Yankees Eyeing Rangers' Ace Yu Darvish?

By Teddy Cecilio, Posted: 05/17/17 02:43AM EDT

The New York Yankees are currently leading the American League (AL) East but they are followed closely by the Baltimore Orioles and the Boston Red Sox. If this tight race continues, the Yankees are expected to boost their pitching rotation before the July 31 non-waiver MLB trade deadline.

Joe Giglio of NJ.com reported that the Yankees may pursue Yu Darvish of the Texas Rangers to beef up their starting pitching. Darvish is currently 3-2 with a 2.96 ERA in eight starts this season. In 108 career starts, Darvish has a 49-32 record with 3.27 ERA, according to ESPN stats.

The Rangers might trade Darvish for prospects before the deadline instead of losing the pitcher completely without getting something as he will be a free agent after this season. Darvish is in the last year of the 6-year, $60 million deal that he signed with the Rangers in 2012, per Spotrac.

Giglio said the team which will trade for Darvish would get the advantage of acquiring Shohei Otani, known as Japan's Babe Ruth, for his pitching and slugging abilities. Otani plans to play in the Major League next season and his choice will be greatly influenced by his close friend Darvish.

Aside from Darvish, the Yankees are reportedly pursuing Gerrit Cole of the Pittsburgh Pirates, according to John Harper of the New York Daily News. Buster Olney of ESPN wrote that the Pirates may trade Cole if their chances do not improve before the trade deadline.

The Yankees picked Cole in the first round in the 2008 MLB draft but he spurned a $4 million signing bonus to pursue a college degree at UCLA. Three years later, the Pirates drafted Cole first overall and signed him to minor league contract with an $8 million signing bonus, the highest signing bonus ever offered to a rookie.

The Yankees currently have Jordan Montgomery, Michael Pineda, CC Sabathia, Luis Severino and Masahiro Tanaka in their starting rotation. They are currently sixth in ERA with 3.77 and 15th in terms of quality starts with 17.

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