Red Sox

Yankees GM Brian Cashman happy he didn't trade for Chris Sale

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Yankees GM Brian Cashman happy he didn't trade for Chris Sale

Two years ago, when the Red Sox traded two of their top prospects -- Yoan Moncada and Michael Kopech -- for Chris Sale, the Yankees were in the bidding for the star left-hander as well. But general manager Brian Cashman felt the White Sox' asking price was too high and stepped aside, clearing the way for Sale to head to Boston.

Sale has gone 29-12 in two years with the Sox and helped them to a World Series championship this year, though his contributions in the second half ot the season and the playoffs were limited due to a shoulder injury. But Cashman is having no second thoughts about saying no to the White Sox.

"Thank God I didn’t do that, actually," Cashman told reporters at the general managers' meetings, as reported by the New York Post, "because you’d be missing some serious components of our major league club right now that are under control. We wouldn’t have gotten anywhere if I did anything like that with the White Sox back then."

One of the players the White Sox wanted was Luis Severino, who has emerged as the ace of the Yankee staff. Cashman didn't identify who else he would have to surrender, except to say that they would have had to give up at least one of the team's core position players.

“In this case, you’d be losing starting position players that you have that are young and controllable as well as a pitcher (Severino) who was a Cy Young Award candidate (in 2018) in his own right,” Cashman said. “We just weren’t in the position back then.

"No regrets on that. Good, sound business decisions then.”

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Mookie Betts poses for photo with Michael Jordan at Celtics-Hornets game

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Mookie Betts poses for photo with Michael Jordan at Celtics-Hornets game

Mookie Betts posed with a fan for a photo after the Celtics-Hornets game on Monday night.

That fan just so happened to be Michael Jordan. Betts, a Jordan Brand athlete, posted the photo to his Twitter along with an appropriate GOAT emoji.

As for the Celtics game, Betts couldn't bring his winning mojo the C's way as Jordan's Hornets were victorious, 117-112.

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Yankees bolster pitching staff with acquisition of James Paxton

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Yankees bolster pitching staff with acquisition of James Paxton

The Yankees didn't have enough pitching or offense to keep up with the Red Sox in 2018. So Brian Cashman did something about it on Monday afternoon, adding a front-of-the-rotation starter to New York's pitching staff.

James Paxton is now a Yankee, with Cashman nabbing the 30-year-old lefty from Seattle -- though the Yanks had to pay a hefty price, with top prospect LHP Justus Sheffield heading to the Mariners along with OF Don Thompson-Williams and RHP Erik Swanson.

Despite a couple of stints on the disabled list, Paxton threw a career-high 160.1 innings in 2018, racking up an 11-6 record with a 3.76 ERA and 208 strikeouts. His strikeouts/9 of 11.68 trailed only Gerrit Cole, Max Scherzer, and Justin Verlander among all pitchers who threw at least 160 innings.

Paxton's stellar 2018 also included a no-hitter against the Blue Jays and a 16-strikeout gem against Oakland, both in May. Oh, and there was also this... 

Another benefit for the Yankees? Paxton is cheap and under team control for two more seasons, as he's projected to make about $9 million in 2019 after arbitration.

And Paxton could be Cashman's opening salvo in an offseason arms race. Jon Morosi reports that New York remains interested in both Patrick Corbin and J.A. Happ, treating starting pitching as a priority over adding another big bat. 

Your move, Dave Dombrowski.

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