Almost every team in baseball has its fair share of bad contracts, some definitely more than others. The Yankees are no exception because over the past couple of years they’ve given out a few contracts they probably wish they could take back.
There are more good contracts than bad ones on the current Yankees roster as I showcased in an article for YGY on Friday. However, there’s a chance the bad might end up outweighing the good down the road because of the length of some of the contracts you’re about to see below.
All of them could still end up working out for the Yanks, but so far that hasn’t been the case so it’s hard to be overly optimistic about the future. Here’s the list…
Luis Severino: 4 years, $40M (entering year 2)
Aaron Hicks: 7 years, $70M (entering year 2)
J.A. Happ: 2 years, $34M with a vesting option for 2021 (entering year 2)
Giancarlo Stanton: 10 years, $265M (entering year 3)
A little over a year ago the Yankees signed Hicks and Severino to big extensions at the start of spring training. It didn’t take long for both of them to get hurt. Hicks didn’t make his season debut until mid-May because of a back injury and then in early September, he suffered an elbow injury which forced him to miss the rest of the regular season and the ALDS against the Twins.
He showed some real grit when he returned and helped the Yanks in the ALCS against the Astros but that likely ended up making the injury worse. After the season ended the team announced he would need Tommy John surgery which he underwent at the end of October.
Sevy didn’t make his debut until the middle of Septemeber due to rotator cuff inflammation in his right shoulder and a strained lat muscle. During the offseason, he started feeling discomfort in his forearm when he would throw his changeup and that continued when he reported to spring training. On February 27th he also underwent TJ surgery and will be out for at least the next 12 to 14 months.
Hicks will be back this season unlike Sevy, but his contract is worse for one main reason.
Fourth Worst: Severino
When the Yankees announced these extensions I don’t think anyone had any issue with the deal Sevy got. At the time it looked like it had the potential to be a huge steal because he was still only 25 years old and worth way more than just $10M a season.
Unfortunately, that hasn’t been the case so far, as the first half of his contract has been nothing short of a disaster. Not all hope is lost however because Sevy should recover fully and at his age, he’ll have a chance to come back stronger than ever and regain his All-Star form for the final two years of his deal.
Third Worst: Hicks
Hicks’ contract looks much worse because of the length of the deal. Sure he’s worth a $10M salary when he’s healthy but giving him a seven-year extension seemed excessive given his injury history. Since 2017 Hicks has had at least one IL stint in every season and he’s averaged only 95 games played during that span.
Again, the money isn’t the issue here because Hicks is a terrific all-around player who can impact the game in so many ways. The problem is he hasn’t been able to stay on the field on a consistent basis and as he gets older it’s likely only going to get harder for him to do so.