Alex Cobb hasn’t yet found a home in 2018. After posting a 3.66 ERA and a 2.4 fWAR (Fangraphs Wins Above Replacement) in 2017, there should be several teams vying for Cobb’s services. However, this deal just doesn’t make sense for the Yankees right now.
Currently, the Yankees Opening Day rotation looks as follows: Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Sonny Gray, CC Sabathia, and Jordan Montgomery. Each of these five starters had good seasons in 2017 and have earned their spots in the rotation. Montgomery comes in as the number five starter, and outperformed Cobb last season.
If the Yankees sign Cobb, do the Yankees move Montgomery to the bullpen? There’s no chance that the Yankees send Montgomery to AAA. In addition, Cobb is said to be looking for at least a three year deal, which means stifling the development of pitchers like Chasen Shreve and Domingo German
The one reason that this signing would make sense is to keep Cobb from pitching for the Yankees opponents. Cobb has a career ERA of 2.99 against the Yankees in 14 starts, holding Yankee batters to a .209 average in 90.1 innings pitched.
CC Sabathia is the only pitcher in the Yankees rotation that Cobb outperformed last season. However, Sabathia is on the books for $10 million in 2018 and brings additional value through his leadership in the clubhouse.
The Yankees have more depth than they’ve had in several years, and Cobb just doesn’t fit with this team right now.