Yankees are having an even worse offseason than the Red Sox


Impatient Red Sox fans can take solace in the fact that the Yankees have been even more inactive than their favorite team. The Bronx Bombers haven’t signed anybody of note through these uncharacteristically frantic early days of free agency, unless you count former Red Sox shortstop José Peraza.

Ex-Yankees lefty James Paxton may not be a top of the rotation arm, but at least he possesses a better big league track record than a journeyman middle infielder who hit .225 during the Red Sox’ moribund 2020 campaign (though Paxton is recovering from Tommy John surgery, so this deal is more about the team options in 2023 and 2024).

The Yankees were exposed last season as a plodding one-dimensional team that relies on the home run and struggles to pitch. They could’ve used a variety of marquee players who signed elsewhere, including athletic outfielder Starling Marte or pitchers Jon Gray and Kevin Gausman. Yet, Brian Cashman has come up empty. All it takes is a quick gander on social media to see the palpable outrage among members of Yankee Nation.

Meanwhile, the Mets spent big on Max Scherzer, while also bringing in Marte, Mark Canha and Eduardo Escobar.

Hal Steinbrenner has been under fire for his relative lack of spending in comparison to his father, and the recent report that he supported a proposal to lower the luxury tax doesn’t help matters. The Yankees weren’t over the luxury tax last season, just like the Red Sox.

But unlike the Red Sox, the Yankees lack any sort of championship nucleus. Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton are fearsome sluggers, but they’re surrounded by a bevy of strikeout artists and underachievers. There’s no Xander Bogaerts or Rafael Devers walking through that door, or even a talent like Kiké Hernández. Alex Cora is a substantially better manager than Aaron Boone.

The last time we saw the Yankees’ $324 million ace, Gerrit Cole, he couldn’t make it out of the third inning at Fenway Park.

Make no mistake: the Red Sox have significant questions in their rotation as well. They let Eduardo Rodriguez walk and will now be depending even more heavily on Chris Sale, who struggled mightily in his return from Tommy John surgery. But the Yankees’ rotation is even more thin. They’re relying on a pupu platter of arms behind Cole, including the oft-injured Luis Severino and unproven hurlers such as Jameson Taillon and Jordan Montgomery.

Most of the top spending teams in baseball have been quiet in free agency so far, with mediocre or moribund clubs such as the Rangers, Mets and Angels throwing around most of the cash. But few of those teams possess as many holes as the Yankees, and that’s including the Red Sox.

It looks like the Red Sox won’t have to worry about losing an arm’s race, even with their conservative approach.