Yankees’ Offseason Free Agent Signings
- Yankees re-sign Joely Rodriguez (B)
Hey! Whatever you gotta do to save money. The Yankees did not exercise Joely Rodriguez’s $3 million team option, had the Rangers pay his $500K buyout, and then re-signed him for $2 million. Easy $1 million in savings right there. Rodriguez is a solid bullpen piece to have at that price and showed he’s capable of at least locking down some sort of relief role in 2022.
- Yankees sign OF Ender Inciarte (B)
The jury is out on this move, but the Yankees need center field help from both an offensive and defensive perspective. Though Inciarte hasn’t been atop his game for three years now, he’s also dealt with injuries and absences that have affected his play. Perhaps a change of scenery can help out both sides. Not too long ago, Inciarte was one of the best defensive center fielders in the game and had a threatening, contact-heavy lefty bat. Any semblance of those traits will help the Yankees.
- Yankees sign SS Roderick Arias (A)
Anytime you sign the No. 1 international prospect in the upcoming class, it’s a huge win. And in this case, Roderick Arias is another power-hitting shortstop, which adds to the massive surplus in the Yankees’ farm system. Whether Arias develops into a capable Major League player or is used as an asset in a trade to acquire something of greater need, the Yankees were shrewd in making this move and cornering the international market yet again.
- Yankees sign 1B Anthony Rizzo (B)
Yankees fans certainly weren’t disappointed when they learned Anthony Rizzo was returning, but this move gets your average “B” since the front office opted to pass on (or miss out on) Freddie Freeman and Matt Olson, two much better first basemen who’d be clear fits beyond the 2022 season. Rizzo signed a two-year deal with an option for the 2023 season, and it’s fairly likely the Yankees will need to either re-sign him or find a new first baseman altogether after this season. Rizzo makes the Yankees better, but it wasn’t the “over-the-top” move many were hoping for.
- Yankees sign OF Tim Locastro (B)
Another solid, but unspectacular move. Locastro is a versatile defender and possesses a ton of speed. Nothing more than a bench player, though. The plus is that he adds upside with his unique characteristics, but as a bench player/Triple-A depth option, we might not see a whole lot out of him throughout the year.
- Yankees sign INF Marwin Gonzalez (C-)
Can’t sign Carlos Correa because of the dirty cheating scandal with the 2017 Houston Astros, but Marwin Gonzalez? Come on down! The Yankees needed a backup shortstop and some bench depth and somehow determined the 33-year-old coming off a career-worst 144 games since the start of 2020 was the move. Gonzalez might be tearing the cover off the ball in spring training, but don’t be surprised if this one turns out to be more like a Jay Bruce situation instead of a DJ LeMahieu one.
- Yankees sign P Shelby Miller (D+)
Anytime you have a dire need to upgrade your starting rotation and pitching staff as a whole, it’s never a bad idea to sign a 31-year-old veteran who hasn’t pitched well since 2015, right? Back in 2015, Miller was an All-Star with the Atlanta Braves, pitching to a 3.02 ERA, 127 ERA+ and 3.45 FIP in 33 starts. The next offseason, he was traded in the blockbuster deal with the Arizona Diamondbacks that had Dansby Swanson as the headliner. Since then? The right-hander has appeared in a grand total of 61 games across five seasons (7.04 ERA!!) and was most recently featured as an ineffective reliever. Don’t know how this will help.