Remaining Free Agents Who Make Sense for the Yankees
While the New York Yankees have likely made their big moves for the winter, there are still a few free agents on the market who could provide the club with an upgrade for a reasonable price.
According to New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman, the New York Yankees are more or less financially “tapped out” following the signing of closer Aroldis Chapman to a five-year $86 million deal during the Winter Meetings.
The club’s intention to get under the luxury tax by the 2018 season has left the GM operating with very little breathing room for the first time in recent memory.
The Yanks have shed considerable payroll this season with the departures of expensive veterans like Mark Teixeira, Carlos Beltran, Andrew Miller, and Brian McCann, and have several more big deals set to expire after 2017, including those of Alex Rodriguez, CC Sabathia, and possibly Masahiro Tanaka.
There’s a strong possibility that the club will finally move Brett Gardner this offseason as well, saving even more money. As long as they don’t hand out any huge, long-term contracts prior to the 2018 campaign, principal owner Hal Steinbrenner should be able to easily stay under the necessary ceiling.
With that in mind, there seems to be very little reason why the Yankees couldn’t make a few, carefully targeted short-term investments on the free agent market this winter to try and improve the team’s chances in 2017, similar to the thinking behind the Matt Holliday signing.
The Chapman signing was a clear win-now move, but unless a lot goes right with the development of the Baby Bombers in 2017, the Yankees are not currently a win-now team. However, they are close enough that with a few more key signings and a little luck, it’s not hard to see them making a push for a Wild Card spot.
The 2016-2017 free agent class has been picked pretty clean after the Winter Meetings, but there are a few players remaining who could help next year’s club.