The Yankees traded for five established major leaguers in the month of July, and front office personnel from around the league took notice.
That includes Dave Dombrowski, the Boston Red Sox’s president of baseball operations. The 61-year-old executive didn’t hold back when asked for a reaction to the Yankees’ aggressive dealing, comparing them to one of the most dominant sports franchises in recent memory.
“You mean the Golden State Warriors?” he said. “Yeah, I think the Golden State Warriors have significantly made some moves. I expected it. I would’ve been surprised if they didn’t. But I think Brian [Cashman, the Yankees’ general manager] probably has made them the Golden State Warriors and we’re the significant underdogs, when I’m listening to the MLB Network.”
It’s a flattering comparison, though not necessarily accurate – while the 2016-17 Warriors won 67 games, six more than anyone else in the Western Conference, the Yankees are just 57-47 and could miss the playoffs if they falter down the stretch.
Still, the additions of David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle turned a merely good bullpen into a great one, while third baseman Todd Frazier and starting pitchers Sonny Gray and Jaime Garcia should provide important depth to a roster that needed some.
The Warriors comparison dates back to last offseason, when Cashman compared Dombrowski’s Red Sox to the NBA super-team. Upon hearing that Boston had acquired White Sox ace Chris Sale, Cashman referred to Sale and fellow starters David Price, Rick Porcello and Eduardo Rodriguez as “their Durant and Green and Thompson and Curry.”
Now the tables are turned, and it’s Dombrowski marveling at the Yankees’ stacked roster.
“I would anticipate, like [Cashman] said earlier in the year that he didn’t know how the Red Sox would lose a game, I think it’ll be the same,” Dombrowski said. “I don’t know how they’ll lose a game right now. They made some good moves. They made their club significantly better.”
The Red Sox also improved their roster at the trade deadline, though to a lesser extent. Dombrowski shipped three prospects to the New York Mets for reliever Addison Reed, who posted a 2.09 ERA during his two years in Flushing. He should provide a huge boost to Boston’s unreliable bullpen.
“We like him a lot,” Dombrowski said. “We think he can come in and be a premium setup guy for us.”
Through July, the Red Sox sit at 58-49, a half-game adrift of the Yankees in the American League East. They will continue their series against the Cleveland Indians on Tuesday.