When Brian Cashman heard those around the industry predicting the Yankees were the favorites to land Shohei Ohtani, the general manager cringed.

Well, the industry will have Cashman cringing again, since many believe the Yankees’ minor league system has what it takes to acquire right-hander Gerrit Cole from the Pirates without sacrificing top prospects Gleyber Torres and Estevan Florial.

And unlike the Ohtani situation, the Yankees aren’t at the mercy of where Cole wants to play.

“The Yankees and Houston have the players,” an NL evaluator said. “And the Yankees’ talent is closer to the big leagues than the Astros’.’’

FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported this weekend Pirates GM Neal Huntington asked the Yankees for Torres, the Yankees’ top prospect. The ask didn’t surprise many because Huntington has a reputation of being difficult to deal with since he has a hunger to win the trade instead of making a move that helps each side.

“I don’t see Brian Cashman doing that, not after working so hard to get [Torres] from the Cubs,’’ the NL scout said of the 2016 deal that sent Aroldis Chapman to the Cubs for Torres, a shortstop who will likely debut with the Yankees at second or third this season. Torres, 21, was limited to a combined 55 games between Double-A Trenton and Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre this past season due to Tommy John surgery on his left (non-throwing) elbow.