Yankees seeking bullpen help in trade market, free agency

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NEW YORK – The Yankees are looking to do more than just re-sign Aaron Judge.

They’re also looking toward help for the bullpen — from the ninth-inning to the middle-inning roles. And that’s despite the Yankees general manager Brian Cashman saying Thursday night that he feels comfortable with Clay Holmes resuming his closer role.

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“I’m looking to improve our bullpen,” Cashman said at a Covenant House charity event aimed at raising awareness for youth homelessness Thursday night.

“But, yeah, I believe we have a closer. That doesn’t mean we can’t play on someone who is a quote-unquote closer because ultimately the more the merrier. You want as many high-leverage guys that you can collect as you possibly can. So, the bullpen is an area that we want to improve upon. We certainly had some injuries that took us out of having access to some of those guys.”

“I feel really good about Clay Holmes being our closer but that doesn’t preclude us from entertaining outside players via trade or free agency if it makes us better,” Cashman added.

Cashman also said that he believes reliever Mike King (fractured elbow) could be ready in time for Opening Day.

“It would be a great gift to get him back healthy,” Cashman said.

The Yankees figure to go into the spring with Holmes, lefty Wandy Peralta and righty Jonathan Loaisiga as their primary back-end bullpen pieces. They also will bring back Lou Trivino, Ron Marinaccio and others. Aroldis Chapman and Zack Britton each left via free agency. A reunion with Chapman won’t happen but the team could look to bring back Britton.

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Brendan Kuty may be reached at bkuty@njadvancemedia.com.

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