The Yankees and Justin Wilson are locked in a room for only a few hours longer.
And it’s a positive one for fans of the middle innings being soaked up by a valuable lefty arm instead of a series of wild cards off the Scranton Shuttle.
Imagine that. Adding valuable veterans instead of banking on a rando emerging!
Wilson, once the Yankees’ seventh-inning guy on 2015’s Wild Card team, was projected to receive around $5 million annually by FanGraphs this offseason.
But if a deal with the Yanks truly is getting close, you can bet he’s ultimately settled for less than that, probably across multiple seasons.
Wilson, fresh off two very good years across town in Queens with the Mets, helped build the Yankee bullpen he appears to be joining. After ’15, the Yanks sold high on him (or so they thought) and acquired six years each of Chad Green and Luis Cessa, both of whom are still around and contributing.
The 33-year-old lefty then scuffled in Detroit (relatively) in 2016 before bouncing back in full the next year, heading to Chicago at the deadline for the Cubs’ playoff push — he struck out 25 men in 17.2 innings, though his ERA was an inflated 5.09.
Over his last three full seasons (one in Chicago, two with the Mets), he’s struck out 136 men in 113.1 innings pitched, and has never posted an FIP above 3.91. His peripherals have largely matched the results.
And if a deal does get completed, he’ll be joining another reliever named “Justin Wilson” when pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training this week.
Yes. That’s the good stuff. “Wilson, great job. No, Wilson, not YOU. You blew it!”
When the Yankees sent Adam Ottavino to Boston and freed up just over $8 million, leaving $10 million or so worth of room beneath the luxury tax threshold, fans fretted that all of that cash would either be pocketed or go to Brett Gardner.
Instead, the Bombers have turned $2.5 million into Darren O’Day, and seem likely to toss ~$3 million or so at Wilson per year.
How willing is Gardner to take an extreme discount? If not, Jay Bruce might have the final word as the fifth outfielder.