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Yankees: New York’s biggest MLB trade deadline surprise

Frankie Montas, Harrison Bader, Jordan Montgomery, Yankees, Cardinals, Yankees trade deadline

It was another productive MLB Trade Deadline for the 70-36 New York Yankees. They made numerous moves, including the acquisitions of Frankie Montas, Andrew Benintendi, and Harrison Bader, while parting ways with Jordan Montgomery and the struggling Joey Gallo.  Overall, the Yankees undoubtedly got better as they look to make a run at a World Series come October.

Here is the biggest surprise trade of them all that likely caught a lot of people off-guard.

Biggest Surprise From Yankees’ Trade Deadline

Trading Montgomery, acquiring Bader

Getting Montas was expected. Same with Benintendi. Both guys will instantly help the Yankees both on the mound and at the plate, but shipping off Montgomery came seemingly out of nowhere. The lefty has been poor at times this season, but overall, he’s done well for New York, going 3-3 with a 3.69 ERA in 21 starts. Montgomery only walked 23 batters in 114.1 innings of work, too, and gave Aaron Boone quite a bit of consistency.

It’s just a bit of a puzzling move because the southpaw was comfortable with the Yankees. There were zero signs of a trade like this coming, either. He rounded out the rotation nicely and usually gave the Bronx Bombers a chance to win every fifth day. For the Cardinals, it’s a nice pickup though. They get a guy who can immediately step into the staff and make an impact and his role could be even bigger because of St. Louis’s lack of rotation depth amid injuries to Jack Flaherty and Steven Matz.

The Yankees did pull off a nice swap, however. Harrison Bader is one of the best defensive center-fielders in the game and has a 93 wRC+ this season. Bader also posted 110 wRC+ in 2021. While the speedy Bader is currently out with a foot injury, he’s expected back in September. Offensively, he was hitting .256 with five bombs before heading on the IL. Bader will slot in nicely in the middle of the Yankees’ order but it’s his defense that will make an instant difference for this team. Plus, he grew up not far away from the Bronx and always dreamed of playing for this storied franchise.

Although the Montgomery move did come as a surprise, it’s not exactly a bad trade. After all, they replaced him with Montas, an All-Star right-hander who was simply just rotting on an Oakland team that is in the midst of a rebuild. The Dominican is one of the best starters in the sport and has a 3.18 ERA this season, striking out 109 in 104.2 innings. He’s under team control through 2023 and likely profiles to be the Yankees’ No. 2 starter behind Gerrit Cole. Montas has overpowering stuff with a high 90s fastball and a couple of absolutely nasty off-speed pitches. His potential can really shine through now on a legitimate contender. New York now has two true aces at the top-end of the staff. There is really no way you can’t love that.

Overall, the Yankees absolutely improved at the trade deadline. Sure, Brian Cashman shipped off Montgomery and left the rotation with just one southpaw in Nestor Cortes, but you can’t deny what Montas brings to the table. This team is already the best in baseball and they strengthened their roster in almost every way. Plus, getting rid of Gallo was a must as well and we know for a fact the fans will approve of it.