New York Yankees Trade Rumors: Last-Minute Buzz Ahead of the Deadline

Anthony MaimoneFeatured ColumnistJuly 31, 2014

Philadelphia Phillies' Marlon Byrd bats during a baseball game against the Washington Nationals, Friday, July 11, 2014, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Matt Slocum/Associated Press

The 2014 MLB trade deadline has arrived, and the New York Yankees have deemed themselves to be buyers in the market.

Their position in the standings, five-and-a-half games out of first place in the AL East and three games out of the second wild-card spot, coincides with that premise despite others believing the opposite.

Wallace Matthews of is asking the bold question of whether or not the Yankees should actually be sellers.

The truth of the matter is, I am not sure how far back the Yankees would have to be to even consider selling in Derek Jeter's final season.

Jeter entered his career as a winner and there is little doubt he wants to go out fighting to win again. With that in mind, general manager Brian Cashman has been doing a nice job of piecing together small trades to help bolster the roster, and the early returns have been positive. He will try to finish the job today and is looking at several players to help fill the holes on this team.

Despite losing four of the five members of the opening day starting rotation, it is the Yankees offense that has really been holding them back this season. They have been in the market for an outfielder for weeks now, inquiring about guys like Alex Rios and Josh Willingham.

The biggest buzz surrounds Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Marlon Byrd, though.

Bringing in a guy like Byrd would allow Ichiro to go back to being a fourth outfielder, where he flourished earlier in the season. As of July 30, the Phillies and Yankees were still in talks for Byrd, who is having a nice season with the Phillies and could certainly give the Yankees the right-handed power they lack.

However, according to ESPN's Jayson Stark there is still one hurdle stopping the Yankees: Byrd's 2016 vesting option.

As I mentioned earlier, the Yankees starting rotation has been crushed by injuries this season, and despite recent positive reports on Masahiro Tanaka and Michael Pineda's comebacks, pitching help is still a priority.

The Yanks have been in talks with the Chicago White Sox for over a week about acquiring lefty John Danks.

CBS Sports' Jon Heyman says that dialogue is still ongoing, but there is still a large gap, mostly due to the amount of money still owed Danks after this season. I've always viewed the Colorado Rockies' lefty Jorge De La Rosa as a much better target due to his free agency at the end of the season as well as his overall talent being better than Danks'.

Unfortunately Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post says a deal for De La Rosa is unlikely.

Moves may be in the works for the Yankees for someone other than an outfielder or starting pitcher. 

Heyman also reports that the Yankees are in talks with the San Diego Padres for reliever Joaquin Benoit. Bringing in another reliever would make sense, considering how much Joe Girardi has had to use Dellin Betances and David Robertson.

The bottom line is that, with the final hours of the trade deadline approaching, the Yanks expect to be very active in the market.

They won't be making any big splashes, but if the right deals are made, they could make a legitimate playoff push.