In the biggest baseball trade news of the day, the Yankees acquired Triple-A first baseman Garrett Cooper from the Brewers in exchange for left-handed reliever Tyler Webb. I'm kidding, of course.
Webb, 27 next week, pitched only six innings for the Yankees this season after boasting strong numbers in the minors over the past few years. I had clamored for his promotion a while back. I think he could be a useful arm in Milwaukee.
Cooper has had a breakout season with Colorado Springs in Triple-A, though his numbers should be taken with a healthy dose of skepticism. In 320 plate appearances, he has hit a gaudy .366/.428/.652 (171 wRC+). A few things to caveat: he's never hit like this before, the PCL is notoriously offense-friendly, Colorado Springs is a hitter's paradise, and he's already 26 years-old.
This trade will improve the team's first base depth. Prior to this move, Ji-Man Choi was the only true first baseman at the upper levels that was healthy. Greg Bird, Tyler Austin, and Mike Ford are all hurt, and Chris Carter was just released. It's slim pickings at first base, indeed, especially when Austin Romine is getting plenty of reps at the position.
What do the Yankees do immediately with Cooper? Two things could happen, in my opinion. One, he could be stashed in Triple-A for the time being. The other option is that he replaces Rob Refsnyder on the roster and enters a platoon with Choi. I think the latter is more likely. Refsnyder is certainly behind Ronald Torreyes and Tyler Wade as utility players. Further, and more importantly, Refsnyder's probably an inferior right-handed bat off the bench and/or platoon partner at first base compared to Cooper.