Zack Wheeler pitches against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the first inning at Citi Field.

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Yankees Eye Wheeler, But Mets Raise Asking Price

Other Teams Also Interested In Pitcher

July 30, 2018 - 11:50 am
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By WFAN.com

The Yankees are among a handful of teams making a push for Mets pitcher Zack Wheeler, but he apparently won't come cheap.

WFAN baseball insider Jon Heyman reported Monday that the Phillies, Brewers and Braves are also in the mix for the 28-year-old right-hander. However, Heyman added that no team has even come close to meeting the Mets' asking price and it's possible Wheeler could remain in Flushing. MLB's non-waiver trade deadline is Tuesday at 4 p.m.

The Mets are apparently convinced Wheeler, who missed the 2015 and 2016 seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery, has turned a corner, and they'd like a return that reflects that. 

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Wheeler is 5-6 this season with a 4.11 ERA. In his last eight starts, he is 3-1 with a 2.96 ERA, and on Sunday at Pittsburgh, he tossed six scoreless innings.

The Yankees just upgraded their starting pitching Thursday by trading for former Blue Jay J.A. Happ. But with a World Series-or-bust mentality, general manager Brian Cashman may be looking to further fortify his rotation, which also includes an inconsistent Sonny Gray, a 38-year-old CC Sabathia and a suddenly struggling Luis Severino. 

A high asking price for Wheeler could very well eliminate the Yankees from contention. In other trade discussions, Cashman has reportedly been reluctant to part ways with top prospects, namely pitcher Justus Sheffield.

Wheeler has one more season of arbitration eligibility before becoming a free agent.

The Yankees are also interested in Tampa Bay righty Chris Archer. Heyman reported that the Rays sent two scouts to watch Sheffield pitch for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Saturday but that the San Diego Padres are the favorites to land Archer.