Yankees trade for Blue Jays’ All-Star J.A. Happ

Arnold Nichols
July 31, 2018

Presumably, the Yankees can now turn to their bullpen with confidence as soon as the sixth inning. Starting pitcher Dillon Tate, who the Yankees acquired from the Texas Rangers in the Carlos Beltran trade in 2016, is the best prospect who the Yankees dealt to the Orioles in the Britton trade.

The Yankees' rotation behind ace Luis Severino was full of question marks, from Masahiro Tanaka's extensive injury history to CC Sabathia's limited length to Sonny Gray's sheer lack of dependability. He is 7-4 with a 2.98 ERA in 19 career games (18 starts) against Boston, including a sparkling 0.84 ERA in two starts this season.

As Tuesday's trade deadline approaches, more and more players are on the go.

The New York Yankees have bolstered their starting pitching, trading for Toronto Blue Jays left-hander J.A. Happ, the team announced Thursday. You've inspired me to continue to strive for greatness. He can only help, so I'm excited about having the opportunity. "There's a lot of teams out there that want good players, and we've got a lot of them". In 20 starts this season, Happ owns a 10-6 record with a 4.18 ERA, earning him his first All-Star nod.

Happ has enjoyed success over Boston in his career. And on Thursday, they scored arguably the best starter available, veteran lefty J.A. Happ.


Even with the additions of Happ and Britton, the Yankees fall behind their American League rivals in key areas.

This was Happ's second stint with the Jays, after he was traded to Toronto from the Houston Astros midway through the 2012 season and traded to the Seattle Mariners in following the 2014 season.

Toronto also made out well in the deal. Those have been forgettable, but he batted a combined.273/.323/.453 with 29 homers, 68 doubles and three triples in just under 1,000 plate appearances with the Diamondbacks in 2016-17 and he's still just 25. Brandon Drury, whom the Yankees acquired in the offseason, not only was not playing well, but didn't get much playing time due to the emergence of rookie Miguel Andujar.

Drury has played in just 10 games for NY since and has spent most of the season at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, where he is hitting.294 with five homers and 30 RBIs in 55 games.

McKinney, 23, made his Major League debut with the Yankees in 2018, going 1-for-4 in two games before being placed on the disabled list for almost two months with a left shoulder sprain after colliding into the left field wall at Rogers Centre. The 23-year-old McKinney, a first-round pick by the Yankees in 2013, was batting just.230 in 54 games at Triple-A Scranton-Wilkes Barre, with 13 home runs and 32 RBIs.

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