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Sherman: Yankees "wondering" about Kepler


Joel Sherman of the NY Post briefly mentions the Yankees are "wondering" about Kepler. It's possible that we are largely ignoring one of the most logical trade pieces on the Twins, assuming the fact people are willing to offer value for him in a relatively down season.

It may be a little absurd for the Twins to keep Kepler with both Larnach and Kirilloff on the roster, as that gives them an all-lefty outfield if Buxton is out. If the Twins believe strongly in Kirilloff and Larnach (particularly him during his recent slump), Kepler becomes moderately expendable.

https://nypost.com/2021/07/19/there-are-real-questions-about-yankees-trade-deadline-plan-sherman/

But... Sherman both writes for the Post (ugh) and may be referencing himself, not the Yankees, based on this other article he recently wrote. Don't trust anyone from the Post about anything ever is a pretty good rule to follow.

https://nypost.com/2021/07/20/yankees-should-look-into-max-kepler-adalberto-mondesi-trades/

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I, too, am "wondering" about Kepler.  As in, I wonder what happened to the Kepler of 2019?

I digress, if the Twins end up dealing Buxton, I'm not sure that Kepler is all that expendable.  Celestino clearly isn't ready.  And with no other CF on the roster, I wonder how motivated they really are about dealing Kepler.  Obviously there's some "what ifs" there, but these are the things I'm watching for this trade deadline.

Edit: Also, they'd be selling low on him.  I'm not sure that really matters, but it's there for consideration.

Edited by wsnydes
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13 minutes ago, wsnydes said:

I, too, am "wondering" about Kepler.  As in, I wonder what happened to the Kepler of 2019?

I digress, if the Twins end up dealing Buxton, I'm not sure that Kepler is all that expendable.  Celestino clearly isn't ready.  And with no other CF on the roster, I wonder how motivated they really are about dealing Kepler.  Obviously there's some "what ifs" there, but these are the things I'm watching for this trade deadline.

Edit: Also, they'd be selling low on him.  I'm not sure that really matters, but it's there for consideration.

If the Twins deal Buxton, they're almost surely not planning to compete in 2022 so I don't see a real reason to keep Kepler, either.

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13 minutes ago, Brock Beauchamp said:

If the Twins deal Buxton, they're almost surely not planning to compete in 2022 so I don't see a real reason to keep Kepler, either.

That's a good point.  Unless they got a capable CF in the trade, which also makes Kepler expendable.

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5 minutes ago, beckmt said:

Yankees will take anyone cheap enough.  Selling Kepler would be at a low,  I would need something of value to look at it.

Yeah I don't think the Twins are going to be willing to be fleeced like they were with the Aaron Hicks trade.  I can see the Yankee's kicking the tires and honestly I do think Kepler would be a pretty good get for them.  He can play center and is generally a plus fielder in right but with his hamstring injury not sure he is plug and play this year.  The Yankee stadium right field fence is 14 feet closer so maybe a few more popups go out for him there as well. 

The Yankee's fixed Hicks I imagine there are things they could do to help Kepler as well.  I just don't think the Yankee's will be willing to give up the pieces they would need to give up to get him and I don't see the Twins eager to trade.  There are better fits for what the Yankee's need right now than Kepler IMO.

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27 minutes ago, In My La Z boy said:

You should have titled this forum Sherman: Yankees "wondering" about Kepler / NY Post sucks

I could do without the added political commentary. There was no reason to inject your bias on newspapers. You wouldn't want me injecting my unrelated political bias to a topic. 

You're injecting politics. My statements were injecting reality. The NY Post, no matter where you fall on the political spectrum, is renown for its inaccurate, sensationalist style of journalism. That extends to everything from sports to society to celebrities to, yes, politics.

They're the ones who have posted headlines like "Derek Eater" when Jeter gained weight while injured, for crying out loud. Don't try to put that paper on any kind of pedestal, it just makes you look silly.

Don't assume my motivations because I don't trust a newspaper, especially one with the reputation of the Post. Trusting anything they say as fact without evidence is generally a mistake, no matter the subject matter. In this particular case, their politics hadn't even factored in my statements, as all I was thinking about was how much of a trash fire their sports page is on a regular basis.

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1 hour ago, Dman said:

The Yankee's fixed Hicks I imagine there are things they could do to help Kepler as well.  I just don't think the Yankee's will be willing to give up the pieces they would need to give up to get him and I don't see the Twins eager to trade.  There are better fits for what the Yankee's need right now than Kepler IMO.

