We have already talked about the possibility of New York Mets closer Francisco Rodriguez coming to the Bronx this summer to set up for Mariano Rivera. Let's look at some other relief pitchers the New York Yankees could target as the July 31 non-waiver trading deadline approaches.
Kerry Wood -- The veteran reliever was terrific for the Yankees last season, posting a 0.69 ERA in 24 regular-season games after being acquired from Cleveland at the trade deadline. The 34-year-old Wood chose to go home to Chicago as a free agent in the off season, but several reports have indicated that the Cubs, who are limping through another miserable season, would be open to trading Wood. He is pitching well, with a 2.25 ERA, and it might be worth a shot to see if he can reprise last season's success in New York.
Jonathan Broxton -- The Dodgers closer has a 5.68 ERA in just 14 appearances and has mixxed six weeks with a bruised elbow, but he is intriguing. Remember, Wood had a 6.30 ERA with Cleveland a season ago when GM Brian Cashman acquired him. Broxton had a down 2010, pitching to a 4.04 ERA. The Dodgers are mess, and the 27-year-old Broxton is in the final year of his contract and might come cheap.
Brian Fuentes -- After losin the opportunity to close games the 35-year-old veteran fueded with manager Bob Geren, who was eventually fired. He is not having a good season, pitching to a 4.76 ERA and lefties are hitting .295 against him. For his career, however, lefties hit just .217 off the side-winding lefty. Signed to a two-year deal for $10.5 million that runs through 2012, and with the A's going nowhere GM Billy Beane might be willing to move him.
John Grabow -- The 34-year-old veteran lefty is nothing special, but he has done one thing very well this season. He has gotten left-handed hitters out, as they are hitting just .170 against him. That is a skill the Yankee bullpen could definitely use. Grabow, a member of the Chicago Cubs, can be a free agent at the end of the season.
Randy Choate -- The 35-year-old former Yankee has become the classic definition of a lefty specialist. In 35 appearances for Florida, he has pitched just 14.1 innings. Left-handed batters are hitting just .125 against him this season. The Marlins are last in the NL East and going nowhere, so really what use do they have for a 35-year-old lefty specialist? The shame of this one from the Yankee perspective is they could have signed Choate cheaply as a free agent in the offseason. Instead, they spent $8 million on the sore-shouldered Pedro Feliciano, who seems unlikely to pitch this season.
Matt Capps -- Seems like the Minnesota closer's name comes up every year in deadline trade rumors, and this year is no exception. The Twins are terrible, and while Capps is signed to a reasonable $7.5 million contract thru next season there is no harm in kicking the tires and seeing if Minnesota would move the 27-year-old Capps.