2. Nick Ahmed
Ahmed doesn’t have the offensive upside that makes Polanco such an attractive trade target, but he does enjoy the distinction of being one of the top defensive middle infielders in the game. That allowed him to post a healthy WAR of 4.5 last season despite relatively pedestrian offensive numbers.
At 29 years of age, it’s also the perfect time for the Diamondbacks to examine dealing him. They’re not going to give Ahmed away, but if they can turn him into multiple young regulars it’s a deal they will have to make. Fortunately for the Yankees, they’ve got the assets to make that sort of deal happen.
The only question Cashman needs to answer is whether or not Ahmed gives this team enough upside. He isn’t going to be the long-term answer at shortstop, but he could be a terrific placeholder until the organization can come up with a younger player capable of manning the position for the next decade.
This trade doesn’t need to contain a ton of players to function. Instead, look for the Yankees to keep things rather simple. Cashman will give up quality pieces to acquire Ahmed, but he’s not going to mortgage the farm system.