Sports Outside the Beltway

Why did the Yanks trade ‘Everyday’ Scott Proctor?

Did Brian Cashman trade away Scott Proctor to force Joe Torre to use other bullpen options? Yes, according to Tyler Kepner -

On July 8, the day before the All-Star Game break, the Yankees led the Angels by 10 runs when Scott Proctor was sent in to pitch the eighth inning. To the Yankees’ decision makers, this was an obvious sign that Manager Joe Torre would probably always favor Proctor over a pitcher just up from the minors, no matter how promising that pitcher seemed.

So when the trading deadline arrived at 4 p.m. yesterday, the Yankees took away Torre’s go-to reliever, shipping Proctor to the Los Angeles Dodgers for the utility infielder Wilson Betemit.

The Yankees refused to trade the Class AAA starter Ian Kennedy or center fielder Melky Cabrera for the Texas Rangers’ Eric Gagné, who went to Boston. They also rejected the Atlanta Braves’ late offer of Bob Wickman for Kyle Farnsworth, a potential swap of relievers in which the Yankees would have had to pay the remainder of Farnsworth’s salary.

The Proctor trade cleared the way for two converted starters, Joba Chamberlain and Ross Ohlendorf, or for Edwar Ramírez to assume an important role in the Yankees’ bullpen. Ramírez, who went two weeks without pitching when he was with the Yankees in July, will probably be recalled today.

Good to see that Edwar will (perhaps) finally get the chance he deserves. If Joba comes up and pitches anywhere close to how he has in the minors, he’ll be an immediate upgrade over Proctor. Betemit is just 25, and despite batting just .231, has an .834 OPS (thanks to his great eye and good power), he plays solid D at 3b, and can also play SS.

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