Insider calls Yankees MLB’s most ‘uncertain’ team, hints at possible Aaron Judge trade

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The New York Yankees are in no-man’s land.

That’s according to USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, who called the Yankees the most “uncertain” team in MLB as the July 30 non-waiver trade deadline approaches.

Do they still go for it, hoping a switch-hitting outfielder like Ketel Marte of the Diamondbacks or left-handed slugger Joey Gallo can give them a significant boost, with the 0.1 WAR from their outfielders the lowest in baseball? Do they sell for the first time since 2016, finally giving up on catcher Gary Sanchez and outfielder Clint Frazier, trading Gleyber Torres and Gio Urshela, and even listening on right fielder Aaron Judge? Or do they simply stay pat?

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Nightengale has a point. Yes, it’s usually World Series-or-bust for the Yankees. But injuries and season-long slumps have conspired to expose the many flaws on this team (no center fielder, no left-handed bats, question marks in the starting rotation). There’s no quick-fix for general manager Brian Cashman, who wakes up Thursday with a club that’s in third place in the American League East, 5.5 games behind the first-place Tampa Bay Rays. And with owner Hal Steinbrenner appearing committed to keeping the payroll under the luxury tax threshold, there’s little wiggle room for Cashman to pick up a contract before the deadline.

Sure, Cashman may decide to wheel and deal. And sure, the Yankees could squeeze into the playoffs. But the franchise might be better off rebuilding on the fly for next year rather than going for broke with a maddening and inconsistent roster which continues to underperform.

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Mike Rosenstein may be reached at mrosenstein@njadvancemedia.com. Tell us your coronavirus story or send a tip here.

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