Would you believe this?! Just a few months ago, fans were fed up with Giancarlo Stanton. Through the month of July, he simply wasn’t getting the job done for the New York Yankees. His inexplicable strikeouts dwarfed any positive contributions. He was OPSing .794 on Aug. 2. Unacceptable for a player of his caliber.
We went as far to say that the trade for Stanton should’ve cost general manager Brian Cashman his job. At the time … yeah, not entirely out of the question. Stanton is the top contract on the payroll, had missed most of the last two seasons, and was underperforming in his most recent full campaign.
But it ain’t over till it’s over, and Stanton stuffed those words down our throat and made every Yankees fan who ever criticized him look like a total buffoon. He finished the year hitting .273 with 35 homers, 97 RBI and an .870 OPS (136 OPS+). He carried the team throughout the final two months of the season, and these splits prove it:
- August – .327 average, 1.045 OPS, 9 home runs and 25 RBI in 28 games
- Sept./Oct. – .275 average, .898 OPS, 10 home runs and 26 RBI in 28 games
Once upon a time, this deal was viewed as “crippling” for the richest franchise in the sport. But many of us didn’t stop to think that the only thing “crippling” the Yankees was Hal Steinbrenner constantly capping the team’s spending despite growing revenues.
Here we are entering the 2022 season, and there’s no possible way the team can use Stanton’s contract as an excuse not to spend … but don’t worry, they will.
Examining the details of Giancarlo Stanton’s contract with the Yankees.
So here’s where we stand for the rest of Stanton’s time in the Bronx.
- 2022: $29 million
- 2023: $32 million
- 2024: $32 million
- 2025: $32 million
- 2026: $29 million
- 2027: $25 million
- 2028: $25 million team option or $10 million buyout
However, those figures aren’t as high. The Yankees received $30 million from the Marlins after Stanton opted into his contract last year for the years 2021-2027 (seven years, $218 million). Factor in that $30 million, and it’s actually a seven-year, $188 million contract, bringing it to a $26.86 million AAV. The Yankees can use $4.29 million per year to subsidize the remainder of his deal.
When looking at contracts in recent years, here’s why Stanton’s $22.7 million AAV is now a bargain:
- Mike Trout: $36 million per year
- Anthony Rendon: $35 million per year
- Francisco Lindor: $34.1 million per year
- Nolan Arenado: $33.5 million per year
- Corey Seager: $32.5 million per year
- Miguel Cabrera: $31 million per year
- Mookie Betts: $30.4 million per year
- Manny Machado: $30 million per year
- Jose Altuve: $29 million per year
- Justin Upton: $28 million per year
- Giancarlo Stanton: $26.86 million per year
- Christian Yelich: $26 million per year
- Marcus Semien: $25 million per year
- Bryce Harper: $25.4 million per year
- Jason Heyward: $24.5 million per year
- Fernando Tatis Jr.: $24.3 million per year
- Javier Baez: $23.3 million per year
Now, you might prefer to have some of those guys over Stanton, but there’s no question half of this list defines the meaning of “crippling.” We’ve been conditioned to believe that with Stanton because, for a time, he was relegated to mostly DH duties and the $325 million price tag on his extension with the Marlins was the prevailing number that stuck out to you.
But with free agency prices increasing by the hour, assuming Stanton can give us a semblance of his feared bat for the next five years, this will end up being as much of a team-friendly deal as it could possibly be for a mega contract.