NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A little D-Rob redux was just not to be.
Having put in a claim over the weekend, the Yankees had hoped to work out a trade for closer David Robertson. However, the veteran right-hander was pulled back by the Chicago White Sox and Monday’s 2 p.m. waiver deadline came and went without a deal, CBSSports.com/WFAN baseball insider Jon Heyman reported.
Robertson, 30, rose to prominence as a setup man with the Yankees from 2008-13 before taking over the closer duties in 2014, following the retirement of legendary Mariano Rivera. Despite racking up 39 saves that season, Robertson and the Yankees were unable to reach an agreement on a long-term deal and he instead left via free agency, signing a four-year, $46 million contract with the White Sox.
So far with Chicago this season, Robertson has converted 27 of 33 save opportunities to go along with his 2.60 ERA and superb .88 WHIP in 48 appearances.
Heyman had said in an earlier report that the odds of the White Sox trading Robertson were long, because they were still high on him and didn’t feel over-burdened by the remaining money and years on his contract.
Other reports suggested the Yankees put in the claim simply to keep AL East rival Toronto from getting Robertson.
The second-place Yankees, who entered play Monday 1 1/2 games behind the Blue Jays in the division, have question marks in their rotation due to the health of starters Michael Pineda and CC Sabathia, not to mention concerns about the partial ulnar collateral ligament tear in Masahiro Tanaka’s right elbow.
General manager Brian Cashman was reportedly open to the idea of adding an innings-eating starter prior to the non-waiver trade deadline on July 31, but found the asking prices — believed to be some of the Yankees’ top prospects — too high, and as a result flirted with the idea of constructing a super bullpen.
Already with power arms in Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller, Justin Wilson, Chasen Shreve and Adam Warren, the Yankees were reportedly in hot pursuit of San Diego closer Craig Kimbrel late last month before the Padres took him off the block.
It now appears that the Yankees will pursue the postseason as currently constructed.