Hicks had a two really good years (17-3.9 WAR/18-4.4 WAR), he only played in 88 and 137 games those years, has averaged 88 games a year (excluding last year) and hasn't been that good the last three years. I mean he is still a ton better than John Ryan Murphy.  The Yanks signed him to a pretty large contract that I am sure they would love to get out of.

The Twins traded from an area of strength for an area of need and it back fired.

On this topic I am good with trading Kepler, I think he is just above average MLB outfielder and with Larnach and Kirilloff seems redundant.

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28 minutes ago, Tim said:

Max Kepler is absolutely expendable, regardless of the rebuild or re-tool debate. The future, middle of the order duo in Larnach / Kirilloff, slide into a corner spot. Kepler might be able to play center right now as a stop gap but that's not sustainable. 

His underlying numbers actually paint the picture that he's swinging the bat similarly to his 2019 season, so it's not like he's a lost cause. For what it's worth, Fangraphs actually just ranked him top 40 in most valuable MLB assets.

The Yankees are so desperate for a left handed bat, that can play center, and can sneak under the luxury tax, you could probably get a decent package. Not many players check those boxes, unless you want to unload for Joey Gallo.

Twins : Deivi Garcia, Alexander Vizcaino, Glenn Otto

Yankees ; Max Kepler

If you can get a package like that, I'm game.

I am not a big Devi Garcia fan.  How many successful 5'9" MLB pitchers are there?  I can't think of any.  Vizcaino's numbers are underwhelming to me.  I like the Glenn Otto pick though.

If I were the Twins I would try and build a package around Peraza or Volpe.  I would try to get your Glenn Otto pick and Luis Medina or even Gil.  Peraza or Volpe both appear to have good bats, can run, and likely stick at short.  I would trade right field for up the middle talent along with some pitching depth.

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15 minutes ago, Dman said:

I am not a big Devi Garcia fan.  How many successful 5'9" MLB pitchers are there?  I can't think of any.  Vizcaino's numbers are underwhelming to me.  I like the Glenn Otto pick though.

If I were the Twins I would try and build a package around Peraza or Volpe.  I would try to get your Glenn Otto pick and Luis Medina or even Gil.  Peraza or Volpe both appear to have good bats, can run, and likely stick at short.  I would trade right field for up the middle talent along with some pitching depth.

If they are willing to give up Medina, by all means swap him out. He's probably their best pitching prospect at this point though so I doubt they are wanting to part with him for Kepler. Same with Peraza..  Both guys are in the top 100 in a lot of midseason rankings.

Garcia is a year removed from being a top 50 guy, control is an issue now. But he's 22, I'd take a flier on him figuring it out. The height thing is a worry I suppose but again, I'll take a gamble on his stuff as its worked well to thus point. Vizcaino has pitched in 2 games this year so the underwhelming numbers might have something to do with that, the rest of his resume looks promising. 

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Not reading too much into the rumor, but I agree with others that Kepler is expendable. The team has needed a RH hitting corner OF for quite some time. And ideally someone better than a platoon against LH pitching like Garlick. If the Yankees want to pay up now, great! If not, there’s always this winter to figure something out. 

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2 hours ago, In My La Z boy said:

You should have titled this forum Sherman: Yankees "wondering" about Kepler / NY Post sucks

I could do without the added political commentary. There was no reason to inject your bias on newspapers. You wouldn't want me injecting my unrelated political bias to a topic. 

 

I would have thought despising the NY Post was the one thing everyone who doesn't work for the NY Post would be able to agree on.

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 I know I have mentioned Max Kepler as a trade chip before but I would only move him at 2019 performance prices. He is having an off year this year but after Covid19 season and this season being so up and down with the bullpen I still think Max is worth a lot prospect wise. He is still a plus defender, and still a plus hitter, this would require a significant staring arm and bullpen peice back for me if I were Twins in any trade ask. Everyone will want to cheap out on there ask but Kepler to me has too much value to give away.

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25 minutes ago, Tim said:

If they are willing to give up Medina, by all means swap him out. He's probably their best pitching prospect at this point though so I doubt they are wanting to part with him for Kepler. Same with Peraza..  Both guys are in the top 100 in a lot of midseason rankings.

 

I agree with you which is why I don't see a deal coming together.  The Yanks won't want to give up top 100 prospects and the Twins won't trade him for wing and a prayer prospects.  I just don't see it getting done.

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1 hour ago, jaimedude said:

 I know I have mentioned Max Kepler as a trade chip before but I would only move him at 2019 performance prices. He is having an off year this year but after Covid19 season and this season being so up and down with the bullpen I still think Max is worth a lot prospect wise. He is still a plus defender, and still a plus hitter, this would require a significant staring arm and bullpen peice back for me if I were Twins in any trade ask. Everyone will want to cheap out on there ask but Kepler to me has too much value to give away.

I like your thinking on a starting arm and bullpen piece, but we should also be realistic, Yelich was much better and younger than Kepler, and his return was two pitchers (high prospects) and two hitters.

(in Kepler's best year he barely made the top 75 players in WAR, from espn including pitchers)

IMO a fair return is a solid almost guarantee bullpen guy with lots of years of control, a starting pitchers that is close but only projects as a 4/5 starter, or an absolute lottery ticket, a young guy with a cannon of a arm, or some super toolsy young guy that has quite figured it out.

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1 hour ago, TwinsDr2021 said:

I like your thinking on a starting arm and bullpen piece, but we should also be realistic, Yelich was much better and younger than Kepler, and his return was two pitchers (high prospects) and two hitters.

(in Kepler's best year he barely made the top 75 players in WAR, from espn including pitchers)

IMO a fair return is a solid almost guarantee bullpen guy with lots of years of control, a starting pitchers that is close but only projects as a 4/5 starter, or an absolute lottery ticket, a young guy with a cannon of a arm, or some super toolsy young guy that has quite figured it out.

Their first 4 years in baseball their OPS's were not all that different Yelich was about 30 or 40 point higher but after that Yelich numbers explode and Max's look like they are moving backward.  Although Yelich looks like he has come back down to earth recently.  His 770 OPS isn't all that Different from Max's 740 OPS right now.

Trading Max should net a top prospect as you are giving up three year of relatively cheap control of an actual major league baseball player and need to get some future player value with good odds of working out otherwise there would be no reason to make the trade, unless you just need to move salary to help with payroll.  Which is pretty much what the Marlins did with Yelich.  They knew they were not going to be able to afford him so they shopped him and I guess the Brewers had the best offer but that ended up being a horrible trade for Miami.  I don't think one of the four guys worked out and that is the danger of trading.  Even top 100 guys don't always work out but sometimes you have to take on risk to get better because you cannot afford to keep everybody.  Even trying to beat the odds by getting four guys for one doesn't even work out.

I don't think Max returns a Yelich type haul but I do think he brings back a very good player and a lottery ticket or two.

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I would be shocked if Gallo is not beardless and in pinstripes soon. At this point, Texas needs as many lottery tickets as possible, and if they can get Garcia in the package, I think they give in. 

Max might be gone, but I think it will be elsewhere. 

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6 hours ago, Brock Beauchamp said:

Don't assume my motivations because I don't trust a newspaper, especially one with the reputation of the Post. Trusting anything they say anyone says as fact without evidence is generally a mistake, no matter the subject matter. In this particular case, their politics hadn't even factored in my statements, as all I was thinking about was how much of a trash fire their sports page is on a regular basis.

FTFY.

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The Yankees have a number of guys I'd take a chance on.  I'd start with Peraza and add from there.  Gil, Medina, Otto are all interesting.  I'm still intrigued by Garcia.  Even guys like Clint Frazier and Miguel Andujar who at one time showed a lot of promise would be interesting as throw ins.  Frazier to take Kepler's place and Andujar as a RH bat that can play LF & 3B.   

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18 minutes ago, TopGunn#22 said:

Even guys like Clint Frazier and Miguel Andujar who at one time showed a lot of promise would be interesting as throw ins.   

Yeah - definitely as throw-ins but they shouldn't be the meat and potatoes of any deal. I think the Yanks have been chomping at the bit to get those guys out of the organization so it shouldn't be a deal breaker to ask.

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Kind of a shame what's happened to Max Kepler and it's strange that he's considered by many here to be a player without much value to the organization at this point. And if you're one of those who think that way....you might just be correct.

Kep was an absolute beast in 2019, solid defender for his entire career here and came up with some clutch hits. His performance in that Cleveland series is certainly memorable. As was his leadoff HR in the 2020 against the Sox on the first pitch (with Cruz cheering loudly in the background). The OF of Rosario, Bux and Kepler was really fun to watch on both sides of the ball.

Was fun while it lasted, Max. Not sure what happened to you, but I am sure there are more big moments yet to come in your career.

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