The five Yankees that were eligible filed for salary arbitration today — Ivan Nova, David Robertson, Shawn Kelley, Brett Gardner and Francisco Cervelli — meaning that the team and the players will exchange salary numbers on Friday, and if they can’t come to any agreement on a number, the two sides will take their business to an arbitrator for him to decided what the player’s salary will be next season.
Based on the projections, the five players combined are expected to cost the Yankees somewhere around $15 million next season. Let’s use the numbers projected by MLBTradeRumors.com to see what we have.
Robertson has been one of the league’s best relief pitchers over the past few seasons while setting up for the great Mariano Rivera as the Yankees’ closer. Now that Rivera is gone, Robertson is expected to take over the closer role in 2014, and that in return should give him a bump in pay from the $3.1 million he made last season.
According to MLBTR, Robertson can expect to get a $2.4 million raise through the arbitration process, effectively earning him $5.5 million this season.
Gardner has found himself in an interesting spot heading into the final year on his contract with the Yankees. They can value him as their best trade piece, and he can value himself as a player close the talent level of Jacoby Ellsbury. He’s probably going to have a nice payday once he hits free-agency — or if the Yanks sign him to an extension.
The Yankees might trade him at some point this season is they don’t get the starting pitcher they’re looking for, but until that happens, MLBTR thinks they’ll be paying him $4 million through arbitration.
Nova has seen a lot of ups and downs throughout his short career with the Yankees. He got off to a rough start in 2013, but put together the best second half of the season on the Yankees’ staff. He’s 27 and going through his first year of arbitration, and is expected to get paid nicely for his performance this past season.
He’ll be the Yankees’ third starter in the rotation when the season starts, and MLBTR thinks he’ll be making $2.2 million in the position.
Likely to be the Yankees’ backup catcher behind newly acquired Brian McCann, Cervelli missed most of the 2013 season because of injuries, and would have missed 50 games because of a PED suspension — for those of you don’t remember, he was one of the 12 players that accepted suspensions in the Biogenesis case while Alex Rodriguez will keep fighting until he dies.
Well, he’s back, he’s presumably healthy, and he’s ready to battle for the backup job with Austin Romine this spring. MLBTR also thinks he’ll be ready to play under a $1 million salary.
Kelly pitched pretty well out of the Yankees’ bullpen last season as their go-to strikeout guy late in the game. He wasn’t as great to end the season as he was in the first half, but he still could be one of the go-to pitchers out of the bullpen again this season.
MLBTR has him making $1.5 million through arbitration, which is a pretty fair number, if you ask me.