy with their prospect packages.
Perhaps, while Brian Cashman is distracted, LA should just pivot to Bryan Reynolds and wrap up the crown a different way? They could always offer Andrew Heaney back to the Yanks as a “thank you” gift.