UPDATE: The Yankees finalized a deal with Roderick Arias Saturday for only $4 million. There’s wiggle room there!
For months (years?), Yankees fans with their eyes firmly trained on the international market have greatly anticipated a wild card addition to the team’s future shortstop picture.
In addition to Anthony Volpe, Oswald Peraza, and 2021-22 Free Agent Shortstop TBD (Mr. Stopgap!), the Yankees have long been predicted to land 17-year-old switch-hitting star Roderick Arias, the crown jewel of this year’s signing period.
Luckily for all of us who love distractions from the MLB roster’s holes, the day Arias’ signing can become official is fast approaching. Pending an absolute catastrophe, the talented future star will be a New York Yankee on Jan. 15, and we’ll no longer have to speak in hypotheticals.
And, with that date approaching, we’re also soon to learn everything possible about his bonus number. Spoiler alert: it’s a lot.
The Yankees are armed with $5.1 million of international bonus money this year, and though the acquisition of such funds briefly became a running joke when Brian Cashman traded Adam Warren away for the mysterious cash in the middle of a pennant race, it’s no laughing matter this time of year.
New York will reportedly use nearly its entire allotted pool on Arias, so let’s hope the hype matches the product.
Yankees getting closer to Roderick Arias signing; details
With $5.1 million at their disposal, the Yankees won’t go scorched earth and select several different hyped prospects to plunder the pool for everyone else. They’re laser focused on the singular best of the bunch.
Heading into the official opening of the signing period, Arias hasn’t lost a single mark off his pedigree; he’s been No. 1 in the class for years, and remains so.
Though MLB Pipeline highlights his potential to become a “plus-plus hitter” with standout power, especially from the right side, we were most impressed by the defensive instincts they extol alongside his big bat.
Per the experts:
"The top prospect in the class, Arias has plus-arm potential. His throws are accurate and effortless, and he’s always in a position to make them. He also shows good footwork with soft hands and above-average range."
With the cancellation of the Rule 5 Draft (along with the entire, uh, MLB offseason), the opening of the international signing period is the one significant date still left on the prospect hugger’s calendar.
For Yankees fans, it should be one simple, expensive, cut-and-dried story on Saturday: get us Arias’ signature and get out of there